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Profesjonelle harpister

Norway is home to many talented professional harpists.  Meet them in the biographies below, listed by music category. 

Classical Harpists

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Giselle Boeters

Giselle Boeters is principal harpist at the Stavanger Symphony Orchestra, in Norway. She has held the same position at the Minas Gerais Philharmonic Orchestra, in Belo Horizonte, Brazil. Giselle was also a frequent guest player at Staatskapelle Berlin, NDR Elbphilharmonie Orchestra, the Munich Philharmonic and the Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra.

Native of the Netherlands, Giselle has studied at the Conservatorium van Amsterdam and at the Hochschule für Musik “Hanns Eisler”, Berlin, from where she graduated with highest marks and distinction. Upon her graduation, Giselle was a member of the orchestra academy at the Staatskapelle Berlin for two years.

As a featured soloist she has performed harp concertos with the Symphony Orchestra of the Conservatorium van Amsterdam, the Nederlands Jeugd Strijkorkest and the Brandenburger Symphoniker, the Taipei Symphony Orchestra and the Minas Gerais Philharmonic Orchestra.

Giselle has also a passion for teaching and sharing her valuable knowledge with her students. She has taught the harp class of the Musikgymnasium Carl Philipp Emanuel in Berlin. She was also a lecturer at the Lübeck Academy of Music in Germany. Since she moved to Norway, in August of 2019 she has been teaching harp students at the Stavanger Kulturskole and online students throughout Europe, Brazil and the United States.

Giselle Boeters - foto RafaelMotta_0001.

Birgitte Volan Håvik

Birgitte Volan Håvik has been a soloist with the Oslo Philharmonic since 2008.

In the last years, her work with the Oslo Philharmonic has taken her to chamber music festivals and concert series in Norway, as well as harp festivals in Finland, Sweden, and Hong Kong. She has also been a soloist with the Oslo Philharmonic many times.  In October 2020 she played Debussy's Dances for Harp and Strings, directed by Klaus Mäkelä.

She has also taught the youth at the Norwegian Youth Symfonoy and the Youth Philharmonic in Norway and in 2016 she worked with the Orchestra of the Americas.  She has also been a consultant for harp auditions in Norway and Denmark.

Birgitte is one of many Norwegian harpists who started her education at the cultureal school in Trondheim in Willy Postma's class.  She continued her studies with Will Postma in the Norwegian Academy of Music and as an Erasmus-student in CNSMD Lyon with Fabrice Pierre. 

Birgitte has played Mozart's Concert for flute, harp and orcestre together with Per Flemström and Philharominc for LaWo Classics.  You can also her her in the reocording  Tine Thing Helseth, conductor Daniel Sæther and Det norske kammerorkester, as well as many recordsings with the Oslo Philharmonic

Contact here for performance bookings.

 

Photo Credit :  Lars Bryngelsson

Runi Wold Kristiansen

Runi lives in Sætre, Asker in the middle of the Oslo fjord. She is a graduate of  Oslo University and Norges Musikkhøgskole. 

Runi manages her own company company and works as a freelance harpist, cultural communicator as well as teaching harp in the Kulturskolen. (cultural school)

She wants to make the harp familiar to people as a solo instrument and in small ensembles. She has had a number of concerts in churches, institutions, private events and business companies.  

Runi seeks the silent in music and uses the harp as a meditative instrument.  In 2016, her CD «Harp in a Landscape» was released and she has also been involved in other recordings.

 

Contact

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Isabelle Perrin

Isabelle Perrin has been co-principal harpist with the Orchestre National de France for over twenty years.  Invitations to give recitals and concerto performances with orchestras worldwide have led to a truly international career. She has recorded CDs of solo, chamber music and concertos from the eighteenth century to the present day.  In addition, she is a devoted teacher, having taught at the Ecole Normale de Musique de Paris for fifteen years and given masterclasses round the globe.  She is Professor of Harp and Head of Strings at the Norwegian Academy of Music, is an appointed Visiting Professor at the Royal Academy of Music in London and has been Visiting Professor at the Music Academy in Krakow, Poland, in 2013-2014. 

President and Artistic Director to the 6th European Harp Symposium held in France in 2004, Isabelle is currently Artistic Director to the World Harp Congress organization and to the Norwegian Harp Association. She is also an Honorary Associate to the Royal Academy of Music in London.

In 2007, Isabelle Perrin was knighted in the French Order of the Arts et Lettres by the French Government in recognition to her involvement in the international musical world.

Elisabeth Sønstevold

Elisabeth Sønstevold, (born 1942), is the daughter of the composers Maj and Gunnar Sønstevold. The bassoonist Knut Sønstevold is her brother.

She began her studies with Oscar Harlem in Oslo, then 6 years of study at the Akademie für Musik und Darstellende Kunst in Vienna, with a final diploma, further a year of studies with the harpist Marisa Robles in London.

Elisabeth Sønstevold was the Oslo Philharmonic's solo harpist from 1967 to 2007. She debuted in the University's Hall in Oslo in January 1968. Throughout her career she has had extensive solo and chamber music activities, including a number of productions for radio, television and gramophone.

She has performed works written for her by her parents, and a number of other Norwegian composers. At the Bergen Festival in 1987, when Gunnar Sønstevold was the festival composer of the year, she played his Concert for Obo, Harp and orchestra.

Elisabeth Sønstevold has played in a number of orchestras in Norway and Sweden, including tours with the Stockholm Philharmonic and the Swedish Radio Symphony Orchestra.

Elisabeth Sønstevold was also the orchestra's main elected representative to the musicians union
for two different periods of time.

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Uno Alexander Vesje

Uno Alexander Vesje (1989) is a Norwegian harpist and composer. Uno studied harp performance at the Norwegian Academy of Music and Manhattan School of Music in New York City and composition at the NTNU in Trondheim.

 

Uno has won a number of prizes and scholarships for his harp compositions as well as his performances on the instrument. His accolades include silver medal at the 5th Manhattan International Music Competition (2020), third prize in the Harp Column New Music Contest (2020), Winner of the 6th USA International Harp Competition Composition Contest (2019) and third prize in the International Edvard Grieg Composition Contest (2014).

 

His international debut as performer/composer took place at Carnegie Hall in New York City in 2016 and Uno has performed as a soloist of his own compositions and projects in venues and festivals around the world. Uno has performed as a soloist with orchestras such as the Bergen Philharmonic Orchestra, Arctic Philharmonic Sinfonietta and performed the world premiere of his own harp concerto with the Trondheim Symphony Orchestra & Opera. Uno has released two solo albums with his own compositions, ​Poems From a City​ (2014) and ​Oslo(ve)​ (2017). Uno substitutes as an orchestral harpist all around Norway.

www.unoharp.com

Sidsel Walstad

After graduating from her studies in Oslo, Indiana, and Copenhagen Sidsel Walstad has been living her dream.

Today she is a highly sought-after musician, both as a soloist with her own exiting projects and as a chamber musician. She is the solo harpist in The Norwegian Radio Orchestra (Kringkastingsorkesteret), a position she previously held in the Norwegian National Opera Orchestra.

One of the most thrilling characteristics of Sidsel’s artistic life is her ability to cross genres and to transcend and expand the traditional definition of harp music. In her use of electrical harps she has been a pioneer, exploring new musical terrain where fuzz and funky rhythms are musical elements in extraordinary interaction with the traditional harp sound. This musical versatility is evident in her extensive collaboration with leading Norwegian artists representing many musical expressions: Karpe Diem, Ne-Yo, Sissel Kyrkjebø, Silje Nergaard, Solveig Kringlebotn, Secret Garden, Helene Bøksle, and many others. She has demonstrated her versatility and musical inventiveness on many tours in Norway and abroad. She has also been featured at many festivals.

Sidsel is also well known for her ice-harp. In 2010 she cooperated with renowned “ice-musician” Terje Isungset, and together they developed the largest ice-harp in the world. She was featured at the opening concert at the Ice Music Festival in 2009 at Geilo, Norway.

Sidsel is a harpist beyond the ordinary. She surprises, fascinates and captivates her audiences – again and again.

www.sidsel.no 

www.facebook.com/sidselharpe/

Photo credit: Anna-Julia Granberg

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Folk Harpists

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Tone Hulbækmo

Musician, singer, composer.


In addition to singing, Tone Hulbækmo plays the Norwegian folk harp, lyre, pump organ and piano. Tone is a crossover artist with folk music as her foundation music. She is always searching for new paths, picking up elements from other musical genres and bringing them into the folk music tradition.

Tone composes her own songs, composes theatre music and choir repertoire. She plays in concerts for children and youth and has cooperation projects with musicians from other cultures. In all her work the harp plays a very important role.

Tone was one of the first to take up again the old extinct Norwegian folk harp tradition and has on her own developed a true personal and distinct style of playing the instrument. Her first solo album Kåmmå no from 1983 with folk music from her home valley Østerdalen was the first ever recording of the Norwegian folk harp.

Tone uses the harp for folk music, world music, medieval music and for modern singer/songwriter tradition. She accompanies herself singing, plays traditional instrumentals, composes new music for the harp, explores and broaden the harp`s register for expression and techniques.

She has been touring all over the world, released 10 albums and was awarded Spellmannsprisen three times, the equivalent to Grammy.

Website

Contact for Bookings

Beth Kollé

Beth Kollé is a professional harper from Seattle, Washington State. As a Norwegian-American, she specializes in Nordic traditional folk music for harp, flute and voice.

 

Beth has lived in Norway, and has taught and performed, including leading three concert tours with multiple harps through southern Norway and Sweden. She had the honor of performing with Kirsten Bråten Berg both in Norway and in the United States.

 

Beth provides teaching and coaching internationally, using online video platforms, and has published ten books of harp arrangements and multiple recordings.  

 

www.bethkolle.com.

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Stein Villa

Stein Villa has played Norwegian harp since 1990 and uses the instrument, together with a number of other Norwegian folk music instruments, in disseminating traditional music to kindergartens, schools, colleges and universities. He is widely used as a guest lecturer at the Ole Bull Academy, and has always tried to create the Norwegian harp's natural place in the by using it in various ways and in different contexts. Over the years, he has made several booklets with simple harp arrangements of Norwegian folk tunes.

Stein introduced the Norwegian harp at Landskappleiken and has won the class for older folk musical instruments a number of times. He has contributed to several CD releases, both his own and others'.

 

In addition to teaching harp playing at various festivals, events and other occasions in Norway, he has held courses at the Harp Meeting in Germany five times, the first time in the 90s, the last time in 2019. He has also held concerts in the Nordic countries, in the Baltics, Germany, the Czech Republic, France and the United Kingdom.

 

Through his work with Nordic Harp Meeting, he has helped to spread knowledge about the Norwegian harps to other environments internationally and to facilitate cooperation between them.

Contact for bookings

Rebecca Harrisson

Rebecca Harrisson is a harpist, storyteller and freelance writer, living with her folk musician husband, near Oslo, Norway.

 

She has been playing harp since 2005 and is active in several folk bands including the Harrisson Duo and the Almost Irish Quartet.

 

She often incorporates stories into her concerts. She offers workshops on Storytelling with Harp online and in person.

Please visit her website for more information about upcoming performances and workshops

Harpstories.com

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More Harpists

Professional Members not listed above

Classical

  • Ela Dabrowska (Bryne)

  • Ellen Sejersted Bødker (Oslo)

  • Johanna Engedal (Kristiansand)

  • Julie Rokseth (Trondheim)

  • Lara Macrí (Oslo)

  • Malgorzata Sundberg (Porsgrunn)

  • Ruth Potter (Trondheim)

  • Willy Postma (Hoston)

Folk

  • Kris Guleng (Location)

Genre bending

  • Julie Rokseth, Tango and Classical, (Location)

  • Frank Wilhelmsen, Designer of a harp damper, (Location)

Non-member Professional Harpists in Norway

Classical

  • Ida Aubert Bang (Oslo)

  • Johannes Wik (Bergen)

  • Kjersti Vindal (Trondheim)

  • Sunniva Rødland (Nesodden)

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