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Bergen International Festival

On Wednesday, His Majesty The King officially opened the Bergen International Festival. King Harald and Queen Sonja were both in attendance as the festival began its 55th season.


The opening ceremony of the Festival took place on Wednesday in the Grieghallen concert hall. After the Royal Anthem and Frode Haltli’s performance of Looking on darkness, His Majesty The King gave a speech in which he formally declared the 55th Bergen International Festival to be opened.

Trio Mediæval, this year’s musicians in residence, performed with Terje Isungset (percussion) and Arve Henriksen (trumpet). The audience also was treated to vocals by bass baritone Bryn Terfel, accompanied by Malcom Martineau on piano.

This year’s Festival Speech was given by Mrs Allis Helleland, recently appointed director of the National Museum of Art, Architecture and Design.

The event concluded with a speech by the Mayor of Bergen, Mr. Herman Friele, and the singing of the National Anthem.

The Opening Concert

In the evening, King Harald and Queen Sonja attended the opening concert in the Grieghallen concert hall. The Bergen Philharmonic Orchestra, directed by Andrew Litton and with Leif Ove Andsnes, piano, performed:

  • Exit Music by Festival Composer Bent Sørensen (premiere)
  • Concert for Piano and Orchestra by Witold Lutoslawski
  • Symphony no.5 in B-major by Sergej Prokofjev

Bergen International Festival

The Bergen International Festival 2007 is being held from 23 May to 5 June. It is the largest music and theatre festival in the Nordic countries, with 160 different events taking place during the coming fortnight. The Festival presents art within a vide variety of genres – music, literature, theatre, dance, opera and visual art.

The Bergen International Festival is under the patronage of His Majesty The King.

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