24th January - 1st February 2025


Opening Concert: Stian Carstensen & Arktisk Filharmoni

When the Northen Lights Festival opens in January, the sun has come back to Tromsø. The opening concert will be both a musical and a visual journey from darkness to light, and our chamber orchestra will play together with two of Europe’s leading musicians, Stian Carstensen and Terje Tønnesen.

Stian Carstensen bilde

Soloist and multi-instrumentalist Stian Carstensen is known for being a genius within several genres, and many of us know him from the group Farmers Market.

His own personal story gives the concert an extra dimension. Carstensen has been open about having years of serious mental and physical illness, a period he has described as an existence of being in total darkness.

His journey back to light was long, but in 2021 the album Musical Sanatorium was published. The album was looked upon as a masterpiece.

We are proud to play with Stian at the opening of the Northern Lights Festival, where he will play solo and together with the orchestra. He will amongst other pieces play Ligeti’s Continuum, as well as several pieces from Musical Sanatorium.

The leader of the orchestra will be Terje Tønnesen. We are proud to welcome him back to our orchestra.

Tønnesen was the concertmaster and the artistic director of the Norwegian Chamber Orchestra from 1977-2021, and he was 1. Concertmaster of the Oslo Philharmonic Orchestra from 1983-2020. In 2015 he was knighted 1st class of the Order of St. Olav.

Terje has contributed strongly to our very special performance of Shostakovich’s Chamber Symphony at this concert.

Shostakovich was a critic of the Soviet regime. He stated that the work was written in memory of the victims of fascism and war, and he stated that he could never hear it being played without bursting into tears.

Music critics believe that the work’s genius lies in Shostakovich’s ability to transfer individual pain to all human despair. The torment it communicates is the tragic human pain of anyone who has experienced great loss, because of fascism, war, or personal grief, and that this piece, String Quartet no. 8, also known as the Chamber Symphony, is written with “heart’s blood”.

This concert will be full of contrasts, both musically and visually. This is good, since our period of darkness is over, and the sun is back. We promise that the concert also will have a lot of light, and that it will end with light and beautiful music by Grieg.

Arktisk Filharmoni Logo Blue

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Friday 26. January

Kl. 18.00

Tromsø Cultural Centre

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