Through the fjords and forests of Scandinavia, full of mythology, legend and song, we embark this year on a musical journey deeply connected to the purest sounds of nature, folk music and the majestic landscapes of the north with its endless horizons. Our festival artists in 2019 are almost exclusively Scandinavian and bring with them all the cultural authenticity of interpretation that this special programme demands. You are warmly invited to experience the unique OCMF atmosphere and hear this world class gathering between 8-12 October in atmospheric and unusual venues all around Oxford.

Scandinavia embodies ideals and surprising paradoxes, where the fire and ice at the heart of its music live alongside a sense of Hygge and community – this is what a true festival spirit represents!


Sunday 6th October

The Phoenix Picturehouse
‘4’ by Daniel Kutschinski

Book via Phoenix Picturehouse Box Office

A tale of creation and destruction, struggle and friendship, as told by the Quatuor Ebène, one of the world’s most exciting string quartets.

One of the finest, most sensitive films ever conceived about music.– Luís Gago, El País

Watching 4 we encounter a tenderness that can only characterise a sensitive love story. – Yvonne Petitpierre, Deutschlandfunk

Los Angeles Documentary Film Festival 2015 – Best Documentary Award
£11.60 adult; £10.60 student/retired; £7.10 child
N.B. This event is not included in the Festival Pass

Tuesday 8th October

CONCERT 7.45pm
SJE Arts at St John the Evangelist
Scandi Noir: Tord Gustavsen Trio

This exciting opening concert of Oxford Chamber Music Festival 2019 ‘Scandinavia: From Hygge to Fire and Ice’ features a musical trio from Norway whose accolades include The Guardian’s Jazz Pick of the Month and New York Times’ ‘most memorable melodies’. Tord Gustavsen is on a constant search for a fresh and radically stripped-down honest beauty in music, working to explore, integrate and serve a holy trinity of emotional intensity, elegance, and meditative musical breathing. Repertoire to include compositions by Tord Gustavsen in musical dialogue with Norwegian folk tunes and chorales.
£25 full price | Free for 8-25 year olds

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Wednesday 9th October

Sheldonian Theatre
Children’s Concert

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We will be holding our annual Schools’ Concert, held at the Sheldonian Theatre, on the 9th October.  It is entirely free for pupils to attend.

This event, created in participation with d’Overbroeck’s specifically for school children around Oxfordshire, will showcase a selection of our festival performers, offering a varied programme that will be fun, inspiring and interactive.

The programme will consist of a mixture of informative examples from Scandinavian folk music and some Norse readings, which will involve the children participating in folk singing, led by one of our own leading Scandavian musicians. The programme will also showcase music from the festival programme, which will include movements from Grieg’s Holberg Suite.

TALK 6.45pm
Sheldonian Theatre
Summer Nights and Winter Storms

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The distinguished Scandinavian music expert Professor Daniel Grimley presents a pre-concert talk introducing Sibelius’s life and work (40 min)
£5 or free with 7.45pm concert ticket

CONCERT 7.45pm
Sheldonian Theatre
Scandinavian Smörgåsbord

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A gala concert to celebrate the rich flavours of our week of Scandinavian music: world-famous pieces by Grieg, beautiful and intense new music from our composers-in-residence, and Sibelius’s astonishing violin Humoresques – a wonderful discovery for those who love his violin concerto Sibelius Andante Festivo arr. for 2 string quartets | Grieg Holberg Suite
Fagerlund Cadenza for clarinet solo | Atterberg Suite no. 3 for violin, viola and string orchestra Bjarnason Air to Breath for solo cello and strings | Gade Tango Jalousie | Nielsen Intermezzo: a waltz Grieg Solveig’s Song | Sibelius Humoresques

Kraggerud | Vaernes | Marmen | Mitchell | Pensola | Sundqvist | Ticciati | Thed en |
Thomsen | Tikkanen | L. A. Tomter

£40 | £30 | £15 | Free for 8-25 year olds

Concert sponsored by Robin Swailes

with encores for Friends and Sponsors


Thursday 10th October

Holywell Music Room
Malinconia: Dark Lands

The darker depths of the Scandinavian character are turned upside down by Grieg’s explosive and exhilarating quartet, based on his song Fiddlers SibeliusValse Triste for piano solo | Sibelius Malinconia for cello and piano Ole Bull La Melancholie | Grieg Spoillemaend (Fiddlers) song | Bjarnason Selected piano pieces | Grieg String quartet no. 1 in G minor op. 27

Kärkkäinen | Kraggerud | Shirinyan | C. Tomter | Vaernes | Vertavo Quartet

£15 | Free for 8-25 year olds

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MALINCONIA programme notes

LECTURE 5.15pm
Holywell Music Room
Grieg: Music, Landscape and Norwegian Identity

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Prof Daniel Grimley lectures on Grieg’s musical contribution, focusing in particular on
his response to landscape.

£5 or free with 6pm concert ticket

Holywell Music Room
1886: a Scandinavian Love Story

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**Programme notes to be announced at the concert**

Henning Kraggerud takes us on a unique journey, narrating a gripping true love story through words and music,which includes extracts from the great romantic violin sonatas by Grieg, Brahms and Franck. The performance also reveals a secret in Svendsen’s One-minute musical love letter (UK premiere).
£15 | Free for 8-25 year olds

Holywell Music Room
Voces Intimae

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VOCES INTIMAE programme notes

One of Sibelius’s very greatest works, coupled with one of Schubert’s – with its intriguing
Swedish bloodline. Sibelius string quartet ‘Voces Intimae’ | Isak Berg folk-song setting, ‘Se solen sjunker’ on which Schubert based the second movement of his trio Schubert Piano trio no 2 in Eb major

Mitchell | Pensola | Shirinyan | Tikkanen | Thedéen | Vertavo Quartet

£22 | Free for 8-25 year olds


Friday 11th October

Christ Church Cathedral
Magical Forest and the Mountain King

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Musical alchemy as we blend baroque bounce with modern fire, by way of Berwald’s classical
wit, awe-inspiring Nielsen and Grieg’s immortal masterpiece depicting the globetrotting Norwegian peasant, Peer Gynt. Telemann Overture Les Suedois anciens / Les Danois modernes Roman Asaggi no 3 in G minor for solo violin Nielsen Chaconne op. 32 | Alfven The Forest Sleeps for violin and piano Grieg Peer Gynt suite for piano-four-hands | Berwald Septet

Hultmark | Kärkkäinen | Marmen | Mitchell | Pensola | Shirinyan | Sundqvist | Ticciati | Tikkanen | L. A. Tomter | Vaernes

£15 | Free for 8-25 year olds







TALK 6.30pm
Divinity School, Bodleian Library
Composers Podium

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2019 Composers-in-Residence Daníel Bjarnason and Henning Kraggerud discuss the creative process and how their Scandinavian roots have influenced their compositions (40 mins).
£5 or free with 7.30pm concert ticket

CONCERT 7.30pm
Convocation House, Bodleian Library
Arctic Circles

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A concert full of surprising musical and emotional connections. Here are circles of time; a moving meditation on early death; a surging, overflowing romantic epic, and a glimpse of the eternal. Handel/ Halvorsen Passacaglia | Dowland The King of Denmark’s Galliard | Nielsen Ved en Ung Kunstners Baare – At the bier of a young artist | Brustad 3 capricci | Cantus Arcticus – improvisation | Svendsen string octet in A major, op. 3

Carrasco Hjelm | Kraggerud | Mitchell | Pensola | Sundqvist | Thed en | Ticciati | Tikkanen | L. A.Tomter | Vaernes

£22 | Free for 8-25 year olds

CONCERT 10.45pm
University Church
Midnight Sun: Late Night Concert

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Join us after dark, for two luminous Finnish night-pieces, and three great Danes – Jens
Sondergaard, whose wildly colourful paintings we show with contemporary composer Karsten Fundal’s atmospheric flute score; and Hamlet’s Ophelia. Sibelius Nocturne for flute and strings | Brahms Ophelia LiederWoO22 | Shostakovich Ophelia’s song Saariaho Nocturne | Fundal Farvekraft (Colour power) for flute and bass flute, with projections of the paintings which inspired the music, by the Danish expressionist Jens Sondergaard

Carrasco Hjelm | Kraggerud | Pensola | Shirinyan | Ticciati | Tikkanen | Thed en | Thomsen | C. Tomter | Vaernes

£10 | Free for 8-25 year olds

Saturday 12 October

University Church
Norse Legends and Myths

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Grieg Lyric pieces and song transcriptions for solo piano | Grieg cello sonata op.36 Bjarnason White Flags for piano trio | Sibelius En Saga arr. for strings and winds

£15 (or £20 to include cream tea at the Vaults & Garden Café at any point during the Saturday afternoon) | Free for 8-25 year olds

CONCERT 3.30pm
University Church

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Since the 17th century, theorists, philosophers and composers have discussed the intrinsic properties of musical keys, and their links to time and space. These discussions and ideas inspired Henning Kraggerud and the world-famous author of Sophie’s World Jostein Gaarder to collaborate on Equinox. This performance will be extracts from the 24 movement work comprising Afternoon, Evening, Night and Morning.
Hearing [Henning] play as a Prom encore the tenth of his 24 ‘Postludes in All Keys’ … opened a window on a magical world. – BBC Music Magazine
£15 (or £20 to include cream tea at the Vaults & Garden Café at any point during the Saturday afternoon) | Free for 8-25 year olds

CONCERT 6.30pm
The Old Library, University Church
Ancient Forces: Scandic Folklore

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The Lodestar Trio is an exciting collaboration between Max Baillie and two stars of the Scandinavian folk scene: Erik Rydvall on a Swedish Nyckelharpa and Olav Mjelva on a Norwegian hardanger fiddle. The trio explores the links between Folk and Baroque music and has featured on Classic FM, BBC Radio 3 and Norwegian Radio.

Lodestar Trio

£15 (or £20 to include cream tea at the Vaults & Garden Café at any point during the Saturday afternoon) | Free for 8-25 year olds

CONCERT 7.45pm
University Church
Concert in support of Greta Thunberg and XR

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Yggdrasil is the tree of life, an eternally green ash tree whose branches connect the nine worlds of Norse mythology, and stretch up into the heavens. Our closing concert is a celebration – of humanity’s deep connections to our fragile and delicate ecosystem, perfectly summed up in the legend of Yggdrasil, and inspirationally defended by a global movement growing out of Sweden, and connecting people across continents.

Schubert Octet in F major, D803 | Lodestar Trio join forces with Festival artists to include
improvisation around ancient Swedish ballads, Finnish tango, and some rocking arrangements of Danish folk tunes.

Carrasco Hjelm | Hultmark | Kraggerud | Lodestar Trio | Mitchell | Pensola | Shirinyan |
Sundqvist | Ticciati | Tikkanen | Thed en | L. A. Tomter | Vaernes

£22 | Free for 8-25 year olds