This year´s official opening performance is the commissioned work Kjetterbålet (The Stake) by Kråkesølv, which opened the Varanger festival in August. Kråkesølv is joined by guest musician Frederik Hillestad, The Arctic Sinfonietta and The Petrozavodsk State University Academic Choir, as they take this project a step further.
Hop on board a dark musical journey into one of humanity´s most difficult episodes. The popular Bodø band Kråkesølv (in english their name denotes the stone Mica) expands upon the former performance of ”Kjetterbålet” which was extremely well recieved in August. The project has a backdrop of the Witch Trials in Eastern Finnmark in the 17th century. Kråkesølv delves deep into these persecutions and in addition, draws comparisons with more recent persecutions leading up to the present time.
The work centres upon the figure of Ingeborg from Ekkerøy. Intertwined with her life in the 1600´s are elements from the story of the Jewish Ruth Maier, who was deported from Norway during the Second World War.
This performance consists of freshly arranged music, in collaboration with the Arctic Sinfonietta. The Arctic Sinfonietta is a groundbreaking ensemble which celebrates its five year jubilee on the 1st of May 2016. They have performed at, amongst others the opening concert of Tromsø´s Northern Lights Festival with the artists Kaja Bremnes and Moddi, and opened Barents Spektakel in February. The Arctic Sinfonietta seek to reflect upon, and celebrate current international trends in the field of contemporary music.
Kråkesølv were given the task of creating ”Kjetterbålet” (The Stake) as this year´s Northern Soul-work by the former artistic director of the Varanger festival, Maria Uti, who is the present director of the Arctic Arts Festival.
Kråkesølv has released four albums and was awarded the prestigious Spellemannspris for one of them. They have a distinct style and a clear artistic profile in their work. They are still relatively young, having founded the band in 2007.
Photographer and illustrator Martin Losvik contributes as a collaborative artist and will illustrate the performance with his visual expressions.
This project was initially brought to fruition with financial support from Sparebank1 Nord-Norges Kulturnæringsstiftelse