Ensemble master, composer and pianist Jon Balke has taken on the task of artistic director for the very first edition of the Vestnorsk Jazz Center's new regional orchestra project, Vestnorsk Jazzensemble, which, in addition to Balke, brings together 13 great musicians from the entire region in a joint musical performance.
The repertoire is chosen from Balke's extensive composition portfolio, and will consist of highlights from the band projects Magnetic North, Oslo 13 and Batagraf.
Jon Balke (born 1955 in Norway), pianist, keyboardist, composer, arranger, percussionist, has been professionally active since 1974, when he joined Arild Andersen's group in the studio for ECM. Since then, his musical life has moved through several stages:
Leader of several groups in Scandinavia, among others:
OSLO 13 (1980-1993)
MAGNETIC NORTH chamber ensemble
BATAGRAF percussion ensemble
Comprehensive composition activities for a large selection of ensembles and projects such as ballet, theatre, symphony orchestras, singers and jazz ensembles.
Balke has collaborated with visual artists such as Kjell Bjorgeengen, Tone Myskja, Francesco Scavetta, Giorgio Rossi etc.
Has taken the step from the west country's best yodelers to all of Norway's Polka-Bjørn in Stjernekamp. Otherwise deals with his solo project, shows collaboration with Ole Paus or in duo with Heine Bugge, plus most other genres, from Americana to throat and singing season.
Stavanger's nyMusikk manager, and cross-genre violinist with a master's degree from NTNU. Equally at home in the Kitchen Orchestra and with Gunhild Seim as in the improv landscape with Vidar Schanche. Also seen constantly in full symphonic unfolding with the Stavanger Symphony Orchestra.
Participant in the Stavanger Symphony Orchestra's talent program and landed a permanent place in the orchestra as a 24-year-old in sharp competition with musicians from all over the world. Just as steady and virtuosic in small ensembles as in a full orchestra.
Versatile cellist with a background from the University of Stavanger, and just about every symphony orchestra in Norway, as well as some in Sweden. Cello Sound Ensemble with Frida Ånnevik, CD recording with Gunnar Halle.
Elisabeth Lid Trøen played with the legendary Andy Sheppard for the first time in Voss in 2010. He was so impressed that he immediately invited her to join his ensemble. Since then, she has collaborated with, among others, Joshua Redman, Steinar Raknes and Tord Gustavsen. Vossa Jazz award winner, currently recording with BounceAlarm, and a great established talent.
Stavanger musician Tor Yttredal is a key supplier in Norway's music scene. As a jazz professor at UIS, he has mostly been busy getting others to sound better, but he occasionally gets the chance to show off the colossal saxophonist he is. Has recorded recordings with Elin Rosseland in charge, as well as close collaboration with Ståle Storløkken, Ole Morten Vågan and Audun Kleive.
Studied jazz at the Grieg Academy in Bergen. Played and plays in many bands – from Michael Barnes Octet to Karoline Wallace and Erlend Skomsvoll.
Hyperactive musician and jazz teacher at the University of Stavanger. In addition to his own music, he has collaborated with Chris Potter, Per Zanussi, Svein Olav Herstad, Arkady Ahikloper, Lars Vaular and Alexander Hoholm, to name but a few.
Masterful, melodic percussionist with a large own production both with his own jazz trio and the folk music group Spindel. Permanent place in the Bergen Big Band, recording with everything from Karin Park to Karin Krogh. Vossajazz prize winner, recipient of the Bergen municipality's cultural prize and the Government's work grant.
Known from Bergen Big Band, where he is musical director, as well as hundreds of small and large projects. Background from the jazz programme in Trondheim. Currently an associate professor at the Grieg Academy. Permanent member of Erik Halvorsen trio, Svein Olav Herstad trio, Frøydis Grorud quartet and Eivind Austad trio.
Øyvind has been a key figure on the music scene in Western Norway for many years. Equally at home in improvisation as in James Brown grooves. A million irons in the fire: Skarbø Skulekorps, Crab is Crap, Bly de Blyant, BMX, 1982 and Håkon Kornstad, to name but a few.