Scotland and Norway share an ocean, share a spirit of adventure and share a passion for their heritage.
And in a series of remarkable one-off nights in Aberdeen, the best grassroots talent from both nations is to come together on the same stage for an unforgettable melding of the musical souls of two great nations.
Aberdeen Performing Arts (APA) is committed to developing local and international musical collaborations and its Northern Arc sessions team up the best of our home-grown talent with the best from across the Northern hemisphere in exclusive Music Hall concerts.
Celebrating the Nordic soul which links the northern nationalities, the one-off events also promote positive integration of diversity through art and culture.
For the series is not just about music – and the pre-show events in the Music Hall café include presentations about Norwegian traditions, artists and links between Scotland and Norway.
They will bring together Norwegian artist Ingeborg P Bodzioch, photographer and musician David Officer who has met with the Norwegian Royal Family and Aberdeen University professors in informal talks about Norwegian poetry, music and traditions.
And the explosive new series begins this year with an exclusive pairing of Scotland’s beloved own singer-songwriter Karine Polwart and Norwegian folk star Sigrid Moldestad on Saturday, February 7.
Susan Whyte, APA Northern Arc producer, said: “Northern Arc reflects the strong cultural links between Scotland and Norway and all the musicians chosen to share the bill (by the Scots) in this series are Norwegian musicians, all of them bringing something different to the stage.
“Karine and Sigrid signify what the Northern Arc Sessions are all about – a loving respect for the folk traditions of their respective nations, but with a newness and dynamism which brings fresh contemporary relevance.”
Described as one of the finest singer-songwriters in Britain, Karine is known for her talent for creating unique and enduring melodies and for her achingly pure vocal ability.
Sigrid was Norwegian Folk Musician of the Year in 2010 and her songs, fiddle tunes and storytelling are full of humour and beauty.
Karine says of Sigrid: “She is a beautiful singer and fiddler - around the same age as me and occupying a similar place on the Norwegian music scene as I do here at home in Scotland, combining contemporary and original elements with traditional influences also.
“What sparked me to collaborate with her for this one-off Aberdeen show is her recordings of Robert Burns songs in Norwegian.”