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Nordic Horizons guide to Celtic Connections 2020

Nordic Horizons guide to Celtic Connections 2020

So many fabulous Nordic performers are appearing at Celtic Connections in January 2020, it seemed a good idea to list them. Each year, Scotland’s largest traditional music festival presents a “showcase Scotland” partnership with a different nation. This year’s it’s Finland … so there are loads of performances featuring Finnish artists playing with top stars of the Scottish Trad Music scene. Get booking folks.

Norway Jan 19th 7.30pm Mitchell Theatre Scots fiddler Sarah-Jane Summers is based in Norway, and is reprising Owerset, her New Voices commission that’s themed around Scots and Gaelic words originating in Old Norse. It features a six-piece ensemble on fiddles, trumpet, accordion, guitars and double bass. Sarah-Jane is playing with the fabulous Scots pianist, flautist and composer Hamish Napier. https://www.celticconnections.com/event/1/hamish-napier-the-woods-with-sarah-jane-summers-owerset

Denmark Jan 23rd City Halls 8pm Danish duo Elmøe & Hoffmann, inspired by traditional dance tunes, classical chamber music and cinematic compositions are supporting the brilliant Lau, here returning to their folk roots with an all-acoustic set for the first time in a decade. https://www.celticconnections.com/event/1/lau-and-elme-hoffmann

Sweden 24th Jan 8pm The Tron Swedish musical polymath Gustaf Ljunggren, on Dulcitone, Indian harmonium, Mellotron and langspil (a traditional Icelandic zither) responds to Boo Hewerdine’s latest album https://www.celticconnections.com/event/1/boo-hewerdine-gustaf-ljunggren-before-and-katherine-priddy

Norway 24th Jan 7.30pm The Platform Scottish indie/folk musician Alasdair Roberts joins with a band of like-minded multi-instrumental spirits Völvur from Norway for a concert of his songs. https://www.celticconnections.com/event/1/alasdair-roberts-og-vlvur-and-support

Norway 24th Jan 7.30pm The Mackintosh Church Norway’s Susanna Wallumrød reprises her 2018 album Go Dig My Grave, with haunting original songs & transformative cover versions featuring material by Lou Reed, Joy Division, Baudelaire, Purcell, Elizabeth Cotton and traditional folk ballads. “Limpid-voiced, open-hearted, musically idiosyncratic and touched with mystery.” (New York Times). Susanna shares the bill with award-winning Scottish singer Hannah Rarity https://www.celticconnections.com/event/1/susanna-go-dig-my-grave-with-hannah-rarity

Estonia 24th Jan 7.30pm Concert Hall Estonia’s enthralling Duo Ruut play together on a single kannel zither, accompanying re-imagined traditional songs and innovative original compositions. They share the bill with Shetland fiddler Ross Couper and flautist/guitarist Tom Oakes; and Luke Daniels with pioneering Syrian oud player Rihab Azar, intermingling Middle Eastern & Celtic sounds. https://www.celticconnections.com/event/1/ross-couper-tom-oakes-with-duo-ruut-and-luke-daniels-rihab-azar

Finland Jan 29th 7.30pm Mitchell Theatre Finnish duo Juuri & Juuri (Emilia Lajunen and Eero Grunstrom) are playing with Edinburgh band Dallahan. https://www.celticconnections.com/event/1/dallahan-and-juuri-juuri

Finland Jan 30th 7.30pm Concert Hall Esteemed by her peers as a genre-transcending visionary, Finnish accordionist/composer Johanna Juhola is a prolific collaborator. Her own free-spirited exploration of Finland’s’s folk and tango traditions features guitarist Roope Aarnio and sound designer Teemu Korpipää. Johanna is supporting Scottish fiddle supergroup Session A9. https://www.celticconnections.com/event/1/session-a9-and-johanna-juhola-trio

Finland Jan 31st 7.30pm St Luke’s Finnish electro-folk sextet Okra Playground (for whom ‘okra’ is an earthy pigment, not the tropical vegetable), combine three-part vocals with plucked zither and bowed lyre, synth and electric bass. They share the bill with Ross Ainslie, whose acclaimed third album Sanctuary, channels influences from the Treacherous Orchestra, India Alba and Jarlath Henderson. https://www.celticconnections.com/event/1/ross-ainslie-the-sanctuary-band-and-okra-playground

Finland Jan 31st 7.30pm Tramway Nordic duo VILDÁ evoke their wild native landscapes in a unique fusion of Sámi joiks and Finnish accordion tradition, allied with shamanic grooves, beatboxing, throat-singing and electronica. They’re supporting Fatoumata Diawara, whose 2011 debut album saw her hailed as a tnew standard-bearer of Mali’s musical traditions. Since then, she’s featured in collaborations with Bobby Womack, Herbie Hancock, Roberto Fonseca and Damon Albarn. https://www.celticconnections.com/event/1/fatoumata-diawara-and-vild

Finland Feb 1 7.30pm City Halls Frigg are the leading group on the Nordic fiddle scene, specialising in Nordgrass (Nordic sounds fused with bluegrass). They’re playing with BBC Radio 2 Folk Award winners in 2018, the Irish/Manx quintet Ímar. https://www.celticconnections.com/event/1/frigg-with-mar

Finland Feb 1 7.30pm Mackintosh Church Sväng’s line-up features chromatic, diatonic and bass harmonicas plus the rare vintage Harmonetta, playing everything from Sibelius and Chopin to tango, blues and Balkan sounds, abetted by brilliant showmanship. “The harmonica equivalent of the Kronos Quartet” (Songlines). They share the stage with sublime Scottish fiddle foursome RANT. https://www.celticconnections.com/event/1/rant-with-svng

Norway/Sweden 2nd Feb Concert Hall 1pm Marit Falt, born in Sweden, raised in Norway and based in Scotland.” Best known through her award-winning duo with Gaelic fiddler Rona Wilkie – recent co-composers of a fabulous new live score for the Norwegian silent movie Laila – she’s playing here mainly on mandola, leading an eight-piece ensemble of strings, accordion and clarinet. https://www.celticconnections.com/event/1/new-voices-marit-flt

And at 8pm Marit plays in Bogha-frois – Gaelic for rainbow – new music and new voices from LGBT+ folk performers. https://www.celticconnections.com/event/2/bogha-frois-lgbt-voices-in-folk

 

 

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