I have two small children at home, a house which needs renovating, and many jobs which need my attention. So Sunday is kind of sacred; the one day of the week which I spend some quality time with my family. Today’s coverage of Olavsfestdagane therefore takes a markedly family feel, but not to worry there is loads for all ages at the festival!
The pick of the bunch has to be the jousting tournament, a popular event which includes mock sword fights, jousting, and all sorts of challenges on horse back. It happens in the shadow of the medieval Nidaros cathedral, on the ‘Outer King’s Court’, with horse poo on the floor and jesters running riot, giving it an authentic feeling. Great for kids, bad news for apples! Here is a selection of photos from the day – the event is repeats tomorrow (Monday) at 3pm, highly recommended.
The wooden swords, incidentally, are available from the historic market, for a really good price of 70 NOK, subsequent parental regret included. Cash only.
What are you planning to see and do with your family at Olavsfestdagene this week? We have our eyes (and ears) on Shama Shama (Tuesday, 12 midday, Ytre Kongsgård) and ‘Meg og Kammeraten Min’ (Wednesday 2pm and 3.30pm, same location).
Olavsfestdagene continued tonight with a moving and memorable concert by the American folk singer and activist Joan Baez, in the imposing Nidaros Cathedral.
This beautiful voice has been charming crowds and leading protest songs for over 50 years, and the woman behind it has led a colourful and involved life. She is often referred to in her capacity as Bob Dylan’s ex-lover and one time collaborator, but Baez embodies much more of the American folk scene than her relationship with its chief protagonist. Indeed her set tonight was steeped in the tradition of coffee shop musicians sharing (and sometimes stealing) one another’s songs. She covered a whole range of old and new, including Woody Guthrie, Pete Seeger, Anthony and the Johnsons, John Lennon…
Many of these songs never really had any owners anyway, a sentiment which suits Baez’s open heartedness and goodness in spirt. She spoke lovingly about the current refugees crisis and wove in some stories about her history in the protest movement. You would not believe she is 75, and when she played House of the Rising Sun, the years rolled back in the audience too.
Opportunities to take photos were pretty limited by the organisers, but here is a selection:
All photos by Wil Lee-Wright