Olavsfestdagane – How Like An Angel

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Wow, what an ending to another fantastic week of events in Trondheim. The List has have been working with both Olavsfestdagene and the Trøndersk Food and Brewery Festival, publishing programmes for both in the latest issue and doing lots of coverage during … and now we have that sort empty feeling after something so big you have been waiting for has come and gone. But what a way to wrap up to the weekend: How Like An Angel was everything it promised to be and more.

I honestly did not know what to expect, even though I had been in the cathedral for a tour earlier that day and stumbled across the dress rehearsal. I quickly averted my eyes trying not to ruin the surprise! But I should not have feared because the show itself was unexplainable and full of unexpected surprises. Now that this trip of British musicians and Australian acrobats have finished and left, I suppose it is no spoiler to reveal some of the most breathtaking movements, when one of the guys seemingly plummeted to his death for example, only to be caught on a mat in the crowd which they had surreptitiously wiggled into the crowd.

The audience was all standing, right in and amongst the action. There was a variety of trapeze and the aerial silk performance, framed perfectly by the cathedral’s stain glass windows, was so close that when the artist rolled up and down the cloth, or span, we felt the breeze of the performance on our faces. All photos by Laura-An Morrison:

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Olavsfestdagene – through Kasia’s eyes

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Hello everybody! I’m Kasia, a newcomer to the town, imported straight from Poland, starting a fantastic journey with The List as Deputy Editor from this month on (that’s me on the right above, wandering about the picturesque Historical Market outside Nidarosdomen). You will hear quite a lot from me during the following months so get ready and follow me in investigating what is going on in Trondheim. Being new to the town makes me super curious, how about you?

I arrived just in time to participate in Olavsfestdagene, which I started checking out with a classy concert in Vår Frue kirke of a Norwegian pianist Tord Gustavsen and a German singer Simin Tander. Elegant, warm and a little bit exotic – this musical trip turned out to be a perfect way of spending Sunday evening.

Yesterday’s performance of a comedian Ruben Gazki was a big change of scene for me. It was in Norwegian, which only made me laugh a couple of times less then the rest of the audience! Great presentation of a Norwegian humour in Ytre Kongsgård both for children and adults.

I’m excited to be here, and excited to be part of The List. I’m also looking forward to see the Patti Smith concert on Thursday (4pm and 8:30pm, sold out) and on How Like an Angel, an acrobatics show in Nidarosdomen on Tuesday and Friday 6:30pm, and also on Sunday 7pm and 11pm.
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Olavsfestdagene – Jousting Tournament

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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).

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Olavsfestdagene – Joan Baez

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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:

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All photos by Wil Lee-Wright