The List has a new face in our midst, and it’s Tina! Our new intern from BI, Tina will be working with us on sales and marketing for the next few months. She is from Molde, has got a super cute little dog called Simba. Yesterday she joined us at day one of Pstereo. We had to find her a waterproof hat because, despite being from Norway, she was not prepared for the weather.
A lot of people were unprepared, to be honest, but that didn’t seem to dampen anyone’s spirits. Magnums of wine helped matters surely, as did some excellent music from artists such as Cezinando and Sigrid.
Lil Pump was also on the main stage, but barely. The young star who turns 18 today, didn’t put in much of a show and was criticised in today’s media. The crowd didn’t seem to give two shakes of brolly though, and people were rocking in the mud throughout. Finally, Kraftwerk mesmerised the crowd with their 3D show.
Our pick of today’s line up is Brazilian heavyweights Sepultura. Should be a mosh. Check out Gåte after on the main stage too.
Get to know one of Trondheim’s most eclectic group of musicians, working tirelessly to bring the clubbing vibe back to the city. This crew, two of which were interviewed here, arrange intermittent concerts with extensive lineups, and an occasional festival, throughout the year, having held around a half dozen already, under the flag of Maskinmassakren.
Perhaps the greatest story is how the group began its formation: a chance, Trøndersk meeting at the Roskilde music festival in Denmark.
“I got lost in the crowd, and far away in the midst of all of it I heard someone singing Rosenborg songs. So I thought, well, if it’s not my friends it’s at least someone friendly and headed in that direction. I found this guy [pointing to his partner in crime] and we’ve been friends ever since.” – S
The sound of each of the musicians involved in the group, and the eventual creation of their very own concert platform, evolved from trends in the clubbing and electronic music scenes in Trondheim; trends that they didn’t really identify with and branched out into their own thing.
“At the time there were a lot of underground raves around and outside of Trondheim. We felt like they staled a bit music-wise. The people that arranged the events seemed to be more keen about creating a place to just go and party and get sh*t faced. And we figured that it wasn’t going anywhere and decided to just do it ourselves.”
“The clubs scene has been stagnant for the last 10 or so years. There were a lot of cool DJ’s and lots of new and creative music. But then something happened, I don’t know, but it lost its identity a little bit and everything just became the same, everything sounded the same wherever you went – and it has stayed the same ever since.” – A
What has emerged from this unique collection of artists is the one of a kind concert series: Maskinmassakren. Each edition of the concert sees a new line-up of experienced and up-and-coming artists; each bringing with them their own take on electronic music.
“One of the things we focus on is to highlight both established and up and coming artists. So we always reserve at least one slot at on the schedule for a new, local act. This also helps us keep a variety to sound at each event.” -A
“We give people who don’t really get recognized for their music a stage to play on.” –S
UFFA has become the stage for the Maskinmassakren concept, with the electronic music clashing slightly with the punk roots at UFFA. But variety is the spice of life, and while some people might have been skeptical of the success of electro in a punk arena, the shows have been a resounding success.
“The UFFA crowd has come around to the idea. After the first concert was such a success, we don’t even have to ask to use the stage now!”
Looking to find some new music to groove to, or want to check out one of the coolest concert venues in Trondheim? Keep an eye out for the next edition of Maskinmassakren!
Enhet i Norge: Indian and Pakistani Culture Festival
This article was provided to The List by Enhet i Norge
Experience food, music, movies, sports and culture from India and Pakistan right here in Trondheim.
Indian Students’ Forum (ISF) and Pakistan Students Association (PSA) present Enhet i Norge – a cultural festival promoting unity through diversity for the very first time in Trondheim. The two countries not only share a common border but also represent similarities in cultural traditions. “Our festival aims to bridge the gap between Indians and Pakistanis living in Trondheim by highlighting common aspects of culture. Students from these countries live in Trondheim as best of friends studying together, sharing ideas and gossip over coffee just like people from other countries. Which ties in with the main theme of hosting this event jointly is to show to the world that differences between nations must not block the exchange of ideas especially when it comes to culture”, say the production managers for the event, Sulalit, and Waqas, from India and Pakistan respectively.
The festival is designed to involve people from different sections of the society. The workshops are designed for children who will learn about Indo-Pak handicrafts, languages in the region, Bollywood, and Cricket. The principal of Birralee International School (Event Associate Partner) Elin Hitchman, thinks highly of the festival. In her words, “The things that our children make in the workshops will be used in the festival. This would be a great opportunity to bring Indo-Pak culture directly to the people of Trondheim”.
Exotic and delicious food from the Indo-Pak region can be tried during Indo-Pak Food Festival (15th August, Activity House, Moholt). Teams will compete to cook food from the region for the people of Trondheim who will taste, judge and declare the winners.
Sabareesh Prabahaker, leading Indian violinist and member of the band Immortal Raaga will perform live in Trondheim Medley at Olavshallen on 17th August. The evening will also feature music from Pakistani Coke Studio singer, Nabeel Shaukat Ali. With his musical background and range, Nabeel will cast a spell on the audience.
The two countries are united by the religion of cricket. And thus, Enhet i Norge will host Cricket Mela on the weekend of 25th-26th August at Dragvoll Idrettsbygget. For the first time in the history of Norwegian Cricket, Para cricket will be organized. NTNUI Cricket Group Leader, Faheem says “This is an exciting event for the cricketing fraternity in Norway and already there is huge interest. NTNUI Cricket Group is all set to create history by introducing cricket to physically disabled people in Trondheim”.
If you are planning to buy a festival pass, this will give you free entry to all the events. To add icing to the cake, you can watch Bollywood and Pakistani movies at Nova Kinosenter at special prices. Movies are often portrayed as mirrors to society. This will be a unique opportunity to experience Indo-Pak movies in theatres in Trondheim.
The festival will culminate with a Panel debate and discussion on “People-people exchange: the way forward to diplomacy” at NTNU. Speakers and panelists will deliberate on general aspects of the topic and dive into specific aspects in regards to Indo-Pak relations. Through this debate, the intelligentsia of the society will be brought to the limelight and their ideas shared to the general public.
Endre Forbord is a portrait, lifestyle and advertising photographer educated at Norsk Fotofagskole. This summer he’s in charge of Football Fever (Fotballfeber) Trondheim 2018! We had a chat with him about this summer’s biggest event in the city.
What is Football Fever?
We will show all the matches from the 2018 World Cup in Russia, starting with Russia versus Saudi Arabia on June 14. The tournament lasts for a month and culminates with the final at July 15. The whole event has free entrance, so everyone is welcome to enjoy this huge football festival in front of a 60 square meters screen at Festningen. We have seats for 4000 people, but there is plenty of extra room for everyone who wants! And of course, we got loads of food and drinks!! You can basically live up there for a month. We will be Trondheim’s biggest outdoor restaurant this summer.
Is there an age limit?
No, this is for football fans of all ages – and of course, we welcome everyone who doesn’t care for the football to enjoy themselves with friends, food, and drinks. There will be different activities throughout the period for both kids and grown-ups! Just beside the area where it all takes place, there will be different activities where you can have fun for hours. Bring the whole family, we can assure great fun for everyone! I can reveal that the world champions in freestyle football, Fagerli Brothers, is having a show for us at the end of the group stage. There will also be a tricks school, freestyle battle and maybe even a world record attempt!
What made you decide to do this huge festival?
Big challenges attract me – and this is such a big challenge that I couldn’t let the opportunity pass. I’ve never done something on this scale before, over a whole month. I must be out of my mind really! But seriously, I can’t imagine a better feeling than giving thousands of people a positive experience through the World Cup this summer. I hear friends talk about their first World Cup and the best World Cup they’ve witnessed. This encourages me to make this World Cup the best for everyone! I feel the goosebumps on my skin just by thinking about it. It truly means a lot to me that I get this chance!
What about your football interest in general?
I have somewhat of an interest, but my level of knowledge is poor. It’s growing on me though! Working with the World Cup really gives me a lot of new information and knowledge. It’s a unique way for me to learn more and take an even bigger interest in the future. I’m really hyped about the World Cup and I can’t wait to follow it through.
So, do you have a favourite player in the tournament?
Ole Selnæs. No, I’m just joking, my favourite player is Carlos Bacca. He is playing for Colombia and I hear they are a fun team to watch.
What was the first World Cup you have a relation to?
Oh, that was the one in 2008! Was that a World Cup? No, it was in 2010! I was part of an event on Blæst (RIP) where we showed the World Cup in South Africa. That was a lot of fun with a lot of happy trøndere enjoying themselves.
What can we look forward to at the beginning of the World Cup?
We can definitely look forward the opening weekend starting this Thursday with the hosting nation Russia taking on Saudi Arabia. On Friday, we get the first real treat of the tournament when Cristiano Ronaldo and Portugal face Andres Iniesta and Spain. It’s definitely going to be a full house this evening.
What happens if the area is full?
If we’re full, we’re full. It’s unfortunate if someone doesn’t get to sit, but there is a way to secure a spot for you and your friends. We have a system where you can book a table up front so that you can skip the line and walk straight to your designated table in front of the big screen. There is already a lot of reservations so for example if you want to have a good view on the big game on Friday, you better get to it sooner rather than later! We have a 50% cut on tables for the opening weekend, so this is guaranteed to be a historic kick-off to Football Fever Trondheim 2018!
Is there something you want to add?
Yes actually, there will be something called BigOne Hour. We will be giving out free pizzas for everyone who wants for an hour every day in the opening weekend. It’s going to be wild!
There are also some days without a game in the playoffs. Here we will have other types of events like the Flashback Summer Festival on July 12. Join our event “Fotballfeber Trondheim 2018” on Facebook for more information in the coming days and weeks. All I can say now is welcome to Trondheim’s biggest football festival ever!
Fun fact: The first 17th of May parade was started right here in Trondheim. It took place in Ilevollen in 1827 with a little over 1000 participants.
The word bunad most frequently conjures up images of women and men seen in their national dress at confirmations, parades and events on the 17th of May. The lively colours of embroidered hems, men’s vests tucked under darker jackets and gleaming silver are hard to miss.
It doesn’t take more than a glance to see that they are beautiful and come in many styles. But from the exterior one may never guess, unless one knows, just how complex each is or how much work goes into them. The concept of bunads is much like one’s hands; we all have them, although each a bit different. But when you really look into each individual bunad you realise they are more like fingerprints; unique to the wearer in every way. They are custom fit and, at Husfliden, completely hand-sewn. Each region is responsible for producing their particular bunad. You will not find a bunad from Oppland made here, as much as you would not find a Trønder bunad made there.
In Trøndelag way back in 1920, Ragna Rytter, Kaspara Kyllingstad and Ingebord Krokstad set out to create a unified Trønderbunad. They never found a full bunad, but they used drawings and paintings done by Dreyer in 1775 to gain a better understanding of the materials and styles they would need. They gathered samples of embroidery, linen shirts, trousers and skirts, and the fabrics common to the area of the time and those inherited over the years. These pieces of local folk costumes were the starting points. Traditions in wool, weaving and embroidery were carefully considered.
Three years after starting their project they collected enough to start sewing the first Trønderbunad. It wasn’t until the 1960s that the Rococo and Trøndelag-wide inspired garment we know today emerged.
One of the biggest trademarks of the women’s bunad is the rose pattern damask brocade bodice. The layers are carefully pressed, pinned and stitched by the hands of skilled artisans. They are trained in their craft and when watching their nimble fingers create delicate inner seams with a peek of brocade or taking a close look at the cuff of a shirt to see tiny pleats and smaller, fine embroidery quietly reveals this is more than making a garment. The construction of this bodice is nothing short of spectacular and all hand sewn, be it the panels of the peplum or the cording into the contrasting wool edging. Many of the embroidered pieces are done by the hands of local women who add their expertise and talents to every bunad.
In quick passing one might never see the details on the white undershirt or white linen headscarf. Stitch placement is carefully counted to form the intricate patterns that one could mistake for being woven. Particularly on the Skautet, or head scarf, the border is intricately done to create an open lacework. In contrast to the tight and fine stitches gracing the
crisp linen shirts, bold and richly dyed wool make up the embroidery that embosses the black silk bonnets, waist purses and shawl. Patterns from Kosberg, Selbu and Singsås grace the bonnets. Gauldal, Soknedal and Tidal are on show on the waist purses.
Men’s bunads are no less intricate than their female counterparts. Just on the inside of the jacket you can see a perfectly spaced whip stitch, a strip of soft leather supporting the buttons and button holes both strengthened and embellished by stitches wrapping tight the edges of the fine wool. The waistcoat is bold with woven details in contrasting colours and gleaming buttons bearing the Trøndersk rose. At the neck, a silk scarf with bright colours shows off its damask pattern.
One might think that black knickers would be a rather simple garment, but again the same details of fine stitching lead down to hand-knit wool socks deftly held up by woven garters. Even the knitted hat has a tradition all its own. The young should only be seen in all red, the young man in a red hat with a black cuff and the married man in a black hat with a red cuff. Also, these hats should only be combined with a dark outer jacket. Every piece is carefully considered to give a dapper and polished air.
In contrast to the rich wools, silks and fine linen is the shining polish of crisp silver. Adorning the collars, waist coasts, bodices, ears and purses are locally made symbols of Trøndelag. Engraving and styles speak more to north or south, as do the rings, the spoked wheel effect and the intricate clasps. The slightest movement causes a little tinkle as the delicate components touch. In the sun, they glimmer and sparkle to make their presence known. Often these are handed down, but whether a family heirloom or a newer piece, these pieces of jewellery are closely looked after.
Whether you are a curious visitor or transplant to Norway, or as Norwegian as the day is long, find the time to closely examine these perfect examples of what it truly means to be ‘Made in Trøndelag”.
This weeks maker is Ceramist Tovelise Røkke-Olsen who, with her friend Mona Sprenger, is bringing back a centuries-old pottery tradition.
The Flora Norwegica is a vase that you won’t find anywhere else in the world. It is handmade with a unique glaze and a distinctly Scandinavian style. Each one is one of a kind!
Did you study ceramics at school?
I did, at Statens Kunst og Arbeidskole, which is now called something else, and I finished with that back in 1983.
What did you do after studying?
I was down in Oslo for 20 years, until 2003, working with ceramics and sculpture the whole time – with a few extra jobs on the side to make money. Then moved back to Trondheim.
Tell us about Flora Norwegica.
It is an extremely old tradition to use. There used to be a number of factories in Trondheim that worked in the same style, but now there is none – only me.
It all started with a green ceramic plate and a green, perforated lump. It was all that was left at a flea market at Bøler in Oslo. I brought it home.
The plate’s label said Graveren. After a bit of research, I discovered that it probably was designed by Ragnar Grimsrud. He was the artist manager for Graveren Tegleverk in Sandnes, Norway in the thirties.
One day a friend who works as a curator at the National Museum in Oslo paid me a visit. She told me that the whole story began at the Dutch court during the famous tulip mania of the 1630s. During this period the vase “Tulipere” was created. The vase had multiple holes where the stems could be inserted. It made a splash among the privileged few of the upper class who could afford the precious flower. At its peak, the price for a single tulip onion could be ten times that of what a skilled craftsman would earn in a year.
Did you have any guide to get started?
No, just started trying. I started trying it one way, but quickly found a more practical way to do it that is probably more like the traditional method.
How do you think the Trondheim art scene is?
It is a very small environment here, but there is a good amount of fantastic artists. With ceramics, it’s a little difficult as there isn’t much education for it here. You find a little bit more down in Bergen and Oslo, but some people are coming back to Trondheim.
What is the best part about creating it?
Its very fun to work with, since its two parts, there is a lot of form and composition that you can work with. It supposed to be fun to make, so I’m always experimenting with different ways to form and glaze and everything.
It’s also fun to play with what you put in the vases, whether its flowers or random things you pick up out of the grass on your way home. You can keep things around as long as you want and change it when you want, it’s very fun.
Find out more:
Keep an eye out at Scandic hotels for some of Tovelise’s work!
Check out Flora Norwegica’s Facebook, right here, and Instagram for fantastic photos of the work, and to find out when you can take your own vase home!
Product: Easy Intervals
Maker: Erik Hjertholm, CEO, and Founder of Easy Intervals
– When did you start and what gave you the inspiration to create your product?
The idea behind Easy Intervals came when I was doing my previous master’s degree. The thesis we wrote was very big and challenging and it made it hard to find time to work out. I then started doing a lot of research into what’s the most efficient way of staying in shape, and I was quite disappointed when I discovered that High-Intensity Interval Training (HIIT) was the answer, as I really hate interval training.
There is a ton of research proving that Interval training is one of the best things you can do for your body, but there are so many things you have to pay attention to while doing it, and it’s really hard to find the right resistance to keep you in the different zones you’re supposed to be in, as well as figuring out what type of interval you should do. I decided to find a solution to these problems combining what I already knew about electronics and automation with the latest research on the topic.
– Do you consider yourself a ‘maker’? Do you make other things outside of this?
I would definitely consider myself a maker. As long as I can remember I have opened things and put them together in new ways to solve some kind of problem I had. Like when I was a kid my older brother didn’t wake up from his alarm, but I did. I took some parts from the garage and an electric motor and made a contraption that shock his whole bed in the morning. It worked like a charm, and I was never bothered by his alarm again. I must have made hundreds of small contraptions like this, and although most of them were merely a curiosity or something just for fun, it thought me a lot about how to make stuff and this has helped me a lot in developing Easy Intervals.
– Tell us a little more about the product: what makes it unique, where it is made and any special techniques?
We decided to make a system for exercise bikes first, and after a lot of prototyping, hundreds of 3D-prints and consultation with doctors, exercise scientists, physiotherapists and professors in cybernetics and automation, we now have a working prototype as well as a letter of intent from a potential customer in the field of physiotherapy.
It really makes for a whole new experience when it comes to interval training, as it tackles all the negative aspects of it. It doesn’t matter if you’re a top athlete or have never worked out before as it automatically adjusts itself to your individual fitness level and takes care of everything during the whole workout, even how fast you should pedal. One of the best features of the system is that although it makes sure you reach the required heart rate that is needed, it actually won’t allow you to do more than what is necessary. Intervals really can’t get any easier than this, and I’ve actually started to like them!
– What has the area of Trøndelag bring to your making? Could this be possible anywhere else? Would it look different if it was?
The development of Easy Intervals would have been really hard to do anywhere else than here. The combination of scientists at the Cardiac Exercise Research Group (CERG) at St Olavs Hospital, professors and experts at NTNU and maker spaces like the Omega workshop supplied both the necessary knowledge and means to develop something like this. It really is a multidisciplinary project that requires expertise in many different fields, and all of them can be found right here.
– And is there something unique to the people behind it and outsider wouldn’t necessarily know, but is cool?
We are extremely stubborn! Not many people know how much effort is required to start a new company, but it is challenging in every way imaginable as you have to learn everything at once and make hard decisions every day. This requires a dedication and stubbornness you don´t find in most people. Although starting a company undoubtedly is really hard, it is also the most rewarding thing I have ever done, so it kind of balances out.
For this week’s edition of Meet Your Makers, The List stopped by the Spætt Film office to talk to director Magnus Skatvold and CEO/Co-Producer Håvard Gosse about their recent hit film: Trondheimsreisen. They premiered the documentary during Kosmorama International Film Festival this past March and received great acclaim.
For those that missed it during Kosmorama, or those wanting to see it a second time, the film is still currently in theatres.
Peep the trailer:How did you first become interested in film?
For me, it very much so has been a lifelong passion. I’ve been a film-buff since my childhood and I have kind of known from the time
I was 10 or 11 that at some point I was going to work with film; either has an actor or director. I was just fascinated with the world of film.
– Any movie in particular?
I think Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles 2 was one of the first films I saw in the cinema, probably a little too young to see it, but that was just such a profound experience for me.
I like to tell a fun story which is when I was born my parents were out at the cinema; watching To Menn for En Baby. I wanted to get out and spoil this horrible film for them…I don’t know if they’ve ever watched it again.
Then my plan was to be an engineer, but I always borrowed my dad’s camera to film little clips. Then I studied math, chemistry, and physics at university and got some extra points for that which got me into my dream course: the film course at NTNU. So thanks to me trying to be an engineer I got into the film class and its grown from there!
Where did the project of Trondheimsreisen come from?
This project had been in development for about a year before we got attached to it. Trondheim Cinema and the producer were in talks about putting to use some the many kilometers of films stock they had stored. And that began the process of what it should be used for, whether a documentary or something else.
We got approached to take a look at the material and got involved in the process. Then we started with interviews, for research and for something we could use in the film. So we started with interesting storytellers in Trondheim, not necessarily famous people, but ones that had personal and historical stories to tell.
We are really happy that Dag Hoel came to us with this project. As we said he had been developing something with Trondheim Kino, but then he needed a storyteller to come on board. Dag Hoel is one of the all-timers here in Trondheim; he’s been producing for many, many years. He knows me from previous work we have done together and of course, Magnus was on his radar as well for being one of the young, new directors from the region that has a lot of experience. So it was well timed that he came to Magnus for the director position.
The dynamic between the producer and myself was very good for the project. We had different views on materials and experience and two voices to tell the story. This resulted in, mainly, positive discussions on the what the story is and could be – which is so broad as we are telling the story of Trondheim over the course of 100 years.
How long did it take to complete the film?
We were contacted about the film about two years ago. The process started there, and while it hasn’t been full time, I’ve spent several hours a week, every week on it for the past two years. It was a lot of different processes, one being getting a hold of all the material and looking through it – which takes hours and hours. You also have to think about it and let it sink in and start to build a story in your head.
There is also the process of editing it all together that started very early on. Within the first month, I started editing together little scenes and trying to get a hold of the style I wanted to use.
Choosing the footage was quite intuitive in a sense. I had done a couple of interviews that were very open, just sitting down with people for an hour or two talking about their lives with no clear agenda. I just wanted to get as much openness as possible, and people ended up using me almost like a therapist. They were talking about things they hadn’t thought about in 10-20 years; people were opening up and crying. I think there is something that happens when people speak to someone half their age or younger starts asking about their lives. How was it being in love during this time or that? What was it like experiencing the war? That gave me a lot to work with.
How was the process compared to your previous work?
This project is very special because we had to find a way of doing it, almost inventing a new way of thinking. The story we were telling isn’t linear where you have a script and just need to follow that. All the materials we had, from the footage, the interviews, and even the sound design was influencing each other. It was after the interviews that I really knew what to look for in the material and footage we had, but also it worked the other way and the material gave me ideas about what to ask people during the interviews.
The only mainframe we really had to guide the process of creating the film was that it started with this shot from 1906 and the ending using footage from the 1980’s. Most people would have organized the film to have it all in chronological order, but Magnus managed to find some kind of fluctuating way to tell the story that still makes it feel like it is going from one point to another. Which is a much more interesting film, I think.
It was a challenge because it needed some structure. The film is chronological in a way that it starts one way and ends more modern in some parts, but it takes some liberties in jumping between decades in ways we felt it was necessary to tell the story. We see the timeline as not only chronological but where do you place something like being a student at NTNU into a specific time period? We wanted to tell things like that, like being a student, as some broader. That we could mix clips from the 1940’s or 60’s or 80’s and that things are very much the same, but also has its differences.
How long did it take to look through all that footage?
Our material came from a lot of sources, from the national library, Studentersammfundet, NRK, and even regular people sending us film from their own collections.
That footage isn’t the same type of quality like some of the stuff from NRK, but having those private moments from real Trondheimer’s became the soul of the film.
We bought a machine to digitize the film ourselves but quickly found out that it wasn’t enough. We could use it to watch through the film but had to send it to a specialist to digitalize it. But its great as now all the footage is being sent to the National Library to be stored and is great for documenting our history.
How was the premiere?
It was awesome for us. I was sitting next to two musicians that have a song in the film and overheard them talking about how they were touched by the film along with everyone else. Everyone was talking about their own experiences in the city, and that was great to hear.
We had people coming up and telling us that they were never going to leave Trondheim again!
It was an overwhelming experience. I’d seen the film 10-20 times already, but it really came alive seeing it with a large audience. It was definitely a high point in my professional life – presenting it with Liv Ullmann of all people and getting such positive feedback from the audience. I had people coming up to me that I didn’t know to thank me for making the film.
We knew of course that this would be popular amongst the older generations of people in Trondheim, but it has shown itself to be more of a cross-generational film and bringing people together.
After Trondheimsreisen it was very good to go back to doing more short-term projects. Also working with the documentary ‘Blue Code of Silence’ [A documentary film about the story of the infamous NYPD officer Bob Leuci] and hopefully we will get some more answers on that in the coming months.
We [Spætt Films] have a short film that is being made with Vegard [Dahle] as director. He made the film ‘Eye’ last year, which won the 72-hour competition at the Jinzhen International Short Film Festival in China last year. We are making a behind-the-scenes movie on that as well. We also have a few feature films that are in development.
The List connected with Trøndelag’s Olympic World Snowboarder, Kjersti Buaas for issue #14 that came out at the start of 2017. To celebrate International Women’s Day, we thought we would give it another share!
Approximately 20 years ago in the small town of Klæbu, just outside of Trondheim, a girl raised in the outdoors tried out something new for the first time, and through love, passion and perseverance eventually became one of Trøndelag’s prized Olympic medal winners.
Kjersti Buaas is a rather known name for anyone that has followed the past four Olympic Winter Games. What you may not have known is that she is a proclaimed Trondheim ambassador. While residing in California for the time being, Kjersti makes it her mission to support others interested in outdoor sports to find a balance between their mind, body, and soul.
Kjersti, can you tell our readers about yourself?
I’m originally from Trondheim and I grew up doing a lot of different sports. I was introduced to snowboarding at the age of twelve when my older sister was trying it out and I wanted to be just like her, of course. Snowboarding was something that I fell in love with immediately. It felt creative and fun to move around and move my body in that way. I never set out with an ambition to create a career… but snowboarding has since become my job and profession. For the past eighteen years of I have been professionally competing, resulting in four Olympics, winning A bronze medal and a couple of silver medals as well. Winning golds in various X-games.
Yours is not the most common life-path, albeit incredibly inspiring. How did you initially get involved in competitive sports?
Something that Norwegians might underestimate is the benefit of being born in a place where people are encouraged to get outdoors and test their limits. Growing up in Trondheim, we had to get out of our comfort zones, whether it was the weather, or something else. I was also lucky to have role models and good people supporting me, including coaches and a national team. I have had a very nice support system from the start. That is really important when you are at the age when you are trying to find your inner strength.
It also feels kind of safe to be in Norway and to be a Norwegian as it’s a small country. I think that we can identify with one another easier because we are only 5 million or so. It has not been easy to find a clear path and everyone must experience the same. I mean, I have never really doubted that it’s what I wanted to do, though I never really decided ‘this is what I am going to do, I’m going to be a professional snowboarder and compete in the Olympics’. Luckily I had all of those people around me, without them I could not have done it.
As a female, what are were some of the mental breakthroughs you needed in order to engage in competitive sports?
I associate some of my drive to resiliency. Whether it’s just weather, cultural tradition or determination. This is all important. In the beginning, snowboarding gave me a new way to think, a new way live and to view myself. I was surrounded by female athletes, yet snowboarding has always been a very friendly sport. So even though we were competing against each other, we became really good friends. A key factor is finding your community. Being that snowboarding was a smaller community worldwide than other competitive sports, we weren’t afraid to share. We weren’t afraid to share strategies with each other were open about it. We pushed each other to watch documentaries about, let’s say food and agriculture, in order to learn what’s behind it. After seeing learning what happens in other places, such as American agriculture, I was shocked. My snowboarding community has helped me access education and knowledge so I that I could make conscious and good choices that would be good more me, and for the world.
Do you think that growing up in this region has had anything to do with your career path?
I grew up in a very active family and we always spent most of our time outdoors. That is to say, I had it in my blood and I loved it. I think that Trøndersk culture is very tough and strong. You know, it’s never really bad weather, we just go outside. In Norway, you will see people going to work on a bike in a rainstorm and it doesn’t matter. In other parts of California, they’ll say it is horrible weather when there is one cloud in the sky and wouldn’t consider riding a bike in the rain. I think that something so simple as coming from a culture where you are not afraid to face nature has helped me understand how to push my own limitations.
“There are no boundaries.”
I brought this outlook with me to into a male-dominated sport where at the time, girls were a token. When there was one spot on a snowboarding team for a girl and that spot was filled, we may have previously thought ‘it’s already taken’. I started challenging this. My upbringing encouraged me to change my way of thinking and follow my heart in order to solve the problem differently. I would try out for the team anyhow. I believed that if I followed mind, body, and soul, I could inspire other people. My perspective is, before the action, it’s just a thought. But everything changes once you start doing it. At some point, I realised my own power. Then I started realising that all anyone has to do is start thinking differently and seeing the potential for change. In that respect, being a professional athlete is simply a way to do life. The benefit is that you get to experience so many things, challenge yourself so intensively both in competition and under pressure.
Snowboarding is often considered a young person’s sport, though you grew up in Norway where you don’t have strong conforming factors related to age – people in their 60s and 70s are still climbing, skiing and are showing that body is actually a tool. What do you have to do to keep yourself healthy and competitive at over the age of thirty?
I’ve done a lot of different things within the sport and I’m still loving it. Yes, I’m still competing with all these teenagers as young as fourteen… and it is about breaking stereotypes. You might think that you need to retire from professional sports in your late 20s because that’s the norm. And then you realise that it’s just a norm and not the rule. I think that coming from a culture where you are free to keep working beyond ‘pension age’ if you choose to, affects you. People are inspired by their peers no matter the age, whether they are parents, grandparents or friends. We will always look to what is around us and draw inspiration from it. So for me, it became almost like a personal goal to see how my body will respond to competing at that level of snowboarding as I age because the sport can be pretty harsh and there can be a lot of impacts. Once I realised that I had to become more healthy in order to continue — when it comes to food, training, and everything going on in my mind — I started seeing so much potential and age didn’t matter anymore. It is a fun journey that I’m kind of creating on my own. There still aren’t that many snowboarders competing after their 20s.
How do you think your ego comes into play?
To be honest, it was probably eight or so years ago when I realised we had the term ‘ego’ and I started to contemplate it. I had certain sentiments and then thought, ‘wow, that’s my ego – that’s what it is.’ I was really lucky because my friends and I started a club and we called it ‘One Life’, which had the intention of being light-hearted in competition. A lot of people get really serious and their ego becomes very blatant and they don’t realise the impact. So ‘One Life’ tried to be aware of the ego. We intended to compete and have fun because isn’t that why we started doing this in the first place? We helped each other through this process and vowed to be a constant reminder to one another. We did silly things when we were younger like where animal hats – you know, you can’t get egotistical and be serious in an animal hat. Just try it. We had these little tools to help us to get through that phase and I think it is really important for people to reflect and look inside to remind themselves of what their ultimate motivation is. The more I learn about my ego, the more I’m able to see that I am unrestrained to be who I want to be. If at one point I did something I was not proud of, I can just shake it off and let it go.
Tips for keeping healthy and active, body and mind
We hosted a camp called ‘Presence Performance’ at Vassfjellet last January and will offer another in March. This was an all-day women’s snowboarding camp starting with yoga and meditation. The foundation of the camp is ‘face what brings yourself to its highest performance.’ If you want to be at the top of anything, the more present you are, the better you’ll be. This is something I have learned from the Olympics. Whenever I’ve done my best, it was because I was present. There are various techniques for breathing in the air, differentiating smell and sounds. We are also teaching participants what will give you the best fuel to perform the best. For me, it is very important to find a good balance between when I’m training and doing my thing, but also hosting things such as this camp. Because that is what really motivates me.
What does this region have to offer, what should they be proud about?
Be proud that you are growing up in a city that is surrounded by amazing forest and wildlife. Where else can you go less than five minutes outside of the city and go cross-country skiing and stay connected to nature? Deep down I think that this is why people in and around Trondheim have a lot of love in their hearts. I feel a lot of love. You don’t know everyone, but because of the size, you feel as if you could.
Quick Facts about Kjersti:
Bronze medal at X Games Oslo 2016
8th place for entire season, World Cup 2012/ 2013
Bronze medal at the Winter Olympics 2006
4th place in half-pipe at the Winter Olympics 2002
Not everyone wants to have a hot coffee beverage, and plain cocoa can get boring. Here are two alternatives that you can make with a few extra ingredients that can excite your taste buds, enchant your guests and give you something new to add to your holiday traditions. As well as a few tips from our friends at Jacobsen og Svart on how to brew a fantastic cup of coffee.
Cinnamon Orange Cocoa – All things considered, these three flavours all go well together in different combinations. Together they are heavenly. This simple cocoa will amaze not only your nose but your taste buds too.
3 dl heavy cream
4 dl milk
3 tbs sugar
2 tsp cinnamon
50 g dark chocolate, chopped
zest of 1 orange
Heat the cream to a simmer, add chocolate and orange zest. Whisk until chocolate dissolves. Whisk in cinnamon and sugar, allow to dissolve. Slowly pour in milk and whisk until entire mixture is warm. Serve this with a dash of cinnamon and some shaved chocolate on the top.
Vanilla and Ginger Warm Apple Cider – Cider is very refreshing with its crisp fall apples. This takes that to a whole new level to warm even the coldest of fingers and noses.
1 litre apple cider (apple juice will work)
1 vanilla bean split and seeds scraped
1 tsp fresh ginger, grated
small cinnamon stick (a ½ tsp of ground cinnamon)
Heat the apple cider to a good simmer then reduce heat. Add the vanilla bean, ginger and cinnamon and heat for 15 minutes, giving it a good stir every few minutes. Strain the mixture to remove the ginger, cinnamon and vanilla bean pod. Serve immediately with a slice of apple, or store in a carafe to enjoy while out and about.
A perfect Coffee?
Any coffee, no matter how good the bean is, can become a bad cup of coffee. The coffee experts at Jacobsen og Svart want to help you make the most of your Christmas coffee.
Kokekaffe (Kettle Coffee):
60g course ground coffee, as coarse as you can get it.
1 litre water, measured in a measuring cup
Boil your water in the kettle and remove from the heat. Once taken from the heat, pour in your grounds and give it a good stir. Never boil the grounds. Now, leave it for 8-10 minutes. Here is the magic tip: take the lid off and hit the edge of the kettle with a spoon and then be patient, the grounds will break and sink to the bottom, leaving you clear coffee to pour off into your cup.
60 g finer ground coffee, about the size of coffee crystals (not the fine ones)
1 litre of water, measured in a measuring cup
Start by rinsing your filter to remove the bitter taste that filters often give. Then measure your water for boiling, in a clean kettle. Pour in the water slowly to give it enough time to seep through the grounds.
One of the things to look for is that your grounds are damp, but not a soggy mess when it is done brewing.
Written by Jennifer Wold, this article originally appeared in Issue #19 of The List; read more here!