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Tuesday, May 21, 2024

Andsnes to play at Risør after all

Norway’s acclaimed pianist Leif Ove Andsnes had felt forced to withdraw from the 20th anniversary of a chamber music festival he helped lead for years, but the early birth of his daughter has cleared the way for him to attend after all.

The Risør Chamber Music Festival always draws a crowd, also inside Risør's historic wooden church. PHOTO: Sven Goll

Andsnes was expecting the birth of his first child right when the annual Risør Chamber Music Festival was due to begin this week, in the small town of Risør on Norway’s southern coast. 

But newspaper Aftenposten could report Tuesday that little Sigrid arrived early, on June 12, meaning that Andsnes now thinks it’s okay to tear himself away from his new family for a few days this weekend.

“I have decided to show up, I’ll come at the end of the festival,” Andsnes told Aftenposten

He said he’ll attend the large outdoor concert at Stangholmen on Saturday and play in Risør Church at the closing concert on Sunday.”Bartok with other soloists and the orchestra Risør Festival Strings, and there will be some solo playing also,” he said.

Festival chief Turid Birkeland said the opening concert is nearly sold out and she expects around 8,000 tickets will be sold during the week. 

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