By:Larm gathers Nordic talent

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Musical talent from the Nordic countries was hitting stages in Oslo again as the annual by:Larm music conference and festival got underway on Thursday. By:Larm is considered a premier arena especially for new Norwegian musicians.

The food and drink court known as Vulkan in Oslo serves as a hub for by:Larm and was due to be busy again through the weekend. PHOTO: by:Larm

The major musical event of the year is also celebrating its 20th anniversary this year, after starting up in Trondheim in 1998 as a meeting place for the Norwegian music industry and budding Norwegian musicians. It mounted an early celebration last year, on the grounds 2017 marked its 20th event, but this year the anniversary is official.

By:Larm has expanded greatly since its early days to a full festival program featuring artists from Finland, Sweden, Denmark and Iceland as well as Norway, along with a conference that attracts international participation. More than 2,500 delegates are registered this year, and 140 artists were set to perform at 15 different locations around Oslo.

Mina Evenrud, the new chief of by:Larm, told the state-backed promoter of Norwegian music Music Norway that there were some initial efforts to pare back the numbers of performing artists and conference session this year, “but there’s too much good stuff going on!” Evenrud claimed that Nordic technology, TV shows and aspiring artists have put “all eyes on the Nordics. Everything is happening at once. We have the confidence to show the rest of the world that Norway is not the capital of Sweden, it’s the hottest Nordic music scene!”

The Norwegian singer Aurora hit the national stage at by:Larm in 2014 and has since had international success. So have many others. PHOTO: Music Norway

By:Larm has long aimed to lift Norwegian and now Nordic artists, and introduce them to the world. It’s been a launching pad for singers and bands from Bertine Zetlitz, Odd Nordstoga and Sondre Lerche in its early years to Donkeyboy, Susanne Sundfør and Kvelertak as it matured, to Aurora and Sigrid Raabe in more recent years. This year’s hottest artists include Halie  (Hannah Emilie Grung) of Bergen and the bands Bokassa and EMIR, according to newspaper Aftenposten.

By:Larm also aims to pair aspiring artists and songwriters with scouts from record companies and other professionals. A so-called “songwriting camp” called Bysongs impressed Norway’s new government minister in charge of culture, Trine Skei Grande of the Liberal Party, when she visited it earlier this week.

“By:Larm is an important event for an industry that’s seeing strong growth,” Grande told newspaper Dagsavisen on Thursday. She was also set to officially open By:Larm, which has financial support from Norway’s foreign ministry, the Norwegian cultural council, the City of Oslo and Nordisk kulturfond.

newsinenglish.no/Nina Berglund