The Jorn Hilme Festival is among the greatest and best attended music festivals of Norway, and is focused purely on folk music. The festival incorporates a Boot Camp, folk music classes, folk music singers, dance parties and competitions for folk musicians. Norway is known for her passion in music, especially the music that carries the folklore of her denizens and this is reverberates across the Valdres district during the two weeks of the folk music festival. For the last 50 years, the Jorn Hilme Music Festival has been a major attraction of Norway, every July.
Every last two weeks of July, year after year, people from all over the globe assemble at Fagernes, a town in the middle of the Valdres, as participants and spectators of the rich cultural music and dozens of activities. The two weeks are fun filed, with activities well suited for family outings and couple’s honeymoons. Fagernes is only three hours away on a vehicle, from the metropolitan town of Oslo. This enables both participants and guests for the Jorn Hilme Music Festival to access first class accommodation and catering offered by the hotels and restaurants in Oslo, without missing out on the fun of the festival.
The Jorn Hilme Music Festival consists of two distinct parts each lasting a week. In the first week, there is a boot camp, locally called a Strunkeveko. After the boot camp, the actual Jorn Hilme-Stemnet festival kicks off. The term Stemnet refers to a folk music festival that incorporates such activities as concerts, music classes, dance parties, classes and competitions, with a specific bias to folk musicians, dancers and singers. Most short courses are offered at the Fagernes museum and Quality Hotel Fagernes, facilitated by Valdres traditional instructors in the flute, jaw harp, langeleik, springar, gamaldans and other traditional music instruments. The courses are spread across the week, to allow participants attend other events and activities of the festival.
In the tradition of the Forde International Music Festival, also in Norway but hosted by the west coast town of Forde, the Jorn Hilme Music Festival, features a host of fun, crowd-pulling activities that are wide ranging and very involving for all participants and spectators. Such activities include, competitions among musicians on several types of folk music, athletic contests for the non-athletes, informal evening dances in the old houses of Valdres, music lessons in short course for beginners up to professionals, wild concerts at various venues, karaoke singers and instrumentals, among many other activities.
For the boot camp, the six days of summer are spent learning folk music for both young adults and children aged between 11 and 20. Over 30 instructors are always on site, whether the classes are held in the museum or in the camping sites. All the 120-130 boot camp students are required to participate in various concerts in the Jorn Hilme-Stemnet festival such as the Teacher’s Concert and the Farewell Concert.
Weeks before the festival kicks off, musicians begin gathering on the venue grounds located in the Fagernes Folk museums, and prepare for the competitions. All the groups and individuals with repute in folk music from all over Norway, especially the talented southern Norway regions, lay a claim on the Jorn Hilme Festival, thereby enriching it with a cultural diversity and yet a melodious harmony, unlike any that can be achieved anywhere else in the globe. The competitions (locally referred to as Kappleik) are rare attractions that emphasize more on the quality of music and entertainment than on who wins.
This year’s festival was the grandest of all 49 festivals ever held. It lasted for fourteen days, beginning on 12th July 2009 and ending on the 26th, with the actual festival spanning from July 19-26. Plans for the silver jubilee festival are already underway, with organizers promising to hold the greatest Jorn Hilme Festival of all time to mark 50 years since the first festival was inaugurated. For those who would like to get further information, the festival manager can be contacted through any of the following means: phone – (011-47)61 36 46 71, address – Jorn Hilme-Stemnet, 27, N-2900 Fagernes-NorwayTags: jorn hilme festival norway, hilme