The Hemsing Festival

  • Invites you to experience great music in intimate settings

  • Presents classical music of a high international standard in collaboration with local musical and cultural traditions

  • Offers a unique combination of nature and music


About the Hemsing Festival


The Hemsing Festival takes place annually in Aurdal – a small village in the mountains of Valdres, with around 700 inhabitants and great cultural traditions. This is a place where both Edvard Grieg and Knut Hamsun, amongst others, got their inspiration from the beautiful nature, and Frydenlund Skysstasjon was for many years an important meeting place for artists from all over the country.


The musical sisters Ragnhild and Eldbjørg Hemsing grew up in this village, and were both introduced to classical and folk music at an early age. Today, they are both internationally renowned artists, who consider the whole world as their workspace. The sisters view the communication of the magical power and depth of music to an audience to be one of the greatest pleasures of performing arts. This is what inspired them to establish their own international chamber music festival in the village where they grew up. Their wish is to transfer some of their own expertise back to this community, and with that, see how music can affect the community, and create an identity and a sense of belonging.


Intimate encounters with great music


In the last part of calendar week 8 (winter holiday week for Oslo/Akershus), highly respected international musicians from all over the World are invited to our festival in Aurdal, to create unforgettable artistic moments.


The Hemsing Festival includes around 15 concerts over a period of five days. The village church, built in 1737, is the main stage for the festival, with neighboring Frikar-Smia providing an additional modern stage, Frydenlund Skysstasjon bringing in an historical aspect, and the modern mountain church in Aurdalsåsen allowing a combination of skiing in beautiful nature and great musical experiences. All of our venues ensure a close and intimate atmosphere.


The Hemsing Festival is strongly rooted in the local area, and has from the beginning had activities aimed specifically towards children and youths. Our wish is to make classical music meaningful for the local community by engaging the local culture school for their own concerts. This, in connection with the village’s rich food traditions, a supportive local business community, and an especially large contribution from volunteers, makes it possible to bring the festival to life with bravado.

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