Livestream: The Norwegian Soloist Prize 2021


Watch the concert live on this page. The transmission starts at 19.25 on Thursday 18 November.

Cellist Amalie Stalheim (28) is the winner of the Norwegian Soloist Prize 2021. The prize consists of NOK 100,000 and two prestigious assignments: A recital at the 2022 Bergen International Festival and a soloist assignment at this concert with the Bergen Philharmonic Orchestra. The concert will be broadcast by national broadcaster NRK and online at, and Amalie Stalheim will perform Elgar’s cello concerto in E minor together with the Bergen Philharmonic and conductor Joshua Weilerstein.

The three nominees for the prize were announced in August. The other nominees were flautist Ingrid Søfteland Neset and violinist Miriam Helms Ålien.

‘This year’s winner is in the middle of a sky-rocketing career that’s getting noticed in both the Nordic countries and beyond. Amalie Stalheim has an exceptionally wide and interesting repertoire, despite her young age, where both brand new cello concertos and the traditional repertoire have a natural place, says Peter Herresthal, chairman of the Norwegian Soloist Prize.

The Norwegian Soloist Prize has been awarded every year since 2005. In even-numbered years, NRK's Virtuos competition chooses the winner of the Norwegian Soloist Prize. In odd-numbered years, the Norwegian Soloist Prize is awarded to one of three to five nominated Norwegian instrumentalists or singers under 30 selected by an international jury.

This year's jury consisted of the Bergen Philharmonic Orchestra's chief conductor Edward Gardner, pianist Marianna Shirinyan, mezzo-soprano Anne Sofie von Otter and the Bergen Philharmonic Orchestra's programme director Oddmund Økland.

‘It’s a big honour for me to win the Norwegian Soloist Prize! It’s heart-warming to get such an acknowledgement, and a huge inspiration for me moving forward, says Amalie Stalheim.

Fast on its way to becoming a modern classic, Caroline Shaw’s Entr’acte was inspired by a performance of Haydn’s String Quartet Op 77 No 2. The music makes clear use of shapes from baroque and classical music while apparently looking at the whole history of the string quartet from the Classical era to Romanticism, modernism and minimalism.

After hearing from the winner of the Norwegian Soloists’ Prize, Joshua Weilerstein takes the orchestra through a true classic and one of the staples of the orchestral repertoire. One night in 1827, from the back of a theatre, the French composer Hector Berlioz fell in love with an actor on its stage. He set about thrusting all his feelings into a yearning, heartfelt symphony that would declare his love for the woman he had never met and persuade her to marry him. Berlioz’s untouchable, captivating musical language was born – and with it the iconic Symphonie fantastique.

Photo: Nikolaj Lund

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Knut Vaage: Relieff (Amalie Stalheim, cello)