VoxLAB VårFEST is a 3-4 days festival with a focus on newly written vocal repertoire and new musical theatre and has been organized since 2019. The content is mainly new vocal repertoire developed by composers working with an experimental vocal expression. Through concerts, workshops, and ongoing collaboration with VoxLAB, composers get the opportunity to develop new works and share them with others. VoxLAB has had great success with the festival for the past three years. VårFEST is becoming known as a "multidimensional voice party" (mentioned in Ballade).
Rome prize winner Pamela Z was invited as a guest artist in 2019, and the program included premieres of two new music-dramatic works by Gro Siri Ognøy Johansen and Kristin Norderval, Ruth Wilhelmine Meyer, and Øystein Elle. We also had an evening with performing and improvising composers such as Tone Åse, Sidiki Camara, and Oddrun Lilja Jonsdottir. Although the corona pandemic led to major obstacles for VårFEST' 20, we carried out most of the concerts we had planned. We presented 5 premieres by local artists at Sentralen, one of which is Edvardpriswinner 2020, Ruth W. Meyer. During VårFest'21 with "The Extended Voice" as the headline, we presented a concert series consisting of new works by ten different Oslo-based composers, in collaboration with the EAU-Electric Audio Unit. We focused on diversity, and as many as eight of the ten Oslo-based composers had backgrounds from other countries. Of the twelve composers presented at the festival, nine were women. The program included Norwegian premieres of solo works by the renowned international vocalists/composers Franziska Baumann and Alex Nowitz, and a site-specific musical theater performance by Ann-Helen Schjølberg. VårFEST 2022 - "New Constellations!" opened with the Berlin-based vocal virtuoso Sophia Körber and closed with the legendary percussionist and composer Limpe Fuchs. As well as presenting new works by 11 Oslo-based composers and a workshop in collaboration with Khio in "Contemporary Vocal Art Practices" and "Music and Theater - work in the Borderlands". The festival offers a rich selection of exploratory vocal repertoire and musical theater by composers and performers from various generations, nationalities, and traditions.
VårFEST 2023 is coming soon, building on its reputation of bringing exciting new works for voice to the Oslo scene. This year’s VårFEST promises an extraordinary program with internationally recognized composers and musicians, featuring exploratory vocal repertoire and musical theatre.
More information and the full program here