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Soul of the Fiddle – Workshop in  London  March 31st – April 2nd:

info: Jewish Music Institute, SOAS


Sven Olav Lyngstad - Norwegian Hardanger Fiddle

As an experienced teacher on various levels Sven will give an introduction to Norwegian folk music of various styles and districts. Students will have a chance to try the unique qualities of the Hardanger Fiddle, but Sven will also adapt some of this music to be played on regular violins. The course will exemplify styles of rhythm and ornamentation, as well as the different tunings of the instrument. Participants will learn old country dances like Gangar, Springar and Halling as well as more “modern” round dances like Reinlender, Walz, Polka and Mazurka.  They will all become experts on Norwegian Wedding Marches, and there might even be a few Swedish tunes to enjoy.


Most of the music will be tought “the old fashioned way” – learning by ear, but for those who would like to prepare some of this in advance, I will recommend the two following textbooks/collections:


Svein Nyhus:   Slåtter for to Hardingfeler

Musikkhusets Forlag, Oslo (M.H.2516)


a collection of popular tunes from various

districts in a somewhat simplified version,

with a possible arrangement for two fiddles.

Preface: Article on Hardanger fiddle style of playing





Sigbjørn B. Osa:  Hardingfela (The Hardanger Fiddle)

Tekstboks:                          Musikkhuset A/S, Oslo (M.H.1143)


                        An introduction to the Hardanger fiddle in Norwegian and

English language. Gives a good orientation

of style of playing, and some practical exercises.

It also includes some famous Hardanger fiddle tunes

Published some years ago, but still quite informative..




How to order:


I will also bring these for the workshop, so you may buy them from me...


You may also download Norwegian Fiddle tunes from

I recommend to search for the following tunes that will be used during the course:

Nøringen  (after Ole Mosafinn, Voss)

Soteroen  (after Dreng Ose, Setesdal)

Hamlagrøen (after Ola Mosafinn)




Lecture Recital – Sven Olav Lyngstad                 SOAS  -  Tuesday March 30th at 12.35


Traditions of the Norwegian Hardanger Fiddle:

 An overview of the instrument in different styles and different
 parts of the country.


In this lecture recital Sven will give a broad outline of the history and various fiddle traditions of Norway,  focusing on the Hardanger Fiddle as a unique instrument of this region, but  with a side glance to  these traditions in a European setting.   Examples will be given of old traditional Country dances such as Gangar, Springar and Halling, and of  the more recent Round dances like Reinlender, Polka, Walz and Mazurka, dances that show a clear European influence.   Sven will also focus on the Hardanger Fiddle as a concert instrument, exposing the very best of Norwegian folk art as expressed in ancient and  more modern listening tunes.  The Hardanger Fiddle will be put into an historic, social, religious  and even political context,  with great importance in creating a cultural identity for a young nation.


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