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Bergenfest celebrates 25 years with sell-out event

Over 50,000 people helped the Norwegian festival commemorate a quarter of a century last weekend

By Molly Long on 21 Jun 2018

Bergenfest will return in 2022

Fans at Bergenfest 2018

image © Bergenfest

It was with a five-day event and 50,000 visitors that Norway’s Bergenfest celebrated its 25th birthday last weekend. Despite challenges in recent years regarding the weakness of the Norwegian currency, the  festival, organised by local independent Bergen Live, managed to enjoy a sold-out anniversary event.

Since 1993, Bergenfest has brought people to the west-coast city of Bergen every year. Originally only a small multi-venue city centre event, the festival now takes place in the open-air Bergenhus Fortress in the Unesco world heritage site Bryggen. Thanks to the relocation, Bergenfest can welcome around 9,000 people a day.

Guests last weekend were treated to performances from artists including Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds, Queens of the Stone Age and Father John Misty. Also on the lineup was a host of Norwegian talent – performers Sigrid and Astrid S appeared on the bill alongside 13 year old local rap ‘whiz kid’, MachoMayne.

“It can’t really get much better for us!”

Additional to the main festival, a further 10,500 children attended Bergenfest Ung, the festival’s youth event. With an early morning show for 2,000 kindergarten children and further events for 8,000 school students, young people of all ages were able to enjoy what Bergen had to offer.

Festival organisers were impressed with the resounding success of the five-day event. Festival director Frank Nes says: “This year is our best so far – a great line up, great feedback from artists, press and festivalgoers, a growing international audience and four out of five days without rain.

“It can’t really get much better for us!”

Fresh from celebrating the successes of 2018, organisers are already looking to the new year. Next year’s Bergenfest will take place 12–15 June and early-bird tickets are on sale now from the Bergenfest website.


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