Watch back: Marja Mortensson and Daniel Herskedal live at the Festivalhuis
Last summer, VPRO recorded several Vrije Geluiden Sessies in the Festivalhuis with artists from Music Meeting 2023. The session by Marja Mortensson and Daniel Herskedal can now be watched back on our website.
This remarkable music comes from Norway. Except, Marja Mortensson does not sing in Norwegian but in the language of her people, the Sami. Or, to be precise, the almost extinct Åarjelsaemien Gïele or South Sami, spoken today by just five hundred people. For she believes that she can only truly express herself emotionally in that language. Unlike colleagues such as Wimme Saari, she doesn’t opt for wordless joik, in which the voice mimics natural sounds, but instead sings songs about subjects such as reindeer calves and their mothers, and about traditional customs. Herskedal, her accompanist and partner in life, is both a composer and a virtuoso player of the tuba and bass trumpet with a background in impro and jazz. And you can hear that in the music of this remarkable duo who, although deeply rooted in an ancient tradition, still sound very contemporary.