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 a concert with the Bergen Philharmonic Orchestra on 18 November this year. This concert will be broadcast by national broadcaster NRK and online at bergenphilive.no, and Amalie Stalheim will perform Elgar’s cello concerto in E minor together with the Bergen Philharmonic and conductor Joshua Weilerstein.
Watch the concert live online. The transmission starts Thursday 18 November at 19:25.
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 great 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.
The Norwegian Soloist Prize
- Supports and promotes young, talented soloists.
- Founded in 2005 based on a donation from businessman Bernt J. Fossum. Since 2020, the award is supported by musicologist and business developer Karianne Westfal-Larsen.
- In even-numbered years, awarded to the winner of the NRK-broadcast Virtuos to a musician under the age of 20.
- In odd-numbered years, awarded to a musician under the age of 30.
- Previous winners of the Norwegian Soloist Prize include Tine Thing Helseth (2006), Christian Ihle Hadland (2007), Guro Kleven Hagen (2010) and Sonoko Miriam Welde (2014).
The award-winning cellist Amalie Stalheim (born 1993) has been a soloist with orchestras such as Gulbenkian Orquestra, the Oslo Philharmonic, the Royal Stockholm Philharmonic Orchestra, the Gothenburg Symphony Orchestra, the Oulu Symphony Orchestra, the Kuopio Symphony Orchestra and the Bergen Philharmonic Orchestra, to name a few. She is the winner of the Swedish Soloist Award 2018. In addition to playing traditional cello concerts internationally, Amalie is passionate about commissioning new pieces for cello. In the coming season, she will premiere and record five cello concerts. Amalie is an active chamber musician and has collaborated with musicians such as Janine Jansen, Yo-Yo Ma, Leif Ove Andsnes, Christian Ihle Hadland, Lars Anders Tomter and the Stenhammar Quartet. Amalie has studied with Professor Torleif Thedéen at Edsberg Manor at the Royal College of Music in Stockholm and the Norwegian Academy of Music.