The 2018 – 20 star of the Talent Norway programme and a former recipient of the 2018 Gstaad Conducting Academy’s Neeme Järvi Prize, Tabita Berglund is rapidly establishing herself as one of the most exciting, talented young conductors on the European circuit.
Engagements in 2019/20 included five concerts with the Finnish Radio Symphony Orchestra, four concerts with the Hallé Orchestra, a full-length production of The Nutcracker with the Arctic Philharmonic, and a return to the Stavanger Symphony Orchestra. The latter two appearances were as part of Opptakt, a launch programme which nurtures young conducting talent in Norway and under which Berglund first performed with the Orchestra of the Norwegian National Opera (together with pianist Leif Ove Andsnes) in 2019.
The 2020/21 season builds on the success of 2019/20 and features many important engagements, including Nordic debuts with the Oslo Philharmonic, Bergen Philharmonic, Royal Stockholm Philharmonic, Trondheim Symphony and Kristiansand Symphony orchestras. Berglund also appears for the first time with the Dresdner Philharmonie, Royal Scottish National Orchestra, Orquestra Simfònica de Barcelona i Nacional de Catalunya, Orquesta Ciudad de Granada and OrchestreSymphonique de l’Opéra de Toulon, among others. In 2021 she returns to the Norwegian Radio Orchestra.
The ever-changing nature which surrounds her hometown in the Norwegian mountains is an inspiring influence on Berglund, and this together with other artistic and musical issues plays an important role in her programming.The inherent connection between the art of leadership and the role of a conductor is also something to which Berglund attaches particular importance: “The goal is to become a conductor whom I would have wanted to play under myself.”
Berglund graduated in 2019 from the Orchestral Conducting Masters course at the Norwegian Academy of Music, where she studied under Professor Ole Kristian Ruud. She originally trained as a cellist and studied to Masters degree level under Truls Mørk, performing regularly with the Oslo and Bergen Philharmonic orchestras as well as the Trondheim Soloists before conducting became her main focus in 2015. She has previously participated in masterclasses with Bernard Haitink, Jorma Panula and Jaap van Zweden, as well as a BBC Philharmonic workshop in September 2018.
“Berglund led the four dozen or so [Royal Scottish National Orchestra] musicians with confidence, masterful direction, and expressions of pleasure and encouragement. Conducting with a baton, she has a very vigorous style, moving her arms energetically in conspicuous arcs. This works well in electrifying the orchestra as she transforms individual passages into a cohesive musical unity. In the physically smaller orchestra, the woodwinds and brass could have easily over-shadowed the strings, but Berglund never let the balance tip too far in their favour.”
(Linda Holt, Bachtrack, November 2020)
“[But] Tabita Berglund managed to give this relatively heavy work new life! Powerful string sound, beautiful woodwind solos, shiny brass instruments […] Certain passages were actually reminiscent of film music, and the experience was completely different compared to hearing the work through the speakers at home – a feat of the young conductor!”
(Fædrelandsvennen, Kristiansand Symphony Orchestra, September 2020)
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