“One of Europe’s greatest promises”(Helsingin Sanomat, September 2021)
Principal Guest Conductor: Kristiansand Symphony Orchestra
Hailed as “one of Europe’s greatest promises” (Helsingin Sanomat), Tabita Berglund is one of today’s most exciting, talented young conductors who is fast gaining a reputation for her alert, charismatic and inspiring style which elicits “exceptional music-making” (The Arts Desk). Berglund is currently Principal Guest Conductor of the Kristiansand Symphony Orchestra, appointed to this post following her debut engagement with the orchestra in 2020.
Highlights of 2022/23 include Berglund’s US debut/subscription concerts with the Detroit Symphony Orchestra and German debut/season-opening concerts with the Sinfonieorchester Wuppertal. Berglund also makes her debut with the Orchestre National du Capitole de Toulouse, Malmö Symphony Orchestra and Orquesta Sinfonica de RTVE in Madrid, while return visits include the Royal Stockholm Philharmonic, Finnish Radio Symphony and Bergen Philharmonic orchestras as well as her fourth guest appearance each with the Hallé and Royal Scottish National Orchestra.
2022/23 also marks the second season of Berglund’s tenure with the Kristiansand Symphony Orchestra – KSO repertoire highlights include Mahler’s Symphony No.1 and Tchaikovsky’s Symphony No.6, while across the season Berglund joins forces with Tanja Tetzlaff, Edgar Moreau and Randall Goosby, among others, with repertoire by Beethoven and Schubert through to composers such as Lutoslawski, Nordheim, Thorvaldsdottir and Tabakova. Looking further ahead, future opera activity includes a revival production of Mozart’s Le nozze di Figaro, while recent engagements include Berglund’s Austrian and French debuts with the Tonkünstler-Orchester Niederösterreich and Orchestre National de Lille respectively, as well as appearances with the Oslo Philharmonic Orchestra, Orquesta Sinfónica de Tenerife, Luzerner Sinfonieorchester, Tampere Philharmonic Orchestra, Stavanger Symphony Orchestra, Trondheim Symfoniorkester, Norwegian National Opera Orchestra, Orquesta Ciudad de Granada and Tapiola Sinfonietta, among others.
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 Master’s 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 was the 2018 – 20 star of the Talent Norway programme and is a past recipient of the Gstaad Conducting Academy’s Neeme Järvi Prize. Berglund’s debut CD, on which she conducts the Oslo Philharmonic with violinist Sonoko Miriam Welde, was released in 2021 (LAWO) and subsequently nominated for a Norwegian Grammy (Spellemann) in the 2022 Classical Music category.
HarrisonParrott represents Tabita Berglund for worldwide general management.
“Tabita Berglund’s conducting style – alert, encouraging and inspiring – seems to bring out exceptional music-making.”
“(Berglund) is considered one of the most talented conductors of her generation and after this concert it is not difficult to understand why. She has an equally emotional and analytical relationship with the material and the communication with the musicians seems frictionless.”
“… at the helm here was the young Norwegian conductor Tabita Berglund, whose unfussy interpretation held poise and vigour. This is her second appearance with the Hallé, and her smiling warmth matched the Idyll’s radiance perfectly. The boundless energy that underpins her approach was best suited to the Beethoven that closed the concert. […] There was room for a rich Allegretto, too, in as athletic a Seventh as you’ll hear, leaving an appreciative if reduced Manchester audience invigorated.”
“(Berglund is) very capable of taking an orchestra with her in her ideas of how music should sound: she smiles encouragingly at the players a lot and makes constant eye contact […] She exudes confidence, and so does her music-making.”
“We take advantage of the somewhat disconcerting habit of giving hurricanes personal names to sum up the experience of what it means to see Tabita Berglund direct. Only, in this case, the metaphor alludes only to her overwhelming momentum and energy, without any of the negative connotations […] The result [in Beethoven’s Seventh Symphony] was forceful and jovial, brilliant but without being strident or tiresome […] The orchestra let itself be carried away and excelled at an extraordinary level of virtuosity and good sound. If the reports of the time detail that at its premiere the symphony was applauded to ecstasy, here the audience was able to renew their amazement and enthusiastic ovation.”
“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.”
“[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!”