The Staff Band of the Norwegian Armed Forces is one of the Norwegian armed forces’ five professional music ensembles, and since its formation in 1818 has been the country’s largest professional wind band.
Based in Oslo, it is the armed forces’ most important band for providing musical support at ceremonial functions, and it plays regularly on royal and official government occasions and on behalf of the armed forces – as well as at a host of other ceremonial and representative functions at home and abroad. The band also has an extensive concert schedule in and around Oslo. Most of its concerts are given in its own concert hall, “Ridehuset”, in Akershus Fortress, but it also gives numerous outdoor concerts and regularly plays on tours around Norway. The band is well-known for its versatility – it plays music that spreads over many genres, with a repertoire ranging from the classical wind repertoire to the very latest in popular music. Works by contemporary composers are often performed, and the band has contributed to the broadening of the wind repertoire by commissioning compositions and arrangements – both from established names and from promising up-and-coming composers.
As one of the world’s oldest military bands, the Staff Band of the Norwegian Armed Forces has a distinguished history and a strong tradition to maintain. In addition to its military functions, it has always played a central part in the cultural life of the capital, Oslo. Moreover, it was for many years the only institution in Norway that offered a musical education.
The band’s artistic aims are the same today as they have always been: to play music that is appreciated by its audience and to maintain and develop the high standards and enthusiasm of its players.
photo: from booklet 2L086 La Voie Triomphale