Iceland Symphony Orchestra


Upcoming events

Bernstein and Villa-Lobos Jan 24 19:30 Eldborg | Harpa Buy ticket


Conversation with Composer Jan 31 18:30 Hörpuhorn | Harpa Free entry


Dark Music Days Jan 31 19:30 Eldborg | Harpa Buy ticket


Yrkja - Young Composers Feb 1 12:00 Norðurljós | Harpa Free entry


Prokofiev and Brahms Feb 7 19:30 Eldborg | Harpa Buy ticket


Peter and the Wolf Feb 16 14:00 Eldborg | Harpa Feb 16 16:00 Eldborg | Harpa Buy ticket


The Rite of Spring Feb 21 19:30 Eldborg | Harpa Buy ticket

This Iceland Symphony concert features Stravinsky’s Rite of Spring, one of the most revered orchestral works of the twentieth century, as well as one of the most influential — a composition that Pierre Boulez called the “birth certificate of contemporary music.” The music is tense and powerful, with strident chords and unexpected rhythms, yet with many melodies taken from Russian and Lithuanian folk songs. The work describes a sacred ritual in which one of a group of virgins is selected to dance herself to death, ensuring the arrival of spring.

In recent years, Daníel Bjarnason has established himself as one of Iceland’s premier musicians. His Violin Concerto, written for the Iceland Symphony Orchestra and the Los Angeles Philharmonic, was premiered by the LA Phil on an outdoor stage at Hollywood Bowl for an audience of over 15,000. It has been universally praised by critics, as has the inspired performance by trail-blazing Finish virtuoso Pekka Kuusisto, for whom it was written. The programme begins with Arvo Pärt’s tranquil and beautiful Fratres, one of his loveliest works, a hypnotic set of variations on a six-bar theme. 


Brantelid plays Elgar Feb 28 19:30 Eldborg | Harpa Buy ticket


Expressions of Pathos Mar 1 18:00 Norðurljós | Harpa Buy ticket


Children’s Hour Mar 9 11:30 Hörpuhorn | Harpa Free entry

The Iceland Symphony’s Children’s Hour concerts have been extremely popular. The programming and length of the concerts are tailored to the needs of audiences too young for the full-length children’s concerts in the Litli tónsprotinn series. Children’s Hour concerts are about 30 minutes long and are held in Hörpuhornið, the open space on the second floor of Harpa, just outside Eldborg hall. It is a good idea to bring a cushion to sit on. A variety of special guests come to visit and participate actively in Children’s Hour concerts with Maxi the Musical Mouse.

Admission is free, and all are welcome as long as space is available. 


Two Symphonies and a Toccata Mar 14 19:30 Eldborg | Harpa Buy ticket


Von Otter and Tortelier Mar 21 19:30 Eldborg | Harpa Buy ticket


Mendelssohn and Beethoven Mar 28 19:30 Eldborg | Harpa Buy ticket


Dancing Symphony Mar 29 18:00 Norðurljós | Harpa Buy ticket


Star Wars: A New Hope
- Film Concert
Apr 3 19:30 Eldborg | Harpa Apr 4 19:30 Eldborg | Harpa Apr 5 19:30 Eldborg | Harpa Buy ticket


Isabelle Faust and Mahler Apr 11 19:30 Eldborg | Harpa Buy ticket

Quentin Blake-The Giraffe and the Pelle and me

The Boy and the Sweet-Shop May 4 14:00 Eldborg | Harpa Buy ticket


Lugansky plays Grieg May 9 19:30 Eldborg | Harpa Buy ticket


Brahms and Tortelier May 16 19:30 Eldborg | Harpa Buy ticket


Thibaudet and Beethoven May 23 19:30 Eldborg | Harpa Buy ticket


More concerts


Dark Music Days

Each year, the Iceland Symphony takes part in the Dark Music Days, a festival of contemporary Icelandic music. The orchestra's concert on January 31st features three first performances, as well as other outstanding recent works, one of which is Metacosmos by Composer-in-Residence Anna Thorvaldsdottir. Before the concert, the orchestra invites guests to a conversation with Anna where she talks about her new work (in Icelandic). On February 1st the orchestra will also premiere two works at the Yrkja concert.

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