Ice Music Festival 2011 – Day 2

As you have probably noticed, I didn’t write my post last night as I usually do at the end of the day. This is due to a series of events that didn’t allow my brain to function when I got back in my room…

Briefly, during the day I walked around Geilo and had a meeting with Anne, the PR person of the tourism in Geilo. We had a very nice chat about the activities in the town during the winter and the summer, and also shared with me some administrative information about Ice Music Festival (related to sponsorships, organisation structure etc). She also contributed in my first ski experience ever as she insisted that “Geilo is the best place to learn how to ski”.

Quite stressed I went to Vestlia ski school, situated near Geilolia resort. After walking for more than 30 minutes to find it, I got my equipment, ski pass and ski instructor and headed down the slopes. Literally, I was sliding down everywhere. I still don’t quite get how these things work, but I know that in order to stop you need to do a “ski plow”. Mine was a bit unsuccessful at times. I was completely ungraceful, but I didn’t harm myself – or anyone else. At times I felt depressed because 3 year old kids could stand and slide without a problem whereas I couldn’t. No worries though, it was much better than everyone’s expectations, and at the end of the day, I enjoyed my hot chocolate.

As the first day, we got the Ice bus from the train station at 7pm. When we arrived at Kikut, I had a brief chat with Anne about my ski experience – such fun! Before the concert, I had the chance to talk a bit to Fatma. She was born in S. Arabia, her mum is Turkish and dad from Lebanon – if I remember correctly. She spent most of her life in Cairo, Egypt but now lives in Denmark. She has released three albums, a compilation of oriental songs from a variety of arabic dialects and musics entitled “Aya Haeman (Passionate Love)”, a more “classical” one as she names it, which is one 20 minute song (“Elia Elzaal, Eccept Sadness”), and her latest one, “Hawel” (Try) which is “a unique mix of love songs about experiences from relationships to patriotism” as it is promoted. She told me how difficult or easy can be in Egypt for a woman to become a musician/singer, and what was the path she chose.

Yesterday, it was the first day that Terje and Fatma met; their first rehearsals were in the afternoon. And their first concert was last night. On stage, there was a selection of percussion ice instruments (kick, ice-ophone, ice curtain etc), an ice guitar connected to an Apple Macbook (processed through Ableton Live!) and a microphone stand. As in my previous post, I won’t write a review of the concert as this is not my intention here. I rather want to describe the event and reflect on my thoughts when I’ll be writing the actual review. The musicians performed for 40 minutes. Two of the percussion instruments were broken – that wasn’t a surprise for me, as ice is very vulnerable.

Here’s a close up of Bram with the Ice guitar:

Photo by B. H. Muns

And to get an idea what it sounded like, here’s a video of the last song that was performed:

After the concert, I attended the conference dinner at the ski centre in Kikut. The meal was accompanied by few words by Pål and Anne. Terje opted for the language of music by performing for few moments a Norwegian mouth harp instead of talking. Many media people were there, from the UK, US, Russia and other countries that I cannot remember. We chatted until midnight and afterwards a taxi drove us home.

Tonight is the last night of the Ice Music festival. I’m really looking forward to Bill’s show and the midnight concert.

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