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Førde festival 2018 Opening, Norway & rehearsing on Peace Boat

It all started from here...

Meeting Førde festival's artistic director Hilde Bjørkum at WOMEX 17 in Katowice Poland.

We were all nerves about having our the first European show in the largest world music festival in Scandinavia, amongst such an A grade list of acts, also that we were even selected to perform at the festival gala opening.... we definitely needed to rehearse well!

We found out an ethical cruise ship, the Peace Boat, was sailing around Scandinavia just before the festival, so we asked to be onboard between Copenhagen to Reykjavik for a week to rehearse our show and share our stories with the passengers (1,000+ Japanese, Taiwanese, Korean and Chinese).

On the 28th of June, we all flew into Copenhagen airport from different parts of the world, to spend the next 6 days rehearsing, usually on the deck, we'll never forget rehearsing as we sailed through the stunning fjords of Norway. The Peace Boat are working with the United Nations, to help promote the global sustainable development goals, so we were lucky to meet and collaborate with Ocean and Climate youth ambassadors giving talks and performances in Bergen and Reykjavik.

Here we are rehearsing on the deck while Peace Boat sailed across the Norwegian sea.

We even planned our wedding on board.

Thank you Peace Boat family making such a memorable rehearsal possible, it also made us feel at home seeing the wide ocean.

After a few flights, a cancelation and baggage delay, we arrived in Forde! and straight into rehearsals for the Førde festival's opening gala, the show was an uplifting start to an amazing weekend, here we are on stage for the closing song with Sammy dancing his way to centre stage amongst some of the biggest world music names!

Our debut performance on the European world music stage was to a full theatre, and standing ovation, we caught the festival director Hilde just afterwards, who turned back to us saying 'Wonderful', took a few more steps then stopped thoughtfully and repeated 'WONDERFULL'! The rest of the festival was too much fun, the parade which turned into a massive jam led by us and Daniel , a children's workshop where we shared dances for an hour with us learning the traditional Norwegian circle dance and a host of incredible shows we went to.

Takk Hilde, Victor, Marion and our care taker Gro for making our four days here a unforgettable memory.

Small Island Big Song featured in Førde festival 2018 after movie.

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