Henrik Hellstenius (born 1963), a Norwegian composer, studied composition at the Norwegian Academy of Music and with Gérard Grisey at Conservatoire Supérieur.
Hellstenius’s output encompasses a large range of works: chamber music, orchestral works, opera, electro-acoustic music and music for theatre and dance. His music has been performed frequently at concerts and festivals around the world by ensembles and musicians such as Cikada, BIT20, Oslo Sinfonietta, Court Circuit, Irvine Arditti, Peter Herresthal, asamisimasa, Hans Kristian Kjos Sørensen, Ensemble El Perro Andaluz, Oslo Philharmonic Orchestra, Bergen Philharmonic Orchestra and Stavanger Philharmonic Orchestra.
His first opera, Sera, received the Norwegian Edvard Award in 2000, and has been staged in Oslo and Warsaw. His second opera, Ophelias: Death by Water Singing, premiered in Oslo in 2005 and was staged in Warsaw, Oslo and Osnabrück, Germany. It was recorded in 2014 and released on the LAWO Classics label in 2016 (LWC1098). In 2022 he received a Spellemann Award (Norway’s Grammy) as ‘Composer of the Year’ for the release Past & Presence, also on the LAWO Classics label (LWC1229).
Hellstenius has been composer in residence with the Bergen International Festival 2011, Oslo Philharmonic Orchestra 2013/2014, and the June in Buffalo Festival 2017.
In recent years Hellstenius has focused on the musical relationship between sound, words and movement in its many forms, ranging from staged concerts and performance works to musical theatre pieces. He is at present conducting an artistic research project, ‘Extended Compositon’, where he focuses on the possibilities in composition with movement, sound and language.
Hellstenius is also a professor of composition at the Norwegian Academy of Music in Oslo and has been a guest teacher of composition at festivals, conservatories and universities in Germany, the USA, Austria, France and the Nordic countries.