LEIF ARNE PEDERSEN – CONDUCTOR
Leif Arne Pedersen was principal conductor and artistic director of the Royal Norwegian Air Force Band from 2011–2017. He began his professional career as clarinettist in the Staff Band of the Norwegian Armed Forces. After performing for a period with Bergen Philharmonic Orchestra, he joined Oslo Philharmonic Orchestra in 1988 and has been principal clarinet since 1990.
In recent years, Pedersen has fashioned a career as conductor. He has guest conducted all the Norwegian military bands, and he served from 2003–2008 as principal conductor of the Royal Norwegian Navy Band. Leif Arne Pedersen has made a number of recordings, both as conductor and as clarinettist. In 1996 he premiered Rolf Wallin’s clarinet concerto, a work for which Wallin received the Nordic Council Music Prize, and he won a Spellemannpris (Norway’s Grammy) for his recording of this concerto.
THE ROYAL NORWEGIAN AIR FORCE BAND
The Royal Norwegian Air Force Band is celebrating its bicentenary in 2018. The band was established in 1818 as the Band of the Fifth Brigade and later was called the Band of the Fifth Division and the Band of the Armed Forces Trøndelag. For over one hundred years it was Trondheim’s only professional ensemble. In 2006 it became associated with the Norwegian Air Force as a branch of the military services and received a new name.
After the transition to the Air Force, the band has expanded its arena of activity from Central Norway to the entire country. At its main venue, “Byscenen” in Trondheim’s city centre, the band has performed with Tine Thing Helseth, Silya Nymoen, Wolfgang Plagge, Ole Edvard Antonsen, and the jazz band Come Shine. Other projects have included the children’s theatre performance, “Musika Mobile”, together with the free theatre group, Cirka Teater, and the stand-up concert “Lufta er for alle” (“The Air Is For Everyone”), in collaboration with Åsleik Engmark. The band's watchword is “No genre unfamiliar to us”.
The Norwegian Air Force Band collaborates closely with the Royal Norwegian Air Force Academy and Ørland Air Station and gives regular guest performances at air force bases and centres around the country.