2018 Workshop Staff


KNUT HAMRE (Advanced hardingfele), from Granvin in Hardanger, has toured all over Norway and participated in festivals and concerts throughout the world. He has won the Landskappleik seven times, and is recognized as one of the most outstanding teachers of hardingfele in the Hardanger area; among his former students are the well-known fiddlers Frank Rolland, Åse Teigland, Benedicte Maurseth and Alexander Aga Røynstrand. He has been one of the main teachers of the Master Class Hardingfele and Master Class Hardingfele International courses organized by the Hardanger and Voss Museum. Knut  has collaborated with artists from a number of different genres, including a concert and CD project Å in 1999 with the American jazz musicians Steve Tibbetts and Marc Anderson, and has released recordings both as a solo artist, most notably Fargespel (1994) and Ferd (2010), and together with others. In 1998 Knut, Hallvard T. Bjørgum and Bjarne Herrefoss won Norway’s Spellemannpris in the folk music category for their CD Toneflaum. The CD Rosa i Botnen (2006) was the result of a pioneering project with fiddlers Knut, Benedicte Maurseth and Nils Økland and the organist Sigbjørn Apeland where the oldest hardingfeler in Hardanger from the 17th and 18th centuries were brought into condition and played. The CD Spelarhola (2014) features Knut, Åse Teigland and Alexander Røynstrand presenting the rich hardingfele history of their home area, Granvin in the Hardangerfjord. 

VIDAR SKREDE (Intermediate hardingfele) from Haugesund on Norway's west coast, is a freelance Nordic folk musician on hardingfele, guitar, fiddle and bouzouki. He has a background the traditional music from Rogaland in Norway's southwest, and has a master's degree in Nordic folk music from the Royal Academy of Music in Stockholm. Vidar has appeared on national television in Norway and Iceland, and been heard on radio in all the Nordic countries and in the USA, including in two live radio concerts at NRK P2 in Studio 19. Currently based in Wisconsin, Vidar is teaching and performing around the US. He taught intermediate hardingfele at the HFAA's annual workshop in 2016.

ANDREA EEN (Intermediate hardingfele) taught violin, viola and hardingfele at St. Olaf College in Northfield, Minnesota, for 35 years. The hardingfele fiddle study program that she founded at St. Olaf in 1979 is the only college Hardanger fiddle program in the US. Een composes marches and dance and listening tunes for Hardanger fiddle. In 2011, she performed her own march to lead the King and Queen of Norway into a state dinner in Minneapolis, and her group, the Lars Skjervheim Hardanger Fiddler’s Lag, was featured in a performance for the royal couple at St. Olaf College. Recent appearances at the Nisswa-stämman Festival in Minnesota and in Lawrence, Kansas have featured Een teaching workshops of traditional Norwegian violin tunes and performing on Hardanger fiddle. Andrea Een has received the following awards: Master Teacher of Folk Music from the Minnesota State Arts Board, the Ole Bull Award from the Ole Bull Folk Academy in Voss, Norway, and the St. Olaf Medal from the government of Norway for her work promoting Norwegian culture in the United States. She holds the Doctor of Musical Arts degree in Violin Performance and Literature from the University of Illinois, Champaign-Urbana.

LORETTA KELLEY (Intermediate hardingfele) has been performing on, teaching and writing about the Hardanger fiddle (hardingfele) for more than 30 years. She has appeared on Garrison Keillor's Prairie Home Companion and American Radio Company, and National Public Radio's "All Things Considered" and "Performance Today." She is a regular teacher at the Nordic Fiddles and Feet Scandinavian music and dance camp and at the Annual Workshops of the Hardanger Fiddle Association of America, as well as at innumerable local workshops throughout the US. She has made over 30 study trips to Norway and has placed highly in many fiddle competitions there. Her playing has been featured in an hour-long radio program on Norwegian radio. Her recording with Andrea Hoag and Charlie Pilzer, Hambo in the Snow, was nominated for a GRAMMY award in the Best Traditional World Music Album category.

LAURA THOMPSON (Beginning hardingfele) is a violinist, violist, and fiddler based in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. She holds a Masters of Music in violin performance from the Royal College of Music in London, UK and a Bachelor of Music in violin performance from Northwestern University. She first encountered the hardingfele while living in London, and started attending the HFAA workshops in 2013. Laura is excited to get workshop participants playing in the beginner class this summer.

EDEN EHM (Beginner mentor). A native of Decorah, Iowa, Eden grew up seeing beautiful Hardanger fiddles in the Vesterheim Museum displays but never dreamed she would play one. Her interest in Norwegian folk music began during her 7 years as the principal violinist of the Decorah Nordic Dancers' Orchestra. She began studying hardingfele while she was a student at St. Olaf College in Northfield, Minnesota. While at St. Olaf, Eden had her first opportunities to share the music of the hardingfele with others and perform: fiddling for King Harald and Queen Sonja of Norway in 2011 was a highlight. She is passionate about sharing this unique instrument and its music with all generations, especially young children and the elderly. She is excited to be this year's Beginner Mentor and looks forward to providing patient personalized guidance to those students who are new to the hardingfele, including tuning and instrument care.

KVEDING (Traditional singing)

ARNA RENNAN, of Duluth, Minnesota, lived in Norway for 13 years while studying art in Oslo. She went back to Norway in 2000-2001 to study at the Institute of Folk Culture, College of Telemark in Rauland. There she learned kveding from Ragnhild Furholt and Frode Nyvold. She received a Travel Study Grant from the Jerome Foundation as well as the King Olav V Cultural Heritage Grant. Arna sings ballads from the Middle Ages, work songs, hymns, cow calls and more. She also plays langeleik (Norwegian dulcimer) and seljefløyte (willow flute). She performs extensively throughout the Midwest and as far as Washington D.C. Arna’s latest project is Nordic Roots Music, a radio program she hosts from KTWH-Lp 99.5 FM, Two Harbors Community Radio, in Duluth/Superior, Minnesota. Arna’s recordings include Nordic Shores (2002), Big Brother/Little Brother (2007), Treasures Left Behind (2017) (in collaboration with Loretta Kelley), and Rescued Treasures (2017), a collection of ballads from the Middle Ages.