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Gothenburg International Chamber Music Festival

January 12–15, 2023


On January 12–15, 2023, Frontside celebrates its fifth anniversary and Göteborg its 400th! The festival’s tetralogy with the four points of the compass is a tribute to Göteborg’s international history, which now becomes complete with the theme DIRECTION 57° NORTH .  After 2019, with the theme m/s transatlantic, 2020 with Eastward, and 2022 with Southern Winds, our ears are now turned towards music from countries that have had a major influence on the formation of Göteborg, such as The Netherlands, Germany, Scotland, and England. It will be a rich program with music by Rebecka Clarke, John Ireland, Joseph Haydn, Jacob van Eyck, Johann Sebastian Bach, Johannes Brahms, Judith Weir, James MacMillan, Ludwig van Beethoven, Oliver Knussen, Leoš Janáček, Gustav Mahler, Benjamin Britten, and many others. The Czech Republic will receive its fair share of the limelight with music by Bedřich Smetana, who lived and worked in Göteborg in the middle of the nineteenth century. We have the pleasure of having his two string quartets performed by one of Europe’s foremost chamber ensembles, the Zemlinsky Quartet from Prague. The Swedish soprano *Malin Hartelius, who regularly sings at the Vienna State Opera and the Zürich Opera House, visits Göteborg together with one of Great Britain’s most prominent chamber music pianists, Alastair Beatson from Scotland.
*We are sorry to announce that Malin Hartelius is ill. We wish her fast recovery and are welcoming Elin Rombo that replaces Malin on short notice.

Göteborg’s own eminent Trio Poseidon participates, as does the deputy chair of the Royal Swedish Academy of Music, the organist Hans Davidsson (Camille Bloche replaces Hans Davidsson, who unfortunately canceled his participation due to illness), and Duo Granmo-Berg, also from Göteborg. This year’s winner of the Royal Academy’s Interpretation Prize, the recorder player Anna Petrini, will join Emilia Amper, well-known player of nyckelharpa (“keyed fiddle”), in performances of Swedish, Scottish, and Norwegian folk and baroque music. They will also grace the festival with a first performance of a piece by the Norwegian accordion player Frode Haitli.

It goes without saying that music by composers from Göteborg, such as Elfrida Andrée, Malin Bång, Lina Järnegård, Sven-Eric Johansson, and Wilhelm Stenhammar, will be performed. Paula af Malmborg Ward’s “Porter Suite”, for untuned piano, tuned porter bottles, and interactive audience in The Ballad of the Porter, is tailormade for Restaurant Porter Pelle and Waterfront Hotel. Another unexpected concert scene is the ship M/S Kungsö, where Palle Dahlstedt places his freshly composed “Finger Breath” for live electronics. These first performances of works by two of Göteborg’s most prominent composers are guaranteed to be spectacular!

Our much-appreciated Wandering Concerts metamorphose this year into an exciting journey through time and town, on M/S Kungsö, in the Litteraturhuset (“House of Literature”) and at the Språkcaféet (“Language Café”). Anders Carlsson, PhD in musicology, talks about his specialty, the history of music in Göteborg, at one of the stops on the wandering adventure.

Children are included in the homage to Göteborg with a specially composed concert. Ayla Kabaca, well known from the children’s tv program Bolibompa, and the guitar duo, The Gothenburg Combo, tell a lively tale in words and music about the people who have made Göteborg what it is. The children will be presented with a broad span of music that brings Göteborg’s motley history alive!

This and much more!
Please feel most heartily welcome to celebrate the international port and city of Göteborg with warming music in the middle of darkest and coldest January!

Please feel most heartily welcome to celebrate the international port and city of Göteborg with warming music in the middle of darkest and coldest January!

Karin Dornbusch, artistic director

Programme 2023

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Thursday 12 January
18.30 Waterfront Hotel and Restaurant Porter Pelle
Ticket price: 200 kr
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Paula af Malmborg Ward (*1962)
The Porter Suite Word premiere!
A musical happening in 3 acts where the audience participates in the creation of a work under the direction of Paula af Malmborg Ward and Palle Dahlstedt.

Act 1 – 18.30 Waterfront Hotel, foyer by the fountain
Everyone in the audience is given a PDS (Personal Drinking Stick) made of three different materials e.g. wood, plastic, metal.
Around the edge of the fountain, porter bottles are set up, grouped harmoniously according to a musical idea. Paula leads the audience in a ”sound walk” around the fountain, Palle Dahlstedt is recording.

Act 2 – 19.15 – 20.15
Over 20 minutes (including the walk), the following acts unfold, each lasting 10 minutes:
Waterfront Foyer: Porter tasting with Björn Lager telling the history of the Porter.
Carnegie ”Hole”: Film: ”Time of the bottles” for tuned porter bottles and untuned piano World premiere
The Porter Flat Boat: Concert with music from Scotland, England, Bohuslän for recorder and nyckelharpa (key fiddle).
Anna Petrini, Emilia Amper

Act 3 – 20.15
Food and drink at Porter Pelle with a closing interactive dessert concert! The audiences recorded porter bottle sounds from loudspeakers around the room,  forms a ground to the newly composed The Ballad of the Porter in X number of verses, performed for three voices by Paula, Karin and Palle. Different tables are given different instructions for the different verses and play using their PDSs (personal drinking sticks) according to a simple musical sketch.
Paula af Malmborg Ward, Karin Dornbusch, Palle Dahlstedt and the audience


Friday 13 January

19.00-20.15 Kronhuset
Ticket price: 250 kr
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Paula af Malmborg Ward
Open up! Frontside’s own fanfare for voice, clarinet, violin, percussion and optional parts, played this year on nyckelharpa (key fiddle).
Paula af Malmborg Ward, Karin Dornbusch, Tobias Granmo, Daniel Berg, Emilia Amper

Wilhelm Stenhammar (1871-1927)
Allegro non tanto for piano trio
Trio Poseidon

Rebecca Clarke (1886-1979)
Songs for soprano and piano
Elin Rombo, Alasdair Beatson

Joseph Haydn (1732-1809)
English songs for soprano and piano
Elin Rombo, Alasdair Beatson

Bedřich Smetana
Piano Trio in G minor op.15
Trio Poseidon


21.00-22.15 Kronhuset
Ticket price: 200kr
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Ann-Sofi Söderqvist (*1956)
Bagatelle in A for violin and marimba
Duo Granmo-Berg

Oliver Knussen (1952 -2018)
…Upon one note, Fantasia after Purcell for clarinet, violin, cello, piano
Karin Dornbusch, Trio Poseidon

Malin Bång (*1974)
Split Rudder for double bass recorder and electronics after Evert Taubes’ Briggen Blue Bird of Hull
Anna Petrini, Palle Dahlstedt

James McMillan (*1959)
Kiss on wood for violin and piano
Sara Trobäck, Alasdair Beatson

Emilia Amper (*1981)
In the dark night and songs for voice and nyckelharpa
Emilia Amper

Nocturnal improvisation on an old theme from the Netherlands for double bass recorder, nyckelharpa and live electronics
Anna Petrini, Emilia Amper, Palle Dahlstedt

Paula af Malmborg Ward
causeries for violin, cello, piano
Trio Poseidon

Benjamin Britten (1913-1976)
Night- Piece for piano
Alastair Beatson


Saturday 14 January

9.30 Kronhuset, second floor
Sandwich, coffee/tea, juice

Ticket price: 150 kr
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Georg Phillip Telemann (1781-1967)
Sonata for recorder and violin TWV 40:11
Anna Petrini, Sara Trobäck

Ludwig van Beethoven (1770-1927)
String Quartet in C major op. 59/3
Zemlinsky Quartet

11.00-11.40 Kronhuset
For children aged 5-12 accompanied by an adult
Ticket price: children up to 18 years free – adults 100 kr
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Well-known actress, singer and presenter from Swedish television, Ayla Kabaca and the guitar duo The Gothenburg Combo vividly tell the story of the people who have influenced the city of Gothenburg! Dutch, Scots, English, Visigoths, Turks, Germans, Americans, Bohuslän, Chinese and Norwegians-yes, people from near and far! It’s also the story of strong music personalities who have influenced musical life in Gothenburg, such as Elfrida Andrée, concert organist and Europe’s first female cathedral organist, and the Czech national composer Bedřich Smetana, who lived and worked in the city in the mid-19th century. Here, children will hear a huge range of vibrant music befitting Gothenburg’s international history: Dutch 17th-century music by flute master Jacob van Eyck, Scottish songs, Carl Micael Bellman, Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, Dietrich Buxtehude, Isaac Albéniz, Evert Taube, Wilhelm Stenhammar, Giacchino Rossini and Håkan Hellström, American folk music and music by Steve Reich with links to the great American ships and the Swedish emigrants, traditional Chinese music such as the Swedish East Indies sailors in the 18th century may have heard on their voyages and Spanish music they heard on the stopover in Cadiz. A tribute to the international port city of Gothenburg, which is celebrating its 400th anniversary this year!
Ayla Kabaca, The Gothenburg Combo


14.00-15.30 GERMAN CHURCH 
Ticket price: 250 kr
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Johann Sebastian Bach (1685-1750)
Höchster was ich habe Cantata BWW 39 for soprano, alto recorder and organ
Elin Rombo, Anna Petrini, Camille Bloche

Matthew Locke (1621-1677)
from A consort for severall friends for recorder and organ
Anna Petrini, Camille Bloche

Torsten Sörenson (1908-1992)
Adorazione for organ
Camille Bloche

Joseph Czapek (1825-1915)
Andante religioso op. 31 for viola and organ
Petr Holman, Camille Bloche

Sven-Eric Johanson (1919-1997)
Preambulum and fugue for organ
Camille Bloche

Elfrida Andrée (1841-1929)
Camille Bloche
Johannes Brahms (1833-1897)
Quintet for clarinet and string quartet in B minor, op. 115 (40′)
Karin Dornbusch, Zemlinsky Quartet


18.00-19.30 Kronhuset
Ticket price: 200 kr
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Robert Schumann (1810-1856)
Adagio and Allegro op. 70 for violoncello and piano
Claes Gunnarsson, Per Lundberg

Franz Schubert (1797-1828) /Arr. Ingvar Karkoff( *1958)
Songs för soprano, string quartet, piano
Elin Rombo, Zemlinsky Quartet, Alasdair Beatson

Jacob van Eyck
(ca 1590-1657)
Trad. Boda/ Sweden When I was in my eighteenth year for recorder and nyckelharpa (key fiddle)
Anna Petrini, Emilia Amper

Leoš Janáček (1854-1928)
String Quartet No. 2, ”Intimate letters”
Zemlinsky Quartet


20.30-21.30 Venue to be announced shortly
Ticket price: 150 kr
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Ludwig van Beethoven from The Diabelli Variations
Trad. Reel The Silver spear
Ragnhild Furebotten (1979) Klopper for recorder and nyckelharpa (key fiddle)
Anna Petrini, Emilia Amper

Judith Weir (1954) Sleep Sound Ida Mournin’
Sara Trobäck, Tobias Granmo

Daniel Berg (*1971) Bird of Prey and Water
Duo Granmo-Berg

William Brade (ca 1560-1630) A Scottish dance
Trad from Hardanger Halling after Svein Lutro for recorder and nyckelharpa
Anna Petrini, Emilia Amper

Trad form Sweden Songs from the West Coust
Emilia Amper & friends

Bengt Lundin (*1945) Due time and Promenade for violin and marimba
Duo Granmo- Berg

Nicola Matteis (ca1650- ca after 1713) Ground after the scotch humour
Emilia Amper

Emilia Amper Pelti Auki ’Spjelle opp!’ for recorder and nyckelharpa
Anna Petrini and Emilia Amper

Bedřich Smetana
Dance of the Comedies from The Bride’s Head for string quartet
Zemlinsky Quartet


Sunday 15 January

Ticket price: 300 kr (inkl boat trip)
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10.30-10.50 Stenpiren-Skeppsbrokajen Departure with m/s Kungsö
Bedřich Smetana String Quartet No. 2 in D minor
Zemlinsky Quartet

10.50 The audience is divided into 4 groups and walks under the guidance to 4 concerts, each lasting 15 minutes.
10 minutes walk between each place

1. Skeppsbrokajen, M/S Kungsö upper deck
Lecture-”Gothenburg’s music history in 15 minutes”
Anders Carlsson

2. Skeppsbrokajen, M/S Kungsö lower deck
Palle Dahlstedt (*1971)
Finger breath for live electronics
Palle Dahlstedt

3. Litteraturhuset (Old Warehouse)
Judith Weir Atlantic drift for two violins
Sara Trobäck, Tobias Granmo

Elfrida Andrée The Swan for soprano, violin, piano
Elin Rombo, Sara Trobäck, Alasdair Beatson

4. Språkcafèet (The Language Café)
Jacob van Eyck  Music for recorder
Anna Petrini

12.40-13.00 Skeppsbrokajen-Stenpiren Return journey with m/s Kungsö
Joseph Suk (1874 -1935)
Zemlinsky Quartet

Traditional folk music Songs from the West Coast of Sweden, Scotland, England for voice and nyckelharpa
Emilia Amper, voice and nyckelharpa

15.00-16.00 Kronhuset

Ticket price: 200 kr
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John Ireland (1879-1962) Fantasia for piano trio in A minor
Trio Poseidon

Louis Spohr (1784-1859) from 6 Deutsche Lieder (6 German songs) for soprano, clarinet and piano
Elin Rombo, Karin Dornbusch, Alasdair Beatson

Elfrida Andrée Piano Trio No. 2 in G minor
Trio Poseidon

16.30-17.00 Kronhuset
Free admission
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Lecture ( in swedish and english) In-depth discussion of Bedřich Smetana’s String Quartet No. 1 in E minor – ”My Life”
Anders Carlsson, Petr Holman (Zemlinsky Quartet)


18.00-20.15 Kronhuset
Ticket price: 300 kr
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Daniel Berg Frontside for violin, clarinet, marimba
Tobias Granmo, Karin Dornbusch, Daniel Berg

Carl-Axel Hall (*1947) Intermezzo no 2 for violin and marimba
Duo Granmo-Berg

Frode Haltli (*1975) Duo for recorder and nyckelharpa, World premiere!
Anna Petrini, Emilia Amper

Max Bruch (1838-1920) from Acht Stücke for clarinet, cello, piano op 83
Karin Dornbusch, Claes Gunnarsson, Alastair Beatson
Claude Debussy (1918-1962)
Marche écossaise ( The Earl of Ross ”March”, after a Scottish tune) for four-hand piano
Alasdair Beatson, Per Lundberg

Lina Järnegård ( *1979)
London; with elements of beauty (when it is infiltrating) for clarinet, violin, viola, violoncello
Karin Dornbusch, members of the Zemlinsky Quartet

Ludwig van Beethoven
from 25 Scottish songs for voice and piano trio opus 108
Elin Rombo, Trio Poseidon
Bedřich Smetana
String Quartet No. 1 in E minor ”My Life”
Zemlinsky Quartet

Participating artists 2022

Emilia Amper

Emilia Amper

Emilia is one of Sweden’s most sought-after folk musicians. Some important events on Emilias CV are for example: World champion of nyckelharpa 2010, Artist of the year at the Swedish Folk & World Music Awards 2013, nominated for the Swedish Grammy, Manifest award and Album of the Year at the Swedish Folk & World awards for Trollfågeln in 2013, double American Grammy nominee and Norwegian Grammy winner for In folk style together with the Trondheim Soloists, Gjermund Larsen and 2L in 2010, and NPU prize winner (an award given to one chosen Nordic composer each year, from the composers organisations of all the Nordic countries) in 2013, teaching at the Royal College of Music in Stockholm, board member at the Eric Sahlström Institute (Sweden’s institute for traditional music, singing and dancing) 2009-2016, member of UTOM Unga tankar om musik (a think tank for musicians and music producers under the age of 40) since 2018, commissioned piece Till Reser Anna for Västerås Sinfonietta as part of the Reflections on Visa från Utanmyra project, and performing in Sweden, Norway, Denmark, Finland, Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, Germany, Belgium, France, Spain, Greece, Iran, the Gambia, Namibia, India, the US, Canada, Brazil, Romania, Italy, UK, Ireland, China, Poland, Hongkong and The United Arab Emirates.

Anders Carlsson

Anders Carlsson


Anders Carlsson (b. 1953) is a musicologist who has worked at the Royal College of Music, Stockholm, and the Academy for Music and Drama, Göteborg University. He has also been Director of organ research at GOArt and Head of Department at HDK-Valand – Academy of Art and Design in Göteborg.

His research has above all focused on the music history of Göteborg. In his doctoral dissertation he showed how professional orchestras were established in Göteborg long before the same thing happened in Stockholm.

Anna Petrini

Anna Petrini


Recorder player Anna Petrini (b. 1978) performs internationally as a soloist and chamber musician, in the scene for contemporary and, lately, also improvised music. Being trained as a classical recorder player, she feels at home both in early music and in the contemporary repertoire.

Petrini enjoys a diverse concert activity and performs with equal enthusiasm as soloist in a modern concert house as in a jazz club, or a northern Finnish forest. New contexts and challenges are a source of inspiration. Petrini is often engaged in multidisciplinary projects.

Petrini received her Master’s degree at the Royal College of Music in Stockholm. With grants from the Royal Swedish Academy of Music, she furthered her studies at the Conservatorium van Amsterdam specializing in contemporary music. Anna has just received the Interpretation Prize from the Royal Swedish Academy of Music.

Ayla Kabaca

Ayla Kabaca


Ayla was born and raised in Täby outside Stockholm. In 2001 she graduated from the Theatre and Opera Academy in Gothenburg, specializing in musicals.
Ayla is known to many for her work as a presenter on Swedish Televisions (SVT) popular children’s programme ”Bolibompa” and in the youth programme ”Ramp” on UR (swedish educational radio) At the age of 12, Ayla was sent by SVT, as a children’s reporter, to cover the introduction of the Convention on the Rights of the Child at the UN House in 1990. As a musical artist, she has appeared in a number of different productions. She has played W A Mozart’s wife in the musical ”Mozart”, an evil Miss Desert in ”Banana Contact”, a controversial girlfriend in ”Blood Brothers” and a pregnant hippie in ”Hair”. As a singer, Ayla has participated in many different contexts, including collaborations with Folkets Hus och Parker and Riksteatern. In recent years Ayla has been the permanent lead singer for the show ”Barnens Allsång på Skansen”. Ayla often works with Sweden’s major symphony orchestras and is a frequent singer and broadcaster at some of Sweden’s largest concert halls. As an actress, she has done a range of productions in everything from dramas to farces. Stages that may be mentioned in this context are Folkteatern in Gothenburg, Västmanlands Teater and Södra Teatern in Stockholm. Ayla has also played minor film roles and is frequently used as a voice-over resource in dubbing foreign films into Swedish.

Alasdair Beatson

Alasdair Beatson


Scottish pianist Alasdair Beatson works prolifically as soloist and chamber musician. Performances during 2022 include numerous appearances at Wigmore Hall; as concerto soloist with Royal Northern Sinfonia; in chamber music alongside such colleagues as Alina Ibragimova, Steven Isserlis, Viktoria Mullova, Pieter Wispelwey, and as member of the Nash Ensemble.

Alasdair is renowned as a sincere musician and intrepid programmer. He champions a wide repertoire with particular areas of interest: Beethoven, Brahms, Mendelssohn, Schubert and Schumann; the solo and chamber music of Gabriel Fauré, Bartók and Janáçek; concertos of Bach, Bartók, Britten, Fauré, Hindemith, Messiaen and Mozart; and contemporary works, including the piano quintet of Thomas Adès, George Benjamin’s Shadowlines and Harrison Birtwistle’s Harrison’s Clocks. Future plans include the first performances of a new piano concerto, written for him by Helena Winkelman.

Recent recordings include a solo piano recital Aus Wien on Pentatone, featuring music of Schumann, Schoenberg, Ravel, Korngold and Schubert, and Schubert works for violin and fortepiano with Viktoria Mullova on Signum. These join a discography of solo and chamber recordings on BIS, Champs Hill, Chandos, Claves, Evil Penguin, Onyx, Pentatone and SOMM labels.

Alasdair teaches solo piano at Royal Birmingham Conservatoire, and regularly mentors for the London-based Chamber Studio. From 2012 to 2018 Alasdair was founder and artistic director of Musique à Marsac, and since 2019 is artistic director of the chamber music festival in Ernen, Switzerland.

Camille Bloche

Camille Bloche


Camille Bloche replaces Hans Davidsson, who unfortunately canceled his participation due to illness.

Camille Bloche, born in Normandy, France, is educated at the Conservatory of Music in Caen, where she received first prize in piano, chamber music and organ.
She then obtained a bachelor’s degree in musicology at the Sorbonne University in Paris, a bachelor’s degree in organ at the Conservatory of Music in Caen and a master’s degree in organ and related piano instruments both at the Royal Danish Academy of Music in Copenhagen and at the University of Stage and Music in Gothenburg.
During her education, Camille has studied organ with Erwan Le Prado, Saki Aoki, Daniel Moult and Hans Davidsson as well as clavichord with Ulrika Davidsson.
Camille has also participated in a large number of master classes and international organ academies (Carentan, Lanvellec, Copenhagen, Gothenburg, Leipzig).

Camille Bloche has excelled in several international organ competitions:
Finalist in Angers 2011, unanimous first prize in Nemours 2011, honorable mention in Miami 2012 and third prize in Dudelange 2013.
In 2015 she won second prize and a special prize for contemporary music in the Biarritz International Organ Competition.
She also received the Ellis Ullmans Memorial Scholarship 2019 and the GIOA Young Organ Scholar Award 2020 for her work and performance of Buxtehude’s free organ work in Codex EB 1688.

She has since regularly given concerts in Europe (France, Germany, Denmark, Norway, Sweden).

Between 2013 and 2017 she taught piano and organ at the music school in Saint-Lô (France).
In 2017-2018 she was Organ Scholar in Jesus Church in Copenhagen and since 2018 she has worked as organist in Älvsborg Church in Gothenburg.

Claes Gunnarsson

Claes Gunnarsson

Claes Gunnarsson has toured all over the world as a soloist, chamber musician, orchestral musician and teacher. His career got off to a flying start after he made his debut as a soloist in Dvorak’s Cello Concerto with the Gothenburg Symphony Orchestra at a young age and was subsequently invited to become a solo cellist. A position he has held since 1999.

Claes has given solo concerts in Wigmore Hall, Queen Elisabeth Hall, St Petersburg Philharmonie, Shanghai Symphony Hall, Seoul Arts Center and Singapore Symphony Hall, among others, and has been a guest at leading international festivals such as La Folle Journée in Nantes, Music@Menlo in California, the Mecklenburg-Vorpommern Festival and Yuri Temirkanov’s Winter Festival in St Petersburg with conductors such as Neeme Järvi, Kent Nagano, Santtu Matias Rouvali, Alexander Lazarev, Mihail Jurowski, Christian Zacharias and Christopher Warren-Green.

As an active chamber musician, Claes has collaborated with violinists Leonidas Kavakos and Nikolaj Znaider, pianists Christian Zacharias, Roland Pöntinen and Helen Grimaud, but above all he has given concerts for 20 years with his colleagues Sara Trobäck and Per Lundberg in their piano trio Trio Poseidon. During these years they have toured extensively both nationally and internationally and made a critically acclaimed recording of Beethoven’s Triple Concerto and Brahms’ Double Concerto with the Gothenburg Symphony Orchestra and Neeme Järvi on the Chandos Records label. On the same label he has also made successful recordings of Weinberg’s Cello Fantasy and Cello Concerto with the Symphony Orchestra and Thord Svedlund, the latter of which was awarded a Diapason d’Or, as an outstanding recording by the French music magazine Diapason.

Claes is also represented on the BIS label with the premiere recording of Albert Schnelzer’s Cello Concerto.Claes Gunnarsson has been invited as a guest solo cellist in several orchestras, including the Oslo Philharmonic Orchestra, the Stockholm Philharmonic Orchestra and the London Symphony Orchestra. Claes is active as a teacher at the School of Music and Performing Arts at the University of Gothenburg. He plays a cello by David Tecchler 1707 which is on generous loan from the Järnåker Foundation.

Duo Granmo-Berg

Duo Granmo-Berg

Tobias Granmo, violin, presenter
Daniel Berg, marimba

Tobias Granmo’s love of the violin has shaped his life, and music has been a natural part of his life since he was young. Violin studies at the Kungl. Musikhögskolan in Stockholm, Högskolan för scen och musik in Göteborg and at the Universität für Musik und darstellende Kunst in Vienna under renowned violin professors such as Milan Vitek, Dora Schwarzberg, Günter Pichler and Ernst Kovacic have inspired him.

Passing on the power of music to the next generation is an important driving force for Tobias. He also has a keen interest in newly written music. He and marimba soloist Daniel Berg together form Duo Granmo/Berg, which regularly tours Europe. Two CDs have been recorded with the duo and a third is on the way.

Tobias is a lecturer in violin and chamber music director at the School of Music and Performing Arts, University of Gothenburg. Between 2011 and 2017, he was also director of studies there for the classical programmes. Tobias is a regular guest teacher at the music academies in Vilnius, Riga, Ljubljana, Rome, Naples, San Sebastian, Birmingham and Cork and since 2018 ”Sponsored Artist” at the string manufacturer Thomastik-Infeld, Vienna.

Daniel Berg is a marimba soloist, chamber musician and composer who combines a large concert activity with teaching. He is Professor of Musical Performance at the University of Gothenburg and teaches solo percussion and chamber music at the Academy of Music and Performing Arts in Gothenburg, the Royal College of Music in Stockholm and the Örebro Academy of Music. Daniel himself studied at the then Academy of Music in Gothenburg (musician and diploma studies) and at the Rotterdam Conservatory of Music in Holland.

His solo debut took place in the Gothenburg Concert Hall, where he premiered Anders Nilsson’s Marimba Concerto with the Gothenburg Symphony Orchestra. In collaboration with Swedish composers, Daniel wants to develop chamber music with percussion at the centre. This has resulted in over 250 world premieres and several exciting projects – including the performance Ekelöf did not play the marimba together with actor Henric Holmberg.

Since 1992, Daniel Berg and Fredrik Duvling have formed the percussion duo Rhythm Art Duo. They have an extensive concert activity supported by the Swedish Arts Council and are frequently engaged by schools, churches and chamber music societies in Sweden. They tour frequently in Sweden and Europe and work closely with many of the country’s county music foundations, such as Kultur i Väst and Västmanlandsmusiken.

Daniel Berg also has a large concert activity together with organist Johannes Landgren and with violinist Tobias Granmo – Duo Granmo-Berg. As a soloist, Daniel Berg has performed at international percussion festivals and is often invited as a soloist and teacher at universities in Europe. He has made several recordings for radio and television and has recorded marimba albums.


Elin Rombo

Elin Rombo

Court Singer, Soprano

The Swedish soprano Elin Rombo has this season made her role debut as Violetta in La traviata and will this spring sing Tytania in Britten’s A Midsummer Night’s Dream, both at the Royal Swedish Opera in Stockholm. The previous season Elin was a guest at the Malmö Opera where she appeared in the title role of Suor Angelica and in the role of Iris in Catharina Backman’s new opera On the Other Side of the Sea– an evening with the two one-act operas united under the name The Sisters. Elin also sang Cunégondein Bernstein’s Candide at the Royal Swedish Opera.

In the season of 2020/21 Elin Rombo sang the role of Régine Saint Laurent in Rufus Wainwright’s opera Prima Donna at the Royal Swedish Opera. Elin has also performed the role of Young Robert Laxin the world premiere at Malmö Opera of Philip Glass’ opera Circus Days and Nights, a co-production between Cirkus Cirkör and Malmö Opera. The season 2019/20 Elin sang Cunégonde in Candide in Stockholm and the season before included the role of Roxana in King Roger both at Teatr Wielki in Warsaw and in Stockholm, as well as Hanna Glawari in Die Lustige Witwe and Donna Elvira in Don Giovanni, also in Stockholm.

Elin Rombo has previously been a guest at the Opéra National de Paris where she has sung Anicia Eritea in Cavalli’s Eliogabalo. She has appeared as The Queen of the Night in Die Zauberflöte at Staatsoper Berlin and as Agnès in Written on Skin at the Netherlands Opera and at the Royal Swedish Opera. Elin has sung Cunégonde in Candide, as well as in AscheMOND oder The Fairy Queenat Staatsoper Berlin and Adina in L’elisir d’amore at the Göteborg Opera.

Elin Rombo’s appearances at the Royal Swedish Opera have included Sophie in Der RosenkavalierDonna Elvira, Blanche in Dialogues des Carmélites, Musetta in La Bohème, Fiordiligi in Così fan Tutte, Mimì in La Bohème, Susanna in Le Nozze di Figaro and the young Batsheba in the world premiere of Sven-David Sandström’s Batsheba.

Elin Rombo made her Salzburg Festival debut in the summer of 2009, singing 1st soprano in Luigi Nono’s Al gran sole carico d’amore under the baton of Ingo Metzmacher and later appeared in the Deutsche Staatsoper revival at Kraftwerk Berlin. She has sung Leila in Les Pêcheurs de Perles at Folkoperan, Stockholm, Timante in Floridante at the Handel Festival in Halle, Zerlina in Don Giovanni with the Mattei Festival in Sweden, with the Mahler Chamber Orchestra and Daniel Harding and she appeared in the world premiere of Wolfgang Rihm’s Dionysus in Salzburg and Staatsoper Berlin. Her roles at the Frankfurt Opera have included Servilia in La clemenza di Tito, Clorinda in La Cenerentola, Pamina in Die Zauberflöte and Corinna in Il viaggio a Reims.

On the concert platform Elin Rombo has appeared under the baton of Riccardo Muti in Brahms’ Ein deutsches Requiem (Chicago Symphony Orchestra) and Schubert’s Mass No 2 in G major (Saint Denis Festival/Orchestre de Paris). In the spring of 2012 she returned to Saint Denis to sing Mozart’s Requiemwith Orchestre de Paris and Sir Colin Davis. She has sung Honegger’s Jeanne d’Arc au Bûcher in Salzburg, Mozart’s C Minor Mass with the Swedish Radio Symphony Orchestra as well as with the Bavarian Radio Symphony Orchestra and toured with renowned Swedish choir Orphei Drängar in China, Japan and Singapore.

Elin Rombo studied at the Brandon University Queen Elisabeth II in Canada and the University College of Opera in Stockholm, where she graduated in 2003. Already during her studies she made her debut as Christa in The Makropoulos Case at the Royal Swedish Opera. Elin was appointed Court Singer in 2013 and in 2016 she was awarded the medal Litteris et Artibus by the H.M. the Swedish King.

Karin Dornbusch

Karin Dornbusch


Karin Dornbusch, the festival’s artistic director, lives in Basel, Switzerland, since 1995,  grew up in a family of musicians in Stockholm. She has a strong connection to both Gothenburg and the West Coast of Sweden. Her father was born and raised in Gothenburg, and after diligent genealogical research she has found that the family on her great-grandmother’s side has lived on the islands of Orust and Tjörn for several centuries. After studying at the Hochschule der Künste Berlin and the Musikakademie der Stadt Basel, she is an internationally sought-after clarinet soloist and chamber musician. In 1996 she won the Swedish Soloist Prize and the first prize of the Basler Orchester Gesellschaft. In 1997 she was selected by the concert halls of Vienna, Birmingham, Stockholm and Athens as a soloist in the Rising Stars concert series. She has performed as a soloist at the Nobel Prize Ceremony in Stockholm. She has recorded three CDs on Caprice Records and one CD genuin classics leipzig. Her album Nordic Clarinet Concertos was nominated for a Swedish Grammis.  As a soloist she has performed with the major symphony orchestras of Stockholm, Malmö, Gävle, Norrköping, Basel and Zagreb under conductors such as Armin Jordan, Peter Csaba and Daniel Harding. She is a regular member of the ensemble camerata variabile basel, Ensemble Fiacorda and she is principal clarinettist of the CMB. She has performed with the Gringolts Quartet, Vertavo Quartet, Bennewitz Quartet, Zemlinsky Quartet, Trio Con Brio Copenhagen, Dénes Várjon, Benjamin Engeli, Georges Pludelmacher, Alasdair Beatson, Henri Sigfridsson, Hans Pålsson, David Huang Danny Driver, Charles Owen, Håvard Gimse, Christian Ihle Hadland, Marianna Shirinyan, Bengt Forsberg, Julien Quentin, Jacob Kellerman, Jakob Koranyi, Malin Broman, Simon Crawford-Phillips. Sini Simonen, Chloë Hanslip, David Grimal, Cecilia Zilliacus, Magali Mosnier, Henrik Goldschmidt, Diego Chenna, Szabolcs Zempléni, Martin Owen, Malin Hartelius, Katarina Karnéus and others. She is strongly committed to contemporary music and has collaborated with composers such as Kaija Saarihao, Dai Fujikura, Lisa Streich, Jennifer Walshe, Helena Winkelman and Maja S.K Ratkje. The well-known Swedish composer Benjamin Staern dedicated ”Worried souls” for clarinet & bass clarinet and orchestra to her, which she has performed on numerous occasions in both Sweden and Germany. Most recently in a critically acclaimed performance at the Stockholm Concert Hall in april 2022 with the Gävle Symphony Orchestra and conductor Emil Eliasson. 2006 – 2017 she was artistic director of the Båstad Chamber Music Festival, where she was awarded the first Gold Quaffle by KVAST in 2009 for her theme of 29 female composers from the past and present. Since 2019 she is the artistic director of FRONTSIDE-Gothenburg International Chamber Music Festival in Sweden. Her concert programmes are often unusually composed, with her own interest in mixing the well-known with the new and unknown. In addition to traditional chamber music, she likes to open the doors to other genres such as folk music, improvisation, electronic music and jazz. Carl XVI Gustaf, Kind of Sweden has awarded her the medal Litteris et Artibus and she is a member of the Royal Academy of Music in Sweden.

Palle Dahlstedt

Palle Dahlstedt

Live electronics, composer

Palle Dahlstedt (b. 1971) is docent at the Department of Computer Science and Engineering, Göteborg University and Chalmers University of Technology, and at the Academy for Music and Drama, Göteborg University. He is also Obel Professor of Art and Technology and Aalborg University in Denmark. His research area is computer-supported creativity and concerns on the one hand the development of new technologies for musical improvisation and composition, on the other hand understanding the inner mechanisms of creative processes, in order to make computers behave more creatively.

Palle Dahlstedt remains active as a composer and improvising musician, having been educated at the academies of music in Malmö and Göteborg. He is also a teacher of electronic music composition and the electronic composition of music at the Academy for Music and Drama, Göteborg, and artistic leader of the Lindblad Studio.

Paula af Malmborg Ward

Paula af Malmborg Ward

Composer and musician with a penchant for music drama. Raised in Stockholm, lives in Gothenburg since 1992. Composes music in a former cooking tower at Nya Varvet. Rhythm and text are two key words in his opera work, which includes works for orchestra and choir, solo and ensemble, and music for TV and radio. In 2022, Paula released two double CDs on Imogena Records, with songs created in the years before her composing career: Pållans låtar – till slut, från början (release March)
MERA Pållan’s songs (release December)

Important works (selection)
Gothenburg Opera’s commissioned work Mytomania, premiere October 2023
Vocal symphony Spår vägar, premiere Gothenburg Symphony December 2023
Choral works Äggen är slut and Hjässan är kal 2017 – 2019
Criança, choral work commissioned by the Royal Academy of Music for H.M. Queen Silvia’s 70th birthday 2013
Radio opera Hittekvinnan 2005
Music for SVT’s Christmas calendar En decemberdröm 2005
Debut opera Bombpartyt, Göteborgsoperan 1998

Paula is a member of the Royal Academy of Music and a member of FST and SKAP.
She is one of the initiators of the Kalv Festival and the Frontside Gothenburg International Chamber Music Festival.

Awards (selection)
FST Composer Prize Rosenberg Prize
City of Gothenburg Merit Award
1st prize Prix Italia for the radio opera Hittekvinnan

Trio Poseidon

Trio Poseidon

Sara Trobäck, violin
Claes Gunnarsson, cello
Per Lundberg, piano

Every so often a new recording comes along that is so exceptional it deserves immediate induction into the Classical Hall of Fame. This is such a recording, and one that I don’t expect to be matched anytime soon. This is a must-have recommendation.
Jerry Dubins, Fanfare 2010
(Chandos CHAN 10564 Gothenburg Symphony Neeme Järvi)

Trio Poseidon was formed in 2002 by Sara Troback Hesselink, (Concertmaster of the Gothenburg Symphony Orchestra), Claes Gunnarsson, (Principal Cellist of the Gothenburg Symphony Orchestra) and pianist Per Lundberg (Professor at The Royal College of Music in Stockholm.) Since their inaugural season, Trio Poseidon has become one of the most sought after ensembles in their native Sweden, performing at the main chamber music festivals and regional chamber music series. The trio had its London debut at Wigmore Hall in December 2004.

Zemlinsky Quartet

Zemlinsky Quartet

František Souček, first violin; Petr Střížek, second violin; Petr Holman, viola; and Vladimír Fortín, cello.

Since its founding in 1994, the ZEMLINSKY QUARTET has become a much lauded example of the Czech string quartet tradition. The quartet has won the First Grand Prize in the Bordeaux String Quartet Competition (2010) and also enjoyed a string of top competition prizes that include Banff, Prague Spring and London, where it was also awarded the Audience Prize. They have also been the recipient of the Alexander Zemlinsky Advancement Award. In 2016/17, Zemlinsky Quartet was appointed as the residential ensemble of the Czech Chamber Music Society. So far, the Zemlinsky Quartet has toured extensively in four continents. The repertoire of the ensemble is far ranging containing more than 350 works by many leading composers, including contemporary music. In 2007-2018, the Zemlinsky Quartet has recorded exclusively for the French record label Praga Digitals, having released nineteen titles including „Diapason d´Or“ award winning 4-CD set of early string quartets by A. Dvořák. In 2014, the Zemlinsky Quartet became only the fourth quartet in the history to record the complete string quartets by Antonín Dvořák. The ensemble also recorded complete works for string quartet by A. Zemlinsky. The recordings of the Zemlinsky Quartet have received universal critical acclaim. Having studied with Walter Levin (LaSalle Quartet) and Josef Klusoň (Pražák Quartet), the group now gives numerous master classes to students of any age. In 2006-11, the quartet served as Assistant Quartet-in-Residence at Musik-Akademie Basel in Switzerland. F. Souček and P. Holman also serve as professors of the Prague Conservatory.


2019, 2020 & 2022, 2023

During the first four years of the festival, we want to turn our spyglass to each of the four cardinal directions in turn outgoing from the harbour city Gothenburgs strategic location at the sea.With the first theme 2019, M/S Transatlantic, our gaze swung westwards. A red thread of American and American-inspired music ran through the festival. Inspiration came from the big ocean liners that carried emigrants to the United States in the nineteenth and early twentieth centuries. The theme also connected with today’s situation, when people are forced to become refugees and to create new lives for themselves in foreign lands. As final piece all artists and the Dream Orchestra with young refugees met in Terry Riley famous piece in C.

In 2020 the theme was Eastward. The note struck was now the Swedish East India Company’s voyages to Asia in the eighteenth century. During the festival, there where both old and new music by European and Asian composers who in various ways have influenced each other.

Swedish Radio P2 was there. Listen here

In 2022 FRONTSIDE will be carried by a warm breeze southward to the theme of Southerly Winds. Here we will fetch inspiration from Italy, Portugal, Spain and South America.

Because of the pandemic will Gothenburg celebrate its fourth centenary in 2023. FRONTSIDE will also postpone the complete programme Direction 57° North that would have been presented 2021. 2023 we will present music by composers from Gothenburg, but also music from countries that have strongly affected the development of Gothenburg, such as Holland, Germany, Scotland and England.

How it started

-Why start a music festival? -Because it’s a joy! Bob Kelly, initiator

After clarinetist Karin Dornbusch had successfully led the Båstad Chamber Music Festival for twelve years, she was contacted by entrepreneur Bob Kelly, who proposed creating an international chamber music festival at the art gallery Röda Sten Konsthall in Gothenburg. A committee was formed with the well-known musicians Paula af Malmborg Ward, Daniel Berg and Tobias Granmo among others. After a year of intensive work, FRONTSIDE – Gothenburg International Chamber Music Festival – was inaugurated in January 2019 with innovative concert programmes in exciting surroundings. There was art music from different periods; well-known pieces and all-new compositions alternated with folk music and free improvisation. Young and old mixed both on stage and in the audience. People listened, watched, chatted and made new discoveries. The ship was launched!

One of the purposes of the festival is to demonstrate what a broad range of music there exists within the chamber format. Moreover, we wish to cultivate the great tradition of Western music while at the same time supporting creativity and artistic innovation. The most important purpose of the festival, however, is to offer enjoyment to people of different generations and from different countries. We want to enrich life with music from near and far, and with the aid of music help to build bridges between people. A festival For Open Minds!

The Board

Karin Dornbusch, Clarinetist and Artistic Director
Anders Wiklund, Chairman of the board
Tobias Granmo, Violinist and Commissioner​
Marielle Korend Larsson, Head of Pr / communications and security

+46 70 868 37 46

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