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718 St. Olaf Ave.
Northfield, MN, 55057
Website URL: http://www.AndreaEen.com
Andrea Een, Norwegian-American Hardanger fiddler, received the St. Olav Medal in 2002, given by King Harald V of Norway for her promotion of greater knowledge of Norwegian culture abroad. Een has studied the Hardanger fiddle, a nine-string folk violin unique to Norway, with some of the leading fiddlers in that country. In 2004 she released her solo CD, "From the Valley" which combines her original fiddle solos with traditional dances and tone poems from West Norway. Andrea Een has taught Hardanger fiddle, violin and viola at St. Olaf College in Northfield, Minnesota since 1977.
Andrea Een, Norwegian-American Hardanger fiddler, received the St. Olav Medal, given by King Harald V of Norway, in May, 2002 for her promotion of greater knowledge of Norwegian culture abroad. Een, whose grandfather, Knute Een, was born in Voss, Norway in 1882, has studied the Hardanger fiddle, the nine-string folk violin unique to Norway, with some of the leading fiddlers in that country. In 2004 she released her solo CD, "From the Valley" (available at AndreaEen.com) which combines her original fiddle solos with traditional dances and tone poems from West Norway. Andrea Een has performed over 125 concerts on Hardanger fiddle in the U.S., Costa Rica, France and Norway and has been a featured solo performer on Norwegian television and radio and National Public Radio and PBS in the United States. In 1998, Een was named a Master Folk Artist by the Minnesota State Arts Board. She is a founding member of the Hardanger Fiddle Association of America. She holds the Doctor of Musical Arts degree in Violin Performance and Literature from the University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign. A member of the Minnesota Opera Orchestra in residence at the Ordway Theatre in St. Paul, Andrea Een has taught Hardanger fiddle, violin and viola at St. Olaf College in Northfield, MN since 1977. Her poetry has been published in literary journals and the chapbook, "Some Days We Name It Love" (Heywood Press, 1994).
Andrea Een developed mastery of the Hardanger fiddle through eight research trips to Norway from her first visit accompanying the St. Olaf Orchestra on tour in 1979 through her most recent visit in 1999. She learned in direct tradition from master fiddlers in Voss where her grandfather, Knut Een, was born, as well as in Telemark and Setesdal. In May, 2002, Een received the Saint Olav Medal from King Harald of Norway and the Norwegian government in recognition of her services in promotion of greater knowledge of Norwegian culture abroad. In 2002, the Carl and Amy Narvestad/ Andrea Een Endowed Fund for Folk Music and Dance was established at St. Olaf College with a major gift from the Narvestads of Granite Falls, Minnesota. In 1987, she was the recipient of the Ole Bull Award from the Ole Bull Academy in Norway.
Peter Hamlin wrote a Hardanger Fiddle Concerto for her which she premiered with the St. Olaf Chamber Orchestra under the direction of Karin Meffert-Nelson in 1996. In March, 2003, Andrea Een's collaboration with Dan Trueman and the St. Olaf Orchestra under the direction of Steven Amundson for the premiere of Three Pieces for Hardanger Fiddle and Orchestra was supported with a grant from the American Composers Forum. In December, 2003, Een played the Trueman again with the Minneapolis Civic Orchestra under the direction of Cary John Franklin at Normandale Lutheran Church.
An international performer, Andrea Een has given over one hundred lecture recitals in the United States, Costa Rica, France and Norway. She gave an invited lecture in Norwegian on Norwegian-American musical traditions at the Landskappleik (Norway's most important folk music and dance competition) in Sogndal in 1987. In the same year, she was co-chair of the International Folk Music Course at the Ole Bull Academy in Voss, the leading folk music school in Norway. She has also been featured in the acclaimed Norwegian National Television series, De Som Dro Vest (Those Who Left) about Norwegian folk music retentions in the United States. This series has been broadcast internationally in America and Europe. In July,1999, Andrea Een performed in Fagernes, Valdres on a program celebrating the 100th Anniversary of the Valdres Samband , the oldest bygdelag (organization of emigrants from a local region) in the United States. In June, 1999, she played a violin and Hardanger fiddle concert in honor of her fiddle mentor, Lars Skjervheim, sponsored by the Ole Bull Academy at Helgatun north of Voss.
Andrea Een first heard the Hardanger fiddle on a set of recordings while she was a graduate student at the University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign. In 1977, while finishing her doctoral degree there in Violin Performance and Literature, she wrote a dissertation entitled, "Comparison of Melodic Variants in the Hardingfele Repertoire of Norway" which was an analytical study of thirteen variants of the Telemark ganger "Bynjulf Olson", After joining the St. Olaf faculty in the fall of 1977, she began to learn to play the Hardanger fiddle through study in Norway. In the fall of 1979, St.. Olaf College became the only college in the United States to offer Hardanger fiddle lessons as part of the music curriculum. As a founding member of the Hardanger Fiddle Association of America in 1983 and one of its first directors, Een has taught at over ten of their annual summer workshops. At St. Olaf, she has also led an Interim course in Norway exploring folk music and folklore, taught courses in ethnomusicology and an Elderhostel in world fiddle traditions.
Een has collaborated with artists in art, theater, film and dance. In 2000, her fiddle music was used in a sound installation and a companion compact disc at the Weisman Art Museum to accompany an exhibit of new paintings with Norwegian motifs by Nancy Randall. Een has played for Ethnic Dance Theater at O'Shaughnessy , Paul Thompson's "Scanibbean" dance evening at the Hennepin Center for the Arts, provided incidental music for a play about Thorstein Veblen at the Northfield Arts Guild and has been a featured performer and music consultant for the award-winning film, "Letters from America" about Ole Rolvaag.
In 1998 she was named a Master Folk Artist Teacher by the Minnesota State Arts Board and given a grant to support the apprenticeship of Karen Torkelson Solgard. She has also received grant support from the Mellon Foundation through the Summer Grants at St. Olaf, a Research Grant from the Arne Bjorndal Fund of the University of Bergen, and a Norwegian Emigrant Fund grant from the Norwegian government.
As a folk artist, Andrea Een is one of the performers on the Minnesota Historical Society recording, Norwegian-American Music from Minnesota, Old-Time and Traditional Favorites. In 1999, Een began composing new pieces for the Hardanger fiddle. One of those pieces, President Thomforde's March was performed for Inauguration Weekend in April, 2001 at the International Concert of Music and Dance celebrating the new St. Olaf president.
As a classical artist, Een is a core (tenured) member of the Minnesota Opera Orchestra's first violin section, a frequent chamber and solo musician on both violin and viola, a founding member of the Camerata and St. Olaf Trios, and with the Plymouth Music Series under the direction of Phillip Brunelle, has recorded a number of award-winning compact discs. Her poetry and essays have been published in literary journals, anthologies and a chapbook entitled, Some Days We Name It Love. Her solo Hardanger fiddle CD, From the Valley, was released in Fall, 2004. She was featured recently on the Best of Amierkappleik CD of live recordings from that festival in July, 2003, available from hfaa.org.
Last updated: 12/24/2004
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