Biography Stein-Erik Olsen
was educated at the Bergen Conservatory of Music and the Norwegian State Academy of Music. His post-graduate teachers included Alexandre Lagoya, at the Conservatoire National Supérieur de Musique de Paris, and the Czech pianist, Jiri Hlinka. His international career began in 1974, when he represented Norway at the Expo Norr Festival in Sweden.
Since then he has played at many international festivals and toured extensively, playing solo recitals and concertos (including Rodrigo’s Concierto de Aranjuez), and appearing on radio and television throughout Europe, Great Britain, India and Korea. In 1986 his debut recital in the Wigmore Hall, London, merited high praise from the critics and his various recordings have been critically acclaimed world-wide.
Stein-Erik Olsen has had a variety of works dedicated to him by eminent composers including Ketil Hvoslef, Olav Berg, John Duarte, Nikita Koshkin, Noel Zahler, Stepan Rak, etc., now featured on his recordings for Simax.
Stein-Erik Olsen has performed at prestigious venues throughout Europe (Germany, France, Spain, Czech Republic, Hungary, Austria, Switzerland, Sweden, Denmark, etc.) and the Far East (including India, Nouvelle Calédonie and Korea).
In Norway he has made many appearances at leading music festivals such as Bergen International Festival (where he premiered Olav Berg’s Guitar Concerto), Arve Tellefsens Chamber Music Festival, Oslo, and Stavanger International Chamber Music Festival.
His engagements abroad include concerts at the Cesky Krumlov Festival, Czech Republic, Brussels International Guitar Festival, Belgium, Fanø Guitar Festival, Denmark, Estergom Guitar Festival, Hungary, etc. Stein-Erik Olsen has given recitals in leading halls in cities such as London, Prague, Lucerne, Bordeaux, Rome, Vienna, Paris, Stockholm, and Copenhagen.
Stein-Erik Olsen has performed as soloist in a range of guitar concertos with the Philharmonic Orchestras of Bergen, Stavanger, Trondheim, and Frankfurt, and recorded with the Norwegian Chamber Orchestra and the Academy of St. Martin in the Fields. Eminent conductors he has appeared with include Jukka Pekka Saraste, Susanna Mälkki, Christian Eggen, Terje Mikkelsen, Asher Fisch, Michael Schønwandt, Lionel Friend, and Alexander Dmitriev
Stein-Erik has a particular interest in performing chamber music and plays frequent concerts with Gro Schibsted Sandvik, professor at the Grieg Academy and principal flute in the Bergen and Oslo Philharmonic Orchestras. Stein-Erik has also given many recitals with the pan flute virtuoso Roar Engelberg, playing programmes which blend popular music, classical and folk music, Latino music and contemporary works. Over recent years he has gained an international reputation for his recitals and recordings in his guitar duo with Olivier Chassain, professor of guitar at the Conservatoire National Supérieur de Musique de Paris. Stein-Erik has also played duo recitals with the distinguished Swedish guitarist Göran Söllscher.
Stein-Erik Olsen is professor of classical guitar at the Grieg Academy, University of Bergen.