Liv Runesdatter lives in Stavanger, in western Norway. She is a critically acclaimed Norwegian singer, composer and producer. As a vocalist she explores and pushes the limits of the natural acoustics of the voice. Her trademark is a personal and creative sound, rich with contrasts, textures, expressions and dynamics. Her musical roots lie in classical music, improvisational music and in traditional world music.
Through more than 25 years she has created and performed festivals, stage productions, installation works, exhibitions, albums, films and thousands of concerts, in collaboration with dancers, film makers, musicians, researchers, architects and visual artists from more than 30 countries, and performed her music on festivals and concert halls in Europe, USA, Middle East, Kaukasus and Canada. She has achieved several awards for her work, and grants such as a the National Governmental Work Grant (2007, 2008, 2011, 2017, 2020, 2021) and Rolf Gammelengs Ærespris (the Honorary Award of the Norwegian Fund for Performing artists).
Liv Runesdatter is artistic director and singer in the vocal chamber ensemble Song Circus. The ensemble specialize in contemporary music and improvisation, and has given life to an unusual and fascinating vocabulary of vocal sound. Their album Anatomy of Sound, presenting new classical music by the Norwegian composers Ruben Sverre Gjertsen and Ole-Henrik Moe, was produced by the multiple Grammy nominee surround sound producer Morten Lindberg i 2015, and was nominated Norwegian Grammy. Song Circus has achieved The Governmental Ensemble Work Grant since 2012.
Liv Runesdatter is the artistic director of Sound of a Cage Triennial. The triennale is build up around the legacy of John Cage and his fellows, and it combines presentations of art, music, design, performance, workshops, lectures and topical discussions.
Her solo folk music album Syng hjerte (Eng. Sing my heart) was released by GRAPPA Music Group, the leading independent record company in Norway. The album has received outstanding reviews in international newspapers, magazines and radio shows. The Norwegian Broadcast journalist Kjetil Bjørgan proclaimes it to be an important music project, challenging the Norwegian traditional music field, both through Runesdatter´s voice performance and the catchy and untraditional musical choices. The magazine «Folk World» selected «Syng hjerte» for their list of Best International Albums.
The Norwegian folk tunes are inseparable from Norwegian roots, tradition and thought. Liv Runedatters traditional folk songs are embellished with life stories and tales, coloured by material from her own musical universe, and inspired from hoarse voices on creaky old recordings, nature, squeaking audiotape players, rooms, shapes, smells, sounds and people. The Norwegian traditional roots are evident, though impulses from other places and traditions can be traced.
Among great artists and producers she has worked with are Nils Økland, Stian Carstensen, Alfred Janson, Frode Fjellheim, Snorre Bjerck, Eivin One Pedersen, Trygve Seim, Rolf-Erik Nystrøm, Paal Nilssen-Love, Else Olsen Storesund, Torben Snekkestad, John Abercrombie and Charles Lloyd… Classical traditional folk musicians such as Britt Pernille Frøhølm, Ahmad Al Khatib, Harpreet Bansal, Abdulrahman Surizehi, Ulla Pirttijärvi, Amadou Sarr, Mahmoud Moneeb Rachdan, Lelo Nika, Alim Qasimov, Ehtiram Huseinov og Elshan Mansurov… Composers such as Catherine Lamb, Eivind Buene, Pascale Criton, Therese Birkelund Ulvo, Christian Wolff, Trevor Wishart, Jaap Blonk, Ruben Sverre Gjertsen, Ole-Henrik Moe, David Moss, Nils Henrik Asheim… And Red Note Ensemble (UK), I Solisti del Vento (Belgia), Oslo Sinfonietta, Stavanger Symfoniorkester, The Kitchen Orchestra, Stavanger Kathedralensemble, Tarozzi/Walker og Cirque de Soleil (CAN). Performance artist Anne-M E Rygh, koreografene Hanna Savolainen (FIN), Jair Cardoso (Brasil), Nadja Hjorton (SE), Sandsmark og Mari Flønes, regissør Valentina Cechi, scenograf Katherine Lane, the poets Odveig Klyve, Jan Erik Vold, Torild Wardenær, Lavinia Murray og Mansur Rajih (Jemen/NO), the design company Brave New Worlds, artist Eli Glader, Jasmin Visser and Tove Kommedal, photographer Signe Christine Urdal, Martin Hawkes and Joakim Hauge Vocke, film artist Maja Friis, Saft Film, Hinterland Film, Piraya Film…