Tora Dugstad

1. Violin

− I cherish the togetherness and the communication which occurs within the group, the ways in which one gives and receives signals and impulses, and how one places oneself in relation to others. When this happens, all individual contributions form a whole, and this is a great thing to be part of.

Tora Dugstad grew up in Trondheim, where she got in close contact with her greatest idol early on:

− Arve Tellefsen was the big star, for me as well as everyone else! When Arve played back home in Trondheim I always went to get his autograph, and once he said “What, are you back here again!”. It felt good being recognised, of course, but very embarrassing to be caught red-handed!

When Tora was around 12 years old, she participated in a chamber music course with “The Danish Quartet” which left a permanent impression:

− It was as if a new world had opened up to me, I had the experience of seeing all the possibilities hidden behind the notes, and playing the violin was given a new meaning.

Later on, Tora gathered rich experiences through living and studying in several countries, and being part of an international environment.

− In addition, the 14 years I spent playing in the The Norwegian Chamber Orchestra with Terje Tønnesen and Iona Brown was a fantastic period where I learned so much. And in my position with the orchestra I constantly receive impulses from musicians on an incredibly high level, in terms of conductors, soloists and fellow musicians.

− Playing a concert is generally the most fun

The violinist has been working with the Oslo Philharmonic since 1978, and mentions that it is the communication between the musicians which gives her the most pleasure in her work:

− Playing a concert is generally the most fun, although the preparations can often be both fun and exciting in themselves! I cherish the togetherness and the communication which occurs within the group, the ways in which one gives and receives signals and impulses, and how one places oneself in relation to others. When this happens, all individual contributions form a whole, and this is a great thing to be part of. For me, this is almost as important as the programme itself, but of course the pleasure is especially great when one plays music one loves!

Brahms, Beethoven and Mozart are composers Tora prizes the most highly, followed by Bruckner, Mahler and many others. One experience with the Oslo Philharmonic Orchestra stands head and shoulders above the rest:

− We played Sibelius Symphony No.7 with Paavo Berglund conducting. It was the first time I had played it, and I experienced it as a bit of a shock. It’s a very special symphony, and the way he did it seemed the only right way, and I’ll never forget it. But I won’t forget when we played Mahler’s 9th symphony with Herbert Blomstedt, either.

When Tora isn’t playing the violin, she enjoys gardening, photography, studying languages, reading, cooking and eating.