September 6 –8

Anja Garbarek & Jo Strømgren: THE ROAD IS JUST A SURFACE

A music-based theatre work



THE ROAD IS JUST A SURFACE is a music-based theatre work which explores the experience of being trapped in an emotionally locked life situation and the longing for moving on.

Anja Garbarek is one of Norway’s most interesting artists, and has since her debut in 1992 been provoking the musical tension between art and pop, with her visual and theatrical expression and uncommon richness of detail. She gained international acclaim for her albums ”Balloon Mood” (1996) and ”Smiling & Waving” (2001). Her musical universe has been described as profoundly visual.

Now she is launching brand new material for the first time since 2005, and, together with choreographer and director Jo Strømgren, she is developing this work of musical theatre, combining her iconic sound landscape with video material, choreography and text.
The collaboration between Anja Garbarek and Jo Strømgren started with a desire to put the music into a theatrical setting, where audiovisual images, choreography, and interaction between the performers on stage are important elements. For both Garbarek and Strømgren the genre of musical drama is new. This allows the possibility of developing material without regard to genre conventions, as well as experimenting with new dramaturgical impulses.

Performing on stage are Anja Garbarek herself, violist Bergmund Waal Skaslien and dancer Line Tørmoen.

Bob Bergmund Waal Skaslien
Bob´s driving force Line Tørmoen
Bob as a child Maja Dworak Strømgren
Bob´s conscious being/ Narrator/ Mother/ Interviewer Anja Garbarek

Concept, music, sound design, text Anja Garbarek 
Direction and choreography Jo Strømgren
Videodesign  Åsmund Bøe
Lighting design Stephen Rolfe
Scenography and costume Kristin Torp/ graa hverdag as
Set construction Simen Aanerud
Scenic painting Lise Hagen
Make-up and hair-design Aase Lund Mathisen
Light and video engineer Oscar Udbye
Music producers Anja Garbarek, Kåre Chr. Vestrheim
Sound design and music Nils Jakob Langvik
Mix Mike Hartung
Live Soundmix Stein-André Hovden
Photo Bjørn Opsahl

Produced by Jo Strømgren Kompani
Production manager  Guri Glans
Co-produced and commissioned by Bergen International Festival/Festspillene i Bergen
In collaboration with Drabant Music and The Norwegian Opera and Ballet
Supported by  Arts Council Norway, FFUK, NOPA and TONO

Smau media/Festspillene i Bergen
The Road is Just a Surface, Festspillene i Bergen
The Road is Just a Surface, Festspillene i Bergen
The Road is Just a Surface, Festspillene i Bergen



  • Scene
    Second House
  • Price
    100 - 350 NOK
  • /
    No intermission

September 2018