One grand piano. One voice. It usually doesn't take more to send shivers down your spine. At least when the artist is Hanne Kolstø and has a songbook that surpasses many others. The extremely prolific singer-songwriter and producer from Sykkylven has in five years released five albums of innovative pop music. In 2016 she gathered some of her finest compositions and released the closest thing you'll come to a "Best of Hanne Kolstø" album, the acoustic Live at Toyenkirken, recorded and mixed by Øyvind Røsrud Gundersen.
In April 2014 Hanne was asked by Henie Onstad Art Centre to hold a different kind of concert. Her answer was to ask piano player Andreas Stensland Løwe to join her in interpreting and arranging some songs from her rich catalogue. The duo cuts the songs down to a minimum and lets the melodies and lyrics step forward. The result is absolutely striking. The concert ends in tears and resonant applause from an audience that has been deeply moved.
"It was fascinating to see what happened when I let the melodies and lyrics get more space, and Andreas' arrangements let me be much more at liberty to improvise, something Andreas and I were doing a lot several years back," Kolstø explains.