There is something for all tastes within Barents Spektakel’s music programme this year. Cool electronic beats meets young funk, while the wisdom of wandering folk singers meets danceable Balkan grooves and old Finnish tango. Soothing ambient synths will transition to over-amplified guitars and experimental other-than-human collaborations, with each night rounded off with classy and creative DJs to keep the rhythms going. 

Boris Grebenshikov: "The Godfather of Russian rock and reggae" - or simply just "BG" - as he is often called, is a figure who is considered one of the founders of Russian rock music. For a Western audience, Boris Grebenshikov can be considered the equivalent of a Russian Bob Dylan, David Bowie or Marc Bolan. Today the legendary vocalist, guitarist, and songwriter is once again banned in Russia because of his position against the war. With wisdom-laden lyrics and a fantastic band, we are looking forward to a very special concert with Boris Grebenshikov in Kirkenes during Barents Spektakel!

Fieh: With a total of eight talented musicians on stage, the energetic soul-funk band Fieh are known for their ecstatic and danceable live shows. The music is characterised by a 70s vibe with elements of jazz, funk, R&B and soul - mixed with modern pop and hip-hop. The group originally rose to fame with the breakthrough single "Glu" in 2017, and have since released several critically acclaimed albums and toured both in Norway and abroad. The dance floor at Samfundshuset is certain to be filled in double-quick time on Saturday evening when Fieh begins to drop the beats at Barents Spektakel for the very first time!

TØNDRA are a Sámi electronic music duo from Finnmark. Their music is best described as an airy mix between analogue and digital sound textures with modern beats. Accompanied by dreamy visuals for their live show, the duo will keep the rhythm steady and surprising on Saturday evening. Not to be missed!

Niilas is a composer, artist and sound artist who weaves together genres, instruments, field recordings and electronics into a unique musical expression. Rooted in his Sámi background and club culture, he creates sparkling, melancholic melodies, such as on his third solo album Stone Skipping (2022), where joik meets Iranian santoor and Moog Matriarch in a complex dialogue. Niilas will play in the Ävv Skoltesamiske Museum. 

Friform Kirkenes presents: Stian Westerhus - a guitarist, composer and creator of a soundscape that is as mysterious as it is massive, intimate, and unique. He will take to the stage in Samfundshuset with his solo project on the Sunday evening of the festival. The show is experimental and improvisational, creating a sound that challenges many of our concepts of genre. Westerhus has won the Spellemann Award in the jazz category together with Sissel Endresen, and has contributed and collaborated on the records of a number of other musicians, including Ulver, Motorpsycho, Lasse Marhaug, Maja Ratkje, Susanne Sundfør and Nils Petter Molvær. Certain to be a special, exploratory, abstract experience!

Kirkenes's own Per Anders Store joins sound-artist John Andrew Wilhite-Hannisdal  and legendary Tuvan throat singer Sainkho Namtchylak for a concert inside the installation Dialects of the Deep. Will there be a time when humans and cod can live and harmonise? Will there be a time when they can actually make music together? This concert imagines and looks forward to a time when humans and other species can collaborate as equals. In keeping with the visual space designed by Anastasia Savinova, the music in this concert will be expansive, and it will be deep. 

Jaakko Laitinen & Väärä Raha have been making people laugh, cry and dance since 2009. The band’s music is a unique fusion of different ingredients marinated in special sauces, with the main elements being the Balkan grooves, and old Finnish tango and humppa. The band consists of vocal, trumpet, bouzouki, accordion, double bass and drums. The Lapland-Balkan band have released six critically acclaimed albums, but are best known for their wild live shows, feeling equally at home within the hippest Helsinki dance floors or the rough village parties of Lapland. They have toured more than 20 countries around Europe and will come to Kirkenes for the first time during Barents Spektakel 2023!

Arctic Philharmonic String quartet with former members of the Kyiv Soloists
In 2022, the Arctic Philharmonic welcomed the Ukrainian orchestra Kyiv Soloists, who were on tour in Europe when the war broke out in their homeland. Together with local businesses in Bodø, the Philharmonic gave the musicians both a place to work and accommodation in a very difficult situation. Now you can hear three of the musicians from Kyiv in concert with the Arctic Philharmonic's concertmaster Oganes Girunyan.

 Barents Spektakel and the Kirkeneskonferansen invite you to a concert with the string quartet with elements of folk music and classical music from both Norway and Ukraine. The concert, which marks the finnisage of the festival and the opening of The Kirkeneskonferansen, will be held in Kirkenes church on Wednesday 1.March.