Composers / Edvard Grieg / Places catalog
The National Theatre in Christiania opened in 1899, thanks to many years’ efforts on the part of eminent Norwegian artists and intellectuals. Its first director was the son of the writer and cultural-social activist Bjørnstjerne Bjørnson, Bjørn, who from 1882 played Peer in Henrik Ibsen’s play Peer Gynt at various theatres, and that was the play which opened the first season at the National Theatre under his direction (1900). Leader of the theatre orchestra (originally comprising 45 musicians, but from 1919, when the Philharmonic Society was founded, numbering just 15) from its inception until 1929 was the highly gifted violinist, composer and conductor Johan Halvorsen, married to Grieg’s niece Anna. Grieg readily attended plays and operas at the National Theatre whenever he was in the capital.
National Theatre in Oslo. (creative commons)