Harald Haugaard Violin, Denmark
“Haugaard is the master of sublime moments” (Sing Out music magazine, USA)
Harald Haugaard is one of the most sought-after musicians of his generation.
Through his constant touring, numerous recordings and strong commitment to teaching he
attracts an enthusiastic, ever-growing following and is an inspiration to talented musicians
the world over.
His virtuoso playing ranges from the effortless to the ferociously challenging, always with a
characteristically rich and melancholy tone. His compositions are original, and his artistic
expression draws always on his deep roots in the rich Danish musical tradition, which he
treats with a freshness and a respect like no one else.
He grew up in an environment full of traditional music, song and dance, and began at an
early age playing for dances together with, among others, his maternal grandfather
Johannes Kristensen. The rhythms of dance, and the movement and feeling that flow from
them, are at the heart of his music, but although his bedrock is traditional music, he has an
inquisitive spirit and is inspired by everything he encounters. He is happy to mix genres as a
way of challenging the existing tradition and developing as an artist. In his own words, ” the
greatest source of inspiration of all is life itsef.”
As a soloist, with his own ensemble the Helene Blum & Harald Haugaard Band, and with his
previous groups Serras, Haugaard & Høirup and Sorten Muld, he has toured most of the
world, having been at times, in terms of numbers of concerts, one of Denmark’s biggest
Haugaard has appeared frequently on television and radio, and has composed and produced
music for theatre, films and concerts, including the opening concert of Womex 2009 “The
Great Nordic Night”. From 2000 to 2008 he was a tutor for the Fyn Conservatory of Music’s
renowned folk music degree, and every summer since 2009 he has held his own popular
summer-school, “Haugaard’s International Fiddle School”, for hundreds of talented players
from all over the world.
Haugaard has received a great many awards and honours over the years for his music and
his work, including the Eiserner Eversteiner European Folk Music Award, the Danish
Musicians’ Union Prize of Honour and the Odense Live Prize, to name some of the most
prestigious. His total of 12 Danish Music Awards make him one of the most frequent winners
of that award ever, in any genre. He has been Artist in Residence at one of Canada’s most
esteemed music festivals, Celtic Colours, and in 2015 he is an official Carl Nielsen Artist with
the Odense Symphony Orchestra; he has also worked with the folkBALTICA festival for three
years as Artistic Director.
2015 saw the release of his album “Lys og Forfald” [“Light and Decay”], which is the third
and concluding album in his trilogy with “Burning Fields” and “Den Femte Søster” [“The Fifth
Sister”] – a trilogy which tells stories in music about people, places and events.
The highly-regarded music magazine ‘The Strad’ has described him as a “charismatic
virtuoso” and the British music magazine fROOTS has said: “Haugaard is a brilliant fiddler,
one of the very best in the world”.