Bjørn Breimo - Biography

Bjørn Breimo (1958) was born in Sandnessjøen (Northern Norway), and grew up in Malm (Mid-Norway). He began to play the piano at a young age, and studied music at the Trondheim Cathedral School in 1975-78, parallel with piano studies with Ragnhild Stenstadvold. He continued his instrumental studies at The Norwegian Academy of Music with Robert Riefling, Einar Steen-Nøkleberg, and Eva Knardahl, graduating in 1982. He made his debut as a pianist in 1985.

Breimo received his degree in composition from the same institution in 1984, following studies with Finn Mortensen and Lasse Thoresen. Since then he has been active as a composer, and has had a large number of performances of his own music for various ensembles in different places in Norway, several of which have been commissions.

In 1987 he won first prize in a composition competition for the inauguration of a new organ in Sola Church (Western Norway), with Forløsning (Redemption) for narrator, choir and organ. He has also had two studio produced radio performances with the Norwegian Radio Orchestra; Fantasia Sinfonica (1988) and Canto Eterno (1994). Of his later production could be mentioned the monumental Te Deum for choir and orchestra, written for Foss College in Oslo, and premiered in Paulus Church in 2008.

Breimo’s early musical style was impressed with Late Romanticism and Expressionism. The beginning of the 1990’ies, however, saw a change influenced by composers like Arvo Pärt and John Tavener, into a simpler and almost meditative style with modal traits. In later works one can hear a tendency to combine this style with that of his earlier works.

In addition to his occupation as a composer, Breimo for many years worked as a pianist for ballet classes, mainly at the Norwegian Academy of Ballet. In 1993 he passed his examination in practical educational science at the Norwegian Academy of Music, and has taught music theory and piano at Foss College in Oslo since 1995, where his title now is a Lecturer.

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