Norwegian Jazz Launch 2018

Norwegian Jazz Launch is a launch programme for the new generation of jazz musicians. The 2018 programme is providing support for saxophonist Hanna Paulsberg and pianist Espen Berg.

The Norwegian Jazz Launch started up in 2004 as a three-year programme to help Norwegian artists with international ambitions and potential to meet a broader international audience. The programme is now in its fourteenth period, and promoting a new set of artists. It is seeking to build further on the excellent reputation that Norwegian improvised music has attained internationally, and its activities include providing financial support for travel expenses and marketing.

Norwegian jazz musicians have established themselves as internationally renowned artists. The response from live audiences, critics and leading international music magazines alike has been tremendous. Karin Krog, Jan Garbarek, Arild Andersen and Terje Rypdal have been big international names since the 60s. Later musicians such as Nils Petter Molvær, Sidsel Endresen, Mathias Eick and Bugge Wesseltoft have been following suit. So too are an increasing number of newcomers to the scene.

Arve Henriksen and Paal Nilssen-Love were the first two artists to receive supported from the Norwegian Jazz Launch. Since then it has enabled Morten Qvenild, Eldbjørn Raknes, Frøy Aagre, Helge Lien, Håkon Kornstad, Stian Westerhus, Mats Eilertsen, Karl Seglem, Mari Kvien Brunvoll, Christian Wallumrød, Elephant9, Moskus, Ellen Andrea Wang, Hedvig Mollestad, Gard Nilssen and Marius Neset to launch various tours and projects.


The 2018 programme is providing support for saxophonist Hanna Paulsberg and pianist Espen Berg.

Hanna Paulsberg (b. 1987) has during the last years, established herself as an active and explorative musician and composer on the Nordic jazz scene.  She has made three records with her quartet Hanna Paulsberg Concept, played in constellations with Bugge Wesseltoft and Bobo Stenson, and contributed on numerous projects with the renowned Trondheim Jazz Orchestra. In 2011, her quartet won the Young Nordic Jazz Comets competition in Stockholm, and in 2015, she was appointed NTNU-ambassador (previous ambassadors has been Håkon Kornstad, Ola Kvernberg, Håkon Mjåset Johansen amongst others). 2018, will be a quite active year, as her newest project, GURLS, with Ellen Andrea Wang and Rohey Taalah, will release their first album in February and go on a following release tour at clubs and festival in Norway and abroad. She will also release a fourth album with her quartet in october, this time with Swedish trumpeter Magnus Broo (Atomic, Angles, IPA).

Espen Berg (b. 1983) is a Norwegian pianist and composer living in Trondheim. He has been touring around the world since 2003. In 2016, he was given Norway’s biggest music award, “JazZtipendiatet”, resulting in a commissioned work for Molde Jazz Festival with the widely recognized Trondheim Jazz Orchestra – featuring soloists as Eirik Hegdal, Ole Morten Vågan and Ola Kvernberg. Espen has participated on numerous albums, and worked with artists such as Seamus Blake, Anders Jormin, Silje Nergaard, Ole Mathisen, Mathias Eick, Marius Neset, Mats Eilertsen, Per Jørgensen and Airelle Besson. Espen has released two albums with his trio in Japan on the Japanese label Blue Gleam. JAZZ JAPAN named Espen Berg Trio the «biggest musical discovery in the first half of 2016». The same trio was appointed to NTNU AMBASSADOR at Trondheim Jazz Festival in 2016.


The Norwegian Jazz Launch is made possible by sustaining support from The Norwegian Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

For more information, contact; Head of programs at Norsk jazzforum,

Øyvind Skjerven Larsen oyvind (at)