Halla Steinunn


Performer, composer, curator Halla Steinunn Stefánsdóttir is one of Iceland’s leading figures within the contemporary music scene. She has been the artistic director of Nordic Affect since its inception in 2005. Believing that the exciting things happen ‘in the connection’ Halla Steinunn’s work with the ensemble has been a tour de force when it comes to collaborative relationships with composers, visual artists, and producers. The work has earned them an Iceland Music Award as Performers of the Year and nomination for the Nordic Council Music Prize. As an avid promoter of solo works for baroque violin last year saw her nominated for an Iceland Music Award as Soloist of the Year for premieres that stretched from telematic concerts over to performances within a hologram and sound installations.

Halla Steinunn’s playing is featured on albums on the Sono Luminus, Brilliant Classics, Bad Taste Records, Tally, Carrier Records, Musmap and Deutsche Grammophon labels. They have received various accolades, including The Iceland Music Award and the Swedish Manifest Prize. She has appeared as a soloist, chamber musician and electronic and instrumental improviser at festivals such as SPOR festival (DK), Skaņu Mežs (LV), KLANG (DK), TRANSIT Festival (BE), Dark Music Days (IS), November Music (NL), Iceland Airwaves (IS), Ensems Festival (SP), Struer tracks (DK), North Atlantic Flux (UK), Reykjavík Arts Festival (IS) and GAS festival (SE).

Her compositional output has spanned everything from electro-acoustic compositions to sound and media installations. 2018 saw the release of her work He(a)r on Nordic Affect’s album by the same title. The album was featured in various best-of- the-year lists, including the Boston Globe, I Care if You Listen, Yahoo Entertainment, Morgunblaðið and Second Inversion. Recent projects have included Spherical White with Diamond, a site-specific installation created for NATUR (UK) in collaboration with National Trust Formby (UK) and Fjärilarna steg upp, an installation of 8 mono channels created for The Botanical Garden in Lund (SE).

With degrees from The Royal Danish Academy of Music and Indiana University School of Music (Fulbright Grant), Halla Steinunn now holds a PhD position in artistic research at Lund University. She has taught at the Iceland Academy of the Arts and given lectures in Europe and the US. She presently teaches a course on method (Bachelor and Master) at the Malmö Academy of Music.