Song Circus is a Norwegian chamber ensemble of professional and improvising singers. The ensemble is specializing in the interpretation of contemporary music.



Concept & idea: Liv Runesdatter and Maja Friis
Film director: Maja Friis
All sound performed by Song Circus
Music composed by: Ruben Sverre Gjertsen
Sound production: 2L / Lindberg Lyd
Producer: Liv Runesdatter
Cinematographer: Anders Nydam
Visual consultant: Lys og Trolddom / Rasmus Møbius

The video is awailable in different formats and can be customized for screening.
The music is originally recorded and produced in Auro 3D.

Contact for screening: Liv Runesdatter –

Great review in Nieuwe Noten (NL)

“A simply unique performance by Song Circus on this album, “Anatomy of Sound”. Years of preparation is presented to us this incredible piece, and in such an exemplary manner. This piece requires an incredible amount of these five vocalists. There is alternately sung and spoken, but the human voice is also used by all other means, literally as an instrument. From whisper soft to icy raw and between all possible nuances, an unreal diverse spectrum of tone colours. A whole fairytale; poetic, terrifying and ghostly time. As a musical poem in which each note will be extremely detailed in the spotlight. Gjertsen’s music sounds remarkably transparent, and his musical language very detailed and full of nuances. This is music that begs to be listened extremely concentrated. Only then his world reveals itself fully…”
Listen to the music:
Hybrid SACD and Pure Audio Blu-ray:

Read the whole review in Dutch:



Sound of a Cage is build up around the legacy of John Cage and his fellows. The triennial is curated by Song Circus´ artistic director, Liv Runesdatter. SOAC combines art, music, design, performance, workshops, lectures and topical discussions. This third edition of Sound of a Cage set focus on sound poetry. 

Sound poetry is an artistic form bridging literary and musical composition, in which the phonetic aspects of human speech are foregrounded instead of more conventional semantic and syntactic values; “verse without words”.
– Wikipedia

sound poetry bilde copy


Song Circus will perform UPSWEEP-WHISTLE-BLOOP. Upsweep, Whistle and Bloop are the names of unidentified sounds detected on the American National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s hydrophone arrays, recorded by the surveillance system SOSUS which has been active since 1961, and was an operation meaning to register the presence of Russian Submarines. After the cold war the operation was reduced, but the hydrophones were not removed, and still during the nineties they picked up a collection of sounds. It is unknown wether these sounds originate from manmade vehicles, such as submarines, or natural phenomena, such as whales or icebergs. Upsweep- Whistle-Bloop takes shape in the tradition of the Gesamtkunstwerk. Just as in the NOAA’s list, all disciplines create an ambiguous world where the organic and the mechanic are constantly at play.

Concept & compostion: Stine Janvin Motland

Concept & visuals: Jasmijn Visser

Performance & co-composers: Song Circus Costume design: Altinstark
Cover upsweep-whistle-bloop


Song Circus had an amazing and busy week during Rotterdam in May, attending seminars and meetings, establishing new collaborations, booking concerts and performing a successful showcase concert in deDoelen! Thank you for inviting us Classical:NEXT!

classical-next sofie og liv

classical-next stine og liv

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classicalnext stine

Review in The Vinyl Anachronist

This collection of experimental pieces for five voices and electronics is definitely not in the wheel house of your average grumpy old audiophile, but if you can power through your preconceptions about songs and melodies you might find that Song Circus will evoke feelings and emotions that are as rewarding as they are unsettling. So no, you will not be humming these pieces to yourself after listening in your car on the way to work. This is brain music, to put it succinctly, something to help you define your own expectations when it comes to your musical sensibilities. Song Circus will either challenge you and expand your horizons, or it will make you head for the exits. But I can’t think of a more informative recording in my entire music collection. If you patiently listen to Song Circus in its entirety, you’ll emerge from the experience knowing more about your sound system and how it interacts with your listening room. You’ll also know more about your brain, and how it interacts with new information. – Marc Phillips, The Vinyl Anachronist, Feb 2016

French review “Anatomy of Sound”


2L 117, Distrart Musique

Super Audio CD hybride stéréo/multicanal

Coverbilde lite SC

Le groupe vocal Song Circus composé de six artistes, Stine Janvin Motland, Maria Norseth Garli, Liv Runesdatter, Anita Kaasbell, Eva Bjerga Haugen et Ronnaug Bakke, est spécialisé dans la musique contemporaine et l’improvisation. Il propose ici deux œuvres, « Landscape With Figures » de Ruben Sverre Gjertsen, sur des textes de Damian Vitanza et James Joyce, puis « Persefone » de Ole-Henrik Moe JR. Ruben Sverre Gjersten a étudié la composition à l’Académie Grieg de Bergen auprès de Morten Eide Pedersen et James Clapperton avant de suivre les Masters classes de notamment Brian Ferneyhough, Klaus Huber, Salvatore Sciarrino, Philippe Hurel. Ole-Henrik Moe JR fit ses études de violon et de composition en Norvège, en France et en Allemagne. Sa rencontre avec Iannis Xenakis, à la Sorbonne à Paris fut, pour lui, déterminante. Comme au temps de la chanteuse et muse de Luciano Berio, Cathy Berberian dans les années soixante, c’est une technique vocale nouvelle que l’on aborde ici, faisant la part belle à la virtuosité. Dans une mise en espace particulière, la musique se déploie avec rigueur et force, laissant l’auditeur à la fois spectateur et acteur d’un univers aux repères déplacés qu’il faut reconsidérer à l’aune d’un partage émotionnel totalement nouveau lui aussi. Avis aux amateurs.

Jean-Jacques Millo

Song Circus selected for Classical:NEXT 2016!

We are very proud to share with you all that Song Circus is selected as one of six curated showcases at Classical:NEXT in May 2016!

“Norwegian ensemble Song Circus is comprised of five vocalists, and the music they make is thrilling, demanding, and light-years removed from traditional choral music. ‘Anatomy of Sound’ showcases the work of two composers, Ruben Sverre Gjertsen and Ole-Henrik Moe. Their pieces are jangled and nervous. Thick vocal textures are interwoven with washes of digital sound. A singer’s whisper morphs into a full-throated roar, then yields to near-subliminal mouth percussion. Just as unique, Song Circus’ stage setup surrounds the audience, positioning them within the ensemble so they can act as co-conspirators in the performance.”