Publikum på konsert i Kirkhelleren på Trænafestivalen Emilie Solbakken / Visit Helgeland

During the European Capital of Culture year in Bodø 2024, Helgeland is buzzing with a host of exciting cultural events. Here’s a roundup of some of the most engaging happenings in the region!

Concerts and Festivals

Music from the Depths

Helgeland museum

Where: Korsdalskløven, Grane
When: July 2

Join us for a mesmerizing musical experience in the mystical natural surroundings of Korsdalskløven, a deep gorge located just south of Trofors in Grane. On July 2, musician and adventurer, Håkon Skog Erlandsen, descends into the gorge with his saxophone to perform a unique concert. The audience, perched on the edge of the gorge, is in for a sensory treat surrounded by the scent of the forest, the sight of enchanting nature, and music echoing from below.

Learn more about Music from the Depths

Moddi at Østerdalsknabben, 1116 m.a.s.l.

Where: Østerdalsknabben, Rana
When: July 27

Described as a “singer-songwriter, pilgrim, environmentalist,” Moddi, or Pål Moddi Knutsen, invites you to a concert at the summit of Østerdalsknabben. This intimate and expansive outdoor stage offers breathtaking views over the mountains, valleys, and forests of inner Helgeland, coupled with some of the finest Norwegian modern folk and pop songs.

Read more about Moddi at Østerdalsknabben

iDJa and Ramona Linnea

Where: Umbukta Mountain Lodge, Rana
When: August 4

iDJa and Ramona Linnea showcase the best and most innovative of modern Sámi culture. Drawing on themes and inspiration from Sámi culture, mythology, and indigenous struggles, they create a unique soundscape with elements ranging from ambient to house, pop, drum & bass, and yoik. A guided tour of Sámi cultural heritage sites in the area is also available before the concert.

Read more about iDJa and Ramona Linnea


Helgeland hosts numerous festivals throughout the summer, from the Trænafestivalen on Træna to Havnafestivalen in Sandnessjøen, Rootsfestivalen in Brønnøysund, and Verket in Mo i Rana.

Read more about the festivals

Theatre and Performances

War travels

Where: Across Nordland
When: July and August

“War Travels” is a series of theatrical performances staged across various venues in Nordland, including Hattfjelldal, Trofors, Korgen, and Mo i Rana. The series explores themes related to World War II in Norway and Nordland, with narratives of captivity, resistance, struggle, and occupation. “War Travels” presents a journey through powerful stories, bringing to light the inhuman aspects of the war, including suffering and oppression. Yet, it also highlights the human elements: hope, courage, longing, and love.

Read more about War Travels


Where: Leirskardalen, Hemnes
When: August 15-17
Language: Norwegian

“Klemetspelet” is a musical narrative about the life of the Sámi man, Klemet Persson, who fled to Norway in the 19th century from a bloody feud with a neighbor in Sweden. Along with his wife Anna and their four children, he left his reindeer herd and carried everything they and their cow could bear to Leirskardalen, beneath the Okstindan mountain range in Hemnes. There, he lived as a mountain guide and itinerant worker, torn between the settled life in the established Norwegian farming culture and the free, nomadic existence in the mountains and nature of the Sámi culture.

“Klemetspelet” recounts multiple stories from Klemet and his family’s life in the valley and mountains. Through a spectacular performance featuring music, song, and dance, it addresses themes of culture and belonging, faith and superstition, and local history. The entire spectacle unfolds outdoors at Jamtjorda, close to where Klemet himself once lived, with traditional hay racks, storehouses, and the peaks of Okstindan as a scenic backdrop.

Read more about Klemetspelet

Bare Elling

Where: Mo i Rana and Sandnessjøen
When: December 6 and 7
Language: Norwegian

Per Christian Ellefsen captivated an entire nation when he brought the fictional character Elling to life in the eponymous 2001 film. Now, in this theatrical production, Elling is back with Per Christian Ellefsen and Anne Marie Ottesen in lead roles, music by Lars Lillo Stenberg, and directed by Petter Næss, who originally directed the first film about Elling. The performance is described on the Bodø2024 website as follows:

“We meet Elling 20 years after we left him in ‘Love Me Tomorrow’. He has moved into a basement apartment with widow Annelore Frimann-Clausen in Grefsen, Oslo. At 65, he misses Gro Harlem Brundtland, Kjell-Bjarne, and his mother. Although he has essentially been retired his whole life, he now wants to leave a mark. He no longer wants to be ‘nobody’. He wants to be SOMEONE.”

Read more about Bare Elling

Museums and Exhibitions

Opening of the ‘Lovund Boat’ Exhibition

Helgeland museum

Where: Lovund
When: June 15

In 2016, an exciting discovery was made on the shores of Lovund: a rare 15th-century wooden boat, the only one of its kind preserved in all of Northern Norway. The origin and purpose of the boat on Helgeland, and how it ended up on the shores of Lovund, remain a mystery. The wood of the boat originated from Vest-Agder, and it was 12 meters long, but little is known about where it came from or its intended destination. It’s speculated that it may have been transporting stockfish between Lofoten and Bergen when it was lost in a storm.

You can learn about both the boat and life on the Helgeland coast during the medieval period at the newly constructed Lovund Boat Museum, opening in June on Lovund. The opening will be celebrated with a community festival featuring lectures, food services, concerts, and activities for children.

Read more about the opening here

Petter on the reef

Where: Herøy
When: August / September

In August or September, join us for the unveiling of the “Petter on the reef” sculpture outside Herøy, against the dramatic backdrop of the Seven Sisters mountain range. This 10-meter high bronze sculpture of the poet-priest Petter Dass will stand as a monument in the very realm where the priest once ministered.

Read more about Peter on the Reef

Food and Culinary Culture

Arctic Food Symposium

Where: Mosjøen
When: September 13-14

The Arctic Food Symposium is a festival and a meeting point for food enthusiasts and culinary professionals of all types. Chefs, food producers, self-proclaimed gastronomes, and those who simply appreciate a good meal will gather here. Attendees can find inspiration and learn about culinary traditions and trends, raw materials, and sustainable production through lectures and tasting experiences.

As a prelude to this year’s symposium, a special food day will be held at the fabulous Skolo in Herøy on Saturday, August 24. The menu has not yet been revealed, but it promises a delightful array of dishes themed around the “Flavors of Helgeland.”

Read more about the Arctic Food Symposium
Read more about “Flavors of Helgeland” at Skolo

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