With the Norwegian mountains as a backdrop, the festival is a nine-day celebration with 35 events, concerts, exhibitions and lectures. The main event of the festival is the theatre production of "Peer Gynt" by lake Gålåvatnet.
The festival is a celebration of Ibsen’s "Peer Gynt" and the historical person Per Gynt, who lived in the Gudbrandsdalen valley. The tales about Per have been told thorugh generations, and these, together with the nature and culture in the valley, is what inspired Henrik Ibsen to write the dramatic poem.
A festival with traditions
The Peer Gynt festival is built on old traditions. In 1928 the first Peer Gynt Festival was held in Vinstra, and volunteers from the valley gathered to create the festival. Ever since then the volunteers have been involved in almost every activity, and they are essential to the success of the Peer Gynt festival.
Peer Gynt at Gålå
The theatre production of Henrik Ibsen’s "Peer Gynt" at Gålå has been a success since 1989, and has gathered some of the best professional actors and musicians in Norway. At the theatre venue by lake Gålåvatnet, the professional theatre meets professional musicians and 80 local amateur actors, and the result is one of the most popular theatre productions in Norway.
The production is well suited for an international audience, with English and German introductions, summary booklets and audio guides.
The mountain concert "by Rondane"
Powerful music meets grand nature when the Peer Gynt festival presents famous artists at the outdoor stage on Kvamsfjellet mountain, overlooking the Rondane National Park.
The concert gathers about 2000 spectators, and is considered one of the highlights of the festival program. This concert is suitable for an international audience.
The Peer Gynt Art Exhibition
Every year the Peer Gynt Festival holds a new art exhibition. Art painters like Magne Furuholmen, Håkon Gullvåg and Ørnulv Opdahl are among the exhibitors that have previous exhibited at the festival. The exhibition is open every day during the festival, from 11 am to 5 pm.
The Church concert
During the festival you can experience a unique concert in the Sør-Fron church, one of the most beautiful churches in the region. This is an acoustic concert, featuring Norway's most celebrated artists.
The Peer Gynt award
Each year, a prominent Norwegian person is awarded the Peer Gynt statuette. The members of the Norwegian Parliament select the winner. Amongst the winners you can find Her Majesty Queen Sonja of Norway, explorer Thor Heyerdahl and author Jo Nesbø. The winner is celebrated in a ceremony at the festival.
The nature surrounding the festival is easily accessible for hiking. The Norwegian Trekking Association offers guided tours during the festival as a supplement to the cultural events.
MapExplore the region
The fastest route from Lillehammer to Gålå is to follow E6 towards Trondheim, for about 72 kilometres, and at Harpefoss, turn left on Gålåvegen and follow Gålåvegen and the signs to Peer Gynt forestillingen. If you travel from the north through Trondheim, follow the E6 towards Oslo via Dombås to Vinstra and Lillehammer.
Parking at the Peer Gynt Festival venues cost NOK 50.
Public Transport Directions
Festival bus in the Gudbrandsdalen valley
The Peer Gynt Festival offers a festival bus to the theatre play "Peer Gynt" at Gålå. The bus departs from Lillehammer every day, stopping in Øyer (Hafjell) and Gausdal (Skei) before the theatre venue by lake Gålåvatnet. The bus travels over the Peer Gynt road, which is a mountain road through Peer Gynt’s kingdom, offering scenic sights on the way to the theatre play.
Bus tickets cost NOK 250 pr person, and must be booked in advanced by sending an e-mail to thebus company, or by contacting your hotel. Visit www.peergynt.no for updated information about the bus route, and contact information to book your tickets.
Many hotels also offer transport to the festival events.
By bus and train
There are daily express bus departures to the festival area from Oslo Bus Terminal, Trondheim Central Station and Bergen Bus Terminal, operated by Nor-Way Bussekspress or Nettbuss.
The closest railway station to the Peer Gynt festival is Vinstra, and the trains are operated by the Norwegian State Railways (NSB). From Oslo Central Station (Oslo S), Intercity trains to Lillehammer depart every hour. Most hotels can arrange to pick you up at the station.