2004 has been a prosperous, active and inspiring year for Norwegian music. The activity has reached unsurpassed heights with new artists making strong debuts, established performers delivering solid and successful releases, sales figures picking up and international attention increasing. Artistic and commercial highlights have been many, and the scene’s level confidence and ambitions seems to be growing significantly.
For MIC it has been a year to remember. Not only was 2004 the year of our 25th anniversary, we have also been blessed with the arrival of Svein Bjørkås - our new and energetic director. In late May, MIC hosted a very successful conference in Bergen that generated enthusiasm and lively debate among the international attendees. 2004 was also the year in which all previous records were broken for MIC’s web-sites. In November, Ballade.no clocked in more than 2,2 million hits while mic.no and Ballade.no’s combined number of unique users ended at more than 136 000. All time high!
2005 will represent a number of challenges for MIC. A revision of the centres organisational structure is on its way, being effective as of 1 January (more on this next year). In August, MIC will welcome its users and guests in a brand new facility at the refurbished and re-designed National Library. The relocation will represent a vast improvement of our facilities, and we also believe that the new aesthetic surroundings will inspire us at MIC to come up with some new thoughts and initiatives.
It's been a busy autumn, and the upcoming holiday season is a welcome break for the MIC staff. As the MIC crew retreats for some well deserved R&R, the Music Information Centre Norway will be closed until Monday January 3. Mic.no/english will not be updated until January 5 as yours truly is off for some long awaited skiing in the western parts of Norway (snow conditions permitting). If all bones are intact early next year, expect a thorough presentation of upcoming releases, tours and key players for 2005.
From all of us at MIC: Merry Christmas and a happy new year. See ya’ll in 2005!
Tomas Lauvland Pettersen
Information Executive Officer
Svein Bjørkås, Director