Festival Square. Photo: Thor Brødreskift

The Festival Square

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Torgallmenningen is decorated and transformed, ready for concerts and performances – free and open to everyone.

Torgallmenningen has been transformed with the addition of a new stage and new audience areas to celebrate the 71th Bergen International Festival. We’re celebrating with old friends and new acquaintances, and sincerely hope you will pop by! The stage at the Festival Square is made possible by Grieg Foundation.

Before I die

What do you want to get done before you die? On erected walls at Torgallmenningen, this question will beam towards you during this year’s Festival. With a piece of chalk, anyone who wants to can write their answer. Before I Die is a global art project that invites people to reflect on their own lives and consider what means the most to themselves and others. Read more here.


School pupils in Bergen have been asked to say what they stand for in everyday life, and their answers have been sprayed onto the ground in a hydrophobic substance. When it rains, the writing becomes visible. So, if it’s wet outside, look down and search for a mood booster or something to contemplate! Read more here.

We’ve borrowed the people’s chairs! 100 kitchen chairs have been gathered from homes in different parts of Western Norway, and each and every one has its own story to tell. The chairs have been given a new stroke of paint, and invite you to take a seat, either where you find them or wherever you feel like moving. Relax together with a friend  – or with a complete stranger. 

The chairs are painted by Manger musikklag.

A set of new benches divide the Festival Square into smaller, more intimate spaces. New meeting spaces challenge our patterns and make us view the city we know – and each other – with new eyes. Sit down, take a deep breath and find a quiet moment in the middle of a busy day. The benches are made by Signo Dokken AS, which provides work for deaf, hearing impaired and deafblind people.

More and more of us live in cities and are exposed to more gray than green on a daily basis. A lot of us feel a certain calm when we're in a forest, out at sea or above the tree line. When we now create small pockets of nature at the Festival Square, we’re concerned about far more than aesthetics. We aspire to create an opening for small moments of wordless balance and a reminder that we’re all connected, both to each other and to everything else that’s alive. Deep down we’re all nature. The green elements at the Festival Square are collected from Norwegian nature. Here, you’ll find both birch trees and blueberry bushes.

Free human beings need to be grounded, feel a sense of community and have fun. Look up! Through the pennons, we bring the party, the informal and the playful onto the square. The world is a serious place, and now more than ever we need to unwind, look others into the eyes, share a smile and remind one another that most people are good people!

On the stage, there will be concerts, circus arts, dance and a whole lot of fun both day and night, whereas the rest of the Torgallmenningen is filled up with a playground, clowns, street theatre and installations. All events are free of charge, and many of them can be enjoyed together with friends and family.

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