Mari Samuelsen the Norwegian Violinist

Mari is a supremely gifted artist and technically brilliant violinist. For more than 20 years on stage, the violin phenomenon has connected with audience and musicians across the world.

Competency is what is known of a violinist called Mari Samuelsen. Mari is a highly acclaimed Norwegian violinist born (in Hamar, Norway) on December 21, 1984 and started to play the violin at the tender age of three at the local music school, outside the city Hamar, Norway. The year after, she continued with legendary Norwegian violinist Arve Tellefsen in Oslo, with whom she played with for nearly ten years.

She later studied several years at the Barratt Due Institute of Music, with Stephan Barratt Due. For the last ten years, Mari has been a student of the world-renowned Russian professor Zakhar Bron, with whom she finished two Master's degrees at Zürich University of the Arts, Switzerland in 2012. In addition to her steady tutoring, she has received masterclasses from Ana Chumachenco, Ivry Gitlis, Donald Weilerstein and Pamela Frank. Mari is a supremely gifted artist and technically brilliant violinist. For more than 20 years on stage, the violin phenomenon has connected with audience and musicians across the world.


Together with her brother, cellist Hakon Samuelsen, she has enjoyed a remarkable rise on the international concert stage through a characteristic mixture of artistry and enterprise. Her concerts combine a breathtaking musical finesse and virtuosity and an imaginative and innovative approach to presentation.

Norwegian violinist Mari Samuelsen has often been heard in concert with her brother, cellist Håkon Samuelsen. The Mari-Håkon partnership flowered during their teens, when they presented novel concerts such as one in 2003 where they both played Stradivarius instruments.

Norwegian violinist Mari Samuelsen has often been heard in concert with her brother, cellist Håkon Samuelsen. The Mari-Håkon partnership flowered during their teens, when they presented novel concerts such as one in 2003 where they both played Stradivarius instruments. In a duo with her brother Håkon Samuelsen, the violinist has long been known for exploring new sound environments and interpreting the works of contemporary composers. Together with Max Richter and the "12 ensemble", she regularly explores the broad spectrum of modern classical music. For the past two years, Mari and her brother have been artistic director of the Yellow Lounge in Norway. Bringing the Berlin-born club night to Oslo, and collaborating with partners such as the pre-eminent video artist, Philipp Geist, keeping classical music in the mix at the forefront of contemporary art.


Samuelsen’s career is well-established in Europe although she has performed in several venues in the US as well. As a solo performer, Mari Samuelsen has given concerts at several of the most important venues, including Carnegie Hall in New York, Théatre des Champs-Elysées in Paris, Tonhalle in Zurich, Victoria Hall in Geneva, Salle Garnier in Monte Carlo, Wolf Trap Center, Washington DC, Kremlin and Tschaikowsky Hall in Moscow. Over the years, Mari has worked with several wrold-renowned orchestras and conductors such as; David Zinmann, Seiji Ozawa, Howard Griffiths, Alexander Shelley, Philippe Bender, Daniele Callegari and in masterclass with Sir Simon Rattle. The 2014 season was include new relations and concerts with conductor Vasily Petrenko.


Samuelsen’s career is well-established in Europe although she has performed in several venues in the US as well. As a solo performer, Mari Samuelsen has given concerts at several of the most important venues, including Carnegie Hall in New York

She is a devoted chamber musician and has collaborated ion festivals with international musicians such as Leif Ove Andsnes, Truls Mørk, Frans Helmerson, Nicolas Altstaedt, Antoine Tamestit, Lawrence Power, Igor Levit, Inon Barnatan, Denis Kozhukhin, Mayuko Kamio, Guy Braunstein, Kirill Troussov and Measha Brueggergosman.
Mari Samuelsen has received several prizes including three Norwegian cultural honour-prizes. She has also received a number of national and international scholarships, and is the only Scandinavian ever to win the Crescendo prize from the Meister Foundation, Switzerland.


The Norwegian violinist Mari Samuelsen did examine the fascinating world of Scandinavian film music on her solo album ‘Nordic Noir’ on Decca Classics which was released on 15th September 2017 via Deutsche Grammophon. “Nordic Noir” stands for dark Scandinavian drama and crime series. The album debuted at number one on the UK and Norwegian iTunes classical charts.

With ‘Nordic Noir’, Mari Samuelsen presents her recording debut as a soloist and devotes herself to mysterious, gloomy and melancholic compositions, which convey and characterize the character of Scandinavian crime stories that have established themselves over the last years as an independent genre. The works are written by Ólafur Arnalds, Frans Bak, Uno Helmersson, Johan Söderqvist and Arvo Pärt, and some of them have been created in close collaboration with the artist so that Mari Samuelsen has penetrated the music with her personality and created recordings whose authentic charisma get under your skin.

With ‘Nordic Noir’, Mari Samuelsen presents her recording debut as a soloist and devotes herself to mysterious, gloomy and melancholic compositions, which convey and characterize the character of Scandinavian crime stories that have established themselves over the last years as an independent genre.

On August 25, 2016, Samuelsen and her cellist brother (with whom she frequently performs as a duo) gave the American premiere (with the Los Angeles Philharmonic) of a work for violin and cello by the late film composer James Horner. Mari Samuelsen plays a fine G. B. Guadagnini (Turin 1773) generously on loan from Anders Sveaas charitable foundation, Oslo, and a Dominique Peccatte bow on loan from Sparebanken Hedmark.