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Ragnheiður Erla Björnsdóttir (she/her) is an Icelandic composer, poet and vocal artist based in Vienna. Her practice centres interdisciplinary research on voice through embodiment and extended vocal techniques, ecomusicology and sound-based experimental writing. Working with de- and reconstructing compositional techniques, she explores and forges webs of connectivity with storytelling in un/sung places.

 

Ragnheiður is a doctoral candidate at the Artistic Research Center in the University of Music and Performing Arts in Vienna and winner of the phonoECHOES prize for Sound Art, Improvisation and Experimental Music at Klangzeit Festival 2023. She currently works at the University of Applied Arts Vienna contributing to the pan-European project CYANOTYPES.

 

Ragnheiður was the co-artistic director of the Icelandic early and new music festival Skálholt Summer Concerts in 2022. She holds a MA in Creative Writing from the University of Iceland and a BA in Composition from the Icelandic Academy of the Arts. She is a member of four interdisciplinary art groups, including HLÖKK, together with Ingibjörg Ýr Skarphéðinsdóttir and Lilja María Ásmundsdóttir. Their debut album, Hulduhljóð, won the Kraumur Awards in 2020 and was nominated at the Icelandic Music Awards.

Her work has been performed internationally in various forms, ranging from hidden sound installations in a forest to theatrical vocal compositions. She has worked as a composer in projects at the National Theatre of Iceland, brut WIEN, the Icelandic National Broadcasting Service, the Reykjavík City Theatre and the Icelandic concert hall Harpa. Her work has been a part of festivals such as Lucerne Festival Forward, Edinburgh Fringe Festival, Dark Music Days, Young Nordic Music, Kultursommer Wien, Imagetanz, Klangmanifeste, WeW! Contemporary Festival, TutTötTuð, RAFLOST Festival, CLASH Festival and Oranjewoud festival.

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