The Norwegian Knut Johannessen, is known as one of Scandinavia’s leading harpsichordists.
During his studies of the modern piano at the Norwegian Academy of Music in Oslo he was introduced to the harpsichord and immediately felt a complete empathy with the instrument. He went to the Sweelinck Conservatory in Amsterdam and graduated with a solo-diploma under the guidance of Gustav Leonhardt and Anneke Uittenbosch im 1985.
He is a professor of harpsichord at the Norwegian Academy of Music in Oslo since 1995.
Besides his position in Oslo, Knut Johannessen has an active international career as soloist and chamber musician, touring extensively in Europe and the USA.
He is a long time member of the Norwegian Chamber Orchestra.
In 1986 he formed and is still the artistic director of the Oslo Baroque Orchestra. Since 1999 he has frequently toured in Europe and USA together with Anne Sophie Mutter, and recorded Vivaldi’s Four Seasons with her for Deutsche Grammophon, a recording that has sold more than 750 000 copies worldwide. In spring 2007 he is again touring with her throughout Europe and a new CD-release for DGG is planed.
He has also recorded for Naxos and many other record labels.
Amongst musicians he has performed with are Andrew Manze, Fabio Biondi, Monica Huggett, Thomas Zehetmair, James Gallway, Maurice André, and the conductors Franz Bruggen, Myung Wha Chung, Tönu Kaljuste.