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Elverum Music Festival was established in 1974, in connection with a seminar for the Norwegian National Youth Orchestra. Festspillene is organised as a foundation at Hedmark County Council and the municipality of Elverum. The foundation's purpose is: "Arranging the festival by providing a high quality offer in music and other arts at a high artistic level. Particular emphasis is on presentation of young, talented and promising artists». Norwegian National Youth Orchestra, which is the Festival Orchestra gives several concerts, and the emphasis is on presenting young musicians. The festival also includes chamber music, folk music and events for children.
The festival´s 30-year long festival tradition and overriding goal has been to present art on a qualitatively high level and at the give the audience in the region high quality art experiences they otherwise rarely have the opportunity to experience. Vertavo String Quartet has been the festival's artistic directors since 2001 and the quartet has both continued and further developed the festival according to the objectives and strategies laid.