Skip to main content
For students Search

Eyolf Dale will step down as pro-principal in the autumn

Jazz pianist Eyolf Dale passes the pro-principal baton on to jazz pianist Morten Qvenild after just over half a term.

– It was a tough choice, but I had to make it for several reasons, says Eyolf Dale.

He says, among other things, that there has been an influx of assignments since the pandemic ended, and activity in cultural life has picked up again. This spring, he has many concerts, works commissioned for the Kilden vocal ensemble and collaboration with KORK on the agenda.

– I had to ask myself: Can I live with being a little less prepared for my artistic projects and a little less present in my job at NMH? No, I can't.

From left: Gunnar Flagstad (vice-principal for education), Astrid Kvalbein (principal), Eyolf Dale (pro-principal) and Sidsel Karlsen (vice-principal for FoU) in 2021.

The best for both

He calls the choice the best for the Academy of Music and himself. Dale is also the leader of the school's 50th anniversary and is working out the project period in September. Then he gets some of his students back, and not least – more time for a busy life as a musician and composer.

Have you gained new experiences that you can use in teaching?

– Perhaps a renewed clarity? He muses and adds that the learning curve has been steep since he started the vice-principal's job. - To dare and stand in challenging situations, be honest, and know the best way to see something. It is about being prepared and having sufficient knowledge, but at least as much about courage. A leadership job at Norway's most influential music education institution is not only developing and educational, but it is also a privilege.

The question one must ask

When he stood for election with Astrid Kvalbein, his primary motivation was participating actively in the leadership group. Someone who knows what it's like to be out and play.

– A vital driving force was to stimulate the development of our environment and to contribute with a view from the world outside the institution, from the free field. Ask questions about what we do and whether it is the best way to do it.

A leadership job at Norway's most influential music education institution is not only developing and educational but also a privilege.

Eyolf Dale outgoing Pro-principal

The tricky balance between tradition and innovation also comes up as a theme.

– There is no unequivocal answer to that, but we must ask the question nonetheless. The very core of future music education lies in this discourse.

Dale also said he was curious about renting and the possibility of making a difference. He likes to be uncompromising in his music and simultaneously test out new paths in life.

– I will miss working with the management team. We can discuss this, but be just as good friends afterwards.

He still believes it is essential to be quarantined from decisions and processes when one has left a leadership position.

– Much of the thinking is in good shape in the management; we are better together. The leadership group has a professional weight, which benefits the College of Music, and a healthy culture for breaking opinions. There is no need for a seventh father in the house; both they and I will have peace of mind after I leave.

Morten Qvenild will be the new pro-principal from Autumn 2023.


He has faith in his successor and jazz pianist colleague Morten Qvenild. Does he have any advice for the next vice-chancellor in line?

– Humility, perhaps, he replies and thinks about it. It sounds like a platitude, but we are a house with many skilled and motivated employees, where their job is not just a job. He adds that it is also wise to spend enough time to familiarize yourself with matters.

– I am incredibly grateful for the trust I have received. So what I have learned about music education and institution building will also come in handy on later occasions. Working life is long, and I have plans to continue for a long time!

Articles relevant