close up music instrument


The Norwegian Armed Forces have several military bands. The bands play a prominent role during ceremonies and parades.

​​​​​​Military bands have roots all the way back to the Classical Antiquity, when military commanders saw the importance to use sound and music to give orders and motivate the soldiers. Secondly, music could also be used to intimidate and demoralise the enemy.​

In Norway, drummers (tambur) were employed at all the country's fortresses in 1627. A provision from 1767 states that all infantry regiments must employ six horn blowers in addition to their drummers. ​

Five brigade marching bands were established during the restructuring of the Norwegian Armed Forces in 1817–18. The Armed Forces' music division grew in importance and became one of the most significant cultural institutions in Norway in the 19th century.

After World War II military bands gained more popularity. In 1953, the Norwegian Parliament gave the green light for establishing the Armed Forces Staff Band and a continuation of the six districts Band and the Navy Band. 

Since the 2000s the music division has undergone an organisational change in the transition and restructuring of the Norwegian Armed Forces. Today there are five main regional, professional bands in the Armed Forces. In addition to these, there are two bands composed of conscripts: His Majesty the King's Band and Drill Team and Oslo Home Guard​​Band.​ 

The Military Bands of the Norwegian Armed Forces celebrated their 200th anniversary in 2020, and are amongst the oldest still active cultural institutions in Norway. The bands are internationally renowned for their exquisite musical quality, and frequently represents the Norwegian Armed Forces and the nation internationally on concert tours and tattooshows world wide.

Military bands of the Norwegian Armed Forces

  1. Forsvarets stabsmusikkorps øver i Ridehuset

    ​The Staff Band is the foremost of the military bands of the Norwegian Armed Forces and Norway's largest professional wind band, employing 39 full-time musicians.

    The band is based in Oslo and partici​​pates in parades and ceremonies for Norwegian royalty, the government and the armed forces, and tours throughout Norway and abroad. In addition, the band has an extensive concert schedule in the Oslo area.​

  2. Fra en konsert med Luftforsvarets musikkorps

    ​​The Norwegian Air Force Band is based in Trondheim and plays a wide range of styles and genres. The band was funded in 2006, but holds a nearly 200-year-old history. It's roots stretch back to 1818 as the Fifth Brigade's Band and later as the Fifth Division's Military Band and The Armed Forces Military Band, Trøndelag.

    After being organized under the Royal Norwegian Air Force in 2006, the band has transformed from being a Central Norway-based band, to serve the whole country. It plays for both military and civilian audiences. ​

  3. Musikere fra Sjøforsvarets musikkorps spiller klarinett på kaien i Bergen

    The Band was earlier knows as the The Armed Forces Music Band Western Norway. It is one of two professional orchestras in Bergen, Norway's second largest city. The Band is particularly known for playing new and modern music with several critically acclaimed album recordings and festival concerts.

    In 2008 the band was awarded the prize "Artist of the Year" handed out by the Norwegian Society of Composers. The band employs 28 musicians and five administrative employees.​

  4. Fire trommeslagere fra Hærens musikkorps

    The Army Band is based in the town of Harstad, around 300 kilometres (185 miles) north of the Polar Circle. It is the oldest professional wind orchestra in Northern Norway and dates back to 1911. The band has 29 professional musicians who hold concerts all over Northern Norway. The Band is known for its wide ranges of genres – from classical music to pop, jazz and rock.​​​

  5. Kongelige Norske Marines Musikkorps

    The Navy Band was founded in 1820 and is one of the most renowned bands in the Norwegian Armed Forces. The band plays around 150 concerts each year for both military and civilian audiences in Norway and abroad. It has 29 professional musician is based in the town of Horten, an hour's drive south of Oslo. The Navy Band won the Norwegian national music award "Spellemannsprisen" in 2003. It plays most genres and is now one of Norway's leading wind bands. ​​

  6. Hjerkinn skytefelt er tilbakeført til naturen. Gardister fra Hans Majestet Kongens Garde under seremonien hvor Hjerkinn skytefelt ble overlevert fra Forsvarsdepartementet til Klima- og Miljødepartementet

    ​The King's Guard Band is the only band in the Norwegian Armed Forces that is composed entirely of conscripts. It is divided into the Music Troop and the Signal Troop. The Music Troop is a janissary band consisting of 60 conscript musicians. The Signal Troop is a marching band with around 25 musicians. 

    The recruited musicians have background from local music bands and must audition to show that they are qualified to play in the King's Guard Band. During their year as conscripts, the soldiers receive both basic soldier's training and musical training. The band participates in concerts, tattoos, shows and other events all over Norway and abroad.​

  7. HV-02 Musikkorps spiller på Akershus festning under en hjemkomstparade

Home Guard 02 band play at Akershus fortress during a medalcermony.

    ​The Band is the Home Guard's only permanent music band. It is based in Oslo and functions as a supplement to the permanent, professional bands in the Armed Forces. The musicians are both professional and amateur musicians ​from the best janissary bands in the Oslo Region. The Band has more than a hundred musicians and officers.