5/5 Ystads Allehanda
“232 Strängar is another example – and what an example! – that Swedish folk music can be played on any instrument. Because the interplay between Frida Höfling (violins) and Emma Engström (piano) must surely be called folk music? Or should it be called contemporary music? Or both? Irrelevant! [...] So beautiful: Delicate and rough, cheerful and melancholy, tranquil and rhythmic. And gripping, straight to my heart. Listen to an example on Tankesamlaren, where Frida Höfling plays the cow horn which first sets the mood and then interplays, alternately, quietly calling, with Emma Engströms contemporary rather than jazz-folk piano. Yes, Swedish folk sounds on piano. Should our thoughts turn to Jan Johansson? Not when it comes to Emma Engström. She plays herself.”
- Bengt Eriksson, Kulturskribent
With hundreds of strings – and a few cow horns – 232 Strängar create their own brilliant instrumental music where improvisation and folk tones combine to create new sounds.
The two musicians Frida Höfling and Emma Engström and their instruments violin, piano, voice and cow horn meet in a tight and nimble collaboration never far from laughter and joy, thought and reflection.
232 Strängar took shape 2013 from a desire to use a small group to test new ideas and gain the freedom to play and explore the possibilities afforded by the piano, violin and cow horn. 2016 saw the release of the debut album Spunnet which has touched many hearts. Spunnet was nominated to the year's best folk music album Årets Folk at the Manifestgala 2017 and received many acclaimed reviews by music critics and public alike. 232 Strängar has played a wide range of venues since 2013, from festivals and culture scenes to large concert halls and churches. Internationally they have represented Sweden at the Euroradio Folk Festival in the Czech Republic, in cooperation with Radio Sweden P2, and the EBU.
The second album Svunnet was released in 2020, and 232 Strängar are now touring with the new tunes.
Violins , Hardanger fiddle,
voice, bells & cow horns
Frida Höfling plays violin, Hardanger fiddle, and cow horn. Originally from Helsingborg, Frida now resides in Malmö Sweden. She is educated in folk and world music at the Malmö Academy of Music; Traditional norweigan music at the University of South-Eastern Norway at Rauland, and Sjöviks Folk High School, Dalarna; and folk music at Skurups Folk High School. It was during Fridas time at Rauland and Sjövik her interest in the cow horn and kulning (herding call) grew. It was at Skurups Folk High School Frida and Emma crossed paths, after which 232 Strängar would eventually emerge.
Frida also play in the children concert The hare and the turtle together with Emma Swensson.
Piano, voice, carillon & accordion
Emma Engström is a pianist with a heart in folk music, and a breadth covering even classical, afro, and jazz. Originally from Varnhem and now residing in Gothenburg Sweden, Emma is educated in jazz and classical piano at St Sigfrids Folk High School in Växjö and in folk music at Skurups Folk High School. Emma also plays piano in bands such as Spöket i Köket, Axel Sondén & Flyttfåglarna, Tant Parant och Glöggkompaniet.