A Blaze in the Northern Sky: Norwegian Black Metal & the Culture that Spawned it

In the last two decades, a bizarre, intense, and violent musical subculture called Black Metal has emerged in Norway, and has subsequently become a worldwide phenomenon. In a unique seminar-meets-radio show format moderated by Patrizia Mazzuoccolo, the lecture will explore and promote the genre and its country through audio clips of bands, interviews with musicians and guests, and an audience Q & A session at Scandinavia House in New York.

Black Metal is a distinctive mix of Satanism, Nordic mythology, and extreme heavy metal. It is the basis of a Norwegian subculture that aggressively forsakes Christianity and mainstream society in favor of Norse mythology, epic Scandinavian nature, and self-inflicted isolation. This violent subculture attracted international attention in the early 1990s with a string of murders, suicides, grave desecrations, and the arson of over 20 Christian churches.

Mazzuoccolo has worked as a music journalist for over 10 years contributing to magazines like Metal Hammer (U.K.), Terrorizer (U.K.), Rock Sound (U.K.), and Metal Maniacs (U.S.), and still writes for Rhythm where in 2002-2003 she had her own metal column. She worked as a Promotions Producer for the Sky Television network in London from 1998 – 2002, did screen work on MTV2’s The Riot (2002), and freelanced for The Rock Show on BBC Radio One in connection with the Norwegian black metal special (2006). She lived in London for 14 years, in Oslo for 6 and currently resides in New York where she is writing a book on the subject of Norwegian metal and culture.

During her time in Oslo, Mazzuoccolo worked as a Marketing and Promotion officer for Moonfog Productions, label manager for Tabu Recordings, acted as consultant and co-organizer of the sold-out Scandinavian metal night at SXSW (2008) and was the co-creator, roving reporter and producer of hot metal show Tinitus on Norwegian national radio NRK P3 from 2005 until early 2009 (www.nrk.no/tinitus).

Source: Scandinavia House

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