Haftor Medbøe is Head of Screen & Performing Arts and lectures across a broad portfolio of subjects within the School of Arts and Creative Industries. He holds the post of Jazz Musician in Residence and is director of Edinburgh Napier University Jazz Summer School and founding organiser of the Continental Drift Conference series. Haftor is founding chair of the Scottish Jazz Archive and member of the Board of Directors, Edinburgh Jazz & Blues Festival. Since gaining his Doctoral degree in 2013 Haftor has been published internationally and presented research papers in Europe and the UK on pedagogy, and cultural identity and commercial infrastructures in jazz.
Prior to being appointed full-time lecturer at Edinburgh Napier in 2008, Haftor enjoyed a twenty-year career in the music industries as a composer for film, television, theatre and contemporary dance for, amongst others, Channel 4, ITV, Tern TV, Scottish Ballet and Scottish Dance Theatre. Other composition credits include the 2014 son et lumiere production, A Night at The Botanics, collaborative installation pieces with artists Alan Kilpatrick and Michele Marcoux, dance/video productions by choreographer/film-maker Katrina MacPherson and a series of commissioned responses to exhibitions curated by the National Galleries of Scotland. Past professional appointments include Lead Tutor for the Princes’ Trust, Music Industry Consultant to Scottish Cultural Enterprise, Musician in Residence for The Queen’s Hall and Drake Music Scotland and project designer/tutor for Artlink Scotland.
Haftor remains active as a musician and composer on the international jazz scene and has recorded five studio albums with Haftor Medbøe Group. Recent releases include 'Bitter Together' (2014) with bass clarinetist Pete Furniss, the 2016 release on Norwegian Losen Records with pianist Espen Eriksen and trumpeter Gunnar Halle, a collaboration with Swedish pianist Jacob Karlzon in 2019, and an album celebrating the poetry of Danish poet Martin N Hansen in 2020. Haftor tours extensively in the UK and abroad and runs his own record label, Copperfly.