Kristina från Duvemåla news

Kristina från Duvemåla

Read up on all the latest news as 'Kristina' plays again in Göteborg.

Benny records choral album with acclaimed Swedish chamber choir


Gustaf Sjökvist’s Chamber Choir are recording music by Benny Andersson

Gustaf Sjökvists Kammarkör (GSKK), the renowned Swedish chamber choir that performed the vocals for Benny Andersson and Kristina Lugn’s Vilar glad. I din famn, during the wedding ceremony of Crown Princess Victoria in 2010, has recently recorded a selection of Benny’s music, with new choral arrangements by Anders Eljas, at RMV Studios in Stockholm.

Benny is excited by the project and has told icethesite about his involvement:

“Gustaf and I have talked about doing this ever since the Princess’ wedding,” he said. “We chose which pieces we wanted to record together and I then made rough backing tracks for the choir to sing to. Now that the vocals are done I will replace those tracks with real people playing,” he added.

Gustaf, Anders & Benny at RMV

Gustaf, Anders & Benny at RMV

Benny and Gustaf have not yet made their minds up which of the recorded songs to include on the album, but Benny says that it will be “a mix of stuff” from his existing back catalogue – so far he has not composed any music specifically for the choir.

“But we may add another track, that is if I can come up with a new song,” he said.

“It feels very good to hear my music performed in this way. The choir are so bloody excellent and Gustaf is a joy to work with,” he enthused.

It is anticipated the album will be released later this year.

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‘Kristina’ in Gothenburg – Benny and Björn attend first rehearsals

It is 18 years since Kristina från Duvemåla was originally staged at Göteborgs Operan, but in just over 9 weeks time, on 25 October 2014, the theatre will premiere a new production of the musical and yesterday, ‘Kristina‘s’ creators Benny Andersson, Björn Ulvaeus and Lars Rudolfsson, were in Gothenburg to oversee the show’s first rehearsals.

Björn, Lars and Benny in Gothenburg.   Photo: Camilla Simonsson

Björn, Lars and Benny in Gothenburg. Photo: Camilla Simonsson

Featuring the same quartet of principles as the successful 2012 production at the Swedish Theatre in Helsinki, (Maria Ylipää as Kristina, Robert Noack as Karl Oskar, Birthe Wingren as Ulrika and Oskar Nilsson as Robert), the Gothenburg cast will be accompanied by the Göteborg Opera Chorus and Orchestra. The musical arrangements are by Anders Eljas.

Benny and Björn are both delighted to see Kristina return to the Swedish stage:

“It is great to be back at Göteborgs Operan. They have great facilities and there is a good feeling here,” said Benny.

Björn agreed: “It’s fun to work with Kristina again and I think it is fantastic that the musical has lived so long,” he said.

The 1990’s version of Kristina remains the most successful production of its kind in Göteborgs Operan’s 20 year history, seen by over a million people. However, the new staging is considerably different from its predecessor.

Benny explained: “The major difference is that both the ensemble and the orchestra are half the size. We originally did this to make room for the show at the Swedish Theatre in Helsinki, but it is up and running and works well in the format, so we decided to continue with it. But we will do the best we can, just as we did back then, for this to be as good as it possibly can be,” he said.

Kristina will be performed a total of 99 times in Gothenburg between October and May 2015 (it does not play every night). After a summer break, the production is scheduled to transfer to Stockholm’s Cirkus theatre next September.

Watch a short video (in Swedish) of Benny, Björn and the cast of Kristina at yesterday’s rehearsal.

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