Rybak: The violin is my mistress, and this book is my child.
Text to the header photo: BOOK DEBUTANT: Alexander Rybak likes that the tiny Trolle resembles himself.
Source: VG.no Published 12.06.2015. Author: Cathrine Gonsholt Ighanian. Photo: Jan Petter Lynau and Cappelen Damm.
Translated by TessaLa, revison by Katie Anderson.
Alexander Rybak (29) believes that with his new project he is a big step closer to the dream of a family life.
The 29-year-old has become calmer and better about choosing what he will say” yes” and “no” to. For the last three years Rybak has dedicated the necessary time between battles to design the project close to his heart.
Rybak plays on many strings, literally. Now he can call himself a children’s author. “Trolle and the Magic Fiddle” is published by Cappelen Damm in September. It’s an old dream come true.
– I still like to experiment with new things and being on the go, but I have prioritized away a lot to put this plan into action, says Rybak.
It’s only been half a year since the multitalent confided to VG that he dreamed about a wife, two children, and a composer’s life in the countryside. But anyone who follows Rybak on Facebook know that he doesn’t live a lazy life. He has been ranked second place in the Russian TV show “One To One”, where he impressed as famous female figures, and he travels the world to perform. A girlfriend he doesn’t have.
– I am dedicated to the violin. The violin is my mistress, and this book is my child. I mean, it really is my child. I feel that this project is a real step towards the peaceful life I talked about last year. Nevertheless, I try to socialize with friends when I am at home in Norway, says a smiling Rybak, who did not hide the fact that he has many good female friends.
Ever since he was a child, Rybak has been fond of telling stories.
– My original plan was to make a troll musical, but I realized that it would take many years. So I started with making an album of songs. When the professionals said that I should publish the story as a book, the idea was created. So the book about the little troll who feels left out will be published. I know I’m going to enjoy this for many months to come, says an enthusiastic Rybak to VG.
Along with the book, Rybak will release a brand new album with songs that all have a relation to the story. The music is a mix of pop and classical, because Rybak wants to introduce both of these genres to children. The first song from this album, “Blant Fjell” (Among Mountains), released today, Friday.
About the Fiddle Curse
The book is about little Trolle, threatened by the other trolls because he was born without a tail. One day he sees The Hulder King’s violin that is laying in the forest, shining. As soon as Trolle starts playing, he discovers that the instrument is magical. Everyone who hears him play is enthralled.
– He bewitches them with his music, says Rybak.
Trolle becomes intoxicated by the sudden power he gets over the other trolls. Finally, he is happy. But one night the trolls escape from the fiddle’s curse, and Trolle remains lonely. The human child Alva comes to his rescue… But this friendship is also put to the test.
Can Feel Alone
Rybak has previously stated that he was bullied in his childhood.
– How much of Alexander Rybak is in Trolle?
– I think it helps the reading experience to know that some of this is perceived by the author. Meanwhile, I think it’s fun that people wonder if these are my own experiences or not. First and foremost, this is a story I’ve had on my mind for a long time, but I was not bullied nearly as much while growing up as Trolle. Nor can I say that I feel lonely, but I can feel alone even if I stand among 3.000 fans in Romania who all want my autograph.
– How often have you considered your own violin as a curse?
– Never! The violin is my companion in life.
When we ask who Trolle’s friend Alva is inspired by, Rybak responds a bit mysteriously:
– Of a girl from my youth. A good friend who made me believe in myself. But Alva is also a mixture of all the Disney princesses.
Doesn’t Want to Litter
Rybak is very aware that he has fans of all ages. Now that he can also call himself a children’s author, he is concerned about how he appears to the public.
– I am privileged to have fans from each generation in the family. So I hope that I don’t blurt out something stupid. I feel a great responsibility. Therefore, I figured I should be in the media less. I don’t want to litter it with things that give another image. I am often asked to participate in things that are not suitable for a children’s author, says a laughing Rybak without explaining what he is referring to.
Rybak has kept a high tempo ever since the big victory at the Eurovision Song Contest in Moscow in 2009. He has also spoken out about when he in the wake of the triumph and was burned, and crushed the fiddle on stage during a show at Liseberg. Since then the fans have expressed concern if Rybak has signaled that he is becoming tired. Rybak himself thinks that he has now become more adult and better at avoiding things that is not worth spending time on. He describes the tempo these days as “positive stress”.
– I’m proud of what I’ve done, but at least as proud of everything I have not done. I always get a lot of questions about reality TV, but now I simply say yes to what I know I have the energy for. Many people might have a barrier to dress up as a woman on TV, while I am happy if I don’t have to dive and bake bread.
Illustrator Thomas Kirkeberg has drawn the figures of the upcoming book, but Rybak has provided guidance along the way. Therefore, it is perhaps not surprising that the brown-eyed, disheveled troll from the book has similarities to him?
– That’s how I wish I looked, says Rybak about little Trolle.
The actors Dennis Storhøi, Anders Baasmo Christiansen and Stig Werner Moe have given voice the audiobook.
– I am so proud and excited! says the author debutant.