Trolle – from book to stage – Alexander Rybak

When Alexander Rybak toured with “Fairytale”, he began writing the story about Trolle. Ten years later he is ready to create magic on the musical stage. When Kilden opens its doors to the premier in November, it will be a sensual and visual party with spectacular costumes and big scenography.

Source: and their magazine. Text: Nina Zachariassen. Translated by Jorunn Ekre, revision by Anni Jowett.
Text to featured picture: Premiere in Kilden – Alexander Rybak ready for the musical stage. Trolle – from book to stage.

The digital version of the magazine

In the spring of 2009 Alexander Rybak begins writing the story about Trolle. He wants to create a children’s book with music, and writes the songs while he is touring all over Norway after his huge success with “Fairytale” in Eurovision.

“Let’s make a visual party”
Jostein Kirkeby-Garstad, director

Summer 2014
Jostein Kirkeby-Garstad is in a cafe in Oslo. He is reaching the end as the director of the Disney musical “Beauty and the Beast”. During a coffee break he reads an article about Alexander Rybak who is writing a children’s book about a small troll. He thinks this definitely could have potential to be a good musical.
Kirkeby-Garstad finishes his coffee and returns to the rehearsals at the Christiania Theatre. One week later he gets an SMS which says:

“Hi! We don’t know each other, but I wonder if you would be interested in making a musical with me? Regards, Alexander Rybak”.

They meet for a quick chat and decided to write a family musical. The first synopsis is finished the same autumn, but only four years later the two artists can present a script they’re satisfied with.

In October 2015
Dagbladet publishes a review of the book “Trolle”:
“Musicians seem to succeed better as children’s book authors than many other cultural celebrities. Alexander Rybak is no exception. “

In June, Kilden Theatre and Concert house has approved the project mandate of the musical, and in December the artistic team-with director, scenographer, costume designer and light designer are in place.

In January
, 71 young women attend the audition for the role as Alva. Ingeborg Walther gets the job. The 19 year old is well known for amongst other things her participation in “The Voice” on TV2. Ingeborg buys a blue book. She writes about Alva in it.

-I try to describe what she’s like and how she thinks. I am very anxious to find out what the director thinks when I will present it, says Walther.

-I try to describe what she’s like and how she thinks. I am very anxious to find out what the director thinks when I will present it, says Walther.

22nd May there’s a model presentation. The theatre manager Amalie Nilssen opens the meeting enthusiastically in mix of Karmøy dialect and perfect English: “Everyone! We will transform a bestselling book into a bestselling show.”

In a black box the scenographer Libby Watson has created a small model of the stage where the golden tree trunks frame the village and form the troll forest where the story will take place.

On the floor, the costume designer Helena Andersson spreads out sketches of all the costumes.
– Since Trolle is left out because he has no tail, the other trolls will have very big tails. And for it to look like there are many trolls on stage, there will be several heads attached to the costumes, says Andersson.

6th June
Alexander Rybak and Ingeborg Walther perform in the TV show “Allsang på Grensen”. It’s the first time one of the songs from the musical are performed publicly.

11th June
New audition. 41 boys attend hoping to become one of the show’s four little trolls.

14th August
Alexander Rybak arrives at Kilden’s costume department to create a mold of his feet, before they are transformed into Trolle’s feet. On the same day he is photographed for this magazine.

15th August
KSO (Kristiansand Symphony Orchestra) with their seasoning opening, and Alexander Rybak presents music from “Trolle”.

Read about the magic in “Trolle” HERE

In September and October the world premiere is being prepared at Kilden. The actors begin their rehearsals in the theatre hall. In the big workshop hall the carpenters are working making the scenographer’s tiny models into big stage sets, and in the costume department lengths of fabric become spectacular costumes.

Jostein Kirkeby-Garstad has directed several big musicals, amongst others “Evita”, “Annie” and the award winning “Billy Elliot”. Now he again is reaching the end of a production, this time also as a script writer.

He has been inspired by both” Lord of the Rings”, “Beauty and the Beast” and the NRK production “Vikings”.

We have all the ingredients for a visual and very musical party, says Kirkeby-Garstad.

7th October the rehearsals begin at “Store prøvesal” at Kilden.

11th November the decorations will be finished, and the actors are ready to have their first dress rehearsals.

28th November at 17.25 – 22 actors, young people and children will stand behind the stage curtain at the Theatre and Opera hall. Soon the buzz from the audience will end. When the curtain goes up, it’s the world premiere of “Trolle” at Kilden Theatre and Concert house.

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