Article in english, published by www.rivalmagazinela.com 12.06.2023
Author: Mariana González
Alexander Rybak is a singer, songwriter, violinist, and actor, who has captivated audiences around the world with his dazzling performances and unique music style. He is all versatility. The boy has won immense popularity with his original compositions and arrangements of traditional folk music.
Born in Minsk, Belarús, Alexander moved to Norway with his family at the age of four. He began playing the violin at the age of five, and his talent quickly became apparent. He won his first national music competition at the age of ten, and by the time he was a teenager, he had already performed with several orchestras across Europe.
In 2009, Rybak won the Eurovision Song Contest with his song ‘Fairytale’, which was an instant hit and reached number one in several European countries. The tune is instantly recognizable thanks to its catchy melody and memorable lyrics.
Rybak’s performance in the show was nothing short of amazing, with his energetic dance moves and his skillful violin playing. His success continued with the release of his debut album ‘Fairytales’, which featured several original compositions by Rybak, as well as some traditional Norwegian folk songs. It was a commercial success.
In the years that followed, he continued to release albums and tour extensively throughout Europe and beyond. His music style blended the traditional melodies of his Belarusian heritage with the modern pop sounds of Western Europe, creating a unique and exotic sound that fans find just irresistible.
In this interview, Alexander said the last few years he has been focusing on film music a lot, living in LA, and meeting talented filmmakers.
ALEXANDER, HOW HAVE YOU BEEN? FIRST OF ALL, WE WOULD LIKE YOU TO GIVE US A TOUR OF YOUR ARTISTIC LIFE SINCE 2009 WHEN YOU WON THE EUROVISION CONTEST. HAVE YOU BEEN MAKING MUSIC SINCE THEN?
Yes, music in all shapes and forms! Before I won Eurovision with my pop song, I also had success winning classical competitions and even Norway’s Got Talent with a jazz composition. So I have, and will always keep enjoying this talent that God has given me. For the last few years I have been focusing on film music, and I feel so lucky to live in L.A. now, meeting talented filmmakers.
WHY DID YOU DECIDE TO MOVE TO LOS ANGELES?
Because of two things. First of all, I was tired of the “comfort zone” in Europe, I wanted a new challenge. And second, this is THE place to be for film music. So, I decided to finish a Master´s Degree at Columbia College, and now I am enjoying Hollywood to the fullest!
WHERE DID THE IDEA OF MAKING A RECORDING STUDIO IN YOUR HOUSE IN LA COME FROM?
In Norway, I have a friend who also has a studio at home. He is one of my biggest inspirations in life, so I was happy to start building my own project in L.A. Also, it´s much cheaper over the course of 3-4 years to have your own studio where you can invite all sorts of talented people!
LET’S TALK ABOUT YOUR THEME “1000 VIEWS”. TELL US, HOW DID THIS THEME COME ABOUT? WHAT DID YOU WANT TO EXPRESS?
1000 views are really a metaphor. It could also be the joy you feel of getting your first job, or even your first fans. We always strive for more in this business, but it´s SO important to appreciate what you already have.
COULD WE SAY THAT THIS IS AN AUTOBIOGRAPHICAL SONG? DOES IT REPRESENT SOMETHING OF WHAT YOU HAVE LIVED IN LA?
Getting 1000 views is definitely something I have experienced, haha. And I know that not everyone gets to experience that and that is a “first milestone” for many people and I wanted to celebrate that with everyone who spends time on social media and knows what I´m talking about!
THE SONG TALKS ABOUT SOMETHING THAT IS HIGHLY VALUED BY CONTENT CREATORS AND ITS REPRODUCTIONS, WHAT DOES AN ARTIST FEEL WHEN HE LOOKS AND SEES THAT HIS WORK ACHIEVES THOUSANDS OR MILLIONS OF VIEWS?
A round number is always satisfying to look at. But what it represents is even more important; a group of people has actually taken their time to listen to your creation. It´s pure magic!
DO YOU THINK THAT NOWADAYS ‘LIKES’ ARE A RELIABLE WAY TO MEASURE THE ACCEPTANCE OF SOMEONE’S MUSICAL PROPOSAL?
Definitely. But a like does not mean that a person loves what I’m doing. Not even a comment or a follow is a guarantee for a future fan. However, when I see those fans singing my songs at my concerts, or making videos of my music on social media, that’s when I feel extremely privileged!
HOW DO SOCIAL NETWORKS AFFECT YOUR DAILY LIFE AS AN ARTIST?
On good days it doesn’t affect me at all. On bad days I’m totally sucked in, and can’t do anything meaningful for hours. But I think those bad days will happen to all of us from time to time, we just need to embrace the good sides of social media and try to live with the bad sides.
THE MUSIC VIDEO THAT ACCOMPANIES THE THEME IS VERY FUNNY, IT HAS A VERY SPECIAL VIBE THAT FEELS VERY ‘EVERY DAY’ AND CLOSE. WHAT CAN YOU TELL US ABOUT IT?
Thank you, those words mean a lot, as there will always be artists with bigger budgets and whole companies behind them. I just created a video with friends who I enjoy working with, and we had so much fun coming up with all the ideas for how I can annoy people with my “1000 Views” across Los Angeles. And with Brendan J Boyle, I feel I have found a filmmaker who is also a friend for life.
WHAT CAN YOU TELL US ABOUT THE COLLABORATION WITH GRACE KELLY?
When you start working in a new country, the first colleagues you get can be vital to your well-being in that country. Grace Kelly was the first musician to visit my studio, and she said the bar was higher than anyone can imagine! She is the coolest entertainer, and the most talented musician, and yet she is one of the most humble human beings I’ve ever met. Now, I really hope to join her in one of her amazing jazz performances!
ON MAY 13TH, YOU SURPRISED AMERICAN FANS OF EUROVISION WITH A SPECIAL PERFORMANCE ON NBC’S LIVE BROADCAST OF THIS YEAR’S EUROVISION SONG CONTEST. HOW DID THAT COME ABOUT?
One of my best friends in America is the amazing figure skating champion, Johnny Weir. I am a huge fan of him and his style, and it just so happens that he is a huge fan of Eurovision. This year he was hosting the American broadcast of the show, and since the 13th of May is also my birthday, he invited me to co-host with him and also sing one of my Eurovision songs. Once again, how lucky am I!
DO YOU PLAN TO RELEASE MORE MUSIC IN THE MEDIUM TERM?
I am planning to work on a new album. (Well, I’m actually working on it right now as we speak.) And I know all my friends have been waiting for a long time, so I promise to hurry up!
DO YOU HAVE VISUALIZED THE NEXT STEP ON YOUR PATH?
I do have some plans for future releases and performances, including 55 Christmas concerts in Scandinavia. But right now, I just want to enjoy my friendship with some of the most talented filmmakers and musicians in the world.