Alexander Rybak: "I won because I had a story to tell"

  • 2010-02-24
  • By Ella Karapetyan

LETTING LOOSE: Rybak is clearly enjoying his wonderful journey.

TALLINN - Alexander Rybak, the winner of the 2009 Eurovision Song Contest, will be giving a concert on March 8 at the Nokia Concert Hall in Tallinn. The event is intended to commemorate International Women’s Day. The concert will also feature the winner of the latest Estonian Idol contest, Ott Lepland, as a warm-up act.

Alexander Rybak won the Eurovision Song Contest 2009, held in Moscow, by a landslide victory. Rybak won the contest with 387 points - the highest tally any country has achieved in the history of Eurovision.
“Fairytale,” a song he wrote and composed, became a massive hit right after Alexander’s win and since then he has starred in TV shows, films and concerts, such as the 2009 Nobel Peace Prize concert, held in Oslo on Dec. 11. Moreover, “Fairytale” rose to the Top 20 in nine European countries, including the number one position in Norway and Russia.
Rybak was born in Minsk, Belarus, but when he was 4 years old, he and his family moved to Norway. At the age of five, Rybak began to play the piano. His parents are Natalia Rybak, a classical pianist, and Igor Rybak, a well-known classical violinist who performs alongside Pinchas Zukerman.

Rybak has been a student at the Barratt Due Institute of Music in Oslo since the age of 10. Due to his success in the song contest, he is currently taking a break from his Bachelor’s degree studies.
In 2004, Rybak was awarded the “Anders Jahre Culture Prize.” In 2005, he entered the Norwegian version of Idol, reaching the semifinal. A year later the singer won “Kjempesjansen” (The Great Opportunity), a talent competition hosted by the Norwegian Broadcasting Corporation (NRK), with his own song “Foolin.”

Rybak also co-stars in the film “Yohan,” directed by Grete Salomonsen, which is to be released in 2010. He went on a tour in Norway with former Norwegian Eurovision winner Elisabeth Andreassen, something that had been decided before his Eurovision win and participation. He and his dance group, “Frikar,” has also toured Norway, and Europe in 2009.
The performer has released a film titled “Fairytale. The Movie,” documenting his incredible journey since claiming the top prize for Norway. Directed by acclaimed Norwegian director Rune Langlo, “Fairytale. The Movie” is about the weeks and months after Alexander’s victory, following him on tour and exposing the man behind the violin. The public only get to see Rybak perform, but this film goes backstage and really allows the fans to experience some of the finer and more behind-the-scenes details of touring.

As well as the actual film, the DVD includes footage from a concert held at the Operaen, in Oslo, where Alexander performed with artists such as Elisabeth Andreassen (winner of the 1985 Eurovision Song Contest as part of Bobbysocks) and Arve Tellefsen. The music videos for “Fairytale,” “Funny Little World” and “Roll with the Wind” are also included in the movie. Rybak’s first album, “Fairytales,” was released after his Eurovision win, and during the concert the well-known artist’s songs will be performed, as well as his latest songs never heard before by the Baltic audience.