Alexander Rybak (Born May 13, 1986 in Minsk, USSR) He is a violinist, singer and composer. In 2006 he won the talent competition Kjempesjansen (The Big Chance) on Norwegian state broadcaster NRK with his own song Foolin’. He was awarded the highly respected Anders Jahres Culture Prize in 2004.
He has collaborated with artists like a-ha’s lead singer Morten Harket and violinist Arve Tellefsen. In 2007, he played the fiddler in Oslo Nye Teater’s production of Fiddler on the Roof. In 2009, he took part in Melodi Grand Prix 2009, the show to select the Norwegian representative for the Eurovision Song Contest and won.
Norway’s turn to choose their singer for the 2009 Eurovision Song Contest. Eight songs were on offer and experts juries and the televote decided that Alexander Rybak’s Fairytale would be the one song that would represent the country best! Alexander’s victory came as no surprise: almost all betting agencies had seen him as the big favourite as the song is already No.1 in the official Norwegian charts!
One month ago, the Norwegian Melodi Grand Prix started with 21 songs being presented in 4 semi-finals. Eight of them were left in the grand final in the Spektrum in Oslo tonight and the Norwegian audience and professional juries had the tough task to select a worthy Norwegian entry from them. Two rounds of voting took place, first to whittle down the eight acts to four and then to find a winner:
Espen Hana – Two Of A Kind
Ovi – Seven Seconds
Publiners – Te Stein
Alexander Stenerud – Find My Girl
Velvet Inc. – Tricky
Alexander Rybak – Fairytale
Thomas Brøndbo – Det Vart En Storm
Tone Damli Aaberge – Butterflies
Of these, Alexander Stenerud, Tone Damli Aaberge, Alexander Rybak and Publiners made the superfinal, with Alexander Rybak being the lucky one getting the most votes ultimately. His song Fairytale is seen by many experts as one of the hottest contenders to win the trophy of the 2009 Eurovision Song Contest – even Greek TV stations had already featured Alexander’s clip in their shows! However, he must overcome his first obstacle first: qualifying from the second Semi-Final in Moscow against 18 tough competitors!
Norway came 5th in last year’s Belgrade Eurovision Song Contest with Maria Haukaas Storeng’s Hold On Be Strong. Tonight, Maria charmed the audience not as a singer, but as the host of the song together with Per Sundnes. She will return to her old job as a singer next week in Sweden’s fourth Semi-Final of Melodifestivalen in Malmö, performing Killing Me Tenderly together with Anna Sahlene.