Swedes sing along at Allsång
By Jonas Tyden
July 24, 2008 | This week I decided to visit the extremely
popular Allsång på Skansen show. It is a Swedish
television show where famous Swedish and international
songs are sung, and the crowd sings along. Allsång
means "sing along" in English, and the show has run
on television since 1979, but its history dates back
as far as 1935. The program runs for one hour each Tuesday
at 8 p.m. every summer from the end of June until the
beginning of August.
Approximately 20,000 people watch the show live at
Sollidens stage at Skansen, which is the biggest zoo
in Stockholm. The show consistently has over 2 million
viewers on television. That might not seem like a lot,
but Sweden "only" has a population of 9 million.
Every week different guest artists appear, and both
Swedish stars such as Roxette and international stars
such as Ricky Martin have guest appeared. There are
also famous Swedish comedians every week, and the evening
is full of laughter and singing.
Everyone that comes to Allsång på Skansen
gets a textbook with the songs that will be performed
and join the singing. The age span of the crowd is large
and children, teenagers and retired 70-year-olds sing
together. It was a great experience to see how they
interact with each other and sing old traditional Swedish
songs and newer songs together.
This week Andra Generationen, Veronica Maggio, Peter
and Beata Harryson, and Vocal Six were entertaining
the crowd alongside the host Anders Lundin. Maggio is
a young Swedish jazz artist and her song Dumpa mig
received a great response from the crowd. The song was
big in 2006, but I loved her act and she has a mature
voice even though she is in her mid-20s.
Vocal Six is a famous Swedish a capella group that
sang one great song and it was amazing to see what they
could do with their voices. Peter Harryson is a famous
Swedish actor and television host, but I did not know
that he was also a great singer and it was funny to
hear him sing and perform in front of the crowd.
There was also a "secret guest" who came
to the show. It was the Swedish rapper Adam Tensta,
who received big applause from the younger crowd, but
the older generations did not seem to appreciate his
music too much.
The people who watch the show live get an extra 30
minutes of entertainment, and this was something that
I didn't know since it was my first time. The extra
30 minutes of entertainment were even better than the
hour show and I think everyone in the crowd enjoyed
it as much as I did.
It costs approximately $20 for adults and $8 for children
between 6 and 15 to attend the event. The money is definitely
worth it because the entertainment is great all night
long, and if you are lucky, you might be able to see
yourself on Swedish televison.
The evenings at Skansen always end with the song Stockholm
i mitt hjärta. This translates into "Stockholm
in my heart," and the host Anders Lundin sings the song,
and all of the 20,000 in the crowd sings along and it
was a great feeling singing together with so many people.