Sissel in 2013
|Also known as||Sissel|
|Born||24 June 1969|
Sissel is considered one of the world's top crossover sopranos. Her musical style ranges from pop recordings and folk songs, to classical vocals and operatic arias. She possesses a "crystalline" voice and wide vocal range, sweeping down from mezzo-soprano notes, in arias such as Mon cœur s'ouvre à ta voix from Saint-Saëns's opera Samson et Dalila, to the F natural above soprano C. She sings mainly in English and Norwegian, but has also sung songs in Swedish, Danish, Irish, Italian, French, Russian, Icelandic, Faroese, German, Neapolitan, Māori, Japanese, and Latin.
She is well known for singing the Olympic Hymn (Hymne Olympique) at the opening and closing ceremonies of the 1994 Winter Olympics in Lillehammer, Norway; for duets with Plácido Domingo, José Carreras, Andrea Bocelli, Bryn Terfel, Josh Groban, Neil Sedaka, Mario Frangoulis, Russell Watson, Brian May, Tommy Körberg, Diana Krall, Warren G, Charles Aznavour, Dee Dee Bridgewater and The Chieftains; and her participation on the Titanic film soundtrack.
Sissel received her first U.S. Grammy nominations on 6 December 2007 for a collaboration with the Mormon Tabernacle Choir. Spirit of the Season, a collection of songs from the choir's 2006 Christmas concert at Temple Square, was nominated for the Best Classical Crossover Album of the Year, as well as Best Engineered Classical Album.
Sissel's combined solo record sales (not including soundtracks and other albums to which she contributed) amount to 10 million albums sold, most of them in Norway, a country with 5 million people. Her albums have also sold well in Sweden, Denmark and Japan. Together with Odd Nordstoga, they are the only Norwegian artists to have an album go 11 times platinum in album sales for Strålande jul" (Glorious Christmas).
Sissel grew up on Lønborg in Bergen with two older brothers, Eirik and Bjørn. Sissel and her parents would often take hikes in the mountains surrounding Bergen. In early years she wanted to be a nurse, but at the age of nine music became her passion.
She joined her first children's choir under the direction of New Zealand-born conductor Felicity Laurence. She stayed with the choir for seven years and said, "That was my musical education. We sang everything: classical and jazz, folk and even Māori songs. People said we sounded like an angel choir because we had this very clean pure sound, almost like an English boys’ choir."
Sissel won her first local talent competition when she was ten. She was influenced by various musical genres; her parents were interested in country music and classical music, and her brothers' interest in rock music also influenced her. She has stated that Barbra Streisand, Kathleen Battle and Kate Bush were inspirations.
1983–1985: First TV appearances, Syng med oss
In 1980 she appeared in the sing-along program Syng med oss ('Sing with Us') together with a children's choir. Her first solo appearance was in 1984, when she sang the Norwegian folktune "Ung Åslaug". Sissel would perform in this program many times until 1989. Her first solo TV appearance without the choir was in 1983 on Norwegian TV, with the song Evergreen in the children's program Halvsju. Later same year she and Rune Larsen, her later manager guested the TV-program "Husker du?", hosted by Odd Grythe. She performed "Barndomshjemmet" and "Sukiyaki".
1986–1994: Rise to prominence in Norway, Sissel, Soria Moria and Innerst i Sjelen
In January 1986 Sissel appeared on the Norwegian TV-show "Kanal 1", hosted by Ivar Dyrhaug. She performed "You Don't Bring Me Flowers" by Barbra Streisand and later, in February she performed "Comin' In and Out of Your Life" on the 1986 Alpine Skiing World Cup TV-show in Norway. In May Sissel performed "Bergensiana" during the intermission of the Eurovision Song Contest 1986, which took place in Grieg Hall in her home town of Bergen. That was her big breakthrough and same year, her first album, Sissel, was released. It sold more than 500,000 copies, making it the best selling album in Norway at that time.
In 1987 Sissel made her debut on Danish television, on Under Uret, hosted by Hans Otto Bisgaard. She performed two songs: "Vårvise" with Danish singer/composer Sebastian and "Summertime". Later that year, in November Sissel released her Christmas album Glade Jul. It contained several traditional Christmas carols and it broke her previous record for best-selling album in Norway. This album still holds the record. Upon its release, it sold more than 600,000 copies in a country with a population of less than five million: to date, it has sold approximately 1 million copies. In Sweden, a Swedish language version was released, called Stilla Natt. Norwegian newspaper Dagbladet honored her as "The Name of the Year" in December. That year Sissel also was invited to represent Norway in the Eurovision Song Contest 1987, but she declined.
This year Sissel wanted a break from her music career and attended a commercial upper-secondary school in Bergen. She performed at the memorial concert of singer/songwriter Trygve Hoff in Tromsø, in February. Hoff wrote several of the songs on Sissel's debut album, Sissel from 1986. Hoff died in 1987. In the fall of 1988, Sissel moved to Oslo for a short period to play the role of Maria von Trapp in the Norwegian version of The Sound of Music. This production set box office records and was seen by over 110,000 people.
In 1989, she released her third album, Soria Moria. The album sold 180,000 copies. In the summer of the same year, Sissel travelled to the US and performed in New York City on the TV program Artists for Our Common Future, which was broadcast around the world. She performed "Summertime" and "Somewhere". On a Swedish TV-concert recorded in Gothenburg she met the man whom she would later marry, Danish comedian and singer Eddie Skoller. They sang "Vårvise" by Sebastian.
In 1990 Sissel recorded the singing parts of the character Princess Ariel for the Danish, Norwegian and Swedish versions of the 1989 Disney movie The Little Mermaid, and played the voice role of Ariel in the Norwegian and Swedish versions. In the same year Sissel visited The Faeroe Islands developing a project called "Kystland". It resulted in two TV programs, Med Sissel til Kirkjubø and the church concert Tidin rennur.
In 1991, Sissel toured Norway and Denmark with her very successful church concert, Tidin rennur. In the fall of 1991 Sissel met and performed with Neil Sedaka on the Norwegian TV-show Momarkedet. Sissel sang his song "Solitaire" while Sedaka played on the piano. He was very impressed and they collaborated on her next album, Gift of Love which came out in 1992. Sissel sings three songs written by Sedaka, including a duet on "Breaking Up Is Hard To Do".
In the winter of 1992 Sissel was named one of the official musicians of the upcoming 1994 Winter Olympic Games in Lillehammer, Norway. She made a short appearance at the closing ceremony of the Olympics in Albertville, France. Dressed like a princess sitting on a giant fake polar bear like in the Norwegian folktale Kvitebjørn kong Valemon. She performed "Molde Canticle" by Jan Garbarek. Her album Gift of Love was released in October and the album only sold 60,000 copies. It received criticism for her new style on the album. Sissel joined Neil Sedaka on his fall tour in Norway same year, and she also had several event performances in US.
In the summer of 1993 Sissel played the role of Solveig in Peer Gynt by Henrik Ibsen at Den Nationale Scene in Bergen. This was very well received by critics. Later, in August Sissel married Eddie Skoller in St Mary's Church, Bergen in Bergen. Thousands of fans waited in the rain outside the church to get a glimpse of Sissel after the wedding-ceremony. The wedding received a great deal of attention from Norwegian and Danish press.
In February 1994, Sissel performed during the opening and closing ceremonies of the 1994 Winter Olympics in Lillehammer. During the Olympics, legendary Spanish tenor Plácido Domingo visited Norway, where he came across one of her earlier albums. He contacted Sissel and the next day they recorded "Fire in Your Heart", an English version of "Se ilden lyse", the official theme song of the Lillehammer Olympics. These two versions of the song were released in February 1994 on Sissel's solo album Innerst i sjelen (Deep Within My Soul), a collection of Nordic folk songs. Domingo invited Sissel, along with world-renowned French singer Charles Aznavour, to take part in his annual Christmas in Vienna concert later that year. The concert was broadcast around the world and released as an album internationally.
1995–2001: Climb to international recognition, All Good Things and In Symphony
In 1995, Sissel was invited to perform at the 1995 Live For Peace – Royal Gala in London. In celebration of 50 years V.E. Day she performed in front of Charles, Prince of Wales, in London Coliseum. She sang the renowned aria O Mio Babbino Caro from the opera Gianni Schicchi by Giacomo Puccini and the Norwegian classic Vitae Lux with the choir Gli Scapoli.
In 1997, Sissel toured the US with the Irish group The Chieftains. They appeared, among other places, on the Late Show with David Letterman and in Carnegie Hall. Later that summer Sissel was involved in recording the soundtrack to the film Titanic. The soundtrack, called Titanic: Music from the Motion Picture, became immensely popular, reaching No. 1 on the Billboard charts and selling more than 30 million copies worldwide. James Horner, the composer of the film's music, knew Sissel from her album Innerst i sjelen and he particularly liked how she sang Eg veit i himmerik ei borg (I Know in Heaven There Is a Castle). Horner had tried 25 or 30 singers before deciding on Sissel. She was then scheduled to record the theme song to James Cameron's 1997 blockbuster film Titanic, but Celine Dion's vocals were preferred due to James Horner's decision to support Dion's career. In an interview from December 2014, Horner quotes: "When I had completed the Titanic [movie], I had to decide for Celine Dion or Sissel['s] [vocals]. Sissel I am very close, while Celine I had known since she was 18, and I had already written three film songs for [her]. But that was before Celine was known and filmmakers and marketing people had not done what they should have done for Celine and [her] songs. So I felt I owed her a Titanic chance, but I could [still] have used Sissel there." Instead, Kyrkjebø completed much of the film score for the soundtrack album.
Sissel had a No.1 hit across Europe in 1998 with Prince Igor, a duet with an American rapper Warren G on the concept album The Rapsody Overture which combined American rappers with European opera singers. Sissel sang an aria from Alexander Borodin's opera Prince Igor during the chorus, while Warren G rapped. When the song was recorded, Sissel had just a half-hour to learn the Russian lyrics and she got help from a Russian, who drove a cab in New York City: the driver's name, coincidentally, was Igor. Sissel was on her way to the airport, but the taxi-driver drove her direct to the studio and followed Sissel into studio. He helped Sissel sing the Russian words correctly while Sissel recorded her part of the lyrics. In the end he was satisfied and they made it to the airport afterwards. On St. Patrick's Day that year Sissel made her second performance on the Late Show, singing "Love Will You Marry Me?" with The Chieftains.
In 1999 Sissel started working on a new album with producer Rick Chertoff, and travelled between Copenhagen and New York. The CD was to be released in 2000, but Sissel were unhappy with the results of the recording sessions and scrapped the album. That year she sang the Gaelic song Siúil A Rún on The Chieftains' 1999 album Tears of Stone.
The beginning of 2000 marked Bergen as the "European city of culture", and Sissel performed at the opening ceremony. In May, as a part of Bergen's Nattjazz Festival she performed at a concert where she sang several duets with jazz singer Diana Krall. In November 2000, Sissel released (in Norway only) her album, All Good Things, which was her first solo album in nearly seven years. Following high sales, 300,000 copies sold, the album was released throughout Europe and Asia the following year. The album included the duet "Where the Lost Ones Go" with fellow Norwegian singer Espen Lind, which was also released on his album This Is Pop Music in 2001. Sissel performed Christmas carols and a few of her new tunes at the Festival of Lights (Lysfest) in Bergen in the beginning of December, culminating the city's celebration of being the cultural city of Europe. The concert was broadcast live on the Internet. Later the same month she was invited to represent Norway at the Nobel Peace Prize Concert, where she sang "One Day" and "Weightless", both songs from All Good Things. She was introduced by Jane Seymour as "the Norwegian star Sissel." Sissel also released a greatest hits collection in Japan that included two new songs, in collaboration with Gheorghe Zamfir. These songs were used in the Japanese TV show Summer Snow, one of which was the show's theme song. Sissel is enormously popular in Japan and has released several Japanese versions of her albums there.
In 2001, she was asked to sing a duet with the Danish goth rockers Sort Sol. Sissel sang with them on the track "Elia Rising" from their album Snakecharmer, released in May 2001. Sissel was inspired by the Kylie Minogue/Nick Cave-ballad "Where the Wild Roses Grow". Sort Sol and Sissel performed both in Tivoli and at Roskilde Festival that year. At the Roskilde they performed at 2 in the morning for a raucous audience of 50,000 rock fans. Sissel made her debut on the big screen in June, playing a female lumberjack, Inga, in the Danish children's film, Flyvende farmor (Flying Grandma). In this movie Sissel sings the Danish song "Himlen over Himmelbjerget". In September, Sissel played two "In Symphony" concerts in Drammen, Norway, with the Norwegian Radio Orchestra and special guests. The concert was broadcast in Sweden, Norway and Denmark and was also released as a live CD, Sissel in Symphony, which sold 240,000 copies. Later in autumn 2001, Sissel toured Scandinavia and sang at a memorial ceremony in October at Copenhagen Airport. Sissel then performed at a memorial concert for a 17-year-old boy, Benjamin Hermansen, the victim of a racially motivated murder in a suburb of Oslo. She also performed at an AIDS/HIV benefit concert in Kulturkirken Jakob, Oslo where she sang "Eg Ser". On 6 December Sissel performed with the Oslo Gospel Choir in Washington, D.C., as part of Norwegian Visions 2001.
2002-2008: More international success, My Heart, Nordisk Vinternatt and Into Paradise
In 2002 Sissel recorded two duets, Ave Maria and Bist du bei mir (BWV 508), with Plácido Domingo in April for his Sacred Songs album, released in September of that year. On 24 May 2002, dressed in traditional Norwegian costume, Sissel performed the Norwegian psalm "Lær meg å kjenne" at the wedding of Princess Märtha Louise of Norway and Ari Behn in the Nidaros Cathedral. In August Sissel performed with the Danish Radio Orchestra at two outdoor concerts in the park surrounding Ledreborg Castle near Roskilde in Denmark. In addition to the orchestra, Sissel entertained the sold-out crowd of 22,000 and guests on these concert were artists like Paddy Moloney and The Pilatze Brothers. On 1 October 2002, Sissel released her first album in the US. It sold over 100,000 copies in its first three months of release with hardly any advertising or marketing. The album sold better than Decca record executives expected, their initial goal having been to sell 100,000 copies in the first nine months. The album, titled Sissel, was largely a re-recording of songs from her Norwegian album, All Good Things with the addition of two songs, "Solitaire" and "Shenandoah". In late 2002, one of Sissel's concerts was filmed at the Oslo Spectrum and later broadcast in March 2003 on PBS in the United States. The British Singer Russell Watson was one of her guests. The production was subsequently released as the DVD Sissel in Concert. In December 2002, Sissel was again invited to represent Norway at the Nobel Peace Prize Concert, for which she sang "Somewhere Over The Rainbow" from The Wizard of Oz and "The Prayer" in a duet with Josh Groban. Sissel closed out 2002 by performing at a Christmas concert, Christmas in Moscow 2003, in Moscow, Russia with Jose Carreras, Plácido Domingo and Emma Shapplin. The show garnered mixed reviews from the Russian media, although Sissel received all-around high marks. This concert was broadcast on Russian television and in October 2014 this concert was released on CD.
In April 2003 Sissel performed in Tokyo, Japan and then in April–May she toured US, visiting Philadelphia, St. Louis and New York City. Sissel had a Poulsen rose (a rose engineered to thrive in cold Scandinavian winters) named after her on 10 August in Denmark. "She spreads joy among all of us with her wonderful voice" was the reasoning behind the honor, bestowed upon her in the garden of Haraldsted Church. Sissel performed The Rose, Vatnet, våren, fela and Solveig's Song during the presentation. Sissel sang with Swedish singer Peter Jöback on the Christmas single "Gå inte forbi" for his new holiday CD. Sissel also guested him on his Christmas tour in Sweden that year.
Sissel released her second US album, My Heart, in March 2004. It was a classical crossover album and included two pop songs written by Richard Marx and one ballad, "Wait A While", written by Jon Lord of Deep Purple. "My Heart" reached No. 3 on the Billboard Classical Album Chart after debuting at No. 7 and spent 31 weeks on the chart. In the summer and fall of 2004, Sissel went on tour with The Lord of the Rings Symphony. She was a featured soloist for an orchestral performance dedicated to the music from The Lord of the Rings films. The Lord of the Rings composer Howard Shore, who arranged and conducted the music, planned on hiring three soprano singers to handle the vocal chores, but after hearing Sissel, decided she would be enough. At each performance, Sissel performed with a symphony orchestra and choirs with 200 musicians on stage. Howard Shore stated, "Ancient Norwegian mythology and culture had a great influence on Tolkien's work. It is very thrilling to have the Norwegian singer Sissel perform as a soloist in The Lord of the Rings Symphony. Sissel's radiant voice illuminates this work." When asked about the tour in an interview, Sissel raved, "I love the music. It's such a wonderful feeling to be sitting in the middle of a symphony orchestra, surrounded by the beautiful voices of the choir and all those gorgeous melodies."
In May 2005, Sissel performed with the Mormon Tabernacle Choir in Salt Lake City, Utah, on their radio and TV broadcast, Music and the Spoken Word, which is featured on nearly 2,000 stations across the US and around the world. Sissel joined the choir to commemorate the Centennial of Norwegian Independence from Sweden, which was being celebrated that year. Sissel sang the ABBA song "Like An Angel Passing Through My Room," "Vitae Lux," the traditional Norwegian hymn "Herre gud, ditt dyre navn og ære," and the Norwegian national anthem, "Ja, vi elsker dette landet" (Yes, we love this country), with the choir. On 8 October 2005, King Harald of Norway knighted Sissel a Knight of the 1st Class in the Order of St. Olav for her contributions to music and as an ambassador for Norway. Sissel was 36 years old. The ceremony was held on 25 January on Hotel Bristol in Oslo. Same month Sissel was invited to perform on the well-known temple-concert, Ninna-ji Otobutai, in Osaka, Japan. She sang "Pie Jesu", "Sancta Maria" (intermezzo from Pietro Mascagni's opera Cavalleria Rusticana), "You Raise Me Up", and a couple of other songs. This concert was aired on television in Japan.
In December 2006, Sissel again joined the Mormon Tabernacle Choir as the featured soloist for their annual Christmas concerts. In four performances, she sang for more than 80,000 people in the 21,000-seat Conference center in Salt Lake City. The concerts were videotaped for PBS television and aired the year after, in December 2007. Sissel celebrated more than 20 years in the music industry with the release of a greatest hits album presenting 40 of her best and most well-known songs, including some never-before-released songs. She toured Norway in December with her Christmas concerts with a mix of Christmas carols and hits from her greatest hits-release that year.
In March 2007, a statistically representative sample of the Norwegian population chose her as the best female Norwegian musical artist in competition with 15 other big names, including Lene Marlin, Wenche Myhre, Kari Bremnes, and Bertine Zetlitz. In the summer of 2007, Sissel toured Norway, Sweden, France, and the US with a band. According to Sissel, this is a new concert format for her, without a choir. For the 2007 holiday season, PBS stations aired two concerts starring Sissel as part of the December pledge drive, one with the Mormon Tabernacle Choir titled Spirit of the Season, released on CD and DVD in late September 2007, the other with operatic legend and good friend José Carreras titled Northern Lights, released on CD and DVD in early November 2007. The albums of these concerts have proven to be extremely popular, with Northern Lights reaching No. 10 in the Billboard Classical Crossover list, and Spirit of the Season staying firmly planted at No.1 on the Billboard Classical charts for nine consecutive weeks.
The album Northern Lights is a live recording of a concert at Bergstadens Ziir ("Jewel of the mountain town" in German), a church from the 17th Century in Røros, Norway (a 17th-Century Germany mining town). It was inspired by Norway's winter, the Blue hour, and the mystical Northern Lights. The music were arranged by Kjetil Bjerkestrand and the musicians sharing the stage with Sissel were the Trondheim Soloists, the Nidaros Cathedral Girls Choir, and Sissel's own band. The concert featured the tenor José Carreras, which performed the Julio Iglesias/Dolly Parton-duet "When You Tell Me That You Love Me" with Sissel. Sissel conducted an eight-city US tour in February 2008, singing selections from Northern Lights. A second leg of the tour covered more cities in the central and southern United States and lasted through April.
2009-present: New influences and break from music, Strålande Jul and Til deg
On 9 November 2009, Sissel released a new Christmas album called Strålande Jul (Glorious Christmas), a project with Odd Nordstoga, another popular Norwegian singer. This album presents mostly lesser-known Christmas carols from Scandinavia. Sissel toured in both Norway and Sweden with Odd Nordstoga, The Real Group, Orsa spelmän, and Krister Henrikson. This album and their sold-out Christmas concerts received much critical acclaim in Norway and Sweden. The record company Universal Music anticipated sales of about 100,000 CDs, but ultimately sold more than 400,000 in Norway in the first two months.
In May 2010, Sissel visited China with the Trondheim Soloists, on Expo 2010 in Shanghai. They performed songs like "Jag vill alltid følja dig", "Solveig's Song" and "Wait A While". Part of these concerts were broadcast on Norwegian television in the summer of 2010. On 20 September 2010, an unauthorized biography of Sissel, named Sissel, by Stig Nilsson, was released in Norway. Nilsson had written several songs for Sissel earlier in her career. In the book, Nilsson claims—among other things—that Sissel never became a worldwide superstar because she did not want to be. The book has only been released in Norwegian. On 15 November 2010, Sissel released a new album in Scandinavia called Til deg (For You), recorded in ABBA's Polar Studios in Stockholm, Nidaros Studios in Trondheim, and in Nashville. This album shows a new direction in music and is heavily influenced by the style of country music, roots and folk. The album includes five songs sung in Swedish, three in Norwegian and two in English, including a Norwegian translation of Victoria Shaw's song "Never Alone", titled "Velkommen hjem", and a Swedish cover of Alison Krauss' song "Ghost in This House", called "Levande död". Sissel has collaborated with Mikael Wiehe, Espen Lind, and Py Bäckman on the new album.
In 2011 Sissel moved back to Norway after 22 years in Denmark. On 21 August 2011, Sissel performed the Norwegian hymn "Til ungdommen" by Nordahl Grieg at the National Memorial Ceremony for the victims of 22 July 2011 terrorist attacks. This ceremony took place in Oslo Spectrum and was broadcast live in all the Nordic countries. HM King Harald and HM Queen Sonja of Norway attended this ceremony with members from all the Nordic Royal Houses, and the prime ministers of Norway, Sweden, Denmark plus the presidents of Iceland and Finland. In September Sissel got her own stamp in Norway when a set of stamps of four Norwegian female performers was issued.
In November 2013 Sissel officially returned to the stage, after having a 3-year long break. She visited the Norwegian talkshow "Lindmo", where she performed "My Tribute" by Andrae Crouch. Sissel toured Norway in November and December with her Christmas concerts with a new mix of Christmas- and gospelsongs. She hired three gospelsingers from New York to back her up on these concerts.
On 17 May 2014 Sissel performed the Norwegian national anthem "Ja, vi elsker dette landet" and Griegs "Våren" on the Norwegian Constitution Day 2014 on Eidsvoll, Norway. Royal guests from Norway, Sweden, and Denmark attended this ceremony which was broadcast live on television. Later, in September Sissel performed with the Greek tenor Mario Frangoulis at a concert on September 5th at the Odeon of Herodes Atticus in Greece. This concert, "Sing Me An Angel" was held in aid of the Non Profit Organisation "I Live For Me". They performed several duets like "You Raise Me Up", "Nights in White Satin", "Smile" and "What A Wonderful World". Sissel toured Norway and Sweden with her acclaimed Christmas concerts in November and December. In the fifth episode (of Season 3) of American television political drama series The Newsroom, which aired in December, a recording of Sissel singing "Shenandoah" was played over the death scene of Charlie Skinner (Sam Waterston).
In 2015 Sissel performed as vocal soloist on two Titanic Live-concerts in Lucerne, Switzerland on 13 and 14 March. And later in Royal Albert Hall, London on 27 April. Sissel performed the vocal lines of James Horner’s orchestral score as well as the solo soprano for "My Heart Will Go On". A few weeks later James Horner died when his single-engine Tucano aircraft crashed in the Los Padres National Forest. In December 2015 Sissel was as one of nine names nominated for the 2016 Hall of Fame at Rockheim in Norway.
The beginning of 2016 saw Sissel performing at a TV-broadcast Royal Gala on 17 January, celebrating HM The King and HM The Queen of Norway's 25 years anniversary as regents on the Norwegian throne. Sissel sang "For alltid" ("Forever"), written by Ole Paus. She toured Sweden in the fall, from October 14–31 with her new concert, Songs of Love. And in November/December she toured Norway, Denmark and Iceland with her Christmas concert, Sissel's jul. Sissel again was nominated in December for the 2017 Hall of Fame at Rockheim in Norway. And the 2014 PBS-concert, "Sing Me An Angel" with Mario Frangoulis was broadcast on television in the US from December.
In February 2017 Sissel performed at a TV-broadcast Celebration-concert for her friend, singer-songwriter Ole Paus in the Opera House in Oslo. And in November/December she toured Norway, Sweden, Denmark and Iceland with her Christmas concert success, Sissel's jul.
In May 2019 Sissel released her first song out of 50 new songs which was released once in the week for the following 50 weeks. This new project, named Reflections celebrated Sissel turning 50 years that year. On June 6, Sissel performed together with Italian singer Andrea Bocelli at a concert in Oslo. In July, Sissel again was invited to perform with the Mormon Tabernacle Choir and the orchestra at Temple Square in their Pioneer Day concert, which also was broadcast on YouTube. And in August, Sissel guested the popular Swedish TV-show Allsång på Skansen, where she performed two new songs, "Welcome to My World" and "Surrender".
Notable concerts and tours
|1986||1986 Alpine Skiing World Cup||Norway||Sissel performed at the 1986 Alpine Skiing World Cup TV-show in Norway in February 1986.|
|1986||Eurovision Song Contest 1986||Norway||Sissel performed during the intermission of the Eurovision Song Contest 1986 in May 1986.|
|1989||Our Common Future||US||Sissel performed at Our Common Future, a five-hour global TV broadcast live from Avery Fisher Hall, New York in June 1989.|
|1990||Å gi er å se||Norway||Sissel opened the new concerthall in Oslo, Oslo Spectrum and performed at the Christmas-concert "Å gi er å se" in December 1990.|
|1991||Tíðin rennur Tour||Faroe Islands, Norway, Denmark||Sissel toured Faroe Islands, Norway and Denmark with her very successful church concert, Tíðin rennur.|
|1991||Julekonserten 1991||Norway||Christmas concert with Sissel and other artists touring in Norway.|
|1992||1992 Winter Olympics in Albertville||France||Sissel performed at the closing ceremony of the 1992 Winter Olympics in Albertville, France in February 1992.|
|1992||Expo '92||Spain||Sissel performed at Expo '92 in Seville, Spain in September 1992.|
|1992||Neil Sedaka Tour||Norway||Sissel joined Neil Sedaka at his autumn tour in Norway in 1992.|
|1992||Julekonserten 1992||Norway||Christmas concert with Sissel and other artists touring in Norway.|
|1993||Julekonserten 1993||Norway||Christmas concert with Sissel and other artists touring in Norway.|
|1994||1994 Winter Olympics in Lillehammer||Norway||Sissel performed at the opening- and closing-ceremony of the 1994 Winter Olympics in Lillehammer, Norway in February 1994.|
|1994||Julekonserten 1994||Norway||Christmas concert with Sissel and other artists touring in Norway.|
|1994||Christmas in Vienna||Austria||On 22 December Sissel performed at the third Christmas in Vienna-concert in Austria, with Placido Domingo and Charles Aznavour.|
|1995||Live For Peace – Royal Gala 1995||United Kingdom||Sissel performed in front of Charles, Prince of Wales on the 1995 Live For Peace – Royal Gala, in celebration of 50 years V.E. Day, in London Coliseum, London.|
|1995||Opera Gala||Denmark||Sissel performed with Jose Carreras and Ilona Tokody at an Opera Gala in Aarhus, Denmark on July 23, 1995.|
|1995||Julekonserten 1995||Norway||Christmas concert with Sissel and other artists touring in Norway.|
|1996||Sigulda Opera Festival||Latvia||Sissel performed at the Sigulda Opera Festival, Latvia in the summer of 1996.|
|1996||Julekonserten 1996||Norway||Christmas concert with Sissel and other artists touring in Norway.|
|1997||Tour with The Chieftains||US||Sissel toured the US with the Irish group The Chieftains.|
|1997||Good Morning America||Norway/US||Sissel guested and performed in the American TV-show Good Morning America when the show visited Bergen, Norway on 13 May 1997.|
|1997||Julekonserten 1997||Norway||Christmas concert with Sissel and other artists touring in Norway.|
|1998||Titanic-concert||US||Sissel performed at two Titanic-concerts in Hollywood, on 9 and 10 October.|
|1998||Julekonserten 1998||Norway, Sweden, Denmark||Christmas concert with Sissel and other artists touring in Norway, Sweden and Denmark.|
|1999||Julekonserten 1999||Norway, Sweden, Denmark||Christmas concert with Sissel and other artists touring in Norway, Sweden and Denmark.|
|2000||Nobel Peace Prize Concert||Norway||Sissel represented Norway at the annual Nobel Peace Prize Concert in December 2000.|
|2001||Sissel in Symphony||Norway||Sissel toured Norway with Kringkastingsorkestret. A recording of one of these concerts, in Drammen, was released on CD in 2001 and later on DVD in 2005.|
|2002||Royal wedding in Norway||Norway||Sissel performed at the royal wedding of the Norwegian princess, Princess Märtha Louise and Ari Behn in the Nidaros Cathedral, Trondheim in May 2002.|
|2002||Jose Carreras Gala 2002||Germany||Sissel performed Ave Maria with Plácido Domingo in the German TV-show Jose Carreras Gala 2002 in Leipzig, Germany in December 2002.|
|2002||Good Morning America||US||Sissel performed Ave Maria with Plácido Domingo in the American TV-show Good Morning America in New York in December (October) 2002.|
|2002||Nobel Peace Prize Concert||Norway||In December 2002 Sissel again represented Norway at the annual Nobel Peace Prize Concert. She performed "The Prayer", with Josh Groban and "Over the Rainbow".|
|2002||All Good Things – Sissel in Concert||Norway||Concert with Sissel that was filmed at the Oslo Spectrum and later broadcast in March 2003 on PBS in the United States. A DVD of this concert was released in 2003.|
|2002||Christmas in Moscow||Russia||Sissel performed at a Christmas concert in Moscow in December 2002 with Jose Carreras, Plácido Domingo and Emma Shapplin.|
|2003||Sissel Tour||US||Mini-tour with Sissel in the US, visiting Philadelphia, St. Louis and New York City.|
|2004||Lord of the Rings Symphony Tour||US, Europe||Sissel went on tour in the US and Europe with Howard Shore and the Lord of the Rings Symphony in the summer and fall of 2004.|
|2005||Music and the Spoken Word||US||Sissel performed with the Mormon Tabernacle Choir at their radio and TV broadcast, Music and the Spoken Word from Salt Lake City in May 2005.|
|2005||Ninna-ji Otobutai||Japan||Sissel was invited to perform at the well-known annual temple-concert, Ninna-ji Otobutai in Japan in October 2005.|
|2006||Nordisk Vinternatt Tour||Sweden, Denmark, Norway||Sissel toured Scandinavia with her Scandinavian album-release Nordisk Vinternatt.|
|2006||Into Paradise Tour||US||Sissel toured the US with her album-release Into Paradise.|
|2006||Christmas Concert with the Mormon Tabernacle Choir||US||Sissel was the featured soloist for the Mormon Tabernacle Choir's annual Christmas concerts on four performances in Salt Lake City, US.|
|2006||2006 European Athletics Championships||Sweden||Sissel performed two songs at the opening ceremony of the 2006 European Athletics Championships in Gothenburg, Sweden.|
|2008||Northern Lights Tour||US||Sissel toured eight cities in the US in February 2008 with her album-release Northern Lights.|
|2008||Northern Lights Tour||US||Tour with Sissel that covered more cities in the central and southern United States in April 2008.|
|2009||Strålande jul Christmas Tour||Norway||Sissel and Odd Nordstoga toured Norway with their album-release Strålande jul.|
|2010||Expo 2010||China||Sissel performed at Expo 2010 in Shanghai, China with the Trondheim Soloists in May 2010.|
|2010||Til deg Tour||Norway, Sweden||Sissel toured Norway and Sweden with her album-release Til deg.|
|2011||Concert in Hareidsstemna||Norway||Concert with Sissel in connection of the 50th anniversary of Hareidsstemna in Hareid on 21 October.|
|2012||Titanic 3D World Premiere Concert||United Kingdom||Sissel performed with James Horner on the Titanic 3D World Premiere Concert at the Royal Albert Hall, London on 27 March.|
|2012||Concert in Istanbul||Turkey||Sissel performed at a concert in Istanbul, Turkey in November 2012.|
|2012||Frostrosir Klassik 2012||Iceland||Sissel performed at the Frostrosir Klassik concert in Reykjavík, Iceland in December 2012.|
|2013||Sissels Jul||Norway||Sissel toured Norway with her Christmas concert "Sissels Jul".|
|2014||Sissel in Ziir||Norway||Concert with Sissel in Røros church as a part of Vinterfestspillene 2014.|
|2014||Summer Concert||Norway||Sissel performed two concerts in Baroniet Rosendal on 16 July.|
|2014||Sing Me An Angel||Greece||Sissel performed with the Greek tenor Mario Frangoulis at the Odeon of Herodes Atticus in Greece on 5 September. This concert was broadcast on television in the US in December 2016.|
|2014||Sissels Jul||Norway, Sweden||Sissel toured Norway and Sweden with her Christmas concert "Sissels Jul".|
|2015||Titanic Live - The Event||Switzerland, United Kingdom||Sissel performed as vocal soloist on 4 Titanic Live-concerts in Lucerne, Switzerland and Royal Albert Hall, London.|
|2015||Sissels Jul||Norway, Sweden||Sissel toured Norway and Sweden with her Christmas concert "Sissels Jul".|
|2016||Kongepar i 25 år - Royal Gala||Norway||Sissel performed at a TV-broadcast Royal Gala on January 17, celebrating HM The King and HM The Queen of Norway's 25 years anniversary as regents on the Norwegian throne.|
|2016||Songs of Love||Sweden||Sissel toured Sweden with her new concert "Songs of Love".|
|2016||Sissels Jul||Norway, Denmark, Iceland||Sissel toured Norway, Denmark and Iceland with her Christmas concert "Sissels Jul".|
|2017||Sissels Jul||Norway, Sweden, Denmark, Iceland||Sissel toured Norway, Sweden, Denmark and Iceland with her Christmas concert "Sissels Jul".|
|2018||Sissels Jul||Norway, Sweden, Denmark, Iceland||Sissel toured Norway, Sweden, Denmark and Iceland with her Christmas concert "Sissels Jul".|
|2019||Concert with Andrea Bocelli||Norway||Sissel and Andrea Bocelli performed together for the first time in Oslo in June.|
|2019||2019 Pioneer Day Concert with the Mormon Tabernacle Choir||US||Sissel again was invited to perform with the Mormon Tabernacle Choir and the orchestra at Temple Square in July.|
|2019||Allsång på Skansen||Sweden||Sissel guested the popular Swedish TV-show Allsång på Skansen, where she performed two new songs in August.|
|2019||Sissels Jul||Norway, Sweden, Denmark, Iceland, Germany|
Awards and recognition
- 1986 – Årets spellemann (Musician of the Year) in the Spellemannprisen.
- 1986 – Årets navn (Person of the Year) by Norwegian national newspaper Dagbladet.
- 1986 - På gang-scholarship from Norwegian national newspaper VG, with Åge Aleksandersen
- 1990 - Ansgarskolens Mediapris (Ansgarschool's Mediaprize), with Oslo Gospel Choir for the 1990 album Oslo Gospel Choir Live
- 1992 - Klods Hans Prisen
- 1993 - Gledespiken-prisen
- 1995 - Paul Harris Fellow by Rotary International
- 2002 - Ranked Scandinavia's Mostselling Artist with a total of 460 000 records sold on 18 months, with the albums In Symphony and Sissel
- 2005 – UNICEF Goodwill Ambassador
- 2005 – Knight of the 1st Class in the Order of St. Olav. On 8 October 2005, The King of Norway knighted Sissel for her contributions to music and as an ambassador for Norway. She was the youngest ever recipient of this honor.
- 2006 – Juryens hederspris (Most Distinguished Artist—akin to a lifetime achievement award) in Spellemannprisen 2006. She is the youngest Norwegian performer ever to receive this award.
- 2007 - Topp 10 - Beste kvinnelige artist Sissel was awarded Best Female Artist of Norway by the Norwegian public broadcasting company NRK in the TV program Topp 10 on 17 March 2007.
- 2009 – A rose developed by Poulsen Roses is named after Sissel and she baptized the rose in Baroniet Rosendal on 4 August 2009.
- 2010 – In February 2010 Sissel was nominated for the 40th Peer Gynt Award, which went to Dissimilis.
- 2011 – On 16 September 2011, a set of stamps of four Norwegian female performers (Sissel Kyrkjebø, Wenche Myhre, Mari Boine and Inger Lise Rypdal) was issued.
- 2011 – Rolf Gammleng-prisen (Open category)
- 2015 - In December 2015 Sissel was nominated for the first time for the Rockheim Hall of Fame 2016.
- 2016 - In December 2016 Sissel was nominated for the second time for the Rockheim Hall of Fame 2017.
- 2018 - In December 2018 Sissel was nominated for the third time for the Rockheim Hall of Fame 2019.
|| Recipient of Årets navn Dagbladet
| Recipient of Årets spellemann Spellemannprisen
| Recipient of Juryens hederspris Spellemannprisen
| Recipient of the Open class Gammleng-prisen
- "Sissel / Lord of the Rings Tour Dates Announced". The Sissel Website. Archived from the original on 3 December 2014. Retrieved 20 November 2014.
- "Sissel hits Soprano F at 2:42". YouTube. Retrieved 20 November 2014.
- "Choir Nominated for Two Grammy Awards". www.mormonnewsroom.org. Retrieved 20 November 2014.
- "11 platinaplater til superduo". Kjendis.no. Retrieved 20 November 2014.
-  Archived 10 July 2011 at the Wayback Machine
- "Catholic Encyclopedia: St. Cecilia". Newadvent.org. Retrieved 20 November 2014.
- Mike Campbell. "Behind the Name: Cecilia". Behind the Name. Retrieved 20 November 2014.
- "Biography of Sissel from the official website" (PDF). Continentalmusic.com. Archived from the original (PDF) on 23 September 2015. Retrieved 20 November 2014.
- "A description of Sissel Kyrkjebø from NRK". Fil.nrk.no. Archived from the original on 23 February 2013. Retrieved 20 November 2014.
- "Sissel 40 år i dag". Nrk.no. Archived from the original on 10 July 2009. Retrieved 20 November 2014.
- Augested, Kate (1994). "'Å, Sissel, Sissel, når eg ser deg slik'". Norsk medietidsskrift (in Norwegian). 1 (02): 8–25. ISSN 0805-9535.
- "Symfonisk Sissel". www.aftenbladet.no (in Norwegian Bokmål). 3 November 2001. Retrieved 14 September 2020.
- "I skuddet". Nrk.no. Retrieved 24 November 2015.
- "Legendarisk pauseinnslag fra Melodi Grand Prix 1986 (Legendary intermission song from Eurovision Song Contest 1986)". Nrk.no. Retrieved 20 November 2014.[dead link]
- 47. Pausenummer - Sissel Kyrkjebø synger "Jeg tok min nystemte" Norwegian Broadcasting Corporation
- sisselfan (20 January 2009). "Sissel Kyrkjebø - Jeg tok min nystemte (Bergensiana)" – via YouTube.
-  Archived 1 June 2010 at the Wayback Machine
- "The official Sissel website". Sissel.net. Retrieved 20 November 2014.
- "Norway population". Ssb.no. Retrieved 20 November 2014.
- "Sissel og Eddie skilles". Dagbladet.no. Retrieved 20 November 2014.
- "Sissel Kyrkjebø er tilbake". Aftenposten. Retrieved 20 November 2014.
-  Archived 5 October 2006 at the Wayback Machine
- "Sissel Kyrkjebø (Soprano)". Baxh-cantatas.com. Retrieved 20 November 2014.
- Earle Hitchner (12 March 1998). "The Wall Street Journal: In Titanic's Wake: A Voice to Remember . . ". WSJ. Retrieved 20 November 2014.
- "Titanic-oppklaring for Sissel".
- "Her synger Sissel Kyrkjebø for verdensstjernene". 28 March 2012.
- "- Det var det verste øyeblikket i mitt liv". 16 May 2009.
- "Kyrkjebø, Sissel".
- Eikeland, Ole. "Sissel Kyrkjebø kunne ha sunget "My heart will go on"".
- "Sissel MTV- helt". Dagbladet.no. Retrieved 20 November 2014.
- "Det kunne være fedt at sætte sig i frisørstolen og sige "shave"". www.b.dk. 9 October 2009. Retrieved 20 November 2014.
- "Sissel går alltid videre". Aftenbladet.no. Retrieved 20 November 2014.
-  Archived 27 November 2010 at the Wayback Machine
-  Archived 29 September 2006 at the Wayback Machine
-  Archived 20 August 2010 at the Wayback Machine
- "Billboard Classical Album Chart". Billboard. Retrieved 20 November 2014.
-  Archived 9 January 2009 at the Wayback Machine
- "Alvesang fra Sissel". Dagbladet.no. Retrieved 20 November 2014.
- NRK (18 November 2004). "Sissel i Kreml". NRK. Retrieved 20 November 2014.
- "Popular Norwegian performing artist Sissel plans BYU performance April 30". News.byu.edu. Retrieved 20 November 2014.
- "Ridder Sissel Kyrkjebø". Bergens Tidende. Retrieved 20 November 2014.
- "JAL Otobutai 2005". Press.jal.co.jp. Retrieved 20 November 2014.
- "Sissel for 80.000 i Utah". Bergens Tidende. Retrieved 20 November 2014.
- "Sissel Kyrkjebø". BA. Retrieved 20 November 2014.
- "IN magasinet : Hjem til jul". Inmagasinet.no. Retrieved 20 November 2014.
- Sissel Kyrkjebø m/band og flere. "Hun kom til sine egne..." Bergens Tidende. Retrieved 20 November 2014.
- ""Northern Lights" reaches No. 10 on Billboard Classical Crossover list". Marketwire. Retrieved 20 November 2014.
-  Archived 15 April 2008 at the Wayback Machine
- "Billboard.com Charts – Top Classical Albums". Billboard. Retrieved 20 November 2014.
- NRK (15 March 2007). "Sissel har inntatt Bergstaden". NRK. Retrieved 20 November 2014.
- "Carreras selger Sissel i USA". BA. Retrieved 20 November 2014.
-  Archived 22 February 2008 at the Wayback Machine
- "Sissel returns to the US for spring tour - Listen to Norway". 22 February 2013. Archived from the original on 22 February 2013.
- Stein Østbø. "Odd og Sissel er årets julepar". VG. Retrieved 20 November 2014.
- "Ble tiårets bestselger på rekordtid". Aftenposten. Archived from the original on 29 June 2011. Retrieved 20 November 2014.
- "Norge satser lavmælt under Verdensutstillingen". Aftenposten. Retrieved 20 November 2014.
- "Sissel mellom to permer". BA. Archived from the original on 13 October 2014. Retrieved 20 November 2014.
- "- Det er både skid og godt". Side2. Retrieved 20 November 2014.
- "Den förtjusande Sissel Kyrkjebö är tillbaka". Mynewsdesk. Retrieved 20 November 2014.
- Halstein Røyseland. "Stoltenberg: – En verdig, sterk og mektig minnestund". VG. Retrieved 20 November 2014.
- "Tårevått og vakkert farvel". BA. Retrieved 20 November 2014.
- Posten. "Musikk i et lite merke". Posten.no. Retrieved 20 November 2014.
- "Kvinnelige artister pryder høstens frimerker". Klartale.no. Retrieved 20 November 2014.
- "Sissel gjør eksklusive konserter i Bergen". Bergens Tidende. Retrieved 20 November 2014.
- "- Nydelig å kunne synge i Johanneskirken". Bergens Tidende. Retrieved 20 November 2014.
- "Derfor har Sissel Kyrkjeb holdt seg borte fra rampelyset de siste tre rene". Kjendis. Retrieved 20 November 2014.
- "– Jeg gleder meg alltid til å komme hjem". BA. Retrieved 20 November 2014.
- Sissel Kyrkjebø. "Gospeljul med Sissel". Bergens Tidende. Retrieved 20 November 2014.
- "Gullstrupen Sissel sang julen inn". NRK.no. Retrieved 1 December 2014.
- "Fikk Dalai Lama-refs". Rana%20Blad. Retrieved 20 November 2014.
- "Rrt dronning Margrethe mtte trke en tre". Dagbladet.no. Retrieved 20 November 2014.
- "Mario Frangoulis concert at the Odeon of Herodes Atticus on September 5". En.protothema.gr. Retrieved 20 November 2014.
- "Suverene Sissel gir juleglede". Aftenbladet.no. Retrieved 1 December 2014.
- Jørn Pettersen. "- Greit å ikke bli gjenkjent på gaten". VG. Retrieved 20 November 2014.
- Christopher Groux. "-'The Newsroom:' Free Stream Of Sissel's 'Shenandoah' From Charlie Skinner's Death Scene". Designntrend.com. Archived from the original on 23 December 2014. Retrieved 13 December 2014.
- "Titanic Live - The Event". titanic-live.com. Retrieved 27 October 2015.
- Mike Barnes. "James Horner, Film Composer for 'Titanic' and 'Braveheart,' Dies in Plane Crash". hollywoodreporter.com. Retrieved 27 October 2015.
- "Ni nominerte til Rockheim Hall of Fame 2016". ballade.no. Retrieved 11 December 2015.
- "De nominerte til Rockheim Hall of Fame 2017". rockheim.no. Retrieved 19 December 2016.
- "Viking Cruises droppet dåp – stjernekonsert går som planlagt". dn.no. Retrieved 9 June 2019.
- "Kjendisekteparet gr hver sin vei". Dagbladet.no. Retrieved 20 November 2014.
- "Sissel ble mamma for andre gang". VG. Retrieved 20 November 2014.
- "Sissel Kyrkjebø gift for andre gang". VG. Retrieved 20 November 2014.
- "EDVARD HAGERUP GRIEG – SISSEL KYRKJEBO – Solveig's Song from "Peer Gynt"". YouTube. Retrieved 20 November 2014.
- "Sissels salige julelapskaus". Dagbladet.no. Retrieved 20 November 2014.
- "- Jeg er ikke gravid". Dagbladet.no. Retrieved 20 November 2014.
- "For lite Sissel – for mye stsj". Dagbladet.no. Retrieved 20 November 2014.
- "Sissel stakk til skogs". VG. Retrieved 20 November 2014.
- "Sissel avlyser julekonsertene". Dagbladet.no. Retrieved 20 November 2014.
- "Sissel & Plácido Domingo - Ave Maria (Mascagni) (2002)". YouTube.com. Retrieved 24 November 2015.
- VG. "Sissel fikk hjelp av Plácido Domingo". VG.no. Retrieved 10 December 2014.
- Lars Geithe. "Sissel Kyrkjebø (sang)". Vinterfestspill.no. Archived from the original on 16 October 2014. Retrieved 20 November 2014.
- "Spellemannprisen 1986". Spelleman.no. Archived from the original on 19 October 2014. Retrieved 20 November 2014.
- "ullensakerkulturhus: SISSEL KYRKJEBØ". Ullensakerkulturhus.no. Retrieved 20 November 2014.
- "Goodwill Ambassadors & Advocates: National". UNICEF. 7 November 2014. Retrieved 20 November 2014.
- "- Dette er stort, sa ridder Sissel". Aftenposten. Retrieved 20 November 2014.
- "Sissel slått til ridder".
- "Spellemannprisen 2006". Spellemann.no. Archived from the original on 19 October 2014. Retrieved 20 November 2014.
- "Hvem er Norges største sangfugl?". NRK.no. Retrieved 15 February 2016.
- "Sissel™ on Poulsen Roser".
- "Sissel ga rosen navn".
- VG. "Sissel Kyrkjebø nominert til årets Peer Gynt". VG.no. Retrieved 10 December 2014.
- Posten. "16. september 2011– Norsk populærmusikk III". Posten.no. Retrieved 20 November 2014.
- "År 2011 fond for Utøvende Kunstner" [Year 2011 Fund for Performing Artists] (PDF) (in Norwegian). Ffuk.no. Retrieved 20 November 2014.
- "Nominerte til Rockheim Hall of Fame 2016". Rockheim.no. Retrieved 15 February 2016.
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Sissel Kyrkjebø.|
| Recipient of the Open class Gammleng-prisen