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There have been at least two artists who have used the artist name Carola.
1. Carola Maria Häggkvist (born in Stockholm on 8 September 1966) is a Swedish singer and for a while a member of the Word of Life congregation. She appeared on television for the first time after winning a talent show in 1977. A couple of years later promoter Bert Karlsson discovered her and she was offered the chance to take part in Melodifestivalen 1982, the national preselection for the Eurovision Song Contest, but she turned it down. In 1983 she recorded the album Standby with Carola Häggkvist with the Swedish metal band Standby. However, in 1983, she decided to participate in Melodifestivalen with Främling, winning the contest with full points from all juries. This became her big breakthrough. A few months later, she represented Sweden in Eurovision in Munich, and a record was broken; 6.1 million Swedes, 84% of the population, followed the competition - a record that has still not been broken. She once again performed the song at ‘Congratulations’, the 50th anniversary Eurovision concert in Copenhagen, Denmark.
Her debut Främling sold one million copies, a Swedish sales record that will probably never be broken. Främling was also recorded in English, German and Dutch, after having ended up in third place at the Eurovision Song Contest. During 1983 and 1984 Carola released three albums with Mariann, the record company of Bert Karlsson, and they all sold very well.
In 1985 Carola started to collaborate with the Bee Gees. She recorded an album, Runaway, with songs written by Maurice and Robin Gibb and produced by Maurice. The record sold double platinum when released in Sweden the following year. After this album Carola left the pop scene for a while, embarking on a church tour together with Per-Erik Hallin, subsequently releasing the live album Carola & Per-Erik Hallin i Rättviks kyrka.
In Melodifestivalen 1990, Carola made a surprising comeback with Mitt i ett äventyr and ended up in second place. She released a new album, Much more. The following year she went for revenge, winning Melodifestivalen with Fångad av en stormvind. In the Eurovision Song Contest 1991 in Rome she practically tied with Amina from France. The rules at this point stated that if two or more entries ended up in a tie, they were to be separated by counting which of the entries had been awarded most twelves, but since both countries had been awarded the same number of twelves, the entries were separated by counting the number of 10s awarded. This was in Sweden’s favour and an ecstatic Carola, cheered on by her team, did a short victory dance on the table, before entering the stage a second time. Later that year she recorded a Christmas album in Swedish – Jul.
Carola was the first Scandinavian pop artist to go to China, where she also released an album in 1992. After her tenth anniversary as an artist in 1993 she changed her focus and recorded a gospel album, My tribute, which was released in Scandinavia and 12 other countries. It also made her Gospel Artist of the Year in the Netherlands in 1994. She continued to release albums. 1994’s Personligt indicated a change of direction, towards a rock sound. This was the first album with songs written by Carola herself.
In 1995 Carola made her debut as a musical actress, in the role of Maria in The Sound of Music, playing opposite Tommy Körberg. Three years later she sang the theme song in the Norwegian musical Sophie’s World, which was released on the album Songs from Sophie’s World. In 2002 she returned to the stage, making a short appearance as Fantine in Les Misérables in London.
In 1998 she left the pop mainstream road again, recording an album of psalms written by Lina Sandell, Blott en dag, and in 2001 an album with children’s songs Sov på min arm. Later in 2001 she returned to pop with the album My show.
In 2003, Carola celebrated her 20-year anniversary as a recording artist. She released a compilation, Guld, platina & passion – det bästa med Carola and a boxed set of four CDs (Guld, platina & passion – det mesta med Carola) and topped the Swedish charts with her song När löven faller, which was originally written for Melodifestivalen 2003 but was disqualified.
In 2003, Carola released a Christmas album on two CDs; “Jul I Betlehem- Jubileumsutgåvan”. The Christmas album was followed by religious album “Credo” in 2004 and the pop-religious album “Störst av allt” 2005.
All in all, Carola has released 15 original albums and is one of the most well-known artists in Sweden, where most people can sing the chorus of Främling. Her status as a national celebrity has made her more or less constantly followed by the tabloid press. She has often talked about her Christian faith, and she has been criticised for making critical remarks on the acceptance of homosexuality in Sweden. She has been a member of Christian congregation Livets Ord. She was married to Runar Søgaard, a controversial Norwegian Christian preacher, with whom she has a son, Amadeus, named after Mozart. After their divorce, she flaunted her single status by wearing a top saying LEDIG – “Available” in Swedish – on national television.
In November 2005, Carola confirmed that she would participate in Melodifestivalen again, after a fifteen year abscence. In 2006, she performed “Invincible”, written by Thomas G:son, Bobby Ljunggren and Henrik Wikström. She performed the song in Swedish (‘Evighet’)in the Melodifestivalen and in English at Eurovision in Athens.
In mid January 2006, Carola confirmed that she had been to a clinic in Stockholm to receive Botox injections to remove the wrinkles in her forehead. According to the Swedish newspaper Aftonbladet, she paid between US$326 (2500 Swedish kronor) and US$391 (3000 Swedish kronor) to have these injections done.
And believe it or not, but Carola would be interested in another try at the Eurovisio n Song Contest. If she takes part in Melodifestivalen in 2008 she’ll be the Eurovision-queen with the highest number of participations ever.
Eurovision Song Contest 1983 - Munich|Entry for Sweden
Performer: Carola Häggkvist|Song title: Främling|Song writer(s): Monica Forsberg|Song composer(s): Lasse Holm
Sang in Position: 4|Final Position: 3|Total Points: 126
For the second time since 1957, the Eurovision Song Contest was held in Germany, this time in the Bavarian capital, Munich. The presenter of this year’s song contest was Marlene Charell who presented the performers in three languages, German, French and English, but she was very nervous and made 13 mistakes in the voting alone. She also mixed up the names of the performers and the conductors much to the displease of the artists. Due to the trilingual presentation, the contest lasted more than 3 hours for the first time ever.
The total number of participants rose to 20 again as Italy, France and Greece returned. The 1983 Eurovision Song Contest didn’t have filmed postcards to present the artists as they were not ready in time. The set was quite small but unique as the stage was arc-shaped surrounding the orchestra section.
This year marked the first performance of Sweden’s Carola Häggkvist who reached the third place and went on to win the contest in 1991 and represented her country again in 2006,coming fifth. Her song Främling became very popular in Sweden, perhaps even more than her winning song from 1991. For France’s Guy Bonnet, it was the second time he represented his native country. After coming 4th in 1970, he ended up 6th in the Munich contest. Italian superstar Riccardo Fogli, the 1983 contest ended with a disappointment: after winning the prestigious San Remo festival the year before, he only ended up 11th with his song Per Lucia.
Luxembourg won the 1983 contest with the dramatic presentation of Si La Vie Est Cadeau by French singer Corinne Hermès which marked the country’s last victory to date. Unfortunately, Corinne’s winning song didn’t set the European charts alight and it was even outscored by the Swedish entry Främling and even the Yugoslav song by Daniel who recorded his song in English, called Julie then.
|Eurovision Song Contest 1991 - Rome|Entry for Sweden
Performer: Carola|Song title: Fångad Av En Stormvind|Song writer(s):|Song composer(s): Stephan Berg
Sang in Position: 8|Final Position: 1|Total Points: 146
The 1991 Eurovision Song Contest was supposed to be held in the seaside resort San Remo which is known for its annual festival of Italian music, but host broadcaster RAI moved it to Rome at a very late stage. The moving of the show meant that RAI was not completely ready for the show and on the day of the contest, there were still works on the set to be done.
For the second time since the very first Eurovision Song Contest in 1956, the Netherlands decided to withdraw from the contest due to the country’s Rememberance Day. Malta took the open spot which meant that the country was back for the first time since 1975. The winner of the previous year and the co-host of this year, Toto Cutugno, had big difficulties with the pronunciation of the song titles and names of the artists and conductors. The other host was Gigliola Cinquetti, Italy’s first Eurovision winner from 1964.
The postcards to present the different national singers were very special this year: the singers were asked to sing a known Italian song which would then be used as a short clip for the postcard. Yugoslavia’s entry Brazil by Baby Doll only managed to get one single point from Malta but the extravagant performance created a cult following among Eurovision Song Contest fans.
At the end of the voting procedure, both Sweden and France had 146 points each. Because of that the the newly-created rule of 1989 was put in effect giving the victory to Swedish entrant Carola who got more ‘10 points votes’ than France. Both Sweden and France had an equal amount of ‘12 point votes.’ Carola had already participated in 1983 with the song Främling which ended up 3rd in Munich. She had already tried to enter the 1990 contest in Zagreb but lost out in the Swedish national heats. In 2006 though, she would re-appear on the Eurovision stage in Athens, performing Invincible which came 5th.
|Eurovision Song Contest 2006 Semi-Final - Athens|Entry for Sweden
Performer: Carola|Song title: Invincible|Song writer(s): Thomas G:son, Carola Häggkvist|Song composer(s): Thomas G:son, Bobby Ljunggren, Henrik Wikström
Sang in Position: 20|Final Position: 4|Total Points: 214
|Eurovision Song Contest 2006 GRAND-FINAL - Athens
Sang in Position: 22|Final Position: 5|Total Points: 170
There were lots of discussions in Athens among the media and fans who would be the winner of the 51st Eurovision Song Contest. Sweden, represented by Carola and her song Invincible, was named very often. The singer had already won the Eurovision Song Contest in1991 and wanted to be the second person on earth to win it twice. Another hotly tipped winner was Russian heartthrob Dima Bilan, who had already tried to represent Russia the year before. German group Texas Lightning did well in at the bookmakers with their refreshing pop-country song No No Never, but the song only managed to end up at a disappointing 14th place. Anna Vissi, the Greek pop queen who had already entered the contests of 1980 (for Greece) and 1982 (for Cyprus) had high hopes as well to win the competition with her dramatic performance of Everything.
However, not many experts expected the masked hardrockers Lordi to get the trophy. With their Hard Rock Hallelujah and their performance filled with spectacular pyrotechnical effects, the Finns managed to win the contest with 292 points. Funnily enough, they had the exact same score in the Semi-Final! These 292 points are the highest amount of points ever achieved in a Eurovision Song Contest to date. Lordi went on to have lots of success with their song which made the top 10 in dozens of European charts.
2006 saw some rule changes in the voting of the Eurovision Song Contest Final. Not all points were read out by the national spokespersons any longer as the marks from 1 point till 7 points were automatically beamed onto the screen, and just the three highest votes were still announced by the national spokespersons. The reason for this was that the voting in the previous years seemed too long, and with this rule change, the organizers wanted to streamline the show.
2. A Finnish singer Carola Standertskjöld-Liemola (born in Helsinki, 3 March 1941 - died in Kirkkonummi November 12, 1997), who was a famous pop and jazz singer in Finland especially in the 1960s and the 1970s. The second is Swedish singer Carola Maria Häggkvist.
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