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There are a number of Swedish stars who have left their mark on the international music scene and one of such people is Marie Fredriksson. Her increasingly waning activity in recent years has forced many into wondering what has happened to her with some doubting the possibility of her still being alive. Fredriksson enjoyed the peak of her career in the 1970s and 1980s, alongside Per Gessle whom she sang with as the duo named Roxette. They were popular for their many soft rock hits, a good number of which charted on the Billboard Hot 100. Here is a detailed but brief look at the life of Marie Fredriksson, including her recent activities.
Marie Fredriksson’s Rise To Fame and Musical Success
Like most top music acts today, Fredriksson’s involvement in music began when she was only a kid. Together with her sister Tina, they’d sing at their local church. As Marie Fredriksson grew, so did her passion for music. At the age of 17, she began attending the music school, Svalöv Municipality. Marie started by performing in musicals before launching a career as an indie musician in 1978. She’d joined forces with her boyfriend Stefan Dernbrandt to form a punk rock group named Strul. Though unable to land a record deal with a top label, the band found success, thanks to their music festival, Strulfestivalen, which they began in 1979. Strul continued to enjoy success until its disbandment in 1981.
Marie Fredriksson, all the while, was part of the band as a keyboardist, however, with encouragement from Per Gessle who had briefly been part of Strul, Marie began a solo career and got her first record deal with EMI Sweden in 1983. She quickly became very popular as a solo act, releasing several chart-topping singles and winning awards, among them, the 1986 Rockbjörnen award for Best Swedish Female.
Later in 1986, Fredriksson and Gessle began doing music together under the name Roxette. Their first work “Neverending Love” became one of the most popular songs on Sweedish radio. Their first album together titled Pearls of Passion solidified them as a duo not to ignore. While performing as Roxette, Fredriksson also continued to perform as a solo act. Their fame shot across borders in 1989 with the release of their second album Look Sharp!
What Happened To Marie Fredriksson
Marie Fredriksson’s life took a hit in 2002 after doctors found a tumor in her brain. The music star was going on a jog with her husband Mikael “Micke” Bolyos on the morning of September 11, 2002, when she complained of not feeling well. Upon getting home, she passed out in the bathroom and hit her head in the process, leaving her with a fractured cranium followed by an epileptic seizure.
Marie Fredriksson would successfully have all of the malignant tumor removed from her brain and later underwent chemotherapy and radiation treatments. For the next three years, Fredriksson’s career was practically put on hold. The aftermath of her ailment included being blind on one eye and being unable to write or read for a while.
Towards the end of 2005, Marie Fredriksson had completely recovered and was healthy. She had begun working on new music in 2004 as a means of therapy, the result was the album The Change. During the period that she was unable to read and write, Fredriksson, as a form of therapy, rediscovered her love for drawing and began using charcoal to create artwork. She released Min bäste vän in 2006 and by 2008, she began working as Roxette and also returned to touring.
Alongside Gessle, Fredriksson performed on 18 June 2010 at the wedding of the Crown Princess of Sweden Victoria and her husband Daniel Westling. Two years later, in 2013, she performed at the wedding of Princess Madeleine, the Duchess of Halsingland.
Is She Still Alive?
Though her activity has greatly waned in recent years, the pop star is still very much alive and well. In 2013, she released the album Nu! which was her first to contain original Swedish material since her 1996 album. The singer-songwriter announced her retirement from touring in 2016. That year, she was supposed to headline a tour to celebrate Roxette’s 30th anniversary and to support their album, Good Karma. However, her doctors asked her to withdraw due to health reasons.
Marie Fredriksson has only released three singles since then and her husband has revealed that chances of Marie releasing another album are very slim.