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Interviewed by
Jean Bell
Friday 16th December, 2016 10:02AM

Norwegian synthpop artist AURORA will be heading downunder for the first time for the Laneway Festival tour in 2017. The twenty-year-old songstress (real name Aurora Aksnes) fuses electro pop with a touch of folk producing an enchanting sound that is topped off with fairytale-like lyrics. After releasing her debut album All My Demons Greeting Me As A Friend earlier this year, AURORA has tirelessly toured around the globe, and made a guest appearances on the likes of The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon - a personal highlight for the emerging musician. With the singer-songwriter calling all the way from a hotel on America's west coast, UTR had the pleasure of a quick chat with AURORA in anticipation of her arrival on these shores in January...

This time last year you hadn’t yet had a full album out – has your life changed much since then?

It was a very scary day when my album was released. I was terrified, excited, and heart broken – all at the same time. My life has changed quite a lot and I have been very busy. It was amazing doing Jimmy Fallon in the United States. It was interesting to see how professional everyone there was, and Jimmy was a nice guy as well. I began touring a few months before the album was released, and the tour continued after it was released.

A rather simple question –- who or what inspires you?

I think everything inspires me. I’m very inspired by nature, and many of my songs involve nature or elements of nature, such in the arrangements of melodies and in the lyrics. I’m very inspired by real people as well, and making up tales like humans becoming werewolves. I have a very vivid imagination that runs wild most of the time.

I love how expressive you are with your hands while performing, what’s usually on your mind when you’re on stage?

Lots of things, I am a very emotional person in many ways. Many of my songs can be a bit sad. Sometimes it can be quite obvious, and in others the sadness is a bit hidden. I always finish my shows with a happy song were we all dance and celebrate life. That’s the best way to finish. I like the audience to feel refreshed when they walk out of my show. But I think my mind is quite empty when I actually sing because it’s like I’m not me anymore – I’m just a form, if that makes sense.

You are very emotionally open – how does it feel to sing such personal lyrics?

It can be difficult, but I like it and most of the time it is really nice. I like making sad, horrible, and scary things less intimidating. I think we all experience lots of the same things and I think we take them in different ways, but in the basic emotions I think we all go through very similar things in life. It’s nice to sing about things that I know we all think about. I love it when a crowd feels sad and happy, it’s nice to see people sing along, and maybe cry and laugh and dance again. I think it’s very healthy to feel as much as we can, and to make those feelings a little less dangerous.

What is one thing you wish everyone knew?

I think especially nowadays there is a lot of fear amongst people. It is very funny to see how children can get a bug on their arm and when they scream someone says the bug is just as afraid of you as you are of it. If we meet people with different cultures or religions, or ideas of life and how we should live it, I wish everyone knew that we should all be less afraid.

Performing at a festival verses an indoor show must be very different, which do you prefer?

I always look forward to festivals when they come around. In summer, festivals are outside in the warm weather and people are happy. In the winter it is darker and cosier, and you know the people have come to see you. With festivals, there is something special about being with other artists and musicians who have the same kind of life, so I quite like meeting people like that.

Will the Laneway festivals be the first time you’re heading down-under to New Zealand?

Yes, I am so excited. I hope I have some time to see the mountains and the lakes. I remember at school we learnt about these amazing places in the world, and New Zealand was one of them. It seems like a place that reminds me of Norway and I think I’ll feel very much at home.

Aurora will be performing at Laneway Festival at the Albert Park precinct on Monday 30th January. Head over here to enter the draw to win an awesome Laneway prize pack.


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