Alexander Rybak was born on May 13th 1986 in Minsk, the capital of Belarus. At the age of five, Alexander and his little family of three moved to Norway and settled at Nesodden near Oslo. Alexanders parents are both professional musicians and they taught their son to play the violin and piano from an early age. Soon, he had to choose between his two instruments and he decided to go with the violin. He still plays the piano – as a hobby – along with the guitar.
Alexander practiced with fierce discipline for many hours every day and played concerts with his family and their musician friends. At a very young age he debuted on the stage and many noticed Alexander’s talents. He enrolled at The Barrat Due Institute of Music when he was 10. Alexander studied the great classical masters, but was from the beginning also preoccupied with thinking “outside the box”. He began playing jazz and popular standards as well as pop hits. He composed music from an early age. His violin took him to far away places including Russia, The United States and China as a member of various orchestras.
Born with a competitive streak, Alexander joined the Norwegian talent-contest “Idol”in 2005, but didn’t get to the final. A year later at the age of 20, he joined another talent contest, “Kjempesjansen”(Norway´s got talent) with a broader approach to music and use of instruments. With his own, jazzy composition “Foolin”, Alexander won the contest and the hearts of the Norwegian nation!
Alexander Rybak signed up for the national Eurovision selection in Norway with his own song “Fairytale“. He performed on stage with folk dancers of the Frikar Dance Company and won with the highest score of viewer votes ever. He went on to the 54th Eurovision Song Contest in Moscow in May 2009 and won with a landslide victory. He finished with a grand total of 387 points, breaking the previous record of 292 points scored by Lordi in 2006 and scoring 169 points more than the runner-up from Iceland.
“Fairytale”, became a major hit in Europe and was #1 on most European iTunes charts the following week. It also reached top 3 on the European chart, #1 in Belgium, Denmark, Greece, Iceland, Norway, Sweden and Russia and #2 in Ireland, Finland and the Netherlands.