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Edward af Sillén (born 1982 in Blumenau,[2] Brazil) is a Swedish screenwriter and director for stage, film and TV. He has translated and directed many theatre shows including Twelfth Night[3] by William Shakespeare, The Drowsy Chaperone[4], Bull [5], Torch Song Trilogy by Harvey Fierstein[6] and soon Art by Yasmina Reza[7].

Edward af Sillén
Edward af Sillén Face 2018.jpg
Edward af Sillén
Born (1982-09-25) 25 September 1982 (age 36)
ResidenceKungsholmen, Stockholm[1]
NationalitySwedish
OccupationScreenwriter, director
Years active2004−present

Af Sillén has worked on the Eurovision Song Contest as a director, commentator and screenwriter, including 2016 where he co-wrote and directed the interval act "Love, Love, Peace, Peace" with Fredrik Kempe, while also directing and writing for Sweden’s most popular television show Melodifestivalen. Following on from writing his first film Medicinen, his second writing En underbar jävla jul became the biggest Swedish film of 2015.[8]. In 2019 he will direct En del av mitt hjärta (A Piece of My Heart). a major jukebox musical film based the music of Tomas Ledin lead by Malin Åkerman[9].

Contents

CareerEdit

Af Sillén started his career as an actor. Performing both at the Lorensbergsteatern and Stockholm National Theatre. Aged 18, he did stand-up comedy. Hungry to work in the creative side of entertainment and theatre, he knew he could get his foot in the door as an actor.[10]

FilmEdit

2014 saw Af Sillén write his first feature film Medicinen. Based on the 2009 book of the same name, wrote by Hans Koppel (pseudonym Petter Lidbeck). The book was reworked into a screenplay by Af Sillén and his writing partner Daniel Réhn. It starred Ewa Fröling and Maria Lundqvist, and was led by Helena Bergström.

Af Sillén’s second film was the Swedish comedy En underbar jävla jul, wrote again with Daniel Réhn. It starred Robert Gustafsson, Maria Lundqvist and Helena Bergström. Seen by 77,736 people during its premiere weekend, it broke records with the biggest opening for a Swedish film in 2015.[11] It went on to become the most popular Swedish film of 2015.[12], and has grossed over $8 million at the box office.[13] The film won Film of the Year at the QX Gaygala 2016.[14]

In December 2019, Af Sillén will direct his third, and biggest, feature film. En del av mitt hjärta (A Piece of My Heart) is a jukebox musical based upon the music of one of Sweden's biggest selling artists Tomas Ledin. Lead by Malin Akerman playing Isabella, a lead business woman in the financial district of Stockholm, who returns home to celebrate her father's birthday[15].

TheatreEdit

Af Sillén’s theatrical work includes Swedish translations of Steel Magnolias, Torch Song Trilogy by Harvey Fierstein, Rock of Ages[16] and The Ladykillers. He directed Shakespeare’s Twelfth Night, the play V.D. and the musical Hair at Stockholm’s National Theatre. His direction of Priscilla the Musical was followed by his translation and direction of the Tony Award winning musical The Drowsy Chaperone in 2015.[17] That same year Af Sillén directed. as well as translated the plays Rumors and the Laurence Olivier Award winner Cock.

Af Sillén has written and directed national tours for major Swedish artists such as Tomas Ledin[18], Ola Salo[19] and Peter Jöback.[20] He teamed up with Alcazar to create their first full production concert. Disco Defenders was a greatest hits residency which début in the Rondo at Lisberg, Gothenburg Summer 2015. The production moved to Hamburger Börs, Stockholm in Winter 2015. After another sell out run, the group took the show on a national tour then returned to Hamburger Börs in 2016.

TelevisionEdit

2004 brought Af Sillén’s screen writing breakthrough with the script for host Maria Lundqvist at the Guldbagge Awards, the Swedish equivalent of the Academy Awards. He returned in 2007 not only as Sissela Kyle’s scriptwriter, but as director of the show live on SVT.

Af Sillén was recruited by Melodifestivalen supervisor Christer Björkman to write and direct the 2009 contest[21]. He returned in 2010, 2012 and 2013[22]. After a two year contest break, he came back to 2016 to much acclaim[23]. His parody sketch song Här står jag by Charlotte Perrelli performed that year topped the Swedish iTunes chart.[24]

After a lifelong love of the contest, Af Sillén became the Swedish commentator in 2009 for SVT. The following year he wrote his first Eurovision Song Contest for Oslo 2010.[25] His commentary continued until 2012 when Loreen won the competition for Sweden. Af Sillén wrote and directed the 58th Eurovision in Malmö 2013[26]. In 2015 he was asked by the BBC to co-write the hosts script of Eurovision's Greatest Hits Graham Norton and Petra Mede, for a celebration of Eurovision’s 60th year[27]. 2016 returned to the role of writer and director for Eurovision in Stockholm 2016 which featured the musical number "Love Love Peace Peace" performed by hosts Petra Mede and Måns Zelmerlöw. The Independent named it the "ultimate interval act, somehow even upstaging Justin Timberlake himself".[28] Buzzfeed said the presenters were the "best thing about this year's contest".[29]

Personal lifeEdit

Edward af Sillén is openly gay. Born in Brazil, he was adopted by a Swedish father and an American mother.[30]

WorkEdit

FilmEdit

Year Title Role
2014 Medicinen Screenwriter
2015 En underbar jävla jul Screenwriter
2019 En del av mitt hjärta (A Piece of My Heart) Director

TheatreEdit

Year Title Role Note
2005 - 2018 QX Gaygala[31] Writer
2006 - 2010 R.E.A. Writer Hamburger Börs[32]
2006 Det är jul igen by Maria Möller Director and Writer Intiman[33]
2008 Blommor av Stål (Steel Magnolias) Translator Vasateatern[34]
2011 Tomas Ledin Showtime Director and Writer Rondo (Gothenburg), Cirkus (Stockholm) and National Tour[35]
2011 Trettondagsafton (Twelfth Night by William Shakespeare) Director Stockholms Stadsteater [36]
2011 Hair Director Stockholms Stadsteater [37]
2012 I Love Musicals by Peter Jöback Director and Writer National Tour[38]
2013 Arnould (Torch Song Trilogy by Harvey Fierstein) Translator Stockholms Stadsteater[39]
2013 Rock of Ages Translator China Teatern[40]
2013 Priscilla, Queen of the Desert the Musical Director Göta Lejon.[41]
2014 V.D. Director Stockholms Stadsteater.[42]
2014 Alcazar Disco Defenders Director and Writer Rondo (Gothenburg), Hamburger Börs (Stockholm) and National Tour.[43]
2015 Förklädet (The Drowsy Chaperone) Director and Translator Göta Lejon.[44]
2015 Skvaller (Rumors) Director and Translator Uppsala Stadsteater.[45]
2015 Cockfight (Cock) Director and Translator Stockholms Stadsteater.[46]
2015 Ladykillers Translator Oscarsteatern[47]
2016 Rakt Ner i Fickan (Cash on Delivery by Michael Cooney) Director and Translator Krusenstiernska Teatern.[48]
2017 Bull Director and Translator Kulturhuset Stadsteatern[49]
2017 Shirley Valentine Director and Translator Maximteatern[50]
2018 Så som i himmelen Co-Writer Oscarsteatern[51]
2019 Ola Salo's - It takes a fool to remain sane Director Rondo (Gothenburg)[52] and Hamburger Börs (Stockholm[53]
2019 Art by Yasmina Reza Director and Translator Teater Rival[54]
2019 Häxorna i Eastwick (The Witches of Eastwick) Director and Translator Cirkus (Stockholm)[55]

TelevisionEdit

Year Title Role Note
2004 Guldbaggegalan Screenwriter Hosted by Maria Lundqvist
2007 Guldbaggegalan Director and Screenwriter Hosted by Sissela Kyle
2009 Roast på Berns Writer For Kanal 5
2009 Melodifestivalen 2009 Director and Screenwriter Hosted by Petra Mede
2009 Eurovision Song Contest 2009 (Moscow).[56] Swedish commentator For SVT (with Shirley Clamp)
2010 Melodifestivalen 2010 Director and Screenwriter Hosted by Måns Zelmerlöw, Christine Meltzer and Dolph Lundgren.[57]
2010 Eurovision Song Contest 2010 (Oslo).[58] Director and Screenwriter Hosted by Erik Solbakken, Haddy N'jie and Nadia Hasnaoui
2010 Eurovision Song Contest 2010 (Oslo).[59] Swedish commentator For SVT (with Christine Meltzer)
2010 Junior Eurovision Song Contest SVT Swedish commentator For SVT (with Malin Olsson)
2011 Eurovision Song Contest 2011 (Düsseldorf). Swedish commentator For SVT (with Hélène Benno)
2011 - 2014 Junior Eurovision Song Contest Swedish commentator For SVT (with Ylva Hällen)
2012 Melodifestivalen 2012 Director and Screenwriter Hosted by Gina Dirawi, Sarah Dawn Finer and Helena Bergström[60]
2012 Eurovision Song Contest 2012 (Baku). Swedish commentator For SVT (with Gina Dirawi)
2013 Melodifestivalen 2013 Director and Screenwriter Hosted by Gina Dirawi and Danny Saucedo[61]
2013 Eurovision Song Contest 2013 (Malmö).[62] Director and Screenwriter Hosted by Petra Mede
2014 Eurovision Song Contest 2014 (Copenhagen) Swedish commentator For SVT (with Malin Olsson)
2015 Eurovision Song Contest 2015 (Vienna) Swedish commentator For SVT (with Sanna Nielsen)
2015 Eurovision's Greatest Hits Co-scriptwriter For the BBC directing hosts Graham Norton and Petra Mede[63].
2016 Melodifestivalen 2016 Director and Screenwriter Hosted by Gina Dirawi (all shows), Petra Mede (semi-final 1), Henrik Schyffert (semi-final 3),

Sarah Dawn Finer (semi-final 4), Ola Salo, Peter Jöback (second chance) and William Spetz (final)[64]

2016 Eurovision Song Contest 2016 (Stockholm).[65] Director and Screenwriter Hosted by Petra Mede and Måns Zelmerlöw
2017 Uuden Musiikin Kilpailu Swedish Jury Spokesperson
2017 Eurovision Song Contest 2017 (Kiev) Swedish commentator For SVT (with Måns Zelmerlöw)
2018 Eurovision: You Decide Screenwriter Hosted by Mel Giedroyc and Måns Zelmerlöw[66]
2018 Eurovision Song Contest 2018 (Lisbon) Swedish commentator For SVT (with Sanna Nielsen)
2019 Eurovision: You Decide Screenwriter Hosted by Mel Giedroyc and Måns Zelmerlöw[67]
2019 Melodifestivalen 2019 Consultant and Adviser Hosted by Sarah Dawn Finer, Kodjo Akolor, Marika Carlsson and Eric Saade[68]
2019 Eurovision Song Contest 2019 (Tel Aviv) Swedish commentator For SVT (with Charlotte Perrelli)

AwardsEdit

QX GaygalaEdit

ReferencesEdit

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External linksEdit