Freedom of Expression Tribute to Else Michelet

Else Michelet.
Fotograf: Annar Bjørgli

Press Release, 18 June 2009

The Freedom of Expression Tribute is being awarded to Else Michelet for her wide-ranging accomplishments in radio journalism and especially for having developed the original, outspoken humorous radio series ”Hallo i uken” for NRK P2.

The tribute will be awarded on Thursday, 25 June 2009, at 11 a.m. at the Fritt Ord's premises at Uranienborgveien 2, Oslo. The Freedom of Expression Tribute acknowledges remarkable efforts to promote free speech, often in connection with current events. Deputy Chairman George Fr. Rieber-Mohn will deliver the award speech on behalf of the Fritt Ord Foundation's Board.

The tribute will be accompanied by NOK 50 000.

The ”Hallo i uken” series was Else Michelet's idea. It started out with Nils Rykken at the helm in 1989, and then Else Michelet and Kai Sibbern took over as hosts in autumn 1990. Since 1993, Else Michelet has been the sole producer of the weekly series. Else Michelet has now resigned from ”Hallo i uken” to address other tasks that await her at NRK Radio.

As a broadcaster at NRK since the late 1960s, Else Michelet has been involved with a wide variety of humour and satire programmes (”Natt-ta-ta”, ”Nattmat” and ”Nattergalen”). She has worked on ”Nitimen” (talk show) and ”Reiseradioen” (radio travelogue). Michelet has also had several of her own satire series (”Dus med Dem”, ”With Rot i Virkeligheten” and ”Bare barnemat”).

Else Michelet made her debut as a cabaret artist on Den Nationale Scene in Bergen in 1976 with ”Skapningens herre og andre eventyr” (The master of creation and other fairytales). The show ”Hadde vi vinger” (If we had wings) at Vertshusteatret at Torshov is another of her many personal performances. She co-authored the cabaret ”En gutts lykke” (A boy's happiness) along with Tor Arne Johnsen for Oslo Nye Teater in 1979. In connection with 100th anniversary of the Norwegian Association for Women's Rights, she staged the cabaret ”At home, away, draw” at the State Touring Theatre.

Michelet has written several books with a feminist approach. The book Sin egen herre (His own man). Eventyr og annet ugress (Fairytales and other weeds) was published in 1979. En annen historie (Another story) from 1981 was a bestseller, and was adapted for TV. In 1988, she published the novel Ariadnes tråd. Et reiseliv (Ariadne's thread. A travelling life), and 2000 marked the publication of og det som verre var. Eventyr på avveie (and even worse. Fractured fairytales) was published.

Else Michelet has translated several works, including Whose life is it anyway? and The Signature by Brian Clarke. She also translated Female Parts by Dario Fo and Francs Rame and Accidental Death of an Anarchist by Dario Fo.

Else Michelet was born in 1942 in Trondheim, and she earned a graduate degree in English, French and literary science at the University of Oslo.

Fritt Ord is a public-utility private foundation that aspires to promote freedom of expression and public debate.

See the list of earlier recipients of The Freedom of Expression Tribute

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