Music documentary featuring Helena Josefsson premieres in New York

NEW YORK – Helena Josefsson, currently on tour with Roxette as the backup vocalist, is one of five women whose lives are examined in “I’m My Own Dolly Parton,” a deeply personal full-length documentary directed by Jessica Nettelbladt that had it’s U.S. premiere last night here in New York at the Tribeca Grand as part of the Nordic Music Documentary Festival.

I Am My Own Dolly PartonThe film, which premiered in Sweden on March 11, introduces us to music producer Gundrun Hauksdottir and – along with Helena – singers Nina Persson, Cecilia Nordlund, and Lotta Wenglén. As the description of the film states, “five colorful women ready to take on whatever challenges life throws at them, inspired by Dolly Parton’s strength to go her own way and defy the pressure to conform. The film takes us on a thought-provoking and inspirational journey about taking yourself seriously, listening to your heart and having the courage to make your dreams come true.”

Nettelblat tells The Daily Roxette that spearheaded by Hauksdottir (who was perhaps the biggest Parton fan), the group had assembled to do a Dolly Parton tribute concert in 2005 and she had been asked to film it. When they did another such concert a year later, she decided that she “was so inspired by these five women or girls” that it would be interesting to do a documentary about their lives. Most of the filming was done during 2007-2009, and after that there was a lot of editing to do.

Persson, who is best known as having been the lead singer for the Cardigans, said that “actually a gradual friendship developed” amongst the group of five, and that the movie “happened very much alongside everything else. I knew she was filming, but we really didn’t think much about it.”

In a particularly funny scene, Helena and her husband Martin are at home and inhale helium out of balloon that was given to their baby, and then they sing to him in high-pitched voices.

Several scenes were shot at Christoffer Lundquist’s Aerosal Grey Machine Studio as both Helena and Nordlund were recording solo albums there during the three-year period the movie was being shot.

The end of the documentary was met with sustained applause, and everyone we spoke with after the screening felt that it was an extremely entertaining and thought-provoking film. 


This article was written for an earlier version of The Daily Roxette.
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May 12th, 2011

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