8 April 2010

«Alt for Norge» – «All for Norway»

The first episode of the reality show «Alt for Norge» («All for Norway») was shown on TVNorge tonight. Ten Norwegian-Americans arrived in Norway last year to participate in a not too serious fight to determine which member of the group was «the most Norwegian». The winner would eventually meet his Norwegian relatives for a family reunion. And win 50.000 dollars in addition.

The participants come from all over the United States: the health care worker Matthew Lovik from Santa Cruz in California descends from Stord in Western Norway; the actress Signe Harriday of Harlem, New York (Steinkjer, county of Nord-Trøndelag); the opera singer Maia Surace from Chicago, Illinois (Austre Moland outside Arendal, county of Aust-Agder); the performance artist Kari Trauring from Minneapolis Minnesota (Gudvangen, Aurland municipality in the county of Sogn og Fjordane); the security guard (but also a part-time professional wrestler!) Joseph Ruud from Long Lake, Minnesota (Nannestad, county of Akershus); the pastor Grant Aaseng from Alexandria, Minnesota (Vågå in Gudbrandsdalen, county of Oppland); the personal shopper Flannery Good of Fresno, California (Åsnes/Våler in the county of Hedmark); the laboratory manager Doug Miner of Seattle (Helleland, county of Rogaland), the insurance agent Deborah Breberg from Dawson, Minnesota (Tuddal, Hjartdal in the county of Telemark) and finally the photographer Clinton Admire from Forth Worth, Texas (Haugesund in the county of Rogaland). Except for Lovik I have put the place of origin in Norway in parenthesis. Henriette Bruusgaard hosted the show.

The episode started at Prekestolen («The Pulpit Rock») in Forsand, Rogaland where they were challenged to hike down to Prekestolshytta. Other challenges were peparing a matpakke (lunch packet) before heading for a short introduction of the Norwegian language and etiquette. Later they received a list written in Norwegian of things they needed for dinner, which was to be served outdoors at Sverd i fjell in Hafrsfjord, Stavanger. It caused some trouble to find out what the Norwegian words meant and how to find the various stuff in downtown Stavanger. No, duk was not a duck, but a table cloth! And what was served for dinner? Not everyone was happy about the main course: grilled whale!

No-one was eliminated tonight, but in the next episode the real fight starts! During the show the Norwegian-Americans will among others compete in tractor racing, cow collecting, dog slade racing and 17th of May (National Day) celebration. Obviously a «feel good» show, quite entertaining with very charming and sympathetic participants. I already look forward to the next episode.

Lots of research has been done in advance, among others in order to find the relatives of all the participants. Norsk Slektshistorisk Forening (the Norwegian Genealogical Society) and DIS-Norge (Genealogy Society of Norway-DIS) were given the task and have done a great job. I joined the board of the Norwegian Genealogical Society as a deputy member after the research was done, so I will not take any credit for this... :-)

Photo: © TVNorge (published here by permission).

Updated Friday 9 April 2010 at 11.25.


1 comment:

  1. "so I will not take any credit for this... :-)".... you'll also receive no blame for neglecting to cast this American(or,much better, her daughter) then too. ;-) (Or are the American contestants still 'pure blooded' Norwegians?)
    Btw, only rarely can I can tell my daughter about something before she has found it. Thanks for the tip.