He’s known for his slick dance moves and an accomplished theatre career. And now Benjamin Ingrosso — the son of music legend Pernilla Wahlgren — is following in his mother’s footsteps to take on Melodifestivalen 2017.
The 19-year-old stunner rose to fame when he won Lilla Melodifestivalen in 2006, moving on to appear in plays and musical theatre productions. In 2014 he won hit Swedish dance competition Let’s Dance, following in the footsteps of fellow Melfest alum and Eurovision winner Måns Zelmerlöw.
You could say Melfest is in his genes: His mother Pernilla has appeared at Melodifestivalen four times, last competing as part of The Swedish Housewives in 2013.
In between rehearsals for his performance of “Good Lovin'” on Saturday night in Malmö, the triple threat caught up with wiwibloggs for a short but sweet interview which you can read below. You can also watch our video interview with him, filmed at the Welcome Party on Thursday evening.
You won Lilla Melodifestivalen ten years ago. Do you think that’s helped prepare you for the competition?
All of my performances are preparation for the next one!
Will your dancing experience from Let’s Dance be on show in Malmö?
Yes! It’s gonna be a show!
Your mom has appeared in the competition four times. Did she have any tips?
Actually, no, not really. She supports me a lot, but she also wants me to do things my way.
You’ve appeared in several musical theatre productions. Is Melodifestivalen a different challenge?
Yeah, in the musicals it’s more about living in another character for a while. But with this it’s months of preparation for a three-minute show that you want to make amazing!
In past interviews you’ve said you never thought you’d do Melodifestivalen. Why is that?
I didn’t think so a few years ago…but the time feels right now, and I have the perfect song. So let’s do this!
Your co-songwriters have written for acts like Flo Rida and 5SOS. How did you come to work with them?
TEN [his record label] got me the chance to fly to LA and write and then they put me in sessions with those amazing guys!
Tell us about your song. What’s the story behind it?
Me and my ex-girlfriend decided to take a break after three years together. I was sad and wrote down all my emotions in this song.
You’re performing last in your semi-final and are one of the favourites this year: Does that add pressure when you’re performing?
Of course! But I feel great about it all, since I’ve got a great song!
Lastly, tell us about your performance!
Dance, funk, pop, soul and a happy me loving what I do!
Benjamin Ingrosso performs seventh in the lineup on Saturday night in Malmö. Make sure to follow wiwibloggs for all your Melfest updates over the weekend.