Lars Saabye Christensen

Tarjei Vesaas' debutantpris Ivar Lo-Johansson Eyvind Johnson
Lars Saabye Christensen
Lars Saabye Christensen in 2010.
Lars Saabye Christensen in 2010.
Born (1953-09-21) 21 September 1953 (age 66)
Oslo, Norway
NationalityDenmark, Norway
GenreDrama, poetry, novels and children's books

Lars Saabye Christensen, (born 21 September 1953 in Oslo) is a Norwegian/Danish author.

Saabye Christensen was raised in the Skillebekk neighbourhood of Oslo, but lived for many years in Sortland in northern Norway; both places play a major role in his work. He lives in Blindern, the university district of Oslo.

He is half Danish and holds Danish rather than Norwegian citizenship.[1][2]


Saabye Christensen studied literature, Norwegian, art history and the history of ideas at university. He made his début in 1976 with a collection of poems entitled Historien om Gly, which won Tarjei Vesaas' debutantpris for that year's best Norwegian literary début, but he had published a poem collection, titled Grønt lys (Green light), when he was 19 years old, and had also published many poems in an underground literary publication called Dikt og Datt.[1]

He has written numerous poems and plays, and several film scripts, but is best known as a novelist. His first novel was published the year after Historien om Gly and titled Amatøren (The Amateur). Among his most noted works are the novels Beatles (1984) (for which he won the Cappelen Prize) and Halvbroren (The Half Brother, 2001) (for which he won the Brage Prize, two other Norwegian literary awards, and The Nordic Council's Literature Prize, and which was shortlisted for the 2005 International Dublin Literary Award). Other notable books by Saabye Christensen are Herman, Gutten Som Ville Være En Av Gutta, Maskeblomstfamilien and Modellen. Between 2017 and 2019, he released a trilogy titled Byens spor (The Traces of a City), in which all three books were met with critical acclaim, while simultaneously being treated for a spinal disc herniation and bone marrow cancer.[3]

Since 1993 he has issued 4 recordings of his poetry as a member of the band Norsk Utflukt: Med lyset på (1993), Diger og gul (1997), Det blå arret (2002) and Tida som går (2004).

On 24 October 2006 he was made a Commander of the Royal Norwegian Order of St. Olav.[1][4] In April 2008 he was made a Chevalier dans L’ordre des Arts et Lettres (Knight of the Order of Arts and Literature) by the French Government.[5][6] In 2018, he was awarded an honorary Amanda award for his contribution to Norwegian culture.[7]. He is a member of the Norwegian Academy for Language and Literature.[8]


Awards and prizes


  1. ^ a b c d "Siste bok i Lars Saabye Christensens Beatles-trilogi" Archived 2012-04-02 at the Wayback Machine (Final book in Lars Saabye Christensen's Beatles trilogy), Norge: det offisielle norske nettsted i Danmark (Norwegian Embassy in Denmark official site), retrieved 20 September 2010. (in Norwegian)
  2. ^ Mannen som ikke vil være moderne. Aftenposten, 22. august 2015, s. 8. «Forfatteren som har bodd i Norge i 62 år og har beholdt sitt danske statsborgerskap - fått ved fødselen - har stått på sitt, sier han.»
  3. ^ 21.08.2019
  4. ^ "Kommandør Lars Saabye Christensen: Forfatteren Lars Saabye Christensen ble tirsdag utnevnt til Kommandør av Den Kongelige Norske St. Olavs Orden for fortjeneste av norsk litteratur" (Commander Lars Saabye Christensen: Author Lars Saabye Christensen was Thursday named as a Commander of the Royal Norwegian Order of St. Olav for services to Norwegian literature), NRK, 25 October 2006 (in Norwegian)
  5. ^ "Remise de l’Ordre des Arts et Lettres à Lars Saabye Christensen" (Presentation of the Order of Arts and Literature to Lars Saabye Christensen), Embassade de France en Norvège, retrieved 20 September 2010. (in French)
  6. ^ Catherine Gonsholt Ighanian, "Norske forfattere hyllet i utlandet: Lars Saabye Christensen ble i går utnevnt til ridder av Frankrike, og Karin Fossum vant prestisjepris i L.A. i natt" (Norwegian authors honoured abroad: Lars Saabye Christensen was yesterday named a Knight of France, and Karin Fossum won a prestigious prize in L.A. last night), VG Nett, 26 April 2008 (in Norwegian)
  7. ^, 19.08.2018
  8. ^ "Det Norske Akademi for Sprog og Litteratur" (in Norwegian). Norwegian Academy for Language and Literature. Archived from the original on 10 February 2009. Retrieved 25 April 2009.
  9. ^ Joacim Lund, "Stille i stormens øye: Jeg ville oppfylle én eneste forventning - min egen, sier Saabye Christensen før lanseringen" (Calm in the eye of the storm: I want to fulfill one single expectation - my own, says Saabye Christensen before the launch), Aftenposten, 19 August 2008 (in Norwegian)