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Get into the Christmas spirit with this video of Michael Bolton and Matoma in Lofoten - Photo: Scream Media
Get into the Christmas spirit with this video of Michael Bolton and Matoma in Lofoten - Photo: Scream Media

Press release -

"It's Christmas time": A Christmas greeting from Norway to all of you - God jul!

Get into the Christmas spirit with this video of Michael Bolton and Matoma in Lofoten

Norwegian artist Matoma and Michael Bolton chose Lofoten as the location for the video of their holiday song "It's Christmas time". Many Norwegians have already experienced the special Lofoten Christmas atmosphere and now it's Michael Bolton and Matoma's turn. 

In the official video you can see the two artists singing and playing at the Justatinden mountain in Lofoten, with the beautiful mountains and fjords in the background. 

The story behind the shoot

How did the piano, Bolton and Matoma get up on the mountain? It's a story that contains helicopters, greenscreens, studios in LA and studios in Lofoten.

First of all, who was actually on the mountain?

"Matoma and the piano were at Justadtinden with a film crew led by us and supported by the Lofoten film Collective" ,tells Martin Litwicki at Scream Media. 

How did you get the piano up?

"We flew it up with a helicopter. We contacted Destination Lofoten and in consultation with them and the municipality we chose this spectacular mountain”.

In the video, Michael Bolton is also see on the mountain top. How did it go?

"Michael Bolton could not come to Lofoten due to current travel restrictions, but with the help of green screen and the studios in Lofoten and LA we got this fantastic result".

How did you experience Lofoten?

"Lofoten is fantastic, and the idea for this video came 2 years ago. We have been waiting for the right project. Lofoten is a dream destination and there is no other place I would take Matoma and Michael Bolton",  Martin says. 

Koselig! Norwegian Christmas traditions 

Christmas in Norway is all about kos. Kos is the kind of instant happiness you get when you feel safe, warm, and good together. Kos is a typical Norwegian luxury of simplicity, where small joys make you feel great. And kos is a typical feeling during the holidays. Koselig is one of the most used adjectives by Norwegians, also during the holidays.

Christmas in Norway is usually a true feast of lights, preparations and traditions that last a whole season. White snow and decorations add to the magic, even in this particular year. 

In Norway, the celebration and preparations for the holiday season begin early on, usually the last weekend of November, with the baking of Christmas cookies - seven different kinds, at a minimum. Then on the first Sunday of Advent the Christmas trees are lit in cities, towns and villages. Late November through December is usually also the season for Christmas markets where farmers sell their local produce, artists sell their handicraft, and you can also buy typical Norwegian candies, cakes and other food, also try the first "gløgg" of the year. Gløgg is the Norwegian twist on mulled wine with almonds, raisins and cinnamon. 

"Jul", which is the Norwegian word for Christmas, actually predates Christianity, and although we do not know much about how the old heathens celebrated, we know that they used to sacrify animals and drink beer. On Christmas Eve (24th of December) most Norwegians gather for the traditional "Julaften" meal and opening of Christmas gifts and hopefully "Julenissen" (Santa Claus) pays a visit.

Christmas food

Norwegians are serious about their Christmas food and stick to a few common dishes. 

Ribbe: Roasted pork belly, usually served with sauerkraut and boiled potatoes, Christmas sausage, meatballs and gravy.

Pinnekjøtt: Salted, dried and sometimes smoked lamb ribs, served with boiled potatoes, Brussels sprouts and rutabaga puree.

Lutefisk: Stockfish that has been lying in water and lye (a way to preserve fish in the old days), then cooked in the oven.

Cod: In certain parts of Norway it is also a tradition to serve cooked cod together with butter sauce, carrots and potatoes.

Riskrem: For dessert it is very common to serve cold, creamed rice porridge. In the porridge is hidden an almond, and the person who gets it, receives a marzipan pig.

Aquavit: Along with wine and beer, many Norwegians also serve aquavit  - a potato based spirit flavoured with herbs such as caraway seeds, anise, dill, fennel and coriander.


As opposed to the more common "nisse" (Santa Claus), fjøsnissen - the barn elf is a more mischivious and slightly sinister character that was important when Norway was still a farming community. If treated well, he would help make sure that the farm prospered, if unhappy he could exercise the most brutal forms of revenger, such as striking the cattle dead. That is why farmers used to bring rice porridge and home-brewed beer to the barn every Christmas, a tradition that continues on Norwegian farms to this day.

God jul! Happy holidays!

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Norway is the place to experience the magical northern lights and the midnight sun above the Arctic Circle; visit the world-famous fjords surrounded by spectacular mountains and glaciers; and in the midst of stunning scenery, enjoy gourmet food and culture in the cities of Oslo, Trondheim, Stavanger, Bergen and Tromsø. 

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