Norway, the world champions in slowness / News / The Foreigner

Norway, the world champions in slowness. Slow TV is popular in Norway, as is knitting. If a book about soft Christmas balls is not enough, Norwegian broadcaster NRK is kicking off National Knitting Night, Friday. A real-time TV program, the woolen wonder programme part starts with ‘Around Norway’ (‘Norge rundt’) on NRK1 at 19:40 local time. NRK2 then picks up the needles at 20:05, with its transmission lasting until 6am the next day.

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Norway, the world champions in slowness

Published on Thursday, 31st October, 2013 at 09:13 under the news category, by Tove Andersson.
Last Updated on 31st October 2013 at 09:37.

Slow TV is popular in Norway, as is knitting.

Norway sheep and landscape
Norway sheep and landscape
Photo: Thomas Mues/Wikimedia Commons


If a book about soft Christmas balls is not enough, Norwegian broadcaster NRK is kicking off National Knitting Night, Friday.

A real-time TV program, the woolen wonder programme part starts with ‘Around Norway’ (‘Norge rundt’) on NRK1 at 19:40 local time. NRK2 then picks up the needles at 20:05, with its transmission lasting until 6am the next day.

Sheep shearing is performed when the clock strikes midnight, requiring a skilled person to do this efficiently without causing injury to the animal, of course.

“Seven persons are carding, spinning, and knitting wool for a sweater for a grown up,” NRK spokesperson Sidsel Mundal explains to The Foreigner. The sweater is to be ready before sunrise.

This part of the real-time real TV lasts for at least 4 hours and 30 minutes, trying to beat current world record holders Australia’s 4 hours, 51 minutes, and 14 seconds to the finish.

NRK foreign correspondent Kristian Elster, 50, knits almost every day. He will be participating in the programme.

“It’s relaxing, and sometimes it even helps the concentration,” he says to his employer. He travels the world with his knitting needles, calling his hobby an "icebreaker".

Americans are taken by Norwegians' fascination for slow TV , so much so that the Wall Street Journal asked for exclusivity on news on NRKs next minute by minute project. Clips from previous programmes – the Hurtigruten and wood burning transmissions – are spread around the world.

“The public wanted something softer after the masculine wood burning programme, i.e. knitting,” explains Rune Møklebust, project manager at western Norway regional channel NRK Hordaland. He was taken by surprise when Reuters suddenly rang shortly before the wood burning broadcast started.

But ‘Slow TV’ does not mean boring TV. A garment will be knitted for a Harley Davidson during Friday’s programme.

Artist Kari Steihaug has collected unfinished knitwear for 10 years in order to "document the poetry in the imperfect and lost". The viewers are invited to participate, NRK press contact Sidsel Mundal tells The Foreigner.

Famous Norwegian designs will get be focused on, among them Selbu. This design is also known internationally, as designers Per Spook and Elinor Flor have used it in their creations. Moreover, there are hardly any Norwegians who have not thrown a snowball wearing mittens with the two-threaded Sør-Trondelag County’s Selbu design when growing up.

Indeed, Norwegian knitwear has become increasingly popular and appears on international catwalks from time to time.

Perhaps Friday’s focus on knitting on TV will give it good publicity and a new generation of hobby knitters.




Published on Thursday, 31st October, 2013 at 09:13 under the news category, by Tove Andersson.
Last updated on 31st October 2013 at 09:37.

This post has the following tags: norwaytv, tvprogrammesnorway.





  
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