Emma was born in Umeå in the north of Sweden, and recalls her family life close to the mountains in a small town called Vilhelmina, where she would hear her father playing in a professional danceband. Listening and singing along with recordings as she grew up, Emma found that as most of the lead vocalists were male, she instinctively needed to develop harmonies to sing along with them. She sang for her father’s band through her teenage years, eventually forming an all-girls group with classmates at her music school when she was about 18. Moving to Stockholm at age 21 she quickly found work as an entertainer and studio musician, singing backing vocals for many of the top Swedish artists, as well as for international names like Britney Spears. Also developing as a songwriter, Emma released a solo album “Från mig till dig” (From Me to You) in 2001 (on Universal Music), and composed a song for Kylie Minogue.
Since joining The Real Group in 2008 Emma very much appreciates the humour and skill level of her singing colleagues. As a new parent she admires the role model of her own mother, and values spending time with her young family, but she also really enjoys her work, especially having an opportunity to tour the world and meet such appreciative audiences. She has particularly fond memories of when her son was just two weeks old and she found herself singing with The Real Group at the 2010 Gala concert for the marriage of Sweden’s Crown Princess Victoria.
Emma’s own musical tastes are centred around jazz and pop music, sometimes including country and western! She points out that a key skill for an ensemble vocal singer is an ability to listen well, and believes that enjoying and entertaining with the music you create is more important than focussing on perfection. Asked about guilty pleasures, Emma admits that she buys and owns too many shoes, but explains that as she prepares for her performances, the last thing she does is to put on her high heels - then she is all set!
Lisa grew up in Upplands Väsby (north of Stockholm) in a very creative family where music and "creation/composition" was always a focus. Their home was often full of music, and playing and singing were a natural way for socializing with her brother and her parents. A lot of jazz was played (on vinyl!) around the house and so jazz music quickly made its way into Lisa’s heart.
Her first memory of The Real Group was when she attended the group’s diploma concert at The Royal Academy of Music in Stockholm. It was a magnificent concert experience starting with the group entering the stage in astronaut suits...in slow motion. Unforgettable!
Later on, Lisa studied singing at The Royal Academy of Music in Copenhagen for two years and then completed her studies with a pedagogical degree in singing at The Stockholm Royal Academy of Music. Since then Lisa has been freelancing as a singer, both as a solo artist and as a backing singer for various Swedish pop artists. She has also been doing studio work with songwriters and composers both within and outside of Sweden. Although Lisa has performed at both the Hollywood Bowl and Wembley Stadium, most of her own concerts have been in small auditoriums and school gyms, trying to please the most demanding audience of them all; kids.
Lisa’s composing skills have twice been rewarded with grants by STIM (the Swedish Writer’s and Composer’s organization) and some of her songs have been released in a modern children’s songbook. She has been touring with the quartet Jazzmys for more than 15 years in Sweden and Finland, has twice been nominated for the Swedish Music Awards. In 2009 she founded her own trio with the saxophone-player Thomas Backman and pianist Cecilia Persson. Lisa draws a lot of her inspiration from being around children. They remind her about the important things in life; to be curious, adventurous and creative.
Fun fact: When Lisa was in college she borrowed two Gino Vanelli vinyl-albums from her music teacher and since then she has had a secret dream of singing a duet with her big idol!
Born in Stockholm, Anders started playing piano and singing in choirs at an early age. From ages 10 to 20 studying at Adolf Fredrik’s School of Music in Stockholm he experienced a strong focus on choir singing. Continuing with five years of studies at The Royal Academy of Music in Stockholm, he and his fellow-students formed an a cappella quintet – The Real Group. In the two years following their Masters qualifications, all five group members studied together on a specially-designed postgraduate course resulting in a diploma of the highest standing.
For The Real Group Anders Edenroth has written and published many original songs, and arrangements of well-known standards, constantly exploring the development of new vocal textures and the integration of vocal percussion and rhythmic effects. He has been awarded several grants from The Swedish National Council for Cultural Affairs and Swedish Performing Rights Society (STIM). He has also worked as a keyboard player within the jazz and pop domain and as a writer of television scores and music for commercials. Over the years he has engineered and produced albums for many artists as well as arranging music for other vocal groups, for big bands, symphony orchestras and stage shows. Since 1989 he has been a full-time singer performing with The Real Group in more than 40 countries and has recorded 20 albums, many of which he also produced. Anders is also much appreciated for his many masterclass workshops, both at the two major TRG Festivals, and at venues on their international tours.
His off-stage interests include cooking (which leaks into some of his compositional ideas) and environmental conservation. One of his favourite influences is Stevie Wonder although he listens to all kinds of music. He thinks that if not a musician, his creative instincts might have manifested as an inventor and he plans to one day publish a book entitled ‘Incredible Inventions’ or ‘Totally Ingenius’.
A small village in Jutland, Denmark was the birthplace and home for Morten as he was growing up. As a child he took piano lessons and performed in local musicals. During his high school years he played in different pop and rock bands and as he grew older he got involved with several a cappella projects, choirs and vocal groups. He graduated with a Masters degree in Rhythmic Choir from the Royal Academy of Music in Aalborg and has sung and worked with a variety of choirs in Denmark and beyond.
Before he became a member of The Real Group in 2010 he was a member of Vox11, Postyr Project and VoxNorth, all Danish groups exploring new directions in a cappella performance. This helped to develop his understanding of some of the technical aspects of capturing and delivering a cappella performances. As a result he brought with him some ideas of new dimensions for The Real Group’s performances, such as the incorporation of a loop-station to assemble multilayer rhythmic accompaniments. Morten has also become heavily involved in the recording and mixing process in The Real Group’s own studio and has contributed new songs and arrangements to their repertoire.
Inspired by the genius of Bobby McFerrin, Morten has engaged in a number of improvisational projects with other a cappella singers, and enjoys the way that these exercises stimulate creative approaches and generate new ideas. Morten and Katarina, together with some of their Finnish a cappella colleagues from Rajaton, and Denmark’s Vox North have participated in several workshops and concerts under the heading ’Songs of the Moment NORDIC’ in 2013 and 2014.
When he is not on stage, rehearsing in the studio or travelling to a concert venue, Morten loves cooking (and eating) with friends, spending time in the South of France, drinking good coffee and walking the streets of Stockholm. His listening patterns are eclectic, ranging from Chet Baker and Ella Fitzgerald to Peter Gabriel and the soulful sounds of Laura Mvula. Of his experiences since touring with The Real Group he has a special memory of their 2013 visit to South Africa; the smiles and spirit of the people they met there made a major impact on Morten.
The parents of Jānis realised that he had a musical instinct when he started to sing at an early age. So from 1994 he studied at the Riga Dome Choir School in his home town of Riga, Latvia. Here he joined a boys’ choir and spent his childhood singing and studying music-related subjects, as well as English language and vocal jazz pedagogy. While at the school (probably around 1995) he encountered an album entitled ”UNREAL” in the school music library, and the singing of The Real Group made an indelible impression on him, motivating his life choices towards a career in singing. While still at school he sang with several vocal groups in Riga, and found the choral atmosphere so welcoming that he progressed to sing with many other choirs in Latvia.
Of the vocal groups Jānis has sung with, the most significant was a 6-voice male ensemble called Cosmos. With this group he shared in winning several Latvian music recording awards and won the young singers’ competition ”New Wave” in 2004. In 2006 Cosmosparticipated in the Eurovision Song Contest in Athens and he has sung on stage with The Real Group, Bobby McFerrin, Björk, A-Ha, Al Bano, and many other wonderful musicians.
In 2010 Jānis moved on to become a member of the award-winning professional Latvian Radio Choir, providing him with the opportunity to broaden his repertoire across a wide range of stylistically different programs and productions. In recent years he has also sung with a blues band and performed as a soloist in a variety of collaborations.
In addition to singing Jānis enjoys many other activities including reading, playing squash, skiing and cycling. He describes himself as more of a listener than a talker, and he enjoys good food, and especially good beer. He also has a special skill that enables him to sleep anywhere, and at anytime!
In response to his opportunity to sing bass with The Real Group, he believes that they are one of the main reasons he has always enjoyed singing in vocal groups, and he describes it as ”a childhood dream come true”.
Traveling with us on tour are:
Live sound engineer
Linnéa was born 1985 in Oslo, Norway, and has been a musician since she was three years old, when her father put a cello in her hands. Since then she has been in the music business and when she was 9 she also started to play the trombone and at only 12 years old she started to play in Karlskoga Symphony Orchestra.
In 1990 Linnéa and her family moved to Karlskoga, Sweden, and her 2nd home has always been the music school where her father works as a violin teacher.
During high school Linnéa decided to be a sound engineer and following upper secondary school she attended the school of music in Piteå Sweden.
In 2004 she qualified as a sound engineer and started to work part time in the sound business alongside her work as personal assistant and waitress.
In 2008 she created her own company and began touring. Then two years later she started to work full time in the business and has been doing that ever since.
Linnéa started working as The Real Group sound engineer in the summer of 2015 and during the intense schedule of the 30th anniversary tour she quickly became familiar with the group and their sound design. Linnea has worked with many artists such as Detektivbyrån, Crucified Barbara, Daniel Adams-Ray, Veronica Maggio, Miss Lee, Top Cats & Molly Sandén.
When there is a gap in the schedule, Linnea likes to spend time with her family in Stockholm and visit her friends. She also writes and arranges music of her own in her spare time.
Helena started as an assistant at The Real Group Festival in 2012 and continued working as an intern and project assistant while she finished her university education in Experience production at Luleå Tekniska universitet in 2013. She has now been working full time as a manager since 2014. Helena feels more comfortable "off-stage" nowadays, but has the experience of being a singer on stage in several performances with her local music school in Värnamo, Sweden.
In 1997 she toured the world with Up With People where she shared the stage with 150 people from 24 different countries at the same time, did community service in Europe and North America and stayed with 60 host families during one year. A memorable moment from that year was performing on the steps in front of the St Peter's Church in Rome, singing a song in Polish, while Pope John Paul II was present.
Very important people
We are so very fortunate to have teams all over the world working with us and helping us reach old and new audiences. To mention everybody would take forever both to write down and for you to read. We've had amazing managers, tech staff and teams behind and around us in the past too, so writing "previous team members" would also take forever. Some are mentioned on the covers of our cds and some remain "secret angels". We are however really happy to have you in our lives!
Chairman, The Real Group AB
Torsten Örtengren has acquired broad experience from executive positions within finance, business and law. He holds an MBA from the Stockholm School of Economics, is an accredited teacher at the Swedish Academy of Board Directors and is an author of specialist literature in corporate governance and securities regulation.
Torsten has a musical background and has sung in various choirs. He has been a member of the a cappella group Tjoflöjters since 1979.
Claes de Geer
CEO, The Real Group Inspiration AB
Claes has been working as an entrepreneur in a range of executive positions in the IT and Financial Services sector over the past 20 years. He holds a Master of Science in Industrial Engineering and Management from the University of Linköping.
Claes started his singing career in the Stockholm Boys Choir. He founded his first a cappella group in 1989 where he developed a passion for vocal percussion. He is also a founding member of the a cappella group Vocal Brand, where he keeps a steady beat nowadays.
Event manager, The Real Group Academy
Caroline is a singer, actress and conductor with a background in the Swedish a cappella community from a young age. An actor's training at Stockholm’s Elementära Teaterskola and a vast experience from improvisational work and directing have resulted in a passion for flavouring music with theatrical influences; helping to build bridges between the two art forms.
Caroline sings in Vocal Brand and is exploring the ‘Organic Choir concept’ within the newly-formed experimental choir Roliga Sångförsöket.