Andreas Lundstedt, one of stars of the disco group Alcazar, has announced today in Swedish media about his big secret: He is HIV positive. He took the decision to make a public announcement himself believing that it was the right time. esctoday.com would like to make it clear that he has not in any way has been pushed by the media to make a statement.
Andreas Lundstedtentered Melodifestivalen 1996 as a solo artist with the song Driver dagg faller regn and took second place. He participated again in2003 and 2005 with the group Alcazar. The band became an international success with a number of hits including Crying at the discoteque, This is the world we live in and Menage a trois. This year he entered the competition for a second time as a solo artist with the song Move. In 2006 he competed for Switzerland in Eurovision Song Contest, In the group Six4One.
Andreashas spoken to the media for the first time aboutthe revelationhe has known a couple of years: "I'm HIV-positive. I want to show that one does not need to look sick when one has this infection. I hope its good for people tosee a healthy face, one with hiv. I know that there are more people in the industry that have it, it is a sin that itremains a matter that is taboo. I want tobe the one to announce it, ratherthan that the news coming from someone else. I have a fantastic family and wonderful friends. They have given me the strength to go public. Without their support, Icould never have gone public with it." He says to Qx Magazine in Sweden. "I am very grateful that I live in 2000s and not in the 1980s and that I live in Sweden".
On the question about how he feels, Andreas replies: "I feel great. This is nothing that influences my everyday existence. I want to peopleto understand, I don’t feel myself as a victim and I don't feel pity for myself.I do not know from whom I got the infection and I have never felt that I must know. What can I do? Hit him? No, I have chosen to put my energy into looking ahead."
Andreas has put on record that none of his previous boyfriends, have the infection and neither does his current partner. He is keen to ensure that their privacy remains and that no speculation begins into their private lives. Andreas is now on vacation,notwanting to be home when the mediabroke the news.
Many people have today reactedwith total support for his decision to talk this openly. Hereare a few reactions:
Jessica Folcker, artist colleague and friend:
"I do not want to believe it is true. Andreasis a hero and I love him. The first thing I will do when I meet is togive hima hug him".
Charlotte Perrelli, artist:
"I heardrumours but not believed in them. I become sad and thinks it is scary. I have worked with him the entire Christmas and think that he is the world's most wonderful person".
Barry Viniker, esctoday.com
"Andreas is an exceptional professional as well as a fantastic person. If anyone has the strength to turn this news into a strength for others, it's him. I look forward to continue working with him and following his career in the future. I'm sure we'll see him back at Melodifestivalen in the future".
Mona Sahlin, party leader, Socialdemokraterna:
"For me is he a hero. There is lot of dread and ignorance since we no longer speaks about AIDS. This is an important reminder that AIDS still exists, that we must speak about theillness and that it people can live with HIV".