Holsby was abuzz this week with two separate film crews scurrying around campus chronicling the visit of “Team Putte.” Choirs from seven cities around Sweden are competing in the annual nationally televised “Körslaget” (Clash of the Choirs), and one of the favorites to win the prize of best choir is from our own town of Vetlanda. The Vetlanda choir is led by Putte Nelsson, a well-known musician and TV personality, who grew up just a couple minutes from Holsby.
Before each performance, the TV show includes interviews with the contestants and a description of the previous week’s activities and practice sessions. In an effort to make the show interesting and to show off some of the sights and attractions of their hometowns, the choirs stage their practice sessions at well-known local sites. And this week, it was Holsby!
With our own Jonathan and Danny facilitating, Putte was filmed jumping off the pamper pole as the choir cheered him on. He surprised us by his agility and confidence as the film team had him go through several takes. A couple choir members also tried out the giant swing. After a fika in the Bik, the choir rehearsed their upcoming performance in the chapel. It is hard to be completely objective, but they sounded like winners!
Besides the excitement of having Holsby featured in a nationwide and very popular TV show and all the free publicity that comes with it, there were some other points of encouragement. Several of the choir members are friends and acquaintances of our staff – and committed Christians. Putte himself is also a strong believer. He was born in Ethiopia and adopted by Christian parents who have been involved in pastoral and para-church ministry their entire lives. In fact, two of the choir leaders for this year’s “Clash of the Choirs” are committed Christians and unafraid to say so. It’s a wonderful testimony in this very secularized country.
A reporter from TV4 in Jönköping was also here to do a news feature on Team Putte. After a very long day, we asked her if she was tired, but she replied, “Oh, no. It’s not tiring when you’re having so much fun. It’s been a great day!”
We were also encouraged by the many comments on the beauty of the Holsby campus and the warm welcome. We are confident that this little media event will open new doors for ministry and contact with our community.