Hallandale Beach Blog -A common sense public policy overview offering a critical perspective on the current events, politics, govt., public policy, sports scene and pop culture of the U.S., South Florida, Europe and Sweden. In particular, Broward & Miami-Dade County, and the cities of Hallandale Beach, Hollywood & Aventura.
Trust me when I tell you, this part of Florida is NOT the Land of Lincoln. Pictured in upper-left is Hallandale Beach's iconic beachball-colored Water Tower on State Road A1A; September 2008 photo by me, South Beach Hoosier. © 2013 Hallandale Beach Blog, All Rights Reserved.

Tuesday, December 25, 2012

Sweet & sublime as always! SVT's 2012 St. Lucia telecast from Uppsala Cathedral -with Astrid Cederlöf as Lucia- was loaded with Swedish goodness, including ABBA's Benny Andersson on piano and Helen Sjöholm singing; There's no substitute for such sheer genius & talent!

sannasonja's YouTube Channel video: Benny Andersson on piano, Olle Moraeus on violin - "En skrift i snön" on SVT's Luciamorgon telecast from Uppsala Cathedral, Sweden. Recorded December 7, 2012 for broadcast on Dec. 12th. Uploaded December 13, 2012. http://youtu.be/cTatkGocfCY

Sweet & sublime as always! SVT's 2012 St. Lucia telecast from Uppsala Cathedral -with Astrid Cederlöf as Lucia- was loaded with Swedish goodness, including ABBA's Benny Andersson on piano and Helen Sjöholm singing; There's no substitute for such sheer genius & talent!

All screenshots appearing on this page of SVT's St. Lucia telecast are December 13, 2012 photos by South Beach Hoosier. © 2012 Hallandale Beach Blog, All Rights Reserved. 

The sweetness and the utter simplicity never disappoints.
Church choirs singing traditional Lucia and Christmas carols, the reading of the Lucia text, and as always, all done with no self-conscious showboating or self-congratulatory displays -and no distracting applause from the audience.
All done in one hour.

Above and below, my screenshots of 14-year old Astrid Cederlöf as Lucia.

By now, after a few years of watching this, and having gotten into the swing of how things go, there are certain songs that are always performed that are now so familiar to me that I can already hear the upcoming refrain, chorus or key musical notes even before the chyron disappears from the TV screen.
Correct, like hearing the first few notes of an ABBA or Beatles song.

To me, this year's telecast seemed much more subdued than the previous two Luciamorgon telecasts.
Whether that was the plan or just the way it all worked out, I can't say, but it did seem like there was noticeably less energy in the room, maybe almost too subdued.
Was it because I already knew that this year's telecast was NOT LIVE as the last two had been, where anything done LIVE always offers up the possibility of something interesting and unexpected happening?

Or maybe it was just because yours truly was already pretty tired and stayed-up all night thru to watch the telecast, which was 1 a.m. Eastern my time that Thursday morning, 7 o'clock in Uppsala.

When that opening framing scene outside Uppsala Cathedral came onscreen, it looked SO very dark and very cold!
I practically shivered vicariously when it came on and I thought about how mornings like that can make you exhausted even before the day begins.
Thoughts of warm tomato soup and soup crackers went thru my head.

This is what it looked like outside the Cathedral in Uppsala an hour later, at 8 a.m., looking more like 6 p.m. in Bloomington, Indiana, about mid-January.

sannasonja's YouTube Channel video: Helen Sjöholm & Benny Andersson - "Vinterhamn" on SVT's Luciamorgon telecast from Uppsala Cathedral, Sweden. Recorded December 7, 2012 for broadcast on the 12th. Uploaded December 13, 2012. http://youtu.be/Xqtr219lt40

sannasonja's YouTube Channel video: Helen Sjöholm & Benny Andersson: "Nu tändas tusen juleljus" on SVT's Luciamorgoon telecast from Uppsala Cathedral, Sweden. Recorded December 7, 2012 for broadcast on the 12th. Uploaded December 13, 2012. http://youtu.be/fsnbicyYNcU

The above was short and sweet, but still my favorite from that day!

The person who uploaded these vids onto YouTube

The video of the entire telecast is on SVT Play's website for another 28 days, as of today, then will be permanently deleted. 

As usual, the SVT audio and video quality is amazing, so be sure to click the opposing arrows in the far right corner of the video and hit fullskärm to enable the full screen, 
And be sure to watch for Olle Moraeus on the violin.

My last two blog posts on the Lucia telecasts by SVT were: 
2010 St. Lucia Day in Stockholm: traditional songs and sweet sentimentality that ring true across the miles; SVT's Lucia program is sublime!

2011 St. Lucia Day in Göteborg is an hour away on SVT; will they strike gold and be sublime yet again?

Sweden.se's Vimeo video: Swedish Lucia for Dummies. Lucia Day - a feast of candlelit processions, saffron buns, mulled wine and talking animals. Here’s how to make the most of it. http://vimeo.com/55253944

As a bit of a Lucia bonus, here's a short video of some kids in a Lucia procession who made their way out to the glass cage in the Great Square in Malmö, Gustav Adolf Squarewhere   this year's Musikhjälpen took place two weeks ago, and where Robyn famously performed in 2010, as I wrote at the time.
Robyn rocks Malmö at Musikhjälpen 2010 as amazed fans watch her like a goldfish in a glass bowl at Gustaf Adolfs Square

Below, Kodjo and Gina interact with the kids inside their glass cage studio: 


More videos of the show's dozens of musical guests performing can be found at

http://sverigesradio.se/sida/default.aspx?programid=3946 and
at http://www.youtube.com/user/poriel2

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Hallandale Beach Blog is where I try to inject or superimpose a degree of accountability, transparency and insight onto Florida and local Broward County government and public policy issues, which I feel is sorely lacking in local media now. On this blog, locally, I concentrate my energy, enthusiasm, anger and laser-like attention on the coastal cities of Hallandale Beach, Hollywood and Aventura.

If you lived in this part of South Florida, you'd ALREADY be stuck in stultifying traffic, paying higher-than-necessary taxes and continually musing about the chronic lack of accountability among not only elected govt. officials, but also of city, county and state employees as well. Collectively, with a few rare exceptions, they couldn't be farther from the sort of strong results-oriented, eager work-ethic mentality that local residents deserve and expect. But seldom if ever see...

This is particularly true in the Broward County city I live in, the City of Hallandale Beach, north of Aventura and south of Hollywood and right on the Atlantic Ocean. Here, the "Perfect Storm" of years of apathy, incompetency and cronyism are all too readily apparent. Sadly for its beleaguered residents, HB is where even easily-solved, quality-of-life problems are left to fester for YEARS on end, because of myopia, lack of common sense and ineffective supervisory management. It's a city with tremendous potential because of its terrific location and well-educated populace, yet its citizens have almost become numb to HB City Hall's frequent outrages and screw-ups, the result of YEARS of the worst kind of mismanagement and lack of foresight. On a daily basis, residents and Small Business owners wake up and see the same old problems that have never being adequately resolved by the city in a logical and responsible fashion, merely kicked -once again- further down the road for others to solve in the future.

I used to ask myself, not always rhetorically, "Where are all the enterprising young reporters who want to show that through their own hard work and enterprise, what REAL investigative reporting can produce?" Hearing no response, I decided to start a blog of my own that could try to do some of these things, taking the p.o.v. of a reasonable-but-skeptical person seeing the situation for the first time with fresh eyes, and wanting questions answered in a honest and logical way that citizens have the right to expect.

Hallandale Beach Blog intends to be a catalyst for positive change in public policy and goivernment engagement. If there's one constant gripe in South Florida, regardless of your age, race, nationality or political persuasion, it's about the fundamental lack of PUBLIC ACCOUNTABILITY of Florida's state, regional and local govt./agency officials, elected and otherwise. Hallandale Beach Blog aims to be a small step towards regaining some of that needed accountability, whether it's thru shining some well-needed public scrutiny on the issue or pol, or requires a higher degree of follow-up investigation and public exposure of the incompetency, cronyism or negligence -South Florida's usual governing style.
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North Miami Beach Senior High School, the Home of the Chargers

North Miami Beach Senior High School, the Home of the Chargers
Before I was a Hoosier, I was an NMB Charger, Class of 1979.

In the Heart of a Great Country, Beats the Soul of Hoosier Nation

In the Heart of a Great Country, Beats the Soul of Hoosier Nation
"In the Heart of a Great Country, Beats the Soul of Hoosier Nation." -South Beach Hoosier, 2007.