On Monday 2 June, The Crown Princess presented the Astrid Lindgren Memorial Award to author Barbro Lindgren during a ceremony at Stockholm Concert Hall.
Barbro Lindgren has written picture books, poetry, plays and books for young adults. Since her début as an author in 1965, she has published over a hundred titles which have been translated into around thirty different languages. The jury's reasons for awarding the prize were as follows:
"Barbro Lindgren is a literary pioneer. Using adventurous language and rich psychological nuance, she has re-invented not only the picture book for the very young but also the absurd prose story, the existential children's poem and realistic fiction for young adults. With perfect pitch, she presents to us both playful shenanigans and moments of bright joy, the inscrutable nature of life and the nearness of death."
The award ceremony at Stockholm Concert Hall was hosted by actor, dancer and artist Lamine Dieng. He was joined on stage by actor Per Sörberg and musicians Edda Magnason, the Lindgren Brothers (Barbro Lindgren's sons), Amanda Bergman and Ebbot Lundberg. Director General of the Swedish Arts Council Staffan Forssell and Minister for Culture Lena Adelsohn Liljeroth gave speeches, and Barbro Lindgren concluded the evening with a speech of thanks.
Astrid Lindgren died in 2002 at the age of 94. To honour her memory and to promote interest in children's and young adult literature around the world, the Swedish Government founded an international award in her name. The award was first presented in 2003.