The Tabernacle Choir Blog

Photographer: Kristin Saastad

7 Things You Didn’t Know About Sissel

1. She Was the Singer Heard throughout the 1997 Blockbuster Film Titanic

When people think of the singer from the filmTitanic, they immediately think of Celine Dion singing “My Heart Will Go On,” the main theme song of the film. But the soundtrack by James Horner is filled with orchestrated pieces supported by Sissel’s beautiful arias. Horner auditioned 25 to 30 singers before choosing Sissel, whose aria took center stage during one of the most iconic movie scenes of all time—the “I’m flying!” scene. Sissel’s voice echoes throughout the scene as the film’s main characters stand on the bow of the ship while the sun sets, shortly before disaster strikes.

The albumTitanic: Music from the Motion Picture sold over 30 million copies worldwide and became the highest-selling orchestral film score in history.

Watch a Titanic interview clip with Sissel (starting at 3:03).

2. She Has Been Nominated for a Grammy along with . . .

In 2007, Sissel was nominated for her first Grammy Award for her collaboration with The Tabernacle Choir and Orchestra at Temple Square for the album Spirit of the Season, recorded during her Christmas concerts with the Choir from the previous year. The album was nominated for the Best Classical Crossover Album of the Year, as well as Best Engineered Classical Album.

Watch Sissel perform “Vitae Lux” from the 2006 Christmas concert with the Choir:

3. She Sang at the Winter Olympic Ceremonies in Lillehammer, Norway

During the 1994 Winter Olympics in Lillehammer, Norway, Sissel performed the “Olympic Hymn (Hymne Olympique)” at the opening and closing ceremonies.

4. She Has Sold over 10 Million Albums

What else can we say? This is an amazing feat, and to make it even more spectacular, this figure does not include any of her soundtracks from films. Way to go!

5. She Took Part in Her First TV Show in 1986

In 1986, Sissel took part in the Norwegian TV show Kanal 1 at the tender age of 16. Even at this age, Sissel had what it takes to move an audience performing “You Don’t Bring Me Flowers,” written by Neil Diamond with Alan and Marilyn Bergman and covered by Barbra Streisand.

6. She Is Included in The Lord of the Rings Soundtrack

As if Titanic weren’t big enough, Sissel’s voice earned her an inclusion in one of the highest-grossing film franchises of all time, The Lord of the Rings. She performed “The Last Debate/Asëa Aranion.”

7. She Is Releasing a New Song Every Sunday for 50 Weeks

Considering most artists release 10 to 12 songs every two to three years, releasing 50 songs in a single year sounds completely exhausting.  Visit Sissel's website for more information.