Roxette singer Marie dies, just 61

She battled cancer for 17 years
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Roxette singer Marie Fredriksson has died after a 17-year battle with cancer – she was just 61 years old. 

WATCH: Roxette perform at Sydney Opera House

The singer-songwriter passed away on December 9, her management team announced in a statement.

“Marie leaves us a grand musical legacy. Her amazing voice — both strong and sensitive — and her magical live performances will be remembered by all of us who was lucky enough to witness them,” the statement said.

“We also remember a wonderful person with a huge appetite for life, and woman with a very big heart who cared for everybody she met.”

roxette's marie passes away
Marie passed away on December 9 (Credit: Getty)
She performed as one half of Roxette, with bandmate Per Gessle (Credit: Getty)

Marie was born on May 30, 1958 in the south of Sweden, and began her music career in the 1980s. In 1986 she teamed up with Per Gessle in Roxette.

Their debut single ‘Neverending Love’ followed by the album ‘Pearls of Passion’ in 1986 made them stars in Sweden, followed by international recognition wth the single ‘The Look’ from Roxette’s second album ‘Look Sharp!’ in the spring of 1989.

Other massive hits by the group included ‘Listen To Your Heart’, ‘It Must Have Been Love’ and ‘Joyride’, as well as numerous worldwide radio staples like ‘Dressed For Success’, ‘How Do You Do!’, ‘Sleeping In My Car’, ‘Dangerous’, ‘Fading Like A Flower’ and so many more. 

Roxette in 1989 (Credit: Getty)
per marie
Per and Marie performed together for over 30 years (Credit: Getty)

In 2002, Marie was diagnosed with a severe brain tumour, receiving an aggressive treatment that took its toll but ultimately was successful.

Her extremely strong fighting spirit meant that by 2009 Marie was able to start a gradual return to the world’s stages. However by 2016, doctors had advised that she wouldn’t be able to tour again. 

Marie’s bandmate Per also commented on the death of his longtime friend.

“Time goes by so quickly. It’s not that long ago we spent days and nights in my tiny apartment in Halmstad, listening to music we loved, sharing impossible dreams. And what a dream we eventually got to share!

Thank you, Marie, thanks for everything. You were an outstanding musician, a master of the voice, an amazing performer. Thanks for painting my black and white songs in the most beautiful colours. You were the most wonderful friend for over 40 years. I’m proud, honoured and happy to have been able to share so much of your time, talent, warmth, generosity and sense of humour. All my love goes out to you and your family. Things will never be the same.


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