Loved Actress

Meet Margareta Krook, one of Sweden´s most loved actresses! I just realized she´s been gone 12 years already, and well, time goes by so fast.

I remember her most from my childhood as a comedic actress on television. There was a particular skit, "Skattkammarön" (= treasure island) with four grown-ups playing a boardgame and becoming very childish and hostile to each other, almost getting into a fight over the rules and accusations of cheating, much to the amusement of us kids - and our parents rolled over with laughter, too.

I also remember her from "Gösta Berlings Saga" (= "The Saga of Gösta Berling") where she played the major´s wife. That was so different from how I was used to seeing her, and now (this was on television in 1986) she is really the only thing about it I remember.

For a few years before her death she was also chosen to recite Tennyson´s "Ring out, wild bells" (in a very creative Swedish translation) on New Year´s Eve, a Swedish tradition only entrusted to the most senior and revered of actors.

The statue is standing at the corner of the Royal Dramatic Theatre in Stockholm, where she used to stand and have a smoke between rehearsals. It has a radiator built in to it, and always keeps body temperature, which is why people touch it. (I wanted to write "touch her", but that seemed just too spooky.)

I found a clip from "Gösta Berlings Saga" on youtube, where Berling meets the major´s wife for the first time. He has sold a sack of flour taken from a peasant woman for a drink, is picked up by the major´s wife who asks him why he wants to kill himself when he is already dead. Do you think one must lie in a coffin to be dead? she asks. I am the most powerful woman in Värmland, and I am just a dressed up corpse! And then she offers to take him in at her country estate, as one of her "cavaliers", a sort of gentleman in waiting.

Greta Garbo started her career in an earlier film version of this Selma Lagerlöf novel.


  1. i found the greta garbo version online, and it's over 3 hours long! wow!

    1. I haven´t actually seen that - I imagine one must be in a very special mood to watch an old silent film that long. There are bits of Greta in it on youtube.