Åse Maria Kleveland (born 18 March 1949 in Stockholm) is a Swedish-Norwegian singer and politician. A well-known folk singer and traditional guitarist in Norway, she was appointed Minister of Culture in Norway from 1990 to 1996, representing the Labour Party under the Gro Harlem Brundtland administration. She was also president of the Swedish Film Institute from 1999 to 2006. In June 2007 she became Chairman of the Board of Human-Etisk Forbund, the Norwegian humanist organization. Kleveland was born in Sweden to Olaf Kleveland, a civil engineer from Norway, and Eva Hansson, a bookkeeper from Sweden. Her father had fled from Norway to Sweden in 1943 due to the Nazi occupation; he had family members in Sweden with whom he could live. She and her family moved to Romerike, northeast of Oslo, in 1957, where her father got a job working at the Institute for Atomic Energy. In a 1977 interview she describes how her parents shared equally in the household chores, and that she and her then-husband Svenolov Ehrén, a Swedish artist, did the same. She is currently married to film director and cinematographer Oddvar Bull Tuhus. Kleveland is fluent in Norwegian, Swedish, English, French and Japanese. She studied Law at the University of Oslo. As a singer, she is famous for her very dark, soulful voice. Besides singing, she also plays the guitar and has composed songs in the singer-songwriter tradition. In addition to her solo career, she was also part of the vispop group Balla...
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