Parkinson’s diagnosis prompted Uje Brandelius Melfest participation

Uje Brandelius decided to participate in Melodifestivalen after coming to terms with his diagnosis with Parkinson’s disease. 

The 51-year-old singer-songwriter is participating in Melfest for the first time, with his self-penned song Grytan

Speaking to The Euro Trip ahead of performing in the second heat of Melfest in Linköping this weekend, Brandelius said: “You only live once and, on top of that, I am diagnosed with Parkinson’s disease, so my stage life might be a little shorter than others’.” 

Parkinson’s disease is a neurological condition that progressively damages parts of the brain over a number of years. Involuntary shaking of parts of the body, slow movement and inflexible muscles are the main symptoms of the disease. 

Brandelius was diagnosed with Parkinson’s seven years ago. 

Despite admitting that he’s “quite sure” he won’t secure the victory in Melfest this year, Brandelius wants to inspire others with the condition. 

“My reason to be in this circus is that I want to show the world and my fellow Parkinson’s people that it’s doable. 

“If I did [win], I hope that I can be some role model for Parkinson’s people in [places] like Romania. 

“In Sweden we have free healthcare [so] I feel quite alright. People who know, they are going to watch me and maybe spot some signs that I am a bit shaky.” 

Brandelius will perform third in the second heat of Melfest on Saturday.

Featured image – Janne Danielsson / SVT

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