Kristian Valen (born 13 October 1974) is a comedian, actor, singer and songwriter originally from Stavanger, Norway. Known for comedic impressions, Valen has also pursued a serious music career; his pop music album Listen When Alone was released internationally in Europe and Asia. Valen was asked by Katherine Jackson to perform his hit song "Still Here" at the Jackson Family Foundation's Forever Michael: A Celebration of an Icon, the one year Michael Jackson memorial show held in 2010 at Beverly Hilton Hotel the home of the Golden Globes in Los Angeles.
Son of Inge Valen, who played as a footballer for the team Viking FK, Valen was expected to follow in his father's footsteps to become a famous sportsman. However, Valen left the world of football when he was 16 and wound up hosting a popular radio show in his native city of Stavanger, Norway. His quick wit and popular on-air impersonations led Valen to the world of comedy.
Valen has created several extremely successful live shows, including Fartøy Valen (SS Valen), Et Musikalsk Kaos (Musical Chaos), and Raskere enn sitt eget beste (Faster than His Own Good). The shows have to date net Valen an estimated US$40 million in ticket sales. His three hit TV series Valen TV, Valen & De and Valen`s Frokost TV aired on national Norwegian broadcaster TV Norge, and topped the ratings. TV Norge. He has been voted "Entertainer of the Year" by viewers of Norway's TV2 and the "Årets TV-ansikt" ("This Year's TV-face") by the readers of magazine Se & Hør (See & Hear).
All three TV series also became hit DVD releases. Valen stated he would have been happy if his first DVD Valen TV sold 5,000 copies; the DVD went on to sell well over 120,000 copies and to win the award for Best DVD overall in 2003. DVD releases of Fartøy Valen, Valen & De and Frokost TV also sold impressively and Valen's most recent DVD production (of the hit show) Raskere enn sitt eget beste sold 25,000 copies in one day. To date, Valen's DVD sales have reportedly topped 500,000 (he has released 6 DVDs).
Valen founded his own company Deepwater Records and recorded his debut solo album Listen When Alone in 2004. Produced by Arvid Solvang, the album went gold in five days, and went on to go platinum. The first single from the album, "Still Here" reached No. 1 on the country's biggest station NRK's P1 and the video for the single - which featured a spectacular car crash on the streets of Los Angeles - was voted No. 1 by viewers of Norwegian national broadcaster NRK's popular Swish program, and No. 3 by readers of national newspaper Dagbladet. The song was used as the theme music for the German TV series Leben für die Liebe. Another single from the album "If I Was" featured the controversial use of NATO troops. Valen's most recent single "Blessed by a Woman" was released on March 15, 2011, also by Deepwater Records. Valen has signed a worldwide music publishing contract with Air Chrysalis Scandinavia.
Recent and Current Events:
Valen was asked by Katherine Jackson (Michael's mother) to appear at Forever Michael: A Celebration of an Icon. The show was held to commemorate the one year anniversary of Michael Jackson's death. Held at the Beverly Hilton Hotel in Beverly Hills (home of the Golden Globe awards), the show also featured performances by Jackson family members Genevieve Jackson and Tito Jackson, as well as Motown legends The Chi Lites. Valen performed his song "Still Here" and also did a montage of his musical impressions for the event.
Valen recently had a cognac brand named after him by the renown French company Cognac Gautier. Selection Valen Cognac V.S.O.P. is currently sold in Norway, but will also be sold throughout Scandinavia and also in selected U.S. markets.