It has become a tradition for me to interview Liv (at least) once a year. We are those kinds of old friends that hear from each other from time to time and have a chat to keep the other one updated on many aspects in personal and professional life. And we do so as well for you fans to give you a broader and clearer insight on how things are going for and around Liv. These last months have been especially hard for her because when it seemed as if her life had finally taken a good turn, a fatal tragedy hit her and her family. We are going to analyze with Liv everything that has happened concerning Mario’s death, her next solo album and Theatre of Tragedy. Don’t miss out on this new interview because it won’t leave you indifferent.
By Marc Gutiérrez
EMPIRE MAGAZINE (EM): The most important thing at this moment is asking you how you’re getting along now. How do you feel now after the tragedy involving Mario?
LIV KRISTINE (LK): At first I felt confused, it all went so fast. After a massive heart attack one night, followed by three weeks in a coma and then a stroke, my fiancé passed away only 48 years old. I was by his side through this whole process, moreover, his and my family, including friends, were with him. It just felt so unreal. Mario’s passion was family, friends, music, playing the bass, painting, animals, driving his huge blue Scania truck, touring, cooking. I promised to stay with him until the end as we got the sad news that he would probably never wake up from his coma. I am just so glad that he didn’t suffer from a heart attack being on the highway, driving tons and tons of equipment. It happened close to our home and I could make sure that he got the best help from doctors and surgeons at a hospital nearby. I have been trying to find words for what happened because so many questions turned up: why, why him, why now? Now, two months later, I feel heaven and earth again. And there’s no other answer for me to these questions except from “it was a terrible accident”, full stop. My name is “life” and my way will always be leading into the light.
EM: What about Leon, Laika and Bailey?
LK: It was a catastrophe for my little family, however, this catastrophe happened the way it happened, and it belongs to the past. Now it us, and my family takes day by day, step by step. We still have each other and we embrace each day with confidence, belief in happiness and future wishes, and it’s essential to have an open heart. We have a beautiful home with amazing neighbors in beautiful old-town surroundings. Our families and friends give us all their love and support. I love my work with autistic and abused children/youth and my colleagues are lovely. My next step will be to pass on my knowledge of how to tune into positive thinking, moreover, how to find safe ground and heaven in critical situations, which I say can be found and discovered in one’s inner voice. I want to help people who have experienced extreme situations, like narcissistic violence, abuse, illness, greater loss. This will happen through workshops. I have a tale to tell and together we are stronger!
EM: How was the experience in Russia?
LK: Russia is very special to me. I have been working with the same promoter for over a decade and my audience is so open-hearted and fantastic! I’m always looking forward to going back to Russia, remember, Moscow was the unforeseen last show with Theatre of Tragedy back then. It was very important to me to be back on stage after what happened in my family. It felt liberating and I had such a good time with my lovely band mates.
EM: The concert in Nagold is always very special but I assume this year it might turn into the most emotional concert of your whole career. How do you focus on the show in Nagold?
LK: I am looking so much forward to Nagold. Over the years it has turned into an annual happening. In the little town of German Nagold many of me friend and fans meet, moreover, my fanclubs. Last year some of my closest supporters came all the way from Chile. There’s always an after-show party and we all meet and chat and make a lot of photos and new plans! I have the best fan-clubs in the world, by the way. After my Facebook page with over 200.000 followers disappeared all of a sudden in 2016 (I still don’t know who caused this), I have had to build up everything again around social media. We’ve now reached 20.000 followers, however, I have the same number of responses to my postings as back in 2016. That says a lot and I am so grateful for this.
EM: What can you tell to us about the Nagold setlist? I know it will different than Russia?
LK: I will play one setlist based on my metal releases, moreover, an acoustic show. It’s a double-time show at one night with a break inbetween.
EM: Which musicians will perform with you in Nagold?
LK: I will perform with my solo band. Fantastic guys. Always helpful, supporting excellent friends and musicians! I love them.
EM: Are you planning more shows?
LK: I am planning a new album. Feels like starting from scratch. That’s what my instinct and stomach feeling is telling me to do now. Just start from scratch. Shows will definitely follow. Playing in Russia was a new kick start for me.
EM: Your new album will see the light next year if all goes as planned but can you tell us some more details?
LK: My solo band musicians are already composing new songs. I just want to start all anew. It feels like breathing in fresh air.
EM: Maybe the most special things on the new album will be the lyrics. Are you writing some of them about Mario, life, death, your love…
LK: I want to write lyrics about all the positive things in life that come after sadness, pining, grief and disappointment. I got this tattooed underneath my heart: “courage, dear heart”. I believe that life is what you make it, and I always let love come in. My mother, Liv, is my greatest inspiration to live in the very moment. She’s such a shining, positive person. And my father my biggest protection. I have the best parents in the world.
EM: Have you already decided which record label will release your new solo album? Or did you decide to go for a crowd founding campaign?
LK: I haven’t decided yet. I am free of label contract for the first time in my grown-up life. This feels utterly good. Label people who wanted me to release albums and perform as a copy of myself actually copying Leaves’ Eyes, haven’t understood the essence of my presence in metal. I’ve always been a forerunner for new ideas and highly creative. Why should I copy myself? It’s kind of disrespectful asking me to copy myself after I was kicked out of my own band. I am going my own way with the best band, fans, friends and fan clubs on the world. I don’t need anybody telling me what to do. I’ve lived long enough to know what I want. I look into the future. Full stop.
EM: At now I want to ask you about Theatre of Tragedy. In December 2017 you met with Hein and Lorentz if I’m not mistaken. Could you please tell about this meeting and decisions you made together on a possible Theatre of Tragedy reunion?
LK: The meeting was very emotional for me and actually for everyone. I would like to work with my old band again. I’ve missed them. We talked about the breakup. I now know the real reason for them to part ways with me.
EM: At this moment is there a chance for a Theatre of Tragedy reunion?
LK: Yes, there is. We’ve sorted out what happened in the past. Past is past. We shall look into the future. And that feels good!
EM: Are you thinking / working in any other musical project?
LK: Recently I worked with Ben Blutzukker from Germany who asked me to join in for a cooperation for a song which gives me goosebumps. It feels like going back to Theatre of Tragedy in 1998. I love it.
EM: Recently you were at Audiospezialist Studio with former Leaves’ Eyes Martin Schmidt
LK: Yes, this was for Ben Blutzukker’s composition “Queen of the Night”.
EM: Since one year ago you are in contact with former Leaves’ Eyes members as Chris Lukhaup, Martin Schmidt, old mates in Theatre of Tragedy… what’s your relationship with all of them right now? Why you were in a different ways from all of them, maybe the same person was the guilty?
LK: I am very happy to still be in contact with Martin (first drummer of LE) and Matze (first guitarist of LE) and Chris (first bassist of LE) who all were founding members of Leaves’ Eyes. We all know that Leaves’ Eyes originally was a project including Chris Lukhaup and me. And they all left, or were forced to leave, because of the same reason. Well, the truth is, we always meet twice in life and karma is already working. I really do hope that Theatre of Tragedy can be reanimated. I’ve missed the guys and the conflicts all belong to the past. We must look into the future.
EM: Which ones will be your next contributions?
LK: Next thing is my annual solo concert in Nagold. Then my album.
EM: All your fans send you lovely messages directly to you or through your Fan Clubs around the world. Do you want to tell them something?
LK: Without music and art I would probably have gone crazy. This is what Louise Burgeois said and she is right. Music is so essential to me. We are all in this same sphere, we are friends and supporters and share the same desires for beauty and communication. This is where we meet. Thank you for being there. You are wonderful. And THANKYOU for this interview! See you in Nagold, Germany, 21.12.2018!