We’ve found a new pop idol. Her name’s Sigrid, and she wears mam jeans

Are We There Yet?: As Taylor Swift was too angry and scantily clad, we needed a replacement

Sigrid: Does she wear normal clothes? Yes! Photograph: Getty Images

It was International Women’s Day on Thursday. (Obligatory explainer: International Men’s Day will happen on the November 19th. Promise.) I had all sorts of events and happenings on the day, but the biggest thing that happened this week for the little women in my house was discovering a new female pop idol.

I’ve been looking for someone new for a while. It all came to head back when Taylor Swift announced she’d be playing in Croke Park this summer. I immediately began remortgaging the house to pay for tickets to her concert for myself and my two daughters for their Christmas present. Luckily before I completed the deal I realised that bagging tickets to the concert was much more about me than it was about them.

Haters gonna hate etc, but even though I've been told by people much more "woke" why Taylor is "problematic", I can't help being a fan. I like her songs. I like her lyrics. I admire her talent and ambition. I must have watched it 100 times, but the video for her song Best Day still makes me cry.

I had, though, begun to wonder if she was suitable as a pop idol for my nearly nine-year-old daughters. Nothing against Taylor, but maybe they were too young for her 2018 self.


"She's very angry, mum," they told me the first time they heard Are You Ready For It? which is off the new album. Nothing wrong with righteous anger, I told them, but it made me think.

Not very many clothes

Discussing Taylor’s impending gig with a friend who has girls the same age, it became clearer.

“I just don’t want them looking at her dancing suggestively in not very many clothes,” said my friend. “I mean, I don’t mind what she does, and I think she looks and sounds great, but I want to let them be kids as long as they can be kids. Unfortunately, Taylor and lots of the other singers are just too grown up for them.”

I took her point about the clothes. Bananarama wore jeans while dancing on Top of the Pops, but you don't see that much anymore. (Yes, I'm a granny. I just got my first pair of reading glasses – €4 thanks ,Tiger – Leave me alone).

I’d like a pop idol for my daughters that wears what in our house we call “practical” clothes. Like the grey trousers the girls wear as part of their school uniform. Or jeans and jumpers. Hoodies and tracksuits.

Clothes that are comfortable and allow the wearer to take part in a multitude of activities, from kitchen-dancing to tree-climbing to sledding. And that’s where Sigrid comes in.

Ah, Sigrid. I read one article about her and then went about diligently researching/stalking her on Twitter to see if she would fit the bill as our new family-approved pop star.

Two brilliant tunes

First of all, the crucial question: were her songs any good?

Yes! Strangers and Don't Kill My Vibe – two brilliant tunes, with no awkward-to-explain lyrics – are the ones we currently have on a loop.

Does she wear normal clothes?

Yes! Maybe because she grew up in a cold climate she seems to favour what I believe are known as Mam Jeans and various cosy, colourful stylish yet practical outfits.

Other info: She’s from the village of Alesund, Norway. She has a brother called Telief, a sister called Johanne, and a dead cat called Sala. (I know way too much about this 21-year-old).

My daughter has asked me can she give the final verdict.

“What I like about Sigrid is even though she’s from Norway, she sings in English perfectly. Her songs start off all soft and then go all wacky in the chorus. And she dances in her own style like she doesn’t care what anybody thinks. That’s very cool.”

The very cool Sigrid is playing in The Academy in Dublin on March 23rd. See you there.

Some things to do with children this weekend...

The Magic Bookshop
A magical show for ages five and over: "Peter and John work at the new arrivals desk. Great heaps of books have to be sorted and categorised and sometimes sent to the dreaded shredder. The two friends do their very best to make sure every book gets a new life and that none of the magic is lost." Step inside this unusual shop, swap a book and and maybe even take a little of the magic home with you. Organisers ask that you bring a gently used book to swap.
Where The Pavilion Theatre, Dún Laoghaire
When Saturday, March 10th, 12.30pm, 2.15pm and 4pm
Cost €8.50/€6.50
Contact 01-231 2929

The Magic Bookshop: swap a book and and maybe even take a little of the magic home with you

The Lion King
Spend a morning with this movie, a Disney classic starring Simba who "just can't wait to be king" and a timeless message of courage. loyalty and hope. With the vocal stylings of a stellar cast including Matthew Broderick, Jeremy Irons and James Earl Jones.
Where Ramor Theatre, Virginia, Co Cavan
When Saturday, March 10th, 11.30am
Cost Tickets are €5
Contact 049-8547074

Storytelling: Monsters, Warriors and Heroes and Legends
Seachtain na Gaeilge, which is actually a fortnight, a fact I love, is still going on so make the most of this thrilling bilingual event with stories and myths about monsters and warriors told through Irish and English. Your storyteller for the event is the talented Seosamh Ó Maolalaí.
Where National Museum, Archaeology, Kildare Room, Ground floor
When Sunday, March 11th, 2018, 3pm (Time to be confirmed)
Cost Free but booking is required
Contact 01-6486332, educationarch@museum.ie

Glass Workshop
Creative children will love getting their hands on some glass at this exciting (and safe!) workshop with Róisín de Buitléar the museum's artist in residence. Materials are provided, and booking is required.
WhereNational Museum, Decorative Arts and History, Collins Barracks
When Sunday, March 11th, 2.30pm
Cost Free but booking is required
Contact 01-6777444