Andreas Lundstedt, 35, who achieved international success as a member of Swedish disco foursome Alcazar told gay lifestyle magazine QX that he had tested positive for the virus several years ago.
Rumours that he was infected had been circulating in music circles for a number of years, but until now Lundstedt had kept his diagnosis to himself. He told QX that he was revealing his status now because “I feel I am at the right stage in my life.”
Lundstedt is the first Swedish entertainment star since the eighties to admit publicly to being HIV positive. He said the strain of the virus with which he was infected is not as aggressive as some other strains.
“I’m lucky in that I don’t need to swallow masses of tablets,” he said, adding:
“I feel great. This is nothing that affects my daily life.”
The singer said he did not know who infected him and had never felt a need to know. He told his then-boyfriend immediately following the diagnosis.
None of Lundstedt’s partners since then have been infected, including current partner Mattias, he said. Among his ex-boyfriends is former Alcazar band-mate Magnus Carlsson.
While insisting that “as a human being you have no obligation to share things with the entire Swedish population that only really concern oneself,” he hoped that his admission would “show people a face of someone with HIV.”
“I know that there are more people in my industry who have it, and it’s just a shame that it’s a taboo issue,” he said.
Among the international singing stars to have gone public as HIV positive are Andy Bell of eighties pop group Erasure. George Michael recently said in a British TV interview that fear had prevented him having an HIV test since 2004.
Lundstedt has been praised for his openness by representatives from politics and showbusiness:
“It’s very sad to hear that Andreas is HIV positive. He is brave – we must support him,” said leader of the opposition Social Democrats, Mona Sahlin, to Expressen.
Pop star Alexander Bard, the brains behind Alcazar, said Lundstedt was a “very brave guy.”
Singer and one-time Eurovision winner Charlotte Perrelli, who has been touring with Lundstedt, said she was upset.
“I think he’s the world’s most wonderful person,” she told Expressen.
Alcazar enjoyed international success with hits including Crying and the Discotheque, Sexual Guarantee and Sinner Not a Saint. Lundstedt has also enjoyed a successful career in Sweden as a solo artist and musical star.