roxette

Roxette singer who featured on Pretty Woman soundtrack dies aged 61

The Swedish singer had a 17-year long battle with cancer

Jenni McKnight

Roxette singer Marie Fredriksson – who famously sang the hit power ballad It Must Have Been Love, which featured in the Pretty Woman soundtrack – has sadly died at the age of 61. Confirming the news in a statement, her management revealed that the Swedish musician "passed away in the morning of 9 December, following a 17-year long battle with cancer." Her bandmate, Per Gessle, added: "Time goes by so quickly. It's not that long ago we spent days and nights in my tiny apartment in Halmstad, listening to music we loved, sharing impossible dreams. And what a dream we eventually got to share!"

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Marie's bandmate Per Gessle paid a touching tribute to his friend

He added: "Thank you, Marie, thanks for everything. You were an outstanding musician, a master of the voice, an amazing performer. Thanks for painting my black and white songs in the most beautiful colours. You were the most wonderful friend for over 40 years. I’m proud, honoured and happy to have been able to share so much of your time, talent, warmth, generosity and sense of humour. All my love goes out to you and your family. Things will never be the same."

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Her management also paid a heartfelt tribute, saying in a statement: "Marie leaves us a grand musical legacy. Her amazing voice - both strong and sensitive - and her magical live performances will be remembered by all of us lucky enough to witness them. But we also remember a wonderful person with a huge appetite for life, and woman with a very big heart who cared for everybody she met."

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Marie was diagnosed with a brain tumour in 2002

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Marie was first diagnosed with a brain tumour in 2002, after collapsing in her kitchen following a workout. The tumour left her blind in one eye, with limited hearing and mobility - but after three years of "aggressive" treatment, she returned to public life and toured successfully again with Roxette from 2008 to 2016. However, the cancer eventually returned – earlier this week, Marie's family said she had died following a recurrence of "her previous illness". The singer's funeral will take place in silence with only her closest family present.

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