Icelandic actress Ragga Ragnars who portrayed Gunnhild in the popular historical fantasy drama Vikings has starred in a music video released by Icelandic cinematic pop artist Ragnar Ægir as part of his debut single “The Surface” which premiered on February 18.
The reel shows the actress walking into the icy Atlantic Ocean in a red bathing suit on a beach close to Reykjavik, the Icelandic capital, one of the scenes in the music video.
“When I first heard the song and heard the storyline of the music video, I immediately got excited to jump into the freezing cold Atlantic Ocean. I have always lived my life to the fullest and decided early on that I would never look back and think ‘I wish I had’ and I feel like that has driven me to do a lot of really amazing things,” Ragga said in an interview.
The music video narrative follows the actress through the cold streets of Reykjavik and during a normal work day at an office job.
Stressed and unfulfilled by her work, the protagonist ends her workday blowing off some steam with a swim at the local swimming hall, fitting for Ragga who herself is a two-time Olympic swimmer and an Icelandic champion and record holder many times over.
The next day, instead of showing up at the office, she decides it’s time to get unstuck, and impulsively takes a dip into the icy Atlantic Ocean, giving her a short escape from her corporate job and a great feeling of freedom and satisfaction.
“I feel like ‘The Surface’ is a great reminder to those people who feel stuck or lost, that it’s more than okay to let loose and live. I had a blast (and quite frankly, a freeze) shooting the music video. The team was so amazing to work with and I enjoyed the days on set immensely,” Ragga said.
“I wanted to do a video that would capture that feeling of desperation when you become so uncertain about the path you’ve chosen,” Ragnar said about his debut single.
The theme relates back to the songwriter’s own personal experience of finally nurturing his creative side by writing music after years of only focusing on his technology startup.
“I’ve been into the icy water, and now there is no turning back,” he added.
Ragnar said every creative decision he makes is influenced by his home country and the creatives it has released into the world.
Being inspired by his family, science and the world around him, Ragnar shared that he sees it as his musical aim to create Icelandic music that’s emotive, cinematic and works with beautiful footage of Iceland’s scenery, especially the rough sea lines.
“There is nothing more magical for me than the sea. I grew up with the Atlantic coastline on my doorstep. The sound of the sea is one continuous roar, heavy, deep, dark, somber. At its height you feel it come from the earth beneath your feet. I grew up listening to this composition, my great-uncle calling it ‘the opera of the sea,’ ‘the expression of the bleeding dawn sky,’ and the ‘voice of god in nature’,” Ragnar said.