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What have you got to say for yourselves…Denmark?

Posted by DINRIL on May 16, 2012

It’s the turn of Denmark to grace Eurovision Blog now so…take it away, Soluna Samay! (You see what we did there?)

Introduce yourself and tell us how you ended up representing Denmark in Eurovision this year!
My name is Soluna Samay and I will be representing Denmark at the Eurovision Song Contest. I was discovered on Facebook by Chief 1 and Remee, two danish songwriters/producers, who were looking for an artist to sing their song at the Danish national final. And I just happened to win! 🙂

Are you looking forward to going to Baku? What can we expect from your stage show?
Yes, very much! It will be a great experience, no matter the outcome! Our stage show will be quite intimate. I have the same band on stage with me as at our national final.

Which of this year’s other entries do you rate?
I think that our neighbour Sweden will definitely be one of the toughest competitors!

Denmark have done pretty well of late, how do you plan to keep up the good work? And does the fact you’re coming to the contest off the back of two top five results leave you with added pressure to do well?
It does add a little pressure. But I will just do my very best. As long as I am myself and concentrate on singing the song (and not the millions of viewers) I think it will go fine. 🙂

Here in the UK Eurovision is regarded by many as a bit of a joke, an attitude which a lot of us are trying to change. How can we get people over here to take it as seriously as the Danes do?
Hard question. I think it’s up to the organizers of the UK national show to present a line-up of serious musicians to the viewers. That way people might get the feeling that it’s more about music than just the “show” and take it more seriously.

Why do you think so many people still love the contest so much even after all this time?
I think it’s just a tradition that people have grown up with. Here in Denmark it’s a family event. It’s probably out of nostalgic reasons that it’s still so popular.

Have you heard the UK entry and what do you think of it, and our somewhat older representative?
I think it’s a lovely song, sung by a true legend! I really hope I get to meet him.

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Posted in Denmark, Eurovision 2012, Eurovision News, Interviews | 1 Comment »

What have you got to say for yourself…Serbia?

Posted by DINRIL on May 13, 2012

Mind your manners everybody, we are in the presence of Eurovision royalty – Serbia’s Zeljko Joksimovic to be precise. Yes, the man who came second in 2004 with the splendid Lane Moje and wrote Bosnia and Herzegovina’s giant-killing Lejla in 2006 returns to the Eurovision stage this year with the similarly fabby Nije Ljubav Stvar – but before he does that he faces the even more fearsome challenge of the Eurovision Blog interview:

So what prompted you to return to the Eurovision stage this year? Eurovision is always challenging for me. It inspires me in some very strange way. And of course, would like to have the best result.

Are you looking forward to going to Baku and what can we expect from your stage show? Yes, I am definitely looking forward to go in Azerbaijan and to see how they will organize the event as I believe that it will be something very very good. From my side, everything will be different then you saw till now , in a way that I am waiting to show you the performance.

Last time you took part in Eurovision you finished second, how do you plan to go one better this year? The song Lane Moje was a big hit, and I do believe that Nije Ljubav Stvar will be even better. Always believe that a good song is the best recipe for success.

What do you plan to do differently this time around, if anything? Many things and we are doing it. First, the song is different, performance will be and promotion of the song of course etc. But you will see very soon.

Which of this year’s other entries do you rate? I think that there are several very interesting songs this year and it will be a strong competition.

Here in the UK Eurovision is regarded by many as a bit of a joke, an attitude which a lot of us are trying to change. How is it regarded in Serbia?
Well, in Serbia people mostly love to watch it, and there are many fans especially after the event in 2008. It is considering as big family TV event and it is.

Why do you think so many people still love it so much even after all this time?
It is always new every year and in the same moment it has a sort of tradition.

Have you heard the UK entry and what do you think of it, and our somewhat older representative? Any chance of some points? (please…..:))
Who knows! But UK representative is known world wide and I wish him all the best at Eurovision stage in Baku.

And finally, tell me why Serbia should have the chance to host Eurovision in 2013 and which city would you choose to host it?
First, the song Nije ljubav stvar is very good song. Second we do want and we are ready to host it and I believe that here in Serbia ESC still means a lot.

Posted in Eurovision 2012, Eurovision News, Interviews, Serbia | 2 Comments »

What have you got to say for yourself…Norway?

Posted by DINRIL on May 7, 2012

Interview season continues apace, and this time it’s Tooji who wants you to stay (did you see what we did there) and read his thoughts on all things Eurovision…

Introduce yourself and tell us how you ended up representing Norway in Eurovision this year!
My name is Tooji Keshtkar, I’m 24 years old, living and working in Oslo, Norway. I’ve been working with music and songwriting for several years now, and it was actually my manager who suggested that I enter the Norwegian Eurovision Contest 2012. I wrote the song “Stay” in collaboration with the swedish producers Peter Bostrøm and Figge Bostrøm, and was voted the winner of the Norwegian Eurovision contest.

Are you looking forward to going to Baku and what can we expect from your stage show?
I’m very excited about going to Baku! Two words to describe my stage performance: “Explosive Joy” 😉

Norway made a shock early exit from the contest last year in the semi-final, how do you plan to change that this year?
My only plan is to give it my all with love and joy, and hope for the very best.

Which of this year’s other entries do you rate?
My main rival is also the one I love the most, Loreen.

Which is your favourite entry from your home country?
Silya. I loved her song Euphoria and her performance and her personality.

There’s a lot of ballads this year; do you think from that point of view Stay will stand out from the pack?
I think definitely that Stay does stand out with its explosiveness and rockin’ beat.

Here in the UK Eurovision is regarded by many as a bit of a joke, an attitude which a lot of us are trying to change. How is it regarded in Norway?
I think that for many years the views and opinions of Eurovision in Norway was very split between “a joke” and “entertainment”. Generally the Norwegians really do make a big deal of Eurovision. Hopefully with the fresh, new and catchy entries we had this year we managed to raise the bar. The voting in Norway was through the roof which is a great achievement and just reflects how many viewers we had.

Why do you think so many people still love it so much even after all this time? I think the concept of “unknowns” is appealing to the majority of our voters. Someone like me, who has little or no experience, but a lot of talent is able to expose themselves and experience something so big. Also the process of the competition, where voters are brought along the entire journey helps them relate to the performers.

Have you heard the UK entry and what do you think of it, and our somewhat older representative? Any chance of some points? (please…..:))
The UK entry “Love will set you free” is a beautiful song, and I have nothing but respect for Mr Engelbert Humperdinck who has a mature and beautiful voice. My ratings I’d prefer to keep to myself for now 😉

And finally, tell me why Norway should have the chance to host Eurovision in 2013 and which city would you choose to host it? Norway is a beautiful country with a lot of amazing culture. I would love to host Eurovision 2013 in Oslo.

 

Posted in Eurovision 2012, Eurovision News, Interviews, Norway | 4 Comments »

What have you got to say for yourself…Latvia?

Posted by DINRIL on April 22, 2012

Not content with singing a Beautiful Song, Latvia’s Anmary now regales Eurovision Blog with some beautiful words. Over to you, lady from a distant 1980…

Introduce yourselves and tell us how you ended up representing Latvia in Eurovision this
year!

I am Anmary and yes, I am representing Latvia in Eurovision Song Contest this year. How did I end up as a representative? Well, Beautiful Song won  Eirodziesma 2012. As easy as that! On the other hand, there was a lot to do to get the ticket to Baku. All the songs were evaluated by the listeners first, and then the Artistic Board had their say, the jury in the semifinal and final made their decisions. I would not be talking to you now if Ivars Makstnieks and Rolands Udris had not written Beautiful Song. And yes, it is in a way the story of my life and dreams, and probably it can draw some parallels with the story of your life as well. How has not and does not dream of becoming famous, doing the things they enjoy the most, meeting their idols?! Tell me about it!

Are you looking forward to going to Baku and what can we expect from your stage show? Will it be similar to that of the national final?

Oh, of course, the whole team is looking forward to going to Baku. We all are excited and working hard to deliver the best performance we can. What regards the stage show… well, I will enter it on a flying carpet… NOT. Just kidding! The performance will be slightly different than you have used to see in the Latvian National selection. I can promise you will enjoy it! I have a good team to rely on. By the way, one of my four back vocalists has already won Eurovision once, back in 2002 when she was supporting Marie N. So, we have our own good luck charm!

Latvia failed to make it out of the semi-final last year, how do you plan to change that this year?

We have a Beautiful Song which has catchy melody and witty lyrics which brings out the hidden sense of humor in anyone who listens to it. It is a song that everyone can easily relate to in their own special way. We promise to spread the good mood and vibes from the scene and we count on the audience to share them with us. Just let the Beautiful song be on your radio, on the tv show and the one that everybody hums. If it goes that way, we will meet on May 26 again!

Which of this year’s other entries do you rate?

There are 42 entries this year. Each and every country has chosen their best song to be their representatives. They have their dreams, hopes and they all are worthy finalists and the winners of the contest. Now knowing what it takes to prepare for the contest, to be the image of the country and to have the responsibility and honor to stand on the big stage in Baku, it would be unfair to point out one or a couple of songs. We all are winners already!

Is your song autobiographical? Were you really born in ‘a distant 1980’, and have you seen the contest from that year featuring Johnny Logan’s winning performance?

Wouldn’t you agree that Rolands Udris has done a great job writing the lyrics? The song is in a way autobiographical. I have been interested in music since I was a child. I studied at the music school, participated in the talent show, and became a vocal teacher herself. And yes, I dare to dream big – and who knows one day you might see me on the same stage with Johnny Logan or even Sir Paul McCartney and Mick Jagger. Every Cinderella knows that with the hard work and positive attitude the expected result will come. Oh, I love What’s Another Year. There is no wonder that song won! Just listen to its lyrics! Such a message!

Here in the UK Eurovision is regarded by many as a bit of a joke, an attitude which a lot of us are trying to change. How is it regarded in Latvia? You had some interesting performances in your national final (am thinking in particular of the Mad Show Boys and the woman dressed as a wedding cake!)

Yes, we had quite a diversity of the performances this year! Everyone was doing their best. People still watch the show, vote for their favorites and comment the result. And most often as in the majority of countries there is a huge discussion if the right song has won. It is good that people talk about it. It just proves that they care.

Why do you think so many people still love it so much even after all this time?

Music makes us feel good. During those three hours of the show every person out of those more than 100 million, can find something for their taste and feel that almost the whole planet share the same heartbeat, the same passion. Latvia is the land that sings. You should visit it when we have the song festivals when several thousands of people gather to sing, and even more watch it and sing along. Music has a magic power of uniting the people, the countries.

Have you heard the UK entry and what do you think of it, and our somewhat older representative? Any chance of some points? (please??)

To my mind, the UK has a great chance to score well this year. Mr Humperdinck has a lovely song, great team behind it, charming stage presence. His voice and the story the song tells are going to open and capture many hearts. Good luck the UK and Mr Humperdinck!

And finally, tell me why Latvia should have the chance to host Eurovision in 2013 and which city would you choose to host it?

Riga is a beautiful city and has already hosted Eurovision once in 2003. There is no doubt that the city and the eventual organizers would be capable of doing it again. But we should not forget that there is a nice town on the coast of the Baltic Sea called Ventspils and it has been an enormous supporter of Eirodziesma and the Latvian delegation at Eurovision for many years already. We could do semifinals in Ventspils and the final in Riga. Oh, daydreaming!

Posted in Eurovision 2012, Eurovision News, Interviews, Latvia | Leave a Comment »

What have you got to say for yourself….Israel?

Posted by DINRIL on March 29, 2012

Oh yes, it’s that time of year again when we ask Eurovision acts across the continent very nicely if they’ll talk to us. While some take no notice, issue a hollow laugh of derision and then take no notice, or demand a fee for their troubles (er, no) others actually quite like the idea, and do indeed take the time to answer our nosy questions. And first out of the bag this year are Israel’s Izabo, who not only deserve a big round of applause for being generally fab, but also for being the first Israeli act ever to face the Eurovision Blog interrogation. Over to the band’s keyboard player Shiri Hadar:

Introduce yourselves and tell us how you ended up representing Israel in Eurovision this year!
We are Izabo! A four piece band including Ran Shem Tov and Myself, Shiri Hadar, we are also husband and wife and just had our new baby girl 4 months ago, called Eli! Ran is the creator of the Music, he produces and Mixes everything aswell as playing Guitar and lead locals. I play keyboard, Jonathan Levi the redhead is our bass player and Nir Manzur is the crazy drummer. we all sing aswell. we are not really sure how we ended up representing Israel this year in the Eurovision to be honest, since its a very suprising choice to take us, being a left field band that are known to be more alternative Musicians. but we were very happy to hear that we were chosen, we believe Eurovision doesn’t have to mean you’re not a good musician. Remember Abba started there!!!! 🙂

Are you looking forward to going to Baku? What can we expect from your stage show?
We are looking forward, and working towards this trip. I think you can expect on the stage show that we will stay Izabo. We are a funk rock band and that is not going to change, we won’t be dancing dressed like clowns, I think being authentic is the most important thing, I hope people will relate.

Israel failed to make it out of the semi-final last year, how do you plan to change that this year?
I can’t say that it will change this year, all i can say is that we are doing our best for that to happen. all we can do is put on the best performance of the song on stage, and again, hope that people will relate to what we are doing.

Which of this year’s other entries do you rate? Since we’ve been working so hard, we didn’t have too much time to go over all the songs.. we really like the Turkish entry. and we know he loves Izabo aswell as he wrote us. England is interesting!

How have your fans reacted to your impending appearance in Eurovision? Have you also found that you now have a lot of new ones? Our fans were like us, suprised at the beginning, but everyone are loving it! everyone loves the song and being so supportive. all the “Music Lovers” around here are supporting us bringing something good to this show.

Ran mentioned in a previous interview that part of his family is from Azerbaijan. Did that influence your decision to represent Israel and will you be getting in touch with your roots while you’re there?
We didn’t know where the Eurovision is this year when we sent the song (hehe we’re not news type of people as you can notice) but when we realized it was amazing. I think it will be very interesting to see what the place looks like and even try and locate the area where Ran’s family grew up in.

You came over here in 2004 after the release of the Morning Hero EP, do you have any plans to play in the UK again?Yes most definitely!!!! We signed with 100% Records over in the UK last year. and a few months ago we released a free 3 track EP, which you could download in our facebook page: http://www.facebook.com/IzaboPage

Our first Single in the UK “I Like It” will be out this May! very excited about it. you can already check out the new video for the song over here:

The whole album “Life is on my side” will be released in the UK May 24th. After that we are planning to be in the UK as much as we will be wanted for!

Here in the UK Eurovision is regarded by many as a bit of a joke, an attitude which a lot of us are trying to change. How is it regarded in Israel? It’s pretty much the same over here in Israel. it’s a shame really. because Eurovision could be a huge celebration of great music from all around the world. I think it used to be that years ago.. but nowdays it’s less about the music…thats what we understand. This is why we believe we are bringing something different to this year’s ESC. Crossing figures that it will stick out and do a great job.

Have you heard the UK entry and what do you think of it, and our somewhat older representative? Any chance of some points? (please…..:)) Well, I don’t think that we will have too much input on the votes from Israel hehe…but i’m sure it will do great this year! We give your our personal vote 🙂

And finally, tell me why Israel should have the chance to host Eurovision in 2013 and which city would you choose to host it? Cause the weather here is the best in Europe? Great food? Amazing beach? All we can do is do our best and hope for the best outcome. either way, we are happy with the experience and with every new Izabo fan that it’s bringing along. it’s all about spreading your Music!!!

Posted in Eurovision 2012, Eurovision News, Interviews, Israel | Leave a Comment »

Just Talk To Us Already: Germany!!

Posted by DINRIL on May 14, 2011

Mind your manners everybody, we are indeed in the presence of Eurovision royalty. Ahead of tonight’s final, your very own Eurovision Blog has managed to grab a brief few moments with Germany’s very own reigning champion Lena, and is utterly chuffed to bits that at least one former winner has been kind and gracious enough to talk to us (are you paying attention, Dana International…..?)

Nice to have you back again after last year’s victory! But tell us, what prompted you to return to defend your Eurovision title? I really wanted to be the German contestant again, since it was so much fun last year. And I also wanted to defend my title in my home country. 🙂

Which of this year’s other entries do you rate / like? My favourites are the ones from Blue (UK), Nina (Serbia), Paradise Oskar (Finland), and of course the Irish twins Jedward! 🙂

Which is your favourite Eurovision entry of all time and which is your favourite from your home country? I’m sorry, I really don’t know…

Here in the UK Eurovision is regarded by many as a bit of a joke (something we are aiming to change this year with our entry). Do you think your victory last year has helped to change people’s perceptions of it in Germany?
Yes, there has been a big party here in Germany after last year’s victory already. And now, since we are this year’s host country, even more people are interested in the contest and they’ll watch and enjoy it.

Have you heard the UK entry and what do you think of it? Is it a bit better than our recent entries or are we going to come last again? Be honest……:) ) I have always been a fan of Blue – I mean, I grew up with them / their music. They are great! And I’m sure you won’t come last this year. 🙂

Posted in Eurovision 2011, Eurovision News, Germany, Interviews | 1 Comment »

Just Talk To Us Already: Greece

Posted by DINRIL on May 13, 2011

Hoping you will watch his dance, so to speak, it’s the very charming Loucas Yiorkas from Greece…

Introduce yourselves and tell us how you ended up representing Greece in Eurovision this year! Hello! I am Loucas Yiorkas and this is Stereo Mike and we are representing Greece at the ESC 2011 with the song “Watch my dance”. EMI, my record company proposed that I entered the pre-selection round which was a big surprise for me and also quite shocking. Mr. Kokkinos, the music producer of the company, had the idea for this collaboration with Stereo Mike. The original idea came from Mr. Liras to create a song combining a Greek folk rhythm (zeimpekiko) and a well know music genre (hip hop) which would make a very interesting sound.  So I took the zeimpekiko part and Stereo Mike took the hip hop part.

Are you looking forward to going to Dusseldorf ? What can we expect from your stage show? We are looking forward to going to Dusseldorf indeed. With regards to the stage show please allow me to keep this as a surprise.

Which of this year’s other entries do you rate? Each country has 3 minutes on stage and anything can happen. There are most definitely some very good songs in this year’s contest.

Which is your favourite Eurovision entry of all time and which is your favourite from your home country? That would probably be “Lane Moja” by Zeljko Joksimovic (Serbia 2004) and from Greece “Die for you” by Antique.

Here in the UK Eurovision is regarded by many as a bit of a joke (something we are aiming to change this year with our entry). How is it regarded in Greece ? For us here in Greece the fact that it is a European contest is regarded as something of high standard.

Why do you think so many people still love it so much even after all this time? I strongly believe that music is an art which brings people together and this is why many people still love it.

What will be the first thing you do if you win?
I think that I ‘ll try to be calm but very very happy in my heart.. I’d rather be spontaneous in my life so I’m trying not to think about this moment but just live it if it comes.

Have you heard the UK entry and what do you think of it? Is it a bit better than our recent entries or are we going to come last again? Be honest……:)
It is actually a very clever choice of performers with a very good song. I believe that Blue CAN win this year’s competition! 🙂

Did you enjoy your recent trip to London to promote the song? I very much enjoyed my trip to London . People seemed to like our song. We have good memories of this trip.

It’s become a bit of a standing joke in Eurovision circles that Greece and Cyprus always give each other 12 points. If you both make it to the final do you think Greece will keep up the tradition? What do you think of the Cypriot entry this year?
Greece and Cyprus are essentially the same nation and pretty much have the same culture. I think that the tradition will probably continue this year as well! 🙂 The Cypriot entry is also an interesting song as it combines Greek and Oriental elements.

And finally, tell me why Greece should have the chance to host Eurovision in 2012 and which city would you choose to host it?
Our song is a music proposition which is a novelty for the Greek and European music. In my opinion, the fusion and perfect marriage of the various music genres is how music advances.
There are many beautiful places in Greece which could host the ESC. It would be a tough choice.

Posted in Eurovision 2011, Eurovision News, Greece, Interviews | Leave a Comment »

Just talk to us already: Lithuania

Posted by DINRIL on May 4, 2011

Who’s this talking to Eurovision Blog? It’s the lovely Evelina Sasenko from Lithuania – and she’s got a lot to talk about….

Introduce yourselves and tell us how you ended up representing Lithuania in Eurovision this year! Well, I’ve been singing solo since I was six – taking part in Lithuania’s most popular TV contest for kids and teenagers and becoming a laureate six times. I’ve performed in a number of music competitions and concerts in various countries and my big break came a couple of years ago when I took part in a popular TV contest for clasiccal singers. Since then, I’m doing concerts, playing in musicals, taking part in TV shows – with repertoire ranging from pop, jazz songs to Edith Piaf or Chopin tributes. Last year I tried to get to Eurovision and finished 3rd in a National selection. And this year I came first. There was no big plan or strategy behind it, frankly, I just felt we had a good song last year and this year, and Eurovision selection is a well-watched show in Lithuania, so it was a good chance to showcase them.

Are you looking forward to going to Dusseldorf? What can we expect from your stage show? I’m looking forward to it impatiently 🙂 There was a lot of tension and preparations, as you can imagine, and now I kind of feel fully prepared mentally and ready to go on that stage. So another two weeks or so is just prolonging the tension. Regarding the stage show – it will be quite similar to to what people saw at the National Lithuanian final. Me and a piano player, no ballerinas, disco balls or stage-diving. However, there might be little extra element which I hope audience will enjoy but I want to keep it a secret at this stage.

Lithuania failed to make it out of the semi-final last year, how do you plan to change that this year? I think you can’t plan a result in Eurovision. It’s a cliché phrase, for sure, but I don’t want to make God laugh at my plans. I don’t really concentrate my attention on thoughts about the result (and I mean it, sincerely, it’s not just a safety net phrase that many artists use in case they fare really badly). I just want to sing my song in the best way possible – if I succeed at that, I’ll be happywhatever the result is.

Which of this year’s other entries do you rate? I kind of dig the French entry. Not saying it’s a masterpiece or anything but it makes me listen and take notice. And the guy singing it is a man of my taste :))

Which is your favourite Eurovision entry of all time and which is your favourite from your home country? Hold On Be Strong by Maria Haukaas Storeng (Norway 2008). And regarding Lithuanian entries – I think Strazdas by Aiste Smilgeviciute (1999). I think it’s a brilliant song, very professional. And I feel it was ahead of its time – Eurovision was just not ready for this kind of folk-infused music. It would have done way better 4 or 5 years later or even now, I guess.

Here in the UK Eurovision is regarded by many as a bit of a joke (something we are aiming to change this year with our entry). How is it regarded in Lithuania? Eurovision is very important for Lithuanians. Musical event of the year, more or less. I’ve been watching it since my childhood although I wouldn’t say I was a die-hard fan of it. Last year it seemed a joke to me, as well – but then again, we had a gimmick song. Winning the ticket changed my attitude considerably – taking a closer look I find there’s a lot of interesting songs/performers here.

Why do you think so many people still love it so much even after all this time? Nostalgia is one thing. I think many people in Western Europe have memories of watching it 30, 40 years ago with their parents and that’s a strong sentiment. Also, you just get used to that. A strange comparison, maybe, but it’s kind of like visiting a church with your family every Sunday. You’ll do it even on days when you don’t necessarily want to pray. People check out Eurovision every year even if they say they don’t like it.

On the other hand, it’s top notch TV entertainment and no one can deny that. It’s dynamic, there’s a competition going on, some great melodies and performances. You can always bet on how your country is going to perform on the scoreboard and see dozens of singers from different countries in front of you, performing their songs which often feature a special twist somehow connected to the country’s culture and tradition. What’s not to like?

What will be the first thing you do if you win? I’ll visit a church.

Have you heard the UK entry and what do you think of it? Is it a bit better than our recent entries or are we going to come last again? Be honest……:) A memorable, catchy pop tune, and certainly better than some of the predecessors. Would be surprised if this came last. Many people know, love and remember Blue (although I’m sure they have their haters, too, just like every act that achieved chart success). No, seriously – I think in case of internationally established acts taking part in Eurovision, song is not what matters the most. And that can be great for the act but it can also be really bad. If you hated the act before Eurovision, I’m afraid no performance can change your opinion and vice versa – sometimes a well-known act can get away with pretty much anything. The thing about Eurovision predictions – I find them quite useless. Remember how everyone thought t.A.T.u were going to win. I mean, even if UK was represented by Take That feat. Paul McCartney (well, there can be six of them), could you REALLY be 100 per cent sure about your victory?

And finally, tell me why Lithuania should have the chance to host Eurovision in 2012 and whichcity would you choose to host it?

The city? Rudiskes. Joking, that’s a little town I grew up in. Well, it obviously should be Vilnius,the capital. We have a great, modern arena, nice hotels and everything that’s needed to stage Eurovision.

2012? That would mean I’d need to win this year, right? Well, that’s for the audience and juries to decide. But seriously, besides music, Lithuania should be given a chance as I feel everyone who comes over would enjoy it here. Beautiful nature, warm-hearted and friendly people, beautiful architecture, good restaurants, tasty food and drinks that are also very cheap– a perfect place to party or to relax that Europe needs to see. And Lithuanians would manage to stage a great show – no matter what stereotypical thinking about former Soviet/Eastern European countries sometimes is.

Posted in Eurovision 2011, Eurovision News, Interviews, Lithuania | Leave a Comment »

Just talk to us already: Romania

Posted by DINRIL on April 28, 2011

Enough with Jedward and their Sexy Utility Vehicle already. Let us restore some sanity to this blog, in the shape of the first ever Romanian entrant to take on the Eurovision Blog interview. All hail – Romanian Dave! Who is actually from Newcastle. But you get our drift….

Introduce yourselves, and Dave, tell us how a chap from Newcastle ended up representing Romania in Eurovision this year? Well I came to Romania as a missionary volunteer to help orphaned children and children with disabilities which during this period i met my girlfriend and decided to stay. After some time i was found singing in a karaoke bar by a friend of mine who offered me a job singing every week in a local shopping centre. This lead to meeting Gabriel Baruta who heard about an English singer in Oradea and I was offered to join his band Hotel FM. Together we competed into the most important international festival and song contest organized in Romania called CERBUL DE AUR (The Golden Stag) where we arrived into the semi final. After some period of being together Gabi had written a song for Eurovision which I found perfect for my voice and asked if he was interested in going to compete in the Romanian Eurovision preselection and he agreed. So that in 2010 we arrived on 2 place from jury and 7th place from public which brought us into 4th place in the final – winners being Paula Seling and Ovi. Again this year I asked if he was interested in going back and he agreed, this time we were glorious and won the National ESC Final.

Are you looking forward to going to Dusseldorf? What can we expect from your stage show? Yes I’m looking forward to Dusseldorf – I can’t imagine any artist in the competition, who isn’t :)) Our show will be very similar to our national final show as we don’t want to complicate things:))

Which of this year’s other entries do you rate? I rate Bosnia and Herzegovina as a wonderful piece along side Denmark and Finland. Everybody seems to be going towards this club scene lately and I think we should try to save some of the real music as much as possible before we loose it all and the world turns into computerised voices and effects :)))

Which is your favourite Eurovision entry of all time and which is your favourite from your home country? My favourite entry of all time must be Waterloo of course :)) I honestly cannot say I remember a good song from the UK :))

Here in the UK Eurovision is regarded by many as a bit of a joke (something we are aiming to change this year with our entry) How is it regarded in Romania? Yes as an Englishman I know myself how the English look at things and before I entered into the competition, I used to think the same and wasn’t too interested in the whole Eurovision thing :)) But now as a competitor it changed the way I think about it, and now my eyes are opened to just how big the competition is for singers. Maybe for us Brits it’s an old competition but for most of Europe and the singers competing its actually a huge way of getting noticed, and for foreign bands to get known. :)) Most artists around Europe are trying to get a foot into the UK and American market to start their career on a bigger level, which seems very hard to do these days, but with Eurovision they can be seen by the whole world which managers and music production labels etc etc maybe watching who may offer some kind of contract etc to help them further their career and move up the ladder in the music world and to try crack the UK and America or the world :)) In Romania the Eurovision isn’t such a big deal like the Swedish people for eg, but it’s watched by a large number of people :))

Why do you think so many people still love it so much even after all this time?  Well because it’s entertaining and the world is at war, (WHOSE COUNTRY HAVE THE BEST SINGERS ETC).. people are very nationalist and when their country wins they grow 10 feet tall :)) But this is only how I think things are and it is still a very competetive show with Europe’s best singers, Why shouldn’t it still be watched?

What will be the first thing you do if you win? If I win ill probably pass out first , then I’ll drink a beer or 2 after coming to to celebrate as for the last 8 months I’ve been on strict no drinking alcohol schedule :)) then I’ll begin planning on the next steps to get on some shows in the UK to try promote Hotel FM :))

  I’ve heard the UK entry and of course the UK have a great chance of winning this year with Blue, they sing well, the song is commercial and radio friendly and could sell well after Eurovision. People say it was a death sentence for them coming on Eurovision but I actually think it will revive them from their sleep that they have had over the last 10 years. I wish the UK good luck but I’m sure this year you dont need it :))

And finally, tell me why Romania should have the chance to host Eurovision in 2012 and which city do you think it should be held in? Well I think Romania has proven over the last years that they do have good artists and this year our song has a strong message, its a very positive song with a happy go feel to it 🙂 Also Romania have never won the Eurovision before so it would be an honour as an Englishman to bring here the trophy.

Romania has had it tough over the years and I think and it would be great for Europeans to come to Romania to finally see how Romania truly is but the most important fact is that we believe in our song and we believe in ourselves :)) If the Eurovision comes to Romania in 2012 I think it should be made in Bucharest the capital. Finally I wish all the contestants good luck and may the best song win :))

Posted in Eurovision 2011, Eurovision News, Interviews, Romania | Leave a Comment »

Just talk to us already: Serbia

Posted by DINRIL on April 23, 2011

Let’s give a warm welcome to Nina, the first ever Serbian participant to tackle the Eurovision Blog interview. Young lady, we salute you (and your song’s not half bad either!)

Introduce yourself and tell us how you ended up representing Serbia in Eurovision this year!
Hi, my name is Nina and I am ordinary girl from Belgrade, student and singer. This year is magical year for me, as I ended up as Serbian representative on this year Eurovision Song Contest. This is big honor for me and I will try my best on Düsseldorf stage. I was selected on National Contest in Belgrade, after composer Christina Covac decided that I should be the voice for her fantastic composition called “Magical”.

Are you looking forward to going to Düsseldorf? What can we expect from your stage show?  Yes I am, really looking forward to this year Contest. My stage show will be very similar as the one that won Serbian Contest. It is retro, cheerful, fun.

Which of this year’s other entries do you rate? I rate all entries, really I do. Congratulations to all participants from Serbia and myself.

Which is your favorite Eurovision entry of all time and which is your favorite from your home country? Of course that I admire group ABBA and also I do think that Marija Serifovic from Serbia who won ESC 2007 is the best our song of all time.

Here in the UK Eurovision is regarded by many as a bit of a joke (something we are aiming to change this year with our entry). How is it regarded in Serbia? I think that some things are changing globally considering Eurovison. In last 10 years stage show was as much important as the songs. I believe that some new wave is coming up and that quality of the songs is now days something to consider and that is good.

Why do you think so many people still love it so much even after all this time?
Eurovision Song Contest has its specific charm and long tradition. It is unique and it is family TV show for all generation.

What will be the first thing you do if you win? Well I did not thought about it but I presume that I would share that emotion with my beloved ones.

Have you heard the UK entry and what do you think of it? Is it a bit better than our recent entries or are we going to come last again? Be honest……:) Yes, it is definitely better and I wish you all success and good results in final.

And finally, tell me why Serbia should have the chance to host Eurovision again in 2012 and which city would you choose to host it? Well, Serbia is changing on better every year. Belgrade is beautiful and it is capital of the country. Of course, maybe we could consider Novi Sad as host as well. We love to host big shows in our country and I just can say that it would be amazing to do it again after just 4 years.

Posted in Eurovision 2011, Eurovision News, Interviews, Serbia | Leave a Comment »