As promised I’m kicking off a series of interviews we had with a couple of artists at last week’s event in Amsterdam. I’ve been able to go and interview participating artists at the three most recent editions for Belgian website www.eurosong.be and now you can find them on here as well. We managed to get 10 artists in front of the camera & I’ll publish two per day. Today: Macedonia & Netherlands!!
First up today is Kaliopi from Macedonia – they were quite explicit about using that name. Next to Engelbert Humperdinck this must be the most experienced name in the field this year and the woman simply oozes charm. Quite insecure about her English but still monologueing her breath away – she’s something else. Her performance at night was pretty standard I’d say, I think she’s saving the Big Guns for Baku.
And next up is Joan Franka. Now, because we went to Amsterdam for Belgian website www.eurosong.be and digital Belgian tv channel Ment TV the interview is in Dutch. A lot of you won’t be able to follow so I’ve written out the transcript below for your ease. Joan was, as was to be expected from those down-to-earth Dutch, a pleasure to talk to: very much herself, not too bothered with the ESC circus at all. The performance at night was pretty standard as well but someone should do something about her questionnable styling. Tim Gunn, are you free the last two weeks of May?
Dimivision: Joan, only one feather today?!
JF: Yeah, I just plucked this one out and left the rest of the headgear at home.
Dimivision: Now, I read somewhere the feathery headgear was made in a bridal shop, is that right?
JF: True, I found it in a shop somewhere because apparently brides are getting married in it…
Dimivision: So it wasn’t custom made at all?
JF: No, I just happened to be lucky enough to find it!
Dimivision: Speaking of cowboy and indians – the act from the national final raised a lot of talking, will you adapt it come Baku?
JF: Hm, I don’t know. I normally do what I want anyway, I don’t really care that much about what people have to say. I’m not really allowed to elaborate on what we’re planning for Baku but I’m just going to do what feels right to me.
Dimivision: So network TROS hasn’t really got a say in it?
JF: I don’t mean for it to come across in a jerky kind of way, I just really want to expression my own vision and emotion…
Dimivision: And right you are! The jury wasn’t exactly extatic in NSF and at the end of May it’s 50% jury votes as well, does that worry you?
JF: Not really because you never know. It was the televoting that got me the ticket to Baku and that was the most beautiful achievement really, there was national vibe which was really cool. I’m not all that worried about Baku, I’m just going to sing my song and we’ll see what happens…
Dimivision: The Netherlands haven’t exactly been peaking at Eurovision in the last couple of years and this year you’re in a semi with a lot of eastern European countries, are you afraid it could work to your disadvantage that the Netherlands don’t have that geographical argument?
JF: Well, every year people are saying that some countries have got this voting pact going on but I hope and believe people will vote for the songs they like and I just hope they’ll like mine.
Dimivision: Speaking of which, did you check out the competition yet?
JF: I did actually, I listened to every single one of them and there are a lot of great songs there – I hate to admit it, but there are a lot of them! It’s going to be an exciting competition I feel.
Dimivision: And who would you vote for then?
JF: A bit silly to admit of course but I really like the Swedish song, it pops up n my head all the time which drives me crazy because it’s not supposed to be in my head! But it’s just a great song. It’s really now, it’s dance but it’s not cheesy or wrong – it’s really cool! Very annoying, haha!
Dimivision: As long as you don’t start singing it on stage in Baku you’ll be fine! You received a lot of negative feedback, how do you deal with that?
JF: I don’t really care, I did what I felt like doing and as long as I’m comfortable I don’t really care what anyone has to say. I’m in my body and whatever people have to say about the way I dress up doesn’t really hit home.
Dimivision: And do you believe Eurovision has this kind of stigma you’ll be carrying with you the rest of your professional carreer?
JF: As long as you don’t get pushed around and just do what you want to do I don’t think that’s really important, but if it happens to be that way because I’m only being me then so be it – I’m not all that fussed…
A levelheaded look on stardom for ya! A delight to talk to I have to say.
Tomorrow: Slovenia & Hungary!