Yet another Eurovision hopeful, this time it's Austrian entry Zoë who faces the questions about her career, Eurovision chances and the like. Although she is 19 years old, she has already released a debut album simply entitled 'Debut' and her Eurovision song 'Loin d'ici' comes directly from said album.
Despite her being Austrian she opted to sing in French, which in itself is quite unique but not as unique as her music per se. Yet for such a young musician, to see her album reached #5 in the Austrian charts is remarkable, so we're yet to see what she can really offer us. Previously she attempted to represent Austria last year but only managed third place, so to see her win this time and head to Sweden in May is a fairy tale come true.
As Zoë looks ahead to her inaugural Eurovision performance at the first semi final, GMA wants to stress that only ten countries can progress from each of the two semi-finals and join the big 5 (UK, Italy, Spain, France & Germany) plus Sweden. The last time Austria won the Eurovision Song Contest was back in 2014 when Conchita Wurst set the world alight with her infectious 'Rise Like A Phoenix' and just like ABBA, became a success overnight. Last year Austria qualified for the final only to finish the final on nul points, so Zoë will almost certainly want to avoid the same fate - perhaps even going on to win Eurovision for Austria for the third time!
For Zoë, she is is "really happy and grateful" to be representing Austria at the Eurovision Song Contest 2016, adding that it is also "like a dream is come true", so clearly she is looking forward to it. Now clearly participants have their own ways of preparing for special occasions like this, more importantly is how to contain their excitement, so how did she do this when learning the news that she had won the 'Wer singt für Österreich' competition?
Well for her "it was so overwhelming! You know, it was the second attempt and I could not believe it..it took some time until I realized it!", of course this is just one of the hurdles till Eurovision and the biggest hurdle yet to jump over is the Semi-Final, so with last year's result for Austria being abysmal, is she nervous or excited about the prospect of overturning Austria's misfortune? "I am excited, I can’t hardly wait to be in Stockholm and to perform on stage. Well, yes there is some pressure, of course, but I will do my best and I am really motivated to make my country proud".
To help Zoë get into the Finals, if you are able to vote in the semi-final (only France, Sweden or Spain), then send your vote her way. Your vote can make the difference to whether she makes the final or goes home. Check out her song below:-
What with Eurovision welcoming new countries over the years, some not geographically European such as Israel and Morocco and some like Australia who despite are in this edition, were invited as a guest last year, can we see more non-traditional countries entering?
Well Kazakhstan applied for EBU membership, so we might see them next year. But what does Zoë think about this expansion?
"I think it’s great that Australia participates again and it would be awesome to see other non European countries participating, too. I mean the Eurovision Song Contest is followed by millions of people and has fans all over the world. I could imagine to see Asian countries and countries from Latin America bringing their music on the Eurovision stage, why not?"
Well this year China tried to apply but was denied by the EBU, what with Zoë wanting to see Asian and Latin American countries taking part, along with Iceland's Greta wanting the Faroe Islands to participate, it would seem that the Eurovision Board will need to consider these wishes because clearly there is opportunities to push and market the Eurovision brand worldwide.
Naturally Eurovision enables bands and artists to showcase their wonderful songs and rejoice in unison through music, speaking of which, what does Zoë's song 'Loin D'ici' mean? Well simply put it "is a song about a journey to an imaginary paradise – a place where everyone is happy singing and dancing. It’s not a physical place, more a state of mind. The song is meant to radiate positive vibes to put a smile on the faces of those who listen to it!"
So does Zoë have any parting words? Of course!
"Hey dear readers! I'm really looking forward to the Eurovision 2016 and I cant wait to be on stage and sing Loin d'ici for you! If you like my song and feel happy after listening to it, then of course, I'd be honoured if you vote for me! Kisses from Austria, your ZOË."
Eurovision Semi-Final dates:-
#1 - 10th May
#2 - 12th May
The ESC 2016 Final is on the 14th May.
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Eurovision Song Contest