RTSH are currently working on the shortlist of the songs and artists that will compete in the upcoming Festivali i Këngës—the Albanian national selection. As we wait for the Albanians to reveal their shortlist. I’m sure you are all dreaming about the acts we’d like to hear sing for Albania at Eurovision 2015. What Albanian artist pops into my head? Elhaida Dani!
When she was just 16 years old, she entered the talent show Star Academy and won! She took her 15 minutes and ran with it, winning several song competitions in her home country and abroad.
I was introduced to this precocious talent when she entered the 50th annual Festivali i Këngës in 2011. She debuted with the ballad Mijëra vjet, which, unfortunately, failed to sway the Albanian jury members. She didn’t get any points from them. Sad. But she was only 18 years old at the time and, despite the very classy performance, she did need a stronger song.
Elhaida Dani performed at Festivali i Këngës 52 as a guest performer.
In 2012, Elhaida covered the Albanian 2012 Eurovision entry Suus at a festival in Romania. What a performance! At the age of 19 she brought magic to an already magical song. Dramatic, emotional and sophisticated! Don’t forget she sang Rona’s song live.
Elhaida Dani performed Suus live at a festival in Romania.
In 2012, Elhaida entered the major music festival Top Fest with the song S’je më and—no surprise here— she won it.
Elhaida performing at Top Fest 2012.
In 2013, Elhaida entered the first season of The Voice of Italy. It was a very emotional time for Elhaida’s parents, as their 19-year-old won the show, giving her an even bigger platform on which to build her career.
With all the success of winning the first edition of The Voice of Italy, Elhaida released a pop song called Baciami e basta.
Elhaida displays her lovely unique voice in her very first Italian single at the age of 20. She’s a superstar in the making!
Eurovision popular in Albania?
I’m afraid not. Eurovision is not popular in the Land of Eagles, but Elhaida Dani could give it fresh appeal. Who wouldn’t love this amazing young talent? I hope that Elhaida has entered a song for Festivali i Këngës 53 as I can see her taking the Festival i Këngës trophy and representing Albania in Vienna for the 60th anniversary. I believe Elhaida Dani has got what it takes to win the Eurovision Song Contest and give Albania its first win. Roll on, Elhaida!
Photo: Courtesy of Elhaida Dani
Would you like to see Elhaida Dani representing Albania in the future?