Ten contestants competed in the Polish Eurovision final, but Magdalena still managed to walk away with 44% of the vote. Now Eurovision fans have their fingers crossed that she can win Eurovision in a landslide, too. Magda recently spoke with Wiwi about singing in Polish, femininity and her role on the Polish TV show “Name That Tune.”
Could you briefly describe the message or story of your song “Jestem”?
The song ”Jestem” depicts a woman who is an unattainable object of a man’s affection. However, the sphere of sexuality is accompanied by the image of the self-confident woman with a high level of self-esteem. Another meaning of this composition is implied in the title. ”Jestem” means ”I am” — now it is my time [Laughs.]
You recently released an English-language version of “Jestem” for promotional purposes. Why have you chosen to sing the song in Polish at Eurovision?
My song was written in Polish. I had not expected I would be honored to represent Poland at Eurovision, so it was not until I won the Polish Finals that I began to think about the language of my performance. I wanted to listen to the English version so that I could make a comparison. To make matters worse, some unexpected events turned everything upside down. Consequently, I listened to my intuition and chose the Polish version which had seemed the most appropriate one from the very beginning. My decision was in line with my fans’ opinion. By the way, during my visit to Amsterdam, I heard my foreign fans singing the refrain of ”Jestem” and then I thought it was the right decision. As a matter of fact, it is one of my first songs performed in Polish. My previous album was recorded fully in English. That sounds like a paradox, doesn’t it? Perhaps it is the best solution. Furthermore, the Polish audience would like to hear the Polish language at the Eurovision.
Was 2011 the first time you entered the Eurovision contest in Poland? What made you want to enter the contest this year?
It was not for the first time that I wanted to enter for the National Finals. As a matter of fact, I had been trying for years but to no avail. Now I know that I have had to wait for my turn and I am still happier. I have also realized the fact that one should never give up one’s attempts even if there are numerous obstacles on the way to success.
You won by a huge margin at the Polish contest. Why do you think your song appealed to voters in Poland so much?
To be honest, I have no idea. I’m not in a position to judge, but it’s a huge success and it’s hard to overstate my satisfaction.
Poland has not made it past the semi-finals at Eurovision since 2008. Do you feel pressure to do well for your country?
I’m trying not to think about pressure. I just want to do my best but I have no influence upon the rest.
Have you set a goal for yourself at this big international contest?
I will achieve my goal if the audience warmly receives my performance. It is of vital importance because we, the artists, exist for our audiences and it is for them that we keep creating. Of course, I would really love Poland to reach for the greatest success.Dreams are really worthwhile!
Your music video is very sexy! Were you happy with how it came out?
I’m really pleased with how it has come out and I’m grateful to everybody who has worked on this video clip. Although we had neither time nor money, we succeeded in creating something out of nothing.
Can you give us any hints about your stage performance in Germany?
My performance is going to be different from the one the Polish audience remember from the National Finals. The team composition will be changed and the whole show will be made more feminine in nature.
Some web sites say that you are also know as “Lady Tullo” in Poland. Where did this name come from?
It was just an episode in my life. Tullo comes from my surname Tul. It is what it used to sound like. The surname could have been of Italian roots. Unfortunately the nickname didn’t gain popularity in Poland and people kept saying Lady Tul [laughs]. Soon I realized that I was known and recognized by most people thanks to the TV show Jaka to melodia (Name That Tune) as Magdalena Tul. So I thought it was pointless to use the nickname although it was used during one stage of my career when I released my first album as Lady Tullo.
In addition to that TV show, you’ve appeared in a number of theater productions Do you think these experiences help you as a singer?
Of course they do. It was in the theatre that I learned how to behave on stage before the audience and how to work with text. I also picked up some acting skills and learned how to make singing and dancing go together well. I also developed my interest in the bigger forms of music. Working in television taught me how to work with the camera and immensely broadened my knowledge of music literature.
Who are your musical inspirations and what kind of music do you generally listen to?
I’d rather not divide music into genres because I perceive it as one entity. I keep listening to various kinds of music including classical compositions, jazz and hard rock.My choice depends on my mood. As a matter of fact, music is a mix of everything and each genre has the same origins. I love Chaka Khan, Michael Jackson, Miles Davis, James Brown….and loads of others.
Which musical artists in Poland do you look up to?
I do not regularly follow what is going on in the world of music. There are more and more gifted artists. My list of the most respected and renowned Polish artists includes Kayah, Mieczyslaw Szczelniak and Natalia Kukulska. The list of foreign artists is endless: from the names included in the previous question to Riahnnia or Beyonce.
Is there anything you want Europe to know about you that they don’t know already?
It is mainly the matters connected with the Eurovision that people are familiar with, but I bet they know very little about my dreams. I dream of having a small music corner where I could do something that I really love doing—create music and give concerts. One day , I’d like to create a music dance show. I’d also like to set a good example to others. It is not my goal to gain fame and popularity at all costs. I think that the artists should make the most of their skills to convey some deeper message. My intention is to face such a challenge despite the fact that Eurovision is a huge commercial undertaking.