A Dal 2015 — Hungary’s national selection for Eurovision — begins at the end of January, and this year’s field is deeper and stronger than ever. Familiar faces like Kati Wolf, Bogi and Fool Moon are back for more, but fans will also have some fresh talent to evaluate. wiwibloggs will be cozying up to as many acts as we can, and today it’s time to chat with the beautiful Boggie (not to be confused with fellow A Dal contestant Bogi). Among other things, she tells us how the conflict in Ukraine inspired her entry Wars for Nothing.
You’ve been on the scene for seven years. How did your musical career start?
Since I was a little girl, I have consciously focused on the fact that I want to be a singer. I have studied in many music schools and I had the chance to learn plenty of musical styles. Classical music, folk music, jazz, pop — I have tasted all of them. I was lucky because there were always teachers around me who led me down the right path. In 2008, I founded my first band, which resulted in my first song, “Absolutely funny girl”. Since then, I’ve kept working.
Last year you became well-known to the Hungarian and the international audience thanks to your song, Parfum. How did you feel when you realized the song was going global?
It is a fact that thanks to the song, I’ve got a wider audience and I am very happy with this. Now, I have ten times more people at my concerts. It changed my life: more concert invitations at home and abroad, plenty of press clippings, expanding singer responsibilities. When I realised what is happening with the song I was glad and scared at the same time. I did not understand what this is all about. It was shocking. The joy came with a heavy burden. Will I be able to deal with this? Am I worthy of it? Why me? So I was worried about a lot of things, but it confirmed that it’s my duty to sing. It strengthened me in a way that I am able to do this. And if only one person will change because of me, I’m doing a good job. I defined to myself while I was a child why should I sing. The success of Parfüm just confirmed in all of this.
Firstly, the song was sung in Hungarian and French. Why not English?
For me, French is the first foreign language, the language I speak confidently. I have a French teacher’s diploma. In 2012, when I made my first album, primarily I thought about the French-speaking area. I have always been motivated by the possibility of an international career, but I would not have thought that a Hungarian and French-language song would be my first real step of that sort. The French version was the first, after that the Hungarian, and at last we made the English version because of the fans. You can listen it here.
Interestingly, on the basis of all kinds of audience and sales figures, the US as an audience is the biggest. It is no coincidence that the most serious requests were received from there in 2014. In November I had two concerts and four performances at the Hofstra University and in The Living Room, Brooklyn.
This song had been sent to A Dal in 2012, but the jury didn’t let it in the live shows. Do you think they regret this decision?
I think so. Although I think that if they had selected it Parfüm may not be on the road where it is right now.
This year is different. Wars for Nothing reached the top 30.
I was delighted! I have big ambitions for the competition. I would love to represent Hungary in Vienna.
I’ve read that the song was inspired by last year’s situation in Ukraine. Is it true?
When we made the second album (All Is One is all in October 2014) with Sebestyén Áron, we wanted to have a beautiful ballad. I was touched by the situation in Ukraine and it depressed me. I wanted to write a song about it. By the time I went to Áron he had already written a song about this topic for me. Thus, we didn’t write it together but both of us worked on the final form.
I quite often think about the things of the world, bad things easily stir me up. Ukraine is so close to Hungary, so I thought “This could be us.” How can we solve this? I’ve read newspapers and tried to follow everything online. And then I ran into a Ukrainian refugee in our elevator. It was a shocking dialogue. We need to evaluate how good we deal with conflict. If a war takes place near to you it has a bigger effect on your feelings.
However, the song is not just about the war in Ukraine, but rather speaks more generally about discrimination, oppression and war. I asked Sára Heléna Bori to write the English lyrics. I made notes for her about my feelings and she did a great job. It’s not easy to write a song against war, so that should not be trite.
Do you ever get compared to Bogi, who is also competing in A Dal 2015)
Of course. This happened a lot in 2014 in Hungary, but not abroad. Hopefully the appearance in A Dal will dispel misunderstandings.
Hungary is already one of the countries tipped to win Eurovision this year. Do you think your song can do that?
In my opinion, YES, it can win!
You remind me of US singer Jewel. Who is your biggest musical influence?
A performer can have a connection with me if the private individual has an impression on me. For me the person behind the musician is more interesting. I really like Charles Aznavour. I think his career is exemplary.
The competition begins at the end of January. Have you listened to your rivals? Who will have the final victory?
I think it all depends on the live performance. I like Fool Moon, but now everyone has the same chances.
What would it mean to you to represent Hungary in the Eurovision Song Contest?
It would be an honor. I would be very happy and would do everything to reach the best possible place!
And finally, do you have a message for our readers and the team at wiwibloggs?
I count on your support and love and thank you for your patience and that you thought of me. See you in February in A Dal!