Oh là là! Alma, the French representative at Eurovision 2017, revealed today that she is going to sing a bilingual version of her entry “Requiem” in Kyiv.
Interviewed by Italian Eurovision source Eurofestival News, the 28-year-old artist born in Lille talked about the time she spent in Italy, her beginnings as a musician and how she landed at Eurovision.
First of all, she immediately declares her intentions to follow in the footsteps of her predecessor Amir: “Me and my team are working on a version of the song in French and in English”.
Wiwibloggs has confirmed with the French delegation that Alma will add juste un petit peu d’anglais. The song will not be 50% English and 50% French. Instead a part of the chorus will contain English lyrics.
Will the decision bring her luck? Last year the bilingual entry “J’ai Cherché” reached 6th place with 257 points.
Alma‘s got a great connection with Italy, where she enjoyed the dolce vita.
Speaking to Eurofestival News she said: “I lived for a year in Milan. I went there to work in a clothing agency as an assistant manager. I have many memories of Italy in my heart. First of all, I learned the language, then… well, I got to enjoy Italian culture, their way of life. I remember the apéritifs, the kindness of the people, the great opportunity that I had to share experiences and moments.”
The internet has helped her to take flight as a musician, but it was the meeting with Nazim Khaled — the writer and composer she shares with the already mentioned Amir — that changed her life forever.
“I had some songs written by me, but it was difficult for a newcomer to find someone who would invest in the project. For this reason I approached a crowdfunding platform. Slowly, thanks to the web, I’ve been able to produce two songs. Then I met Nazim Khaled and we started working together: he introduced me to the French branch of Warner Music: they liked my project, so I released the single “La chute est lente“. And now here I am, ready for Eurovision!”
She admitted that her new adventure started in December when Edoardo Grassi, French Head of Delegation, approached her.
“He called me with the proposal to represent my nation,” she said. “I accepted without thinking twice.”
How is she preparing for the musical extravaganza? With the help of a special friend and colleague!
“I spoke with Amir, and he advised me to make the most of this opportunity. He said I’m going to live ten very intense days in which I’ll have the chance to get to know so many people. Also, during the grand final, people from all over the world will see me. It’s a unique occasion to share experiences. Personally, I expect a lot from this participation, but above all I want to make France proud of me: there will be so many people in my country in front of the TV, I want them to be proud of me. I’m super excited for this great opportunity.”
At the end of the interview, she gives her answer to the drama that erupted a few days ago. On February 17 a video clip emerged of a 2015 live performance of the song. This potentially makes the song in breach of the 1 September 2016 cutoff date, and could lead to the EBU disqualifying it.
Anyway, Alma is very chill about it: “I’ve never recorded the song before now and the rules state that the entries must have been recorded from September 1 onwards. From this point of view we should be fine. Also, that was just a voice and guitar performance”.
What do you think? Should “Requiem” remain in French? Or is it a good decision to add a part in English? Sound off below!