He’s the Adele-sounding X-Factor winner flying the flag for the lang of kangaroos, koalas and Kylie at Eurovision 2017 in May. But Australia‘s Isaiah Firebrace isn’t the only Aussie taking to the stage at the International Exhibition Centre in Kyiv.

Aussie expat Anja Nissen is singing for Denmark with “Where I Am” and the two will square off in separate semi-finals on May 9 and May 11, ahead of a possible meeting in the Grand Final on May 13.

Now Isaiah has spoken out about the “rivalry” that has set Australian media outlets buzzing down under. Clearly the serious vocal firepower Anja’s packing has caught his attention: “She’s a great singer, she’s awesome.”

And despite winning the last season of X-Factor, Isaiah also revealed he’s open-minded when it comes to reality singing competitions. In fact, he watched Anja’s journey to win The Voice himself.

Talking to news.com.au, he gushed, “She was my favourite when she was on The Voice, now I can’t wait to meet her.”

The two won’t have the chance to square off against one another in their semi-finals. There’ll be plenty of opportunities to hang out during Eurovision fortnight though. Isaiah also discussed Anja’s sunny personality, which has been on full display during her pan-European charm offensive in recent weeks.

“She seems like a nice girl so I can’t wait to connect with her.”

On the subject of whether he sees Eurovision as a battle of the reality franchises, Firebrace is a little cagier.

“Kind of, I guess, but X-Factor isn’t on any more.” Simon Cowell’s reality show may be off air, but judging by momentum building behind Australia ahead of Eurovision 2017, Isaiah will be running on air by the time he lands in Kyiv.

TOURING WITH JESSICA MAUBOY TO PREPARE FOR EUROVISION 2017

While Isaiah hasn’t appeared on the promo circuit like other Eurovision acts, he has honed his act in front of live audiences. He’s been busy opening for Eurovision 2014 interval performer and Australian Idol runner-up Jessica Mauboy.

And the experience of Mauboy, and fellow Australian performers Guy Sebastian and Dami Im set him on his road to the Eurovision Song Contest.

“When Jess (Mauboy) performed I thought, oh my god, Australia can do it now! And then seeing what Guy and Dami did was incredible.”

Whether he lives up to their incredible example is in the hands of professional juries and televoters across Europe. They’ll give their verdict on “Don’t Come Easy” and Isaiah at Semi-Final 1 on May 9.

GET MORE AUSTRALIA NEWS HERE

Photo Credit: Dylan Robinson

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Margareta
Guest

We are a bunch of volunteers and opening a brand new scheme in our community. Your site offered us with useful information to paintings on. You have performed an impressive task and our whole neighborhood might be grateful to you.

Joe
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Joe

After reading and watching comments/reactions from some Eurovision blogs in Australia I’m seriously questioning the position of the country in the contest.

liat
Guest
liat

He is such cute person, and his voice is the best male voice.love him.i will vote for him from israel.

Azaad
Guest
Azaad

Anja and Isaiah are both testaments to Australia’s diversity, neither of them being Anglo-Celtic Australians. And I’m here for that!

Colin
Guest
Colin

Explanation? I mean, Anja is Caucasian. But, yeah, sending Guy, Dami and Isaiah three years in a row really speaks great of Australia’s diversity and I love it.

Donna Vey
Guest
Donna Vey

Especially if you consider Jessica as well.

Oz
Guest
Oz

Denmark will beat us easily, thank god.

qqq
Guest
qqq

booooriiiing! australia’s entry is just weak.

JB
Guest
JB

Totally agree, he’s my second favourite this year.

Napaw
Guest
Napaw

It’s not one of my faves, that’s for sure (especially compared to last year’s eargasm Dami Im).

But I’m pretty sure he’ll do pretty well. Australia seems to have built up quite a fanbase.

Australia is one of the guaranteed qualifiers this year.

Concheetah
Guest
Concheetah

Australia continues to be in my top 5 every year.

Pant7
Guest
Pant7

I haven’t liked a song from Australia yet. This is no different. But I prefered Dami or Guy over this 100%. At least I wanted Dami in the final, she was my top 15 or something. But this is like my top 30 :/

fikri
Guest
fikri

describing isaiah as adele-sounding is a little over the top imo.

Dew
Guest
Dew

Haters gonna hate. His song is my absolute favorite in the competition. He can easily sail through with his vocals and be a dark horse this year and the bookies know that. Wish you the best of luck from the far east.????

Donna Vey
Guest
Donna Vey

I really want Isaiah to do well. The song is soulful and passionate, and he puts a lot of heart into the words. Anyone doubting Isaiah should see his live performances, because he is great live and will deliver a strong performance on May 9th. As for comments about Australia, well they were only a few points from winning last year — and if there hadn’t been ongoing political issues in Crimea then a song about the sorrows of Crimeans would likely not have won in 2016. Australia have sent strong, well-polished songs every year with performers who can deliver.… Read more »

dingdong
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dingdong

I hope he’ll not go to the final, only because it is Australia, because his song is so boring!