He’s the androgynous singer who stormed both the jury and public votes during the first semi-final of Destination Eurovision — France’s national selection for the 2019 song contest in Tel Aviv. Yet despite his runaway success Bilal Hassani remained down to earth when talking to media afterwards.
Speaking to our Etienne, the “Roi” vocalist explained that he’s not stressed. That’s thanks mostly to his mother — “I don’t feel the pressure. I feel very good, actually. I have my mum beside me and she’s always here with me”. She is his reine.
His team also help him remain focused, keeping him away from most of the online commentary.
That team includes Madame Monsieur, the “Mercy” duo who represented France in Lisbon — “I was so proud of them”. But Cyprus’ Eleni Foureira and Israel’s Netta were his favourites from 2018. He loved “Fuego” and sang along to “Toy” while watching at home. Czech Republic’s Mikolas Josef was also a highlight.
Bilal Hassani interview at Destination Eurovision 2019 semi-final 1
The performer has a wig collection which would make even Agnese Rakovska — the front woman of Latvia’s 2017 act Trianna Park — jealous. Many have compared his current look to that of his Madame Monsieur mentor Émilie Satt. But he assures our backstage reporter Etienne that it’s merely a coincidence, adding that his look could evolve if he reaches Tel Aviv.
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Bilal Hassani after his performance « Roi » in the SF1 of #DestinationEurovision which was probably inspired by Emilie of @madamemonsieur . . @eurovisionfrance @france2 #eurovision2019 #daretodream #paris #destinationeurovision2019 #france @iambilalhassani #bilalhassani #roi #king #pride #eurovision #esc2019 @waiotte @diegopinpa
Bilal dominated the first episode of this year’s Destination Eurovision. Our William writes:
“Wearing all white and owning his natural flair, Bilal oozed confidence far beyond his years. He started his performance in the audience, treating the walkway as a runway before mounting the stage to preach a message of empowerment. He was joined by a series of dancers who helped give the song a bit more dynamism. And good thing: it started to feel a tad monotonous after the first chorus. But that’s easily remedied with a few quick camera cuts and angle swaps. Ultimately Bilal has charisma and a tune that many people can identify with. That puts him out in front in our minds.”
And he’s much more than a one night wonder, racing up both the iTunes and Spotify charts in the hours and days following Saturday’s broadcast.
Bilal Hassani “Roi”
What do you think? Is Bilal a dead cert for Eurovision 2019? Who from semi-final 2 could challenge him? Let us know in the comments below.