After a bizarre week in which every Dutch singer beginning with the letter “J” suddenly became a potential candidate for Eurovision 2020, the Netherlands eventually confirmed its artist on Friday 10 January. And now, Jeangu Macrooy seems to be the most talked-about person in the country.
However, one man has had his eye on Jeangu for significantly longer — Cornald Maas, the Dutch Eurovision commentator and the Creative Advisor for Eurovision 2020.
Jeangu Macrooy was on the Dutch selection committee’s radar since 2016
Speaking to AD, Maas reveals that he’s had an eye on Jeangu since 2016. He told the rest of the Dutch Eurovision selection committee to do likewise and they duly obliged.
Now that Macrooy is finally on the Dutch ticket, Cornald is, of course, full of praise. He complements the singer’s voice and appearance while promising that his song will be very distinct.
The track was submitted to the selection committee in late 2019 and it was immediately clear that it should be the Dutch entry for Rotterdam. Maas says that when music is written from the soul it will reach the hearts of both jury members and televoters alike.
Jeangu Macrooy for Eurovision 2020: Reactions
Cornald isn’t the only one raving about the Dutch representative. The weekend’s newspapers were filled with people lining up to gush about Jeangu. And top of the queue was Pieter Perquin — Jeangu’s manager.
Pieter Perquin — Jeangu Macrooy’s manager
He believes that Jeangu is the perfect fit for Eurovision 2020. In an interview with Nu.nl, Peter emphasises that Jeangu is a black, homosexual singer with roots from outside of The Netherlands. This connects strongly to the Eurovision 2020 slogan “Open Up”.
Peter says that Jeangu had to have a lot of courage to be open about his sexuality when he lived in Suriname, as the country is not as accepting of homosexuality as The Netherlands.
Peter and Jeangu first met in 2015 at the conservatory in Enschede. There, Peter saw Jeangu performing some of his self-written songs.
After a while, he reached out to the future Dutch rep and in no time the two met in the studio for a collaboration. Peter took Jeangu with him to perform outside Enschede. He got him his first performance in Amsterdam — a sellout concert at the Paradiso.
When asked about their preparations for Rotterdam, Peter insists that they won’t be checking out the performances of past winners. They trust their intuition. Peter says the chances of a strong result in the Ahoy Arena are high.
They obviously can’t do better than 2019 winner Duncan Laurence, but they will try to match his result.
Others react to Jeangu Macrooy
Newspaper AD contacted several Dutch personalities who have connections with Jeangu.
Singer Angela Groothuizen says Jeangu is a fantastic vocalist. He has a beautiful voice and his music combines both soul and pop. She is very happy that he has been chosen to perform in Rotterdam.
Rob Kramer from the Artez Conservatory in Enschede remembers Jeangu as the guy who was always cold in The Netherlands because the climate is very different from Suriname. He also says that Jeangu is a great songwriter with a fantastic voice.
Radio presenter Giel Beelen says Jeangu knows how to put soul in his songs and he sings from his heart. He also finds a good connection between old soul and new electronic elements.
What are your thoughts on Jeangu representing the Netherlands? Are you excited to hear his song? Let us know in the comments.