If Christmas is a time of giving, then Senhit celebrates all year round. Anyone who has met the Italian star, who will sing for San Marino at Eurovision 2021, knows her as a generous spirit who leaves you with love and laughter and, if you’re lucky, a glimpse of her adorable dog Buddy. Now, on Christmas Day, we’re re-visiting the most holly, jolly, and inspiring stop of her #FreakyTripToRotterdam thus far: the manger in Bethlehem.
Re-interpreting Salvador Sobral‘s Eurovision 2017 song “Amar pelos dois”, Senhit delivers a video of Biblical proportions. Salvador’s “love for two” becomes “love for everyone” — a vision that gives way to gay men at the manger, and which sees Senhit — an Italian with Eritrean roots and a well-known ally to the LGBT community — transform into the Virgin Mary. It’s re-told as only the Freaky Queen and her creative spirit animal Luca Tommassini could — with rich visuals and a sense of the cinematic.
Senhit re-interprets Salvador Sobral’s “Amar pelos dois”
“This year has been different for everyone, for better or for worse,” Senhit says. “So it also deserves a unique Christmas, where children are the ones who bring gifts to a homeless Santa Claus and where anyone can feel part of a big family. No matter their sexual orientation or religion, or what their origins are…unfortunately not all the world is celebrating in that way.”
“In this disastrous year, a freaky contribution could not miss one of the most beautiful ballads in the Eurovision world,” Senhit adds. And a beautiful ballad can only benefit from another beautiful voice. So Senhit blends hers with that of the Spanish tenor Jordi Galán. The internationally acclaimed performer was a student of the legendary soprano Montserrat Caballé.
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Director and artistic director Luca Tommassini explains more about their vision.
“I started from an idea of musical structure where I liked to include a choir of children, big and small and insert an important voice, which would warm up even more this Christmas, which is a Christmas of great challenges. Therefore I dreamed of a tenor close to Senhit’s voice and close to the children’s choir: Jordi Galán is the one who finally convinced us the most.”
“I dreamed about the sound of rain and snow, a noise to be invented for the video with a gesture. So I thought of Antony and the Johnsons who made snaps with their fingers in their concerts and I wanted to bring this back into the arrangement because it fits this tale.”
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“The tributes are many. We dedicate the phrase in this video to Michael Jackson, for me he was a Santa Claus. I think he was the one for most human beings, and he represents him at best. The homeless man is our Santa Claus this year, naked and without work. Children are generators, like parents, they reverse their roles and this year it is them who give us the warmest smile.”
“Then the Holy Maria could not be missing, the Mother of all women. So I tried to bring together all the women in the world, through make-up, wigs and dresses, which merge into a single figure, which is the Mother of all. His gift is Jesus, his and God’s, an important gift. The message of the Gospel is that Jesus is a gift for all human beings and therefore is a universal gift that has no sexuality and only recognizes love.”
“Finally, in this video there are two worlds that cross, the world of Roberto Maestri who is an artist that I have adored for years and fascinates me, almost Timbartonian, animated by an extraordinary Patrizio Ratto who is a dancer, a dreamer, and the world of the nativity scene, the poor nativity scene, where the wealth of the Madonna is given by a stratification of many women whom united to become powerful.”
Whether you celebrate Christmas or not, we hope Senhit’s video fills you with warmth and hope for 2021!