It’s hard to remember now, but just a few months ago the world did not know who Chanel Terrero was. All of that changed when globally renowned choreographer Kyle Hanagami and songwriter Leroy Sanchez came into her orbit.

In 2021 Leroy shared his song “SloMo” with Kyle and they had a feeling they were on to a good thing.

“We wanted to do the song for a diva,” Leroy says in their emotional new YouTube documentary, uploaded to Kyle’s channel. “I showed the song to Kyle and he loved it.”

Sure, the pair had “SloMo”. But they needed a performer who could do it justice both musically and physically, since this is a song that has to move. With Benidorm Fest on their minds, they turned to RTVE for candidates. 

Unfortunately none of those performers had that X factor: They passed on all of the options sent to them from the Spanish broadcaster. Then, at the end of the road, Chanel stepped into the frame.

“She blew our mind, she is so talented,” Kyle says of Chanel, who hadn’t yet released a single or competed in any musical competitions.

“I feel like [Spain] have been sending a lot of the same thing and it hasn’t been well-received,” Kyle remembers. “So I really wanted to come in and try something different this year.”

With Chanel he finally had his muse.

Kyle Hanagami, Leroy Sanchez and Chanel share Eurovision 2022 documentary on YouTube

Chanel admits that she wasn’t fully prepared for all the attention that came her way after her explosive first performance in the Benidorm Fest semi-finals.

“It was so funny because no one knows about us, and after performing everyone talked about us,” she says. “Like what the hell? Who are they?”

They were Eurovision fans and YouTube reactors, many of whom weren’t accustomed to lavishing potential Spanish acts with so much praise. 

None of it went to her head. She honestly didn’t expect to win — even after hype started building online.

“I just performed and I said to one of my dancers, ‘We’re not going to win’ — because the competition is so hard.”

Kyle — who has worked with everyone from The Black Eyed Peas to Justin Bieber to Jennifer Lopez —wasn’t confident either. He described Benidorm Fest as an uphill battle, since they were competing against artists with big names and millions of followers, like Rigoberta Bandini and Rayden.

But of course Chanel did win. “The moment when Chanel won was the most surreal thing,” Leroy says. “I’ve never been so stressed out in my life.”

This fairy tale hadn’t reached its happy ending though. None of us can forget the avalanche of Eurodrama that threatened to overshadow Chanel’s incredible performance.

“After I won things completely changed,” Chanel remembers. “Most of the people supporting other singers, they hated me on social media. Like heavy.”

Some called her a cheater and others said the jury was rigged in her favour, which RTVE strongly and rightly denied. Still others called her a prostitute and accused her of not singing.

“This was so, so hard for my mental health,” she says. “I was crying in my hotel room because I didn’t expect to win. I didn’t expect for hate. It was too much for me.”

“The drama was so big that even politicians started using it to their advantage,” Leroy remembers, explaining that they wanted Chanel to remove the word “daddy”, which they had twisted to mean “sugar daddy.”

Leroy says: “It doesn’t say ‘sugar daddy’ in the song at any point.”

Chanel, Kyle and Leroy pressed ahead and immediately set to work revamping the choreography for Turin.

“I don’t know how she sings and does this,” Kyle says, observing her in rehearsal and even on the treadmill in her high heels.

“One of the most important things for Chanel’s singing is the breath control,” he observes. “As you’ve seen she’s dancing her ass off the entire performance.”

The documentary offers insights into the practical matters of singing at Eurovision — like recording her planned stage show for Eurovision producers, who then re-create it with stand-in performers. You can briefly see the stand-in and will instantly recognise the leg-lift motion.

Chanel travels to Los Angeles — her first trip to the United States — to work with Kyle at the studios of his iconic Millennium Dance Company.

She’s visibly touched when she sees a room full of professional dancers performing the “SloMo” choreo en masse. 

Chanel — SloMo choreography from Kyle Hanagami

The vlog-style doc continues in Turin, showing us the team’s reaction to their first rehearsal. They also discuss who they see as their biggest competition — Sweden, Italy, UK, and Ukraine — describing themselves as the “dark horse again, just like in Benidorm Fest.”

Chanel’s performance, of course, isn’t just about Chanel. It draws strength from Exon Arcos, Raquel Caurin, Josh Huerta, Maria Perez and Pol Soto, the beautiful dancers who support her, creating a visual feast full of surprises. 

We see Kyle slipping all of them a little extra cash.

“I just bought cards for the dancers,” he says as he stuffs envelopes. “Dancer rates in America, they suck. But here in Spain it’s even worse. I’m going to surprise the dancers with a little extra — because they put so much into this performance and get drastically underpaid…I hope the extra money helps ease the burden.”

The night before the final Chanel, Kyle and Leroy reflect on all that they’ve already achieved.

“I think the best part of this whole experience has been seeing Spanish fans in the audience waving their flags and being so proud of their entry for the first time in years — they actually feel that they may have a shot of winning,” Kyle says.

“Whether we win or not isn’t important at this point. “It’s just crazy to see we’ve created something that has such a huge response all over the world.”

For Kyle, another victory comes in seeing his own journey reflected in Chanel’s. Kyle, who got his break via YouTube, has been with Chanel for her first big performance, her first music video, and her first song, among other things.

“I just wanted someone to see the potential that I have,” he remembers of the times before he hit it big. “And now I see a world of potential in Chanel.”

Judging from her result at Eurovision, he’s not the only one.

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Jonkonfui
Jonkonfui
16 days ago

Hi. I have a song in my head to present to aBeFest but i know nothing of music. Where can i find help??

Ezio
Ezio
15 days ago
Reply to  Jonkonfui

Call me

Arby
Arby
16 days ago

Oh look, William is promoting another thing he’s featured in. What a shock.

Arby
Arby
16 days ago
Reply to  Arby

Don’t forget that William also promoted this song heavily before BeFest, and that both of the international jury members follow him on Twitter and Instagram, and interacted with him positively during BeFest specifically about this song.

I’m happy for Chanel that she did well, but William unfairly influenced BeFest, and that’s something that is never discussed on this site. We Spanish should be allowed to choose our own representative, and the influence of Wiwibloggs this year was unforgivable… and then Wiwibloggs blamed us Spanish for the drama that Wiwibloggs created.

Disgusting.

Lorena
Lorena
16 days ago
Reply to  Arby

Sometimes we are so plonged in our microuniverse that we don’t realise how real world goes. I mean, for us, eurofans, the Eurovision blogs and sites are important, yes, but they are NOTHING when you go out there. BenidormFest and Eurovision have so many million of viewers, 95% of which do not know anything about Wiwibloggs, Eurovision Spain or El Euroté.
Really, forget about that, they have minimum influence to decide.

Jonkonfui
Jonkonfui
16 days ago
Reply to  Arby

Wiwibloggs William influenced BeFest??

Ashley
Ashley
15 days ago
Reply to  Arby

Get over it! Thanks for Chanel your country wasn’t last place or 2th to last for 10 year in a row, so Get over!!

gabriel
gabriel
17 days ago

i loved the film and Chanel is so sweet and worked so hard to be top 3.

Alex
Alex
17 days ago

very interesting documentary! I didn’t know that they did not expect to win in Benidorm. I guess they knew that Ukraine would win but perhaps they were hoping for a bigger televoting score.
In any case, I want Chanel to have a big career in Spain and I hope they know what they’re doing. We’re still waiting for her concerts/new singles and promo announcements.

TheDrMistery
TheDrMistery
17 days ago

Great documentary, really let their true selves shine. Teary-eyed dancers was such a wonderful moment and the closing with the reception in Madrid upon their return home. Very well made.

Brian
Brian
17 days ago

I was totally one of those haters at first. I LOVED the Rigoberta Bandini performance and complained about Chanel all the way until the Grand Final (only in conversations with friends/family!). After watching her performance, I was blown away and really regretted not giving her a chance. Lesson learned: I’m going to resist the negative energy, keep an open mind, and support the artists. (Also, SloMo is among my favorite tracks now, lol).

TheDrMistery
TheDrMistery
14 days ago
Reply to  Brian

I’m Polish and I gave benefit of the doubt even to Rafal last year. Oh well… 🙂

Liam Lindsay
Liam Lindsay
17 days ago

Spain to host in 2023.

Baby
Baby
18 days ago

As much as i love Chanel and slomo, i really hope Spain dont do the same thing as Cyprus and try to do the same thing 5 years in a row

ete sech
ete sech
18 days ago
Reply to  Baby

I think BeFest’s format might help avoiding such an outcome, so fingers crossed!

Lorena
Lorena
18 days ago
Reply to  ete sech

Yes, I hope so as well. Many of those who did not win last year (Rigo,Tanxus, Rayden, Varry Brava, etc.) really improved their careers thanks to BeFest. So I really hope that many other artists are keeping their best songs to be presented at next year’s edition… I think there are many possibilities: pop songs, rock songs, some flamenco style or even, why not? a good ballad. The problem with Spain has not been bringing ballads, but maybe bringing ordinary, safe, non-special ballads, without a good staging. So let’s not disregard them.

Jofty
Jofty
16 days ago
Reply to  Baby

Well they stopped this year and look what happened. Sandro Nicolas (2020) was also slated.

Jack
Jack
18 days ago

The right people in the right place. I hope that broadcasters approach Kyle Hanagami for next year, he is one of the best choreographers in the world.

Alex
Alex
17 days ago
Reply to  Jack

How would the manage Tanxugeiras or Rigoberta? I think he’s specialised more for pop artists.