Australia joins lineup for Eurovision 2014
Jessica Mauboy has been chosen to represent Australia at the annual festival of regional dialects, kitsch costumes and indecipherable lyrics known as Eurovision.
While several Australians have represented England at the contest – including Gina G with her classic ‘Ooh Aah… Just a Little Bit’ – this is the first time an act will perform as a representative of Australia at the event. So even though Mauboy won’t actually be competing in the contest it’s a proud patriotic moment for the future Dame Jess and all Australians.
The decision to allow Australia to perform at Eurovision marks the 40th anniversary of Olivia Newton-John’s performance at the competition when she was chosen to represent United Kingdom only to be defeated by some plucky upstarts from Sweden called ABBA. It’s also the 8th anniversary of Lordi’s win with the epic ‘Hard Rock Hallelujah’, which has nothing at all to do with Mauboy’s performance but is a moment that should forever be cherished.
Mauboy has written a new song with Potbelleez producer Ilan Kidron for her Eurovision performance, which according to news.com, “not only reflects her indigenous heritage but resonates with the European cultures competing”. While Mikkel Bech, the editorial boss for this year’s competition, says that Mauboy’s performance will be “big and spectacular… and involve a lot of humour”.
“The song speaks of ancient dreaming but I also wanted to convey a message that whatever country you represent, you have to bring that culture to the next generation,” Mauboy explains. “Every time I listen to it I get another layer of goosebumps, so introducing it to the world is going to be so powerful.”
Other notable performers at the 2014 contest include bearded drag queen Conchita Wurst who will represent Austria, Valentina Monetta who will represent San Marino for the third year in a row, and Russian twins The Tolmachevy Sisters who won the Junior Eurovision Song Contest 2006.
Julia Zemiro and Sam Pang will again host the SBS broadcast of Eurovision in May. The first semi-final will be aired on May 9, the second semi (featuring Mauboy) on May 10, and the grand final on May 11.