interview with DESS (DesiSlava) For ESCDaily.com
about Eurovision 2012
Exclusive: DesiSlava speaks to ESCDaily.com!
ESCDaily.com had the privilage to interview Bulgarian pop superstar Dess, or DesiSlava, who has entered this year’s Bulgarian preselection.
Dess’ career started when she was very young and she won her first award when she was just 14 years old. To date, DesiSlava has released 13 studio albums, with the latest being ‘Slavatronika’ released this year, and has worked with music producers behind the hits of stars such as Sade, Lenny Kravitz, Christina Aguilera, Michael Jackson, Tina Turner, Aerosmith, and Madonna.
In 2012, Dess has entered the Bulgarian preselection for the Eurovision Song Contest 2012, where she won the Academy vote with a total of 146 points, 30 points clear of the next competitor. We spoke to Dess about her entry into the contest ‘Love is Alive’ and her general thoughts about Eurovision. Read more below;
ESCDaily.com: Welcome DesiSlava and it is a big honour to speak with you today! First, why Eurovision and why at this point in your career?
Dess: Because it is an honourable contest. I’ve always wanted to participate in Eurovision. I’ve always dreamed of being on a wonderful stage like that. In my country Eurovision is quite a controversial contest. And why at this point of my career? Why now? Well, maybe now is my time!
Before the last edition of the contest a group was created in the social network Facebook that wanted me to present Bulgaria. I wasn’t prepared then. I wanted to have a special song, not just a song in the last minute. For me it is important everything to be precise and perfect. I disappointed a lot of people when I said “No”. That’s why, I want to do what I promised.
ESCDaily.com: What are the highlights of your career so far? How did your music journey begin?
Dess: I have been singing for 15 years. I started with Bulgarian traditional folklore. I am a student of one of the legends of Bulgarian folklore – Valkana Stoyanova. I have a lot of awards in this musical style. Then I began to sing pop folk music. This is the most common style in our country. My biggest success is in it. I have always wanted to sing pop music but this style is not that valued and well paid in Bulgaria. We usually listen to more music with Balkan elements. I received all the most prestigious awards / for singer, album, song, vdieo etc. / in the pop folk branch. I have started to deal with pop music more seriously recently. I feel that this music style comes from within. I began to work with a Romanian team. I changed my name into Dess. My first song by them is “I like” and its success contributed to my decision to participate in Eurovision. The song stayed a long time in almost all of the charts. This led me to draw more attention to pop music. The music market in Bulgaria is extremely narrow and I am working on that to achieve a bigger success outside the country.
ESCDaily: Tell us a bit about your entry “Love is Alive”.
Dess: It is a rhythmic, modern and very refreshing piece. It is made by the musicians from “SYMPHONICS” -- Borislav Milanov, Sebastian Arman and David Bronner. I also participated in the process of composing. The text is again by Bobby and Sebastian -- a great team! Last year they worked with Polly Genova (Bulgarian participant in Eurovision 2011), so they have proved their qualities.
ESCDaily.com: The entry won the first phase of the Bulgarian selection. How did it feel when you heard you had received the highest amount of points from ‘The Academy’? Does this give you motivation?
Dess: Of course. If I say I’m not proud, this would be a lie. I am very glad. It gives me motivation and hope, makes me think that I have a chance. Of course I know that this really means nothing, because people also have to choose my song. But the decision of the Academy, in which are big names in Bulgarian music stimulates me to give everything.
ESCDaily.com: What can we expect from you on the stage of the live shows of the Bulgarian National Selection?
Dess: I am already working with some of the biggest professionals in Bulgaria to help me to do something interesting and hopefully different. So – just wait and see!
ESCDaily.com: You are working with the team behind the 2011 Bulgarian entry “Na Inat”. This is not the first time you’ve worked with the ‘Symphonics’ -- why did you choose to work for them for “Love is Alive”? Do you think they bring valuable experience to the table?
Dess: I like my work with them. Furthermore we are friends and I feel very well, confident with them. We understand well and complement to each other. They give me the opportunity to feel free and to put something of myself. This freedom is very important to me. I think we made a very nice song.
ESCDaily.com: How would it feel to represent Bulgaria in Eurovision?
Dess: If it happens so that I can represent Bulgaria at Eurovision, I would be very happy, but at the same time, this is a big responsibility. It is absolutely clear that I will give everything. And will be proud to represent my country. Bulgaria is a small country and there are many talented people, yet many of them had no chance to reach the Eurovision Song Contest. As it may sound immodest, Eurovision has not yet seen the best of Bulgaria!
ESCDaily.com: Bulgaria hasn’t made the final of Eurovision since the fifth place achieved in 2007 with ‘Voda’. What do you think needs to change or be done in order for Bulgaria to reach the final and challenge for victory in the contest?
Dess: I do not have this experience and outlook of the things to tell you what Bulgaria must do. I know that certainly anyone who appears is trying hard to succeed. ;)
ESCDaily.com: As a artist who already has achieved success worldwide, what would Eurovision mean personally to you as an artist?
Dess: I do not like to talk beforehand so again I want to stress that IF I have the chance to represent Bulgaria, it will be a new emotion and in a way a challenge for me.
The general opinion in Bulgaria is that Eurovision is a contest that is unattainable for us. We have no confidence that we can win Eurovision. Even the success of Elitsa and Stundzhi in 2007 for us was a big surprise. But I am optimistic. I know that one day our time will come!
ESCDaily.com: Finally, what message do you have to your fans and the readers of ESCDaily.com?
Dess: I will tell them to continue to believe in me. I will do my best not to disappoint them. Now more than ever I need their support. To Your readers I wish to believe strongly and to have fun with all the songs that Eurovision 2012 will offer. I hope my song is among their favorites
ESCDaily.com: Thank you very much Dess and we wish you the best of luck -- we can’t wait to hear your song