Esctoday.com interview with Marian van de Wal

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Marian van de Wal, a 34 year-old Dutch singer, will represent Andorra at the 2005 Eurovision Song Contest. On 18th December 2004, Marian defeated Ishtar Ruiz and Mar Capdevila in the Andorran final of Eurocàsting. One day after the final esctoday.com had an interview with her…

How did a Dutchwoman end up in Andorra?

We have been coming to Andorra for more than 12 years already, since my parents went to Andorra at a certain moment. We have always enjoyed our winter sports holidays here. My sister and her husband opened a hotel in Andorra and when we were here we always gave them a helping hand. We really enjoyed that because of the cosy and familiar atmosphere . Due to circumstances, we decided to move to Andorra to work in our family hotel and now we are running the hotel ourselves.

Why did you decide to participate in Eurocàsting?

In general, I'm not really a fan of singing contests but I couldn't let this chance slip away. I obeyed to all rules (including living in Andorra for at least 5 years) and so I decided to take the plunge. Actually I believed it would all have been over very soon. But every time I proceeded to a next round, I realised what a wonderful experience this could become.

What's the relationship between Marian van de Wal and the Eurovision Song Contest?

I will always remember the Eurovision Song Contest as an evening, watching television with the whole family who's the best. The best memory I still have is the time that Nicole won for Germany with Ein bisschen Frieden. Everyone had such trendy, fluent and up-tempo songs. And then suddenly that girl with the guitar appeared with a very simple song that ended in three languages. The whole family agreed that Nicole would win!

Do you feel Dutch and were you surprised when you defeated Ishtar Ruiz and Mar Capdevila, two popular Andorran girls?

It's simple. I am a Dutchwoman who's living in Andorra. My home is here now. We live here, so in this way I am more connected to Andorra now. Since we have a lot of Dutch guests in our hotel, I still keep a connection with the Netherlands of course, also because a lot of Dutch is spoken here. But I feel home in Andorra. The Netherlands now are like a holiday destination for a couple of days.

I was totally surprised that I could beat Ishtar and Mar in the final of Eurocàsting, certainly because I thought there was hardly any difference between the three of us during the live broadcast. In the end, the jury had the final say, but when I heard that the televoting audience only awarded me 15 votes less than their favourite Mar, I had been set my mind at ease because with one phone you can vote four times, so that's only a difference of four people voting. As good as no difference.

RTVA will now select three songs in Catalan that you will sing on 22nd January. Do you have a say in the choice of the songs?

No, I don't have a say in the selection of the three songs. A new professional jury has been appointed and they will make the decision.

During the final of Eurocàsting you sang a ballad and an up-tempo song. What kind of song would you like to sing in Kiev?

In Kiev I would prefer to sing a song in which I can give all of myself. Whether that song is a ballad or an up-tempo song is less important, as long as it isn't monotonous. It should have something special making it conspicuous. The song Stop by Sam Brown for instance is a slow song with a lot of power.

You earlier told esctoday.com how important the Catalan language is in Andorra. Will you or would you also like to record an English or Dutch version of your song for Kiev?

I believe that the winning song will be recorded in several languages but that isn't totally certain yet. It would be very pleasant but it isn't the most important thing to do.

What are your expectations and targets for the Eurovision Song Contest?

To win, of course!!! No, I'm kidding, but you never know. I had never expected to come this far, but I did it. You only succeed when you stay sensible. One step at a time. Now the song has to be selected and then we hope that Andorra will reach the final of the Eurovision Song Contest and that we don't get stuck in the last position with 0 points.

Esctoday.com kindly thanks Marian van de Wal for the interview!

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