At the top of her career, more mature, with a provocative look and with a song dedicated to a traditional Albanian wedding ceremony, Ledina Celo is preparing to represent her country at the Eurovision Song Contest in Kiev.
In 2003, Ledina hosted Festivali i Kenges and proclaimed Anjeza Shahini as the first representative of Albania for the Eurovision Song Contest. This year she was one of the contestants and won the Albanian ticket to Ukraine where she'll represent the red and black colours of her flag.
Ledina Celo is a consolidated singer with a lot of experience and the subject of many cover stories in the Albanian magazines and newspapers. Ardi Pulaj, our correspondent in Albania interviewed Ledina Celo and uncovered some information on Ledina's Eurovision Song Contest participation.
Last year you hosted Festivali i Kenges, this year you participated in this contest. Why did you decide to participate as a singer?
I did not ask to be a host last year, but I was a proposed to do so by the director of Festivali i Kenges. It was a strange proposal, but I gave it a try. Why not trying something different, besides singing? It was interesting to introduce your colleagues, it was a special emotion.
This year, the Eurovision Song Contest was a reason why I decided to participate in Festivali i Kenges. I have passed the emotions of winning prizes in local activities and contests, so now my dream and my aim was the Eurovision Song Contest.
What is the most important reason for your success?
I think it is the rhythm of my songs. I remember my first performance in a song with Luan Zhegu called E doni dashurine (Do you love love). The rhythm fits me and my character so well and I think that the audience likes that.
Albania has great singers, but they don't often have a lot of rhythm in their songs. It is normal that in a national event like Festivali i Kenges r&b, dance songs and ballads are performed, but the rhythm is essential. This was proven in the last festival, where good performances and rhythm reigned.
Do you think your song and performance were the best at the Festivali i Kenges?
I think that it was not only about me in the festival. There were more beautiful songs with traditional elements, like the song of Luiz Ejlli. I would like to remind the songs composed by Flamur Shehu, three girls from Kosovo or Edmond Zhulali. They had very good performances. The jury chose my song and I was happy with that decision. But I also think that my other colleagues, who made a wonderful presentation, should be congratulated.
Your song is about the wedding and Albanian traditions. Was the song composed on purpose for the Eurovision Song Contest?
The idea of composer Adrian Hila and lyricist Pandi Laco was to create a traditional Albanian song. In the end, we are Albanians, and in a European festival we cannot represent ourselves as English or French. Through this song we can bring the culture of Albania to the audience.
Neser shkoj (I�ll go tomorrow) is a song dedicated to the wedding, an important moment in everybody�s life.
The song is about a girl who is talking to her mother a day before her wedding. The drums are forewarning the wedding and then the beautiful atmosphere of an Albanian wedding ceremony shows up. We would like to introduce this part of our tradition to the European public.
Every detail is well considered. Not only the drums, but also the ballet, the costumes,…. All the components fit in the song, like the atmosphere brought on stage: girls dancing and a boy performing with a drum create the idea of the Albanian wedding, while my dress belongs to a modern bride.
Are you going to sing the song in Albanian or in English at the Eurovision Song Contest?
I will sing the song in English, so the public can perceive it easily. The composer Adrian Hila is working on the remix. Compared to our performance at the Festivali i Kenges we are thinking of an act in which I will be more involved in the choreography. I hope it is going to be a special performance.
Esctoday.com kindly thanks Ledina Celo for the interview
Interview by Ardi Pulaj