Croatia rehearsal and conference

by Gordon Roxburgh 57 views

This afternoon it was the turn of Croatia to rehearse, with Boris Novkovic featuring Lado with their song Vukovi umiru sami. The performance features Boris on lead vocals, and he is accompanied on stage by three female backing vocalists, a bagpipe player and a drummer. The drummer also does some handstands on stage towards the end of the song. The song generally received a very good reaction in the hall. They managed to get through three camera rehearsals, although on their final run through, the tape suddenly stopped and they had to restart again.

Press Conference

The press conference started with Boris entering the room by playing football with the moderator. This is because football is his other great passion, and plays for a Croatian football team, that is comprised of musicians.

The conference started with a statement, saying how pleased they are to be here for the 50th edition of the contest, with the song, which translates as The wolves die alone in English. The lyrics were written by Boris Novkovic along with his colleague Franjo Valentic, and together they made the production of the song.

The group then performed a song in the Croatian language, though this time the girls took the vocals, while Boris accompanied them on guitar. This was because the song is sung when a girl is looking to get married!

He is a long term star in Croatia, as well as the neighbouring countries, and is hoping to be well received, not just in these countries, but all over Europe in the contest.

So, at what age had he started singing, and what had been his ambitions? Well his father was a composer, so it was normal to be surrounded by music “as natural as water from a tap”, although he had thought of football as a career, but he dreamed of being like The Beatles, so maybe this is his reason for being a professional musician.

Had their been much discussion about whether to perform in Croatian or English, as in recent years it was more usual for Croatia to sing in Eenglish? Normally he would describe his songs as pop and rock in style, but this was the first time he had a pop and ethnic type song, and liked it. Also becausethe girls sing in a traditional way he thought “It would lose magic if sung in English”, so the decision was made.

As his mother was a music teacher, would he ever consider being a music teacher? Probably not was the answer, as he has learned music by himself, he didn't think he could teach.

What could he tell us about his career to date? He started in the days when it was Yugoslavia, and a much larger market, he had four albums, with sales around 150,000 copies, but since the changes, it is just Croatia, sales are around 30,000. He has in fact had a total of fourteen albums to date, as he started when he was quite young, at 17, and was still in school, when he had his first record.

When asked about favourite memories from the contest, like several others before, the name of Johnny Logan came to mind. He thinks it is an important festival, as it unites Europe and its cultures, as well as experiencing the new countries and the different melodies.

What did he think of Kyiv? He has been here two days so far, and finds the Ukrainian people very friendly, and he likes it very much so far, and hopes by the end of the Eurovision Song Contest, it will get even better!

He has done a lot of promotion of the song, appearing in several countries, and theyhave even sent out tapes of him playing football to gain support. The conference concluded with the group singing a Beatles song, with Boris on guitar followed by the obligatory photo session.

Croatia are scheduled to rehearse next on Sunday 15th May at 15.00 local time.

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