Today our interview team arrives in Israel. We get to talk to Moran Mazor, who will present the song Rak bishvilo as song number 10 in the second semi-final in Malmö.
1. Hello Moran! What is your first Eurovision memory?
I think that one of the things that I remember the most is when Israel won the competition in 1998 with ‘Diva’. I was a young girl and I was so excited that she won, and the year later I even didn’t notice Dana falling on the stage when she handed the trophy – I was in such an euphoria so I didn’t notice that.
2. Where did the decision to take part in the Kdam-Eurovision came from? How was the song written, and did you believe that you have a chance to win?
My artistic manager talked to me about it and I said that I would be very happy to participate in the Kdam, it wasn’t a question! It is a thing I dreamed to do since I was very young and it made me excited to think about participating in the Kdam.
After a few days we have started to look for materials for a song, and after sorting things in my email we have found ‘Rak bishvilo’. It was lying in my mailbox for about a year and we decided right away that this will be my song.
I always wanted to believe that I’m going to win the Kdam, but it looked so big and so far so I didn’t know if I really had a chance.
3. You won the first season of ‘Eyal Golan is calling you’, a reality show for finding new stars in the Mediterranean genre. Is Eyal taking part in the preparations for the big moment?
Of course, he has a significant part in every step we make. We ask him about everything and he loves being a part of our preparations for the Eurovision Song Contest. He will probably come to visit us during this journey, and this is simply amazing for me.
4. Tell us more about your preparations for the contest. Have you found a dress already?
We rehearse on the song and we prepare ourselves mostly mentally. I don’t really understand where we’re going to, I don’t realise the size of the event, it’s something huge and you don’t experience it anywhere else. The whole of Europe watches it and it’s very stressing and exciting. I still haven’t found a dress, we are working on it. We really look for the dress that will be the best for me, and this is what I will wear.
5. Will you be looking to put on a spectacle show, or are you keeping it simple?
I still don’t know exactly what the performance will look like. We get many references and we are in contact with the Swedish producers, but the final decisions will be made when we will look at the stage and get to know the size of everything. We got sketches of the stage but only when I’ll get there I’ll understand where I am, and the same regarding the show I will give.
6. What do you think is the best way to convey your message to members of the audience who don’t speak Hebrew?
I think that there’s a lot in the feeling of the song, in my facial expressions when I sing. I don’t think that I need more than that – you just have to look at me during the song and you will get the feeling of what the song is about. The melody itself is very touching and I hope that people will be touched by it.
7. As opposed to your other songs so far, which are in the Mediterranean genre, Rak bishvilo is a typical Eurovision ballad. How do you define your musical style, and what can we expect to find in your first album that will be out soon?
My album is going to be in the Mediterranean genre, as I am a Mediterranean-genre singer, but it will be more versatile with touches of r’n’b, soul and pop. It will be very diverse with a lot of ideas and compositions inside it. It took us about two years to work on it, simply because there were a lot of things we wanted to put in it, and I am very happy that it was slow but worthwhile.
8. Have you heard any of the other songs this year? Who are your favourites?
It’s still kind of difficult to me to relate a song to a country and to an artist. I heard Anouk’s song ‘Birds’, and also ‘Only teardrops’ from Denmark and I think that it’s a great song. The Georgian ballad is charming. I still don’t know who my favourites are but I will get to find them soon.
9. You have Georgian heritage, as your both parents are Georgian. What do you think of their entry this year? How do you feel about competing against them in semi-final 2?
Actually, when I performed in Amsterdam last week I managed to get to know them more and to talk to them. Nodi & Sophie are very charming and I feel great to be friends with them and to compete against them. It’s a competition after all but we get along very well.
10. What are you most looking forward to experience in Malmö?
I really want to have fun, not to be stressed, not to lose myself over there and I hope that I won’t let the pressure and the emotions to take me to unwanted places. After all, it’s a one in a lifetime experience and I want to live the moment up to the last second. I want to come back to Israel with a smile and to know that I the best that I could on the stage and it will make me very happy and proud.
11. During the last years, the Eurovision Song Contest has become less popular in Israel. Do you think that thanks to your fans of the Mediterranean genre, who are not usually following the contest, you will manage to bring back the excitement in Israel?
First, I think that the new concept of the Kdam was very good. It was in the news and the websites around so you couldn’t ignore the fact that there is a Kdam somewhere in the country, and it makes me very happy that the contest is back to the front.
I hope that the people who watched the Kdam Eurovision shows will also watch the actual Eurovision and I hope that my audience will also watch Eurovision. It is very important for me that they will watch and support me, even though they wouldn’t be able to vote for me.
12. Other than music, what are your passions in life?
I am really interested in biology, it is something that always made me curious. In high school I studied biology and I was supposed to study pharmacology and be a pharmacist in the Israel Defense Forces, but at the end I served as a singer in the Israeli Air Force band. I would really like to research or to find a new medicine, but right now I am very happy that I am doing the thing I love the most and that I manage to fulfil myself there.
13. Are you following the polls and the comments of the Eurovision Song Contest fans?
I don’t follow these as if you are in a high place or a low place, it can only make you nervous, for bad or for good. I would like to come ready and give my best on the stage, and what will be – will be.
14. Do you want to say something to the esctoday.com readers who will read this interview?
I really hope to give my best performance in Malmö and I hope to bring the trophy back to Israel. But nevertheless, I want to make the audience enjoy, to give my team and myself the best experience over there. I would like to thank you all for your support and I hope that the readers will love the song and vote for us in Malmö, the contest is really around the corner!
The esctoday.com team would like to thank Moran Mazor for taking the time to talk to us and to wish her the best of luck in Malmö!
Questions by Gil Laufer and Eliza-Jane