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André Vásáry: “My song has a surprising touch that gives me a plus” (Hungarian candidate – Exclusive Interview)

ESC+Plus has talked to André Vásáry, candidate of this year’s Hungarian national selection for Eurovision, “A Dal 2016”. The singer will perform “Why” in the second heat set on January 30.

ESC+Plus: Hello! First of all, thank you so much for your time and congratulations on having been selected to take part in the Hungarian national selection for Eurovision 2016!

E+: Can you tell us about you, your musical career and important achievements?

I’m a male soprano singer performing on national and international stages for 15 years now. I have a classical musical training, but singing both classical and crossover style music. I have already five albums (also classical and crossover) released gaining three Gold Records and one Platinum Record.

I won the Opera Contest in Miskolc, Hungary; I was finalist in an international singing contest in Rome; I placed second in the Hungary’s Got Talent Competition; I received nomination for the Hungarian Fonogram Musical Award in the category of the Hungarian Contemporary Classical Album of the Year ; I played theatrical roles in Pesti Theatre and acted also in a Schiller drama in the National Theatre of Hungary for three years; My album titled Ünnep (Feat) is the first Christmas theme album recorded with the accompaniment of a symphony orchestra and made by a male soprano singer; I had memorable performances in the greatest concert halls and festivals of Hungary with lots of renowned orchestras and conductors; My fifth album Mozijegy (Movie Ticket) contains soundtracks; I had many concerts and tours abroad both in Europe and overseas and I was selected to perform as leading soloist to Red Army Choir’s Hungarian tour last September.

E+: What impelled you to take part in “A Dal 2016”?

The producer of my fifth album came up with a song, saying that he had written it just for me, for my soprano voice and it’s very special. On listening it we nodded, it was special indeed. From here it was only one step to decide to enter it into the Eurovision contest. And if you go through my career, you see that it’s quite a new challenge for me. So why shouldn’t we try it?

E+: How did you feel when you knew you had qualified for the heats? Did you expect it?

We were surprised but very happy. I’m known as a classical and crossover singer so it is a great step from me to participate in a competition like this. It was just because of this we were not at all sure that the song would be selected into the heats. So no, we did not expect it but were all the more happy with it.

E+: What it would mean for you to represent Hungary?

It would mean great happiness and even greater responsibility. To represent a whole country is responsibility of course. You have to be perfect, cooperate with your team and do all your best for the success. With a slight exaggeration it could be said that the Eurovision Song Contest means the same for the musicians than the Olympic Games means for the athletes.

E+: Can you tell us about your song? What is the story behind the lyrics?

I think the lyrics of my song is particularly good as everybody can interpret it on an other way round. As for me the events going on in the world in the last months show that we are heading into the wrong direction, so everyone has to ask himself questions and answer them honestly. If done, the problems of the world might become re-evaluated, or at least might be approached otherwise. Let’s accept each other just as we are and don’t hurt each other – that’s the message of my song.

E+: Why do you think your song has to be selected for Stockholm? What are you strengths to reach the top in the competition?

I wouldn’t enter the Contest, if I didn’t believe in the song. It is very unusual and extraordinary. Partly operatic, partly pop-dance style. And I will sing it with my male soprano voice. Even its deep sounds at the beginning and the unusually high tunes at the end. It is a surprising touch that gives a plus, other songs won’t have. And the top of it my song has also a profound message to say.

E+: Have you started to prepare your stage performance for “A Dal 2016”?

Yes, indeed. It’s a very compound task, there are lots of details to deal with. First of all we have to prepare to sing the song live. In the Hungarian contest we have to perform more versions of the song (including an acoustic performance). Besides the musical preparations the styling, the choreography and the visual effects are also very important.

E+: Do you usually watch Eurovision? What are your favorite songs in the history of the competition?

Yes, of course! I like the ideas that make it work, and I love its spectacular show and it’s also interesting to have an insight to other country’s musical trends and get to know new performers. It’s hard to choose one, there are more and more loveable songs and singers. Last year for example the Russian and the Italian singers were my favorites.

E+: If you could choose a Eurovision former participant to sing along with, who would it be?

Celine Dion!

E+: Besides Eurovision, what are your plans for this year?

I was very busy at the end of last year with my Advent concert tour, and this year started with the very event-filled days and weeks of the Eurovision preparations and the contest. After Eurovision I’ll go on with my concerts with the songs of my recent album titled Mozijegy (Movie Ticket) including popular soundtracks. Many interesting tasks are among my plans, but I would prefer to keep them in secret until they are under negotiations.

E+: Finally, can you send a message for our readers and Eurovision fans?

Keep on watching Eurovision. And do not forget that music is able to iron out conflicts and can help you making friendships. That is what Eurovision calls for!

E+: Thank you for your time and good luck!

About Tony Rodríguez (Spain)