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Bella Wagner: “Weapons Down is a modern and timely pop song that makes a clear statement for peace” (Austrian finalist – Exclusive Interview)

ESC+Plus has talked to Bella Wagner, finalist of this year’s Austrian national selection for Eurovision. Bella will perform “Weapons Down” in the Wer singt für Österreich final set on February 12.

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

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

I am Singer/Songwriter born in Vienna, Austria. I studied at the Prayner Conservatory in Vienna and speak five languages. I love Music, from pop to jazz. I won the Austrian Newcomer Award, was Supporting Act for Lenny Kravitz; worked with Austrian pop-icon Falco; and presented my debut album in the Montreux Jazz festival in Switzerland. In 2014 I performed at the German equivalent of “America´s Got Talent”, known as, “Supertalent”. My motivation for the Eurovision Song Contest: “With Weapons Down, I speak/sing as a representative for all who are against war and stand for peace; for the present and future generations”.

E+: What impelled you to take part in “Wer singt für Österreich 2016”?

The Eurovision Song Contest has fascinated me since I first heard about it. It is the biggest music event in Europe and a great opportunity to remind millions of people of one important message: PEACE. My intention is not only to entertain, but also change things in a positive way with music.

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

It is overwhelming and a great pleasure to participate with “Weapons Down” – a modern and timely pop song, which makes a clear statement for peace!

I hoped for the best. It was exciting. You never know how things will go in life – everything is possible.

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

It would be a great honour for me to represent Austria at the Eurovision Song Contest with a song which stands for peace and human rights.

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

The main motivation of the song are all the children and innocent people who have suffered due to war or violence with weapons. The song was produced by Austrian Dj/ producer, Masta Huda and composed by the Armenian pianist, Hovannes Djibian, who grew up in Libanon during civil war. I simply loved and enjoyed this teamwork. Extremely positive vibes are connected with WEAPONS DOWN. This lifted the song to a very emotional and powerful level.

E+: Why do you think your song has to be selected for Stockholm?

Weapons Down is a modern and timely pop song that makes a clear statement for peace. At this very moment, in which so many people are living in fear, I feel it is extremely important that this message is heard by as many people as possible.

E+: What are you strengths to reach the top in the competition?

My Heart, Emotion, and the will to change something into good.

E+: Have you started to prepare your stage performance for “Wer singt für Österreich 2016”?

Yess slowly. I concentrate on fitness and vocal-training and, of course, the stage performance as well.

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

Yes I do, nearly every year. My favourite songs that I can remember are “Puppet on a String”, “Mercy”, “Euphoria” and “Rise Like a Phoenix”.

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

I guess it would be Mans Zelmerlöw 🙂

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

I am preparing my new pop album and looking forward to my next releases!

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

Love life, have a great time and enjoy the fantastic Song Contest show ! We will give our best.

E+: Thanks for your time and good luck!

About Tony Rodríguez (Spain)