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Kati Laev: “Kaugel Sinust is about longing and hope of those who are far away from home” (Estonian semifinalist – Interview)

ESC+Plus has talked to Kati Laev, semifinalist of the Estonian national selection for Eurovision, “Eesti Laul 2016”. The singer along with Noorkuu will perform “Kaugel Sinust“ (“Far Away From You”) in the first semi-final set on February 13.

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

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

My name is Kati Laev and I’m Eesti Laul 2016 semifinalist. I was born on the island of Saaremaa (in Kuressaare), which is the biggest island of Estonia. I have lived most of my life in this beautiful island. Music has always been a big part of my life. When I was 8, I started to learn the accordion at Kuressaare Music School. I have been singing in different choirs, school bands and musical projects. I studied international economics and business management in university. I have worked in financial sector.

About 2 years ago, my love for singing brought me back to music as a hobby and I started writing my own music and lyrics. Besides, I`ve been doing some radio and television commercials and the biggest project was Denim Dream “Magical Time“. Music is just a therapy for me and I am happy to have this beautiful hobby in my life.

E+: What impelled you to take part in “Eesti Laul 2016” in a duet with Noorkuu?

The initiator was Urmas Kõiv. “Kaugel Sinust“ is a song written by Urmas Kõiv and Anneli Kõiv. Urmas Kõiv had this melody for a long time, but he didn`t find a suitable singer for this song until he found my songs from YouTube. We made a demo and he decided to participate in Eesti Laul.

E+: How did you feel when you knew you had qualified for the semi-final?

I was very happy and the feelings were incredible.

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

It would be a great honour to represent Estonia in the Eurovision Song Contest, but there is still a very long way to go, I have to work hard and we need a lot of luck to qualify to the Eurovision Song Contest.

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

“Kaugel Sinust“ is a song written by Urmas Kõiv and Anneli Kõiv. It means “Far Away From You“. The words of this song have a significant meaning. It tells a story about longing and hope of those who are far away from home and their loved ones. They are longing and hoping to get back home and be reunited with their loved ones. „Kaugel Sinust“ is a very big and glorious song with orchestra. Once I had a dream to sing with orchestra and now it`s time to say the dream came true.

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

Actually I don`t think about it. I have already won because of our song was selected for the Semi Finals of Eesti Laul.

E+: If you win the contest, would you sing in Estonian or in English at Eurovision?

We haven`t discussed about doing an English version of this song, but never say never. My biggest goal at the moment is to represent “Kaugel Sinust” as well as I can.

E+: How are you preparing your performance for “Eesti Laul”?

We need to work out stage decoration.

E+: What is your opinion about the past Estonian representatives in Eurovision? Do you have any favourites?

My favourite is “Kuula” (by Ott Lepland).

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

I would like to learn to play the guitar and continue to write my own music and lyrics. Music is just a therapy for me and I am happy to have this beautiful hobby in my life. But my biggest goal at the moment is to represent “Kaugel Sinust“ as well as I can.

About Tony Rojas (Spain)

Spanish journalist. I love good music and I like Eurovision. I'm bringing you different interviews with the candidates of the European contests for Eurovision. Follow me on @tonyrojas and @tonyrojasofficial (Twitter and Instagram).

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