Tasha Odi is going to take part in the Belarusian national selection once again this year. After last year’s participation with the song “Empty Universe”, she will try and represent Belarus in Eurovision 2015 with the song “Giving Up Your Love”, composed by Ylva and Linda Persson.
We had a great pleasure to talk to Tasha about her career, as well as her participation in Eurofest. Check out everything she told us, in the following interview:
- Hi Tasha! Thank you very much for taking your time out to speak to us! For the start, can you tell us a little bit about yourself?
Hi, thank you so much for the opportunity to speak to our audience. Gladly!
I was born and raised in Belarus, and from a very young age have taken interest in music and took singing lessons. For some time I sang at various venues in my home town: night clubs, restaurants, concert halls, corporate celebrations. Then, I have entered and passed the auditions for the lead part in a musical “Prophet”, the author of which was a famous Russian artist Iliya Oleinikov and the director – Janusz Jozefowicz, a famous Polish director of such musicals like “Metro” and “Witches of Eastwick”. Working in the musical side by side with professionals of such level, I have realized the need for formal musical education, even if later in life. That is how I came to study at the Saint-Petersburg University of Culture and Arts, where I have acquired degrees in Jazz Vocals and Management in Music Industry. Currently, I give concerts, sing in various music clubs/venues, and take part in cultural projects of Belarus and Russia.
I have recorded a number of songs with the aid of Belarussian and Russian authors, but this year I worked with two very talented Swedish composers – Ylva and Linda Perssom. It has been a great experience and pleasure to work with them. They wrote the song for me worthy to represent Belarus at Eurovision 2015.
I believe that between my vocals and the talent of the Swedish composers, we are more than qualified; we could even go as far as Grammys!
- How did you decide to enter Eurofest, and how did you get in touch with the composing team of your entry?
Last year I took part in Eurofest because our Belarussian authors Leonid Shirin and Yuriy Vaschuk (a.k.a. TEO) offered me a wonderful song. For one reason or another, we did not win the final contest. But! We were heard by Ylva and Linda. They approached me because they liked my voice and thought we could really make something great together. And that is exactly what we did! They wrote the song, I recorded it, and we decided to participate again this year! We are doing it again! Why not?!
- Can you tell us a little bit about “Giving Up Your Love”?
To quickly summarize the meaning of the song, I would describe it as “I am moving on. I am not angry. I am letting you go, and life goes on as well. Thank you for the experience and the lesson. The best is yet ahead of me!” The lyrics are very relatable and are easily understood by all. Ylva and Linda Persson wrote this song in such a way, that people in any country in the world could understand it. As artists, we have an opportunity to reach so many people and deliver a message of strength and hope. I find the message empowering, it touches my heart, and that is what I sang it about. The song is a catchy, funky, uptempo song flirting with the classic love story and the ups and downs of a relationship. The style suits my style, image and soulful voice very well.
- How are you preparing yourself for Eurofest?
I try to sleep more and talk on the phone less… Joking!!! 🙂 There is a lot of work to be done and so little time left. I am fortunate to be working with a great team of professionals – stylist, makeup artist, director, backup singers, dancers, sound mastering, cameramen, etc. We are employing our creativity to put together a performance that will bring joy to the audience. That is the only reason we, performers, do what we do. That is practically what we live for!
- Can you tell us how is your stage performance going to be on the night?
At first, we were going to do what everybody else does – pretty costumes, dancers in the background, choreographed performance, wind machines, etc. But some things just take away from the magic of true art, the music, the power of voice. Amazingly, the authors of the song will be on stage with me and will back my voice with theirs! This year, we will present to Europe a great song without a freak-show!
- Have you heard the other 14 songs, and do you have a favourite one?
Yes, of course I heard everyone. One should be wise enough to know their competition! I like the beautiful song of Gunesh, as well as the song by Napoli. During the spectators’ voting, I will send SMS in their support! I also have my least favourite performances, but would rather not say anything negative about anyone. We all have opinions.
- What would representing Belarus in Eurovision mean to you?
It is a huge HONOUR. My homeland, my flag, my hymn… all these things are a part of who I am. Wherever I am in the world, my heart is always in one place only – my country, Belarus – with its vast green fields and forests, with all the beauty it has to offer. It would be a huge responsibility, but I would be proud to represent my homeland!
- Do you usually watch Eurovision, and have you got an all time favourite Eurovision song?
Yes, I do. I never miss Eurovision, and went to see it live in the year when it was held in Moscow.
To name a few of my all-time favorites: Loreen – “Euphoria” (Sweden / Eurovision 2012), also Marija Šerifović – “Molitva” (Serbia / 2007) and Jade Ewen – “It’s my time” (United Kingdom / Eurovision 2009).
- Are you currently engaged in any other projects, apart from Eurofest?
Yes, I am working on my on my own repertoire – still dreaming about Grammys! Also, my business project in agro-tourism in Belarus.
- Do you have a message for all the readers of ESCBubble?
Of course! Dear audience, have a closer look at my country – Belarus! Find out how amazing it is! Come visit! Our culture, the beauty of nature, as well as our hospitality, with pleasantly surprise you! Belarus welcomes you!
- Thank you very much for your time, and we wish you all the best at Eurofest!
Thank you as well, it is my pleasure! Many thanks and much love! See you soon!
Give a listen to Tasha’s entry in Eurofest, “Giving Up Your Love” right here: