After using the X Factor Malta for the past few years as their Eurovision selection method, in 2022 Malta is going back to their longstanding national final show Malta Eurovision Song Contest or MESC for short. With that comes 22 hopefuls who will all be competing for the ticket to Turin! Over the next two weeks join us for our series of interviews with the artists in the lead up to the show.
Next up its 2017 runner up Janice Mangion, who is taking part with her song “Army”!
Welcome back to MESC! Back in 2017 you came very close to winning with the wonderful “Kewkba”. What made you return to the contest this year?
Thank you for the warm welcome 😊 Yes indeed, “Kewkba” back in 2017 came extremely close to representing Malta at the Eurovision Song Contest, and it is the love that I received then, which I will forever hold close to my heart. The contest had stopped for a couple of years with the X Factor winner getting the Eurovision ticket, but upon it’s return, my love for the Eurovision Song Contest just made me want to take part. I had an idea which I wanted to explore together with my team. The rest, you know… as “Army” was created, submitted and now published 😊
This year you’ll be performing “Army” at the contest. Tell us more about the song, working with the team behind it and why you chose this to be your entry?
“Army”, penned by Emil Calleja Bayliss with music by Mark Scicluna and Cyprian Cassar, is a ballad, which sends out a positive message that when we’re going through a rough patch in life, we find peace and solace by coming together with others. A soldier by himself would definitely be shot dead in a battlefield, but chances are significantly lowered whenever a group of soldiers come together as one. We as people have it in us, to act together, and it is those acts which help us reach a desired goal.
Emil, Mark, Cyprian and I have worked together on more occasions than I could count. They are the kind of people who listen to ideas, share their views, and then start working on magic magic. Previous releases with them include: “Teżor”, “Xewqti”, “Warda” and “Kewkba”.
In 2017 you chose to perform a song fully in Maltese. At the time we did not see that much at the Eurovision selection however this year we have multiple Maltese language songs. Do you think you helped to show other musicians that you could have success with Maltese language music?
I would like to think that I did play a role, knowing that no other song at the Malta Eurovision Song Contest since 1993 had ever been presented in Maltese. There’s a growing sentiment towards the language at the moment, something which picked up right about the time of “Kewkba” with local bands The Travellers and The New Victorians presenting original music in Maltese, as well as a revamped Festival of Maltese Song, Mużika Mużika 😊
Four years have passed since you last competed, so what have you been getting up to? We saw you on the X Factor Malta and that you have released some music such as “Warda” so how have you grown as an artist in this time?
Since “Kewkba”, I have been rather busy! In the weeks after the Malta Eurovision Song Contest in 2017, I travelled to Varna, Bulgaria and also Vitebsk, Belarus to represent Malta at the Discovery International Pop Music Festival and also the Slaviansky Bazaar whilst also releasing “Warda”, “Xewqti”, “Għadu Mhux il-Waqt”, “Sajjetta fil-Bnazzi” and most recently “Teżor”, a collaboration with renowned local violinist George Curmi Puse’.
I feel like each and every experience has given me qualities which have helped me grow, not just as an artist, but even as a person. As a matter of fact, I feel extremely organised tackling this participation in the Malta Eurovision Song Contest.
Eurovision is huge in Malta! What would it mean to you personally to represent your nation at the Eurovision Song Contest in Turin?
You may say that again! 😊 Eurovision is incredibly huge in Malta. It is one of the things that an artist aspires to do in Malta, and I have said it time and time again that it would be an incredible honour to follow in the footsteps of past participants and represent my country in front of an audience of millions. To do it in neighbouring Turin would definitely be extremely special 😊
We like to throw a random question in the mix… if you could sing any other Maltese Eurovision song which would you pick and why?
If I had to sing any other song which represented Malta at the Eurovision Song Contest, it would have to be “Angel” by Chiara. I love everything about it; the lyrics, the melody, the vocals and Chiara’s stage presence.
Thanks for taking the time to answer our questions. Best of luck in the contest! Did you have any message for your fans?
You’re welcome 😊 but thank you for taking the time to prepare these questions. I would like to thank everyone for the ample support I have felt throughout these past couple of years, I never take it foregranted <3 Stay tuned to all the latest updates about my music, through my social media platforms on: Facebook, Instagram, Twitter. Let’s not forget Spotify, where you could also stream my songs!!
The semi final for Malta Eurovision Song Contest 2022 will be taking place on Thursday 17th February 2022 with the top sixteen performances qualifying for the grand final, which will be taking place on Saturday 19th February 2022.
You can vote for your favourites in our poll here!