We did it! We have finally interviewed our Shady Lady!
Ani Lorak is one of our favourite singer from these Eurovision Song Contest: she is really pretty, she is sensual and she is the new face of the european campaign against AIDS.
So her songs becomes a more important entry for the whole audience, not only because it is a really cool song, but even because its message is really strong.
At the age of 14, Ani signed her first contract and, years later, she has been awarded with the title of the Honoured Artist of Ukraine, having become the youngest singer ever to get this rank. As we see in the video of "Shady Lady", Ani is a marvellous actress and she also acted as a professionist in some musicals and dubbed some films.
Overall, she has written three books and she owns a restaurant in Kyiv; she has partecipated in many important campaigns. Let's join our chat with her!
If you could describe in few words "Shady Lady", what will you say?
It’s a very positive song that gives you a burst of energy. Shady Lady is image of a strong, independent woman. Shady Lady sets on fire everybody who she meets on her way, she inspires heroes and leaves an unforgettable impression in the hearts of her admirers. At the same time she uses her power to change this world to a better place, does charity work and takes care of those deprived and dispossessed.
Do you feel that Verka's performance and image of last year will influence the voting of this year?
Of course her performance last year contributed to the image of Ukraine at Eurovision Song Contest. And I will be very happy to add to it as well. But I don’t see Eurovision as a sports competition. My main goal is to make people enjoy the show and to imbue them with positive emotions. I think it’s more important that the audience hears my backstage message which is AIDS is not transmitted through friendship. If I feel that my efforts in the field of fighting stigma and discrimination to HIV-positive people influence public opinion this will matter more to me than voting results.
From whose singers do you find inspiration? Has Madonna any influence on the intro of Shady Lady?
I do usually sing in pop-rock style and disco-pop is something new to me. As you know Shady Lady was a present from the prominent Russian singer Philip Kirkorov who is a composer of this wonderful song. Of course, I wouldn’t deny that Madonna’s image is very much about Shady Lady. Also Cleopatra, Evita Peron, Mata Hari, Marilyn Monroe, Edith Piaf are among those who are called Shady Ladies. They all have had an incredible impact on our world and the way we live today.
Who will be on stage with you?
Let it be a small secret. I would like to surprise the European audience with my performance. One thing you can be sure of is that it’s going to be something incredible!
Was Shady Lady your favorite song from the Ukrainian selection?
Yes, I loved it from the very first time when I heard it. Another song which I liked very much was A Dream of Brighter Day. I dedicated that song to promoting international support and action on behalf of the victims of the humanitarian crisis in Darfur which is the Western Region of Sudan. I presented this song to the international organization Justice Africa and now it’s being distributed in the refugee camps in Darfur. But, of course, I respect the choice of my Ukrainian fans and will be singing Shady Lady at Eurovision.
What kind of character will you show on stage?
It will be a woman who rules the world. She will be passionate, seductive and glamorous!
Will your Shady Lady be sensual enough to fascinate all the European audience?
Sensuality is an inseparable trait of every Shady Lady. But I hope that European audience first of all hears my voice into the support of people who live with HIV/AIDS. I think the most important thing is to cultivate tolerance in society, to develop a social cause using Shady Lady’s magnetism.
Where has the video of Shady Lady been filmed? And how many days have you been on the set?
The video was filmed in Kiev, Ukraine, by the young and very talented video director Katya Tsaryk. I think she did a great job. Working with her was very easy and cool. As women we understood each other perfectly.
As like as in Tina Karol's song, you have a marvelous high note at the end of the song. Is it hard to sing it live? Do you think it will display the greatness of your voice?
I think the whole song is a very good choice to show vocal potential. And I do love this last high note. I like the way it ends the song in a very good way! For me it is not hard to sing at all. I thank God every day for the gift He gave me. That is why I know that such present has to be used for some good cause.
Have you already listened to this year's song? Which will be the hardest to beat?
I did hear some of the songs. But I don’t see other performers as my opponents and rivals. We are all coming to Eurovision to enjoy the time and to have fun. I wish luck to everybody, because I respect the choice of every nation who sends their favorite singer to represent their country at such a great event. I am sure that every song will be very unique and pretty as every nation in a multicultural Europe.
Last year, the song that represented the fight against AIDS was the Austrian one and it didn't do well. Do you think they have preferred yours as one of the most strong songs from this year?
I think more important was that the Austrian entry brought this topic to Eurovision and that the audience understood the message delivered by that performer. This is what matters the most.
Will you bring the AIDS-fight symbol on the stage with you?
As I said before I want to keep a secret about my performance but I can say that my promo materials will have a “red ribbon” symbol on them.
Do you think that Eurovision Song Contest launches important messages for safe sex because it's sometimes referred as a gay-show?
Of course, not! Safe sex should be a care of every couple. It’s about our health and health of our kids. Europe needs strong, healthy nations!
In the last years, Russia and Ukraine were the runner-ups. Do you think there is a same competition with your neighbor?
It’s not the first time I hear this question. But I don’t see Dima Bilan as my competitor simply because I don’t see music as sports. Plus his song is so different from mine that they cannot be compared. Recently I visited Moscow and met with Dima. We made really good friends and wished luck to each other at the contest.
You have worked with Philip Kirkorov, how was it to work with the most important songwriter in the Eastern Europe?
Of course, I feel honored to have Philip as a composer of my song. He is very professional in what he does and I am sure that our tandem will be a pure success in any sense! He helps a lot and sincerely supports me before Eurovision.
Did you see the video of "Ken Lee" where a bulgarian girl (Valentina Hasan) sang a "newer version" of "without you" of Mariah Carey at the selection of the Bulgarian Idol in front of a Shocked Philip Kirkorov? Did he tell you anything about it?
Honestly I don’t have much time lately. I’ve been on the European tour which ended just two days before I leave for Serbia. I will definitely ask Philip about this and will be able to comment later on. We’ve just been so busy this month
Do you think that Belgrade is a "safe place" for the ESC?
Definitely. I am sure that organizers have done a great job to host the show and it will go very well. I am sure that God protects us because we are going there for a great cause!
Have you ever visited Italy? If yes, what did you like most?
Recently I flew to Florence to meet with the famous designer Roberto Cavalli who is making a dress for my performance. During this last visit I finally had enough time to enjoy the atmosphere of Italy. I visited the historical part of the city and absolutely loved all the cathedrals and other historical buildings. I was particularly impressed by Santa Maria del Fiore.
Would you like to say something to your fans (especially) from Italy and all over Europe
Watch Eurovision and enjoy the show! I sing for every one of you. You, just like the music, are my life!
Thank you Ani for the interview! You're such a great person and we love you! Also, thanks to Mrs. Skomorohova for her help