PLEASE CLICK HERE IF YOU WANT TO READ THIS INTERVIEW IN ALBANIAN EDITION.
Lorine Zineb Nora Talhaoui, better known by her stage name Loreen, is the world-famous Swedish singer who won Eurovision in 2012 with the song “Euphoria.”
It is still remembered as one of the most cult songs of the European song festival, and now, 11 years later, Loreen has returned to the Eurovision Song Contest, representing her country Sweden with the new song “Tatoo”.
In an exclusive interview for Telegrafi, her first for an Albanian media outlet, Loreen talks about her successful music career, her expectations this year from Eurovision, and how her life changed after the glorious victory in 2012.
It seems that the former “Euphoria” of participating in this festival has already turned into a “Tattoo” in the career of the artist Loreen.
Telegrafi: Loreen, you are back to competing in Eurovision after 11 years. Tell us what it was like to come back after so many years.
Loreen: It felt beautiful and natural. maybe at first, I didn’t think that I was going to be, that life would want me to go down this path again. Not in my wildest dreams, but life happened, and I am here. I don’t understand how, but I am here. So it feels beautiful. I am happy about it.
Telegrafi: You represent Sweden this year with the song “Tatoo.” Can you tell us a little more in detail about this song?
Loreen: Well, it’s a song about love. It’s a song about fighting for love and also having an understanding that if you want to, experience true, deep love, you have to be willing to fight a little bit and understand that it’s not always like ‘Woohoo’. It’s not always beautiful. Also, dark stuff is needed. Not too dark, but the dark stuff. So I feel sometimes that today, as soon as it’s like trouble, we’re like ‘Haka’? So there are parts in the song like, I walk through fire and through the rain just to get closer to you. So, it’s about love fighting for love. It’s about love.
Telerafi: Yes, all about love. You are the winner of Eurovision in 2012. Tell us a little about your memories from that time when you won the song contest.
Loreen: I remember, when I performed the song, I created something at the time that was very different and not so many people believed in that, but I believed in that. And, you know, it’s scary when you have something and people are like “Hmm, that’s not going to work”. And you’re still going to do it, and you do it, and it works. So for me to win with “Euphoria”, it was very spiritual because it was almost like, if you believe in God, it was like God saying “Even though it was scary, you did what your heart told you”, and that was why it was flowing. So it was very, very powerful to win Eurovision with “Euphoria”, because it was different. And we are all different, and it’s beautiful. And also when I won with “Euphoria”, it just opened doors all of a sudden. I was beyond borders. I met people like you from around the world, new friends, new experiences, new challenges, and life happened. It was up, it was down, it was there. It was like all over the place, but it was beautiful.
Telegrafi: Yeah, it’s a really good performance. It was also a good time for us because Albania had the highest score in 2012 until now. So, it was really one of the best competitions ever. How much has your life changed since winning Eurovision?
Loreen: I mean, one big change is that I’m working with the things that I love. I’m very, privileged that way because, it made it possible for me to be a creator and an artist full-time. So that’s one thing. But also “Euphoria” taught the movie a lot about being really persistent when it comes to your creativity, protecting it and, protecting other artists and their creativity. You had an understanding of, and I learned so many things from that, because the business is pretty crazy. So you learned a lot about how to stand your ground and do your stuff, your thing, trusting in what you’re doing. I haven’t learned anything else about.
Telegrafi: “Euphoria” is one of the most legendary Eurovision songs. What distinguishes “Tatoo” from “euphoria”?
Loreen: “Euphoria” was very introverted, it wasn’t about hiding, but at the same time you felt something. Remember, it was very dark and mystical, and everything was moving very, very secretively. “Tattoo” it’s the opposite. It’s very bright and it’s a complete opposite in many ways in energy. Like, if “Euphoria” was the moonlight, “Tattoo” is the sun. Do you know what I mean? So, both of these energies are so important, but, it’s more open with a “Tattoo”. It’s about strength. It’s about love and hope. It’s about all of these things that we have and that we need today more than ever.
Telegrafi: What are your expectations this year? Do you think that you are a strong contender to win Eurovision this year as well?
Loreen: I don’t know why. Because first of all, you can never, ever control people. Never. Even though you try, you can never have it, which is freedom. And so the only thing I can control is making sure that I will be perfect for you. That I will create something for you that maybe you will like and that I can control. But if you like, or you don’t, I don’t know.
Telegrafi: Have you heard the other competing songs in Eurovision 2023? How did the other participating songs sound?
Loreen: Yeah, I have heard to be honest. I haven’t heard all of them. I’ve heard some of them and I like it. I like the diversity, like different styles; I like to see it; I like the fact that there are, we have, and the creators are being very creative and free. As they do, they do their thing, without being apologetic. And I like that because I think you should never interfere with the creator. You just let the creator do what he or she wants to do, and that’s when it becomes the best. So for me, when I look at these, I’m like “Oh my God, that is so good”. And there we are, all so different.
Telegrafi: Loreen, you have travelled to many countries in Europe. But have you ever been to Albania or Kosovo?
Loreen: I have, I think I had a gig in Albania. So I’m asking now. I’m asking my people. Have I been to Albania?
Telegrafi: So you don’t remember?
Loreen: I think, I’ve actually had a gig in Albania many, many years ago, so yes, yes, I’ve been to Albania. I just wanted to say that I have Albanian friends.
Telegrafi: Okay. Albanians are good friends to be honest. Have you heard the Albanian song this year in Eurovision?
Loreen: Yes, I have.
Telegrafi: Did you like it?
Loreen: Yeah. Well, she’s amazing. As I said, everybody has their own touch, and I just love watching all these different colours. And I also like more, the women. I’m sorry, I’m a female feminist.
Telegrafi: We had a lot of female artists that represented our country in Eurovision. So, I guess you’re happy with this. Loreen, we are at the end of the interview. Thank you so much for being with us today. We wish you a lot of success in Eurovision. Finally, what would be your message to all Albanian fans?
Loreen: Okay, so my message is: first of all, thank you for believing in me. Thank you for supporting me because I’ve seen a lot of beautiful messages, both on Instagram and TikTok, and everywhere else, from my Albanian friends, and I’ve read them. So thank you for that. That’s the first thing. Second thing, I will do my best for you on this, Eurovision; I will practice every day for you. It’s going to be great. /Telegrafi/
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