Anggun, who was born in Indonesia, is not an unknown lady in the music world, spanning an impressive career since the age of 12. The Indonesian beauty, who’s been living in France for over ten years was more then happy to talk to us about her Eurovision mission, language, men in the video and her outfit for Eurovision.
Hello Anggun, thank you so much for allowing us to talk to you today.Congratulations on representing France at Eurovision. Were you surprised to be asked by French television to take part in the contest?
”thank you. Yes absolutely, because I didn’t even know that I was entitled to participate for France. I wasn’t born or raised in France. I thought it was just an opportunity for French people. Now I am a Francophone though which means I am really into the French culture, I’ve been living in France for ten years, have a French passport and absolutely love it. I was really honored when I was asked so I take representing France so I took the invitation on as a mission.”
So When You said ”yes” to representing France, did you more or less know in which direction you wanted to go song wise?
”Absolutely, I knew almost immediately what I wanted, it needed to be opposite of what France has offered in Eurovision so far. I remember Patricia Kaas, she sang a very slow song and Sebastian Tellier four years ago went for a mid tempo song while Amaury Vassily last year sang a opera song in the Corsican language. I wanted to spice things up a bit by suggesting to sing an up tempo song, it hasn’t been done in a long time for France. On top of that, I also suggested to sing part of the song in English. And believe me it took a lot of effort to convince them because people in France are very adamant when it comes to their language.” (laughs)
I can imagine your convincing skills being tested. Based on my own experiences The UK and France are quite similar when it comes down to their language and an artist singing a part of the song in another language would raise an eyebrow at first and need some persuasion.
”I personally think it’s very important in Eurovision to sing in the country’s mother language, not a lot of people do that. Most of the countries taking part this year sing in English or have it changed to English. For example Iceland, I heard the Icelandic version first but they changed it to English. So I do feel that I am one of the only people in the competition singing in the language of my country and I think it’s important to do so but equally it’s important for other people to understand the song, hence why we decided to put 20% of the lyrics in English as it makes the song more accessible. ”
Can you describe your song ‘Echo’ (You and I) in three words for us? And explain afterwards why you chose these three words.
”Uneasy, it’s not an easy song. It’s a very architectural song, and also very French. It’s not like ”Euphoria” which is a huge immediate song. You hear it and you go ”OMG I want that”. Echo is different, it’s the type of song which has to grow on you. It’s very French, like the French people really. It needs to be approached in a particular way, as you would approach French people. We can be moody sometimes so we require a different type of approach” (laughs)
You’ve recorded ‘Echo (You and I)’ in several duets with European artists. Are we seeing Anggun doing a ‘David Guetta’ and perhaps releasing an album soon with collabs?
”I have been doing lots of collaborations over the years, I love doing so but the thing now is, it has more exposure because of Eurovision. Also collaborations are a good thing, so I’m saying why not? Music has to go global and open up so lots of people are able to listen and hear different music . ”
Let’s talk a bit about the video for Echo which, is let’s say rather yummy… Did you personally choose the men for the video?
”You think? hahaha,. when they did the casting, I had my word of course haha. the thing is, the video director, Roy Raz, he’s amazing in what he does so I pretty much agreed with whatever he wanted to do and followed him. He has a fantastic taste.”
What can we expect in Baku from you? Half naked men in white glitter underwear? (Please say yes!!!)
”I can’t say much about the performance yet, it needs to stay a surprise but Ehm maybe… maybe not… hahaha. ”
Another much debated topic is of course your dress, which is designed by Jean Paul Gaultier. We’ve been doing a bit of research since you’ve been touring for quite some time and noticed that you’ve been wearing short dresses during the promo tours sooo we assume you might be wearing a short number by him? Any hints if we’re in the right direction?
”I don’t actually have the right to say anything about the dress. Well outfit, I can’t say if it’s a dress or not so yes, it’s Jean Paul Gaultier who designed my outfit. The only thing I can say is, when he talks about the outfit in the media, he says the outfit is inspired by Anggun’s hair colour and skin colour. ”
Let’s assume on May 26th, you are crowned the Eurovision winner of 2012….
”Can we say that? I am very superstitious…. ”
Are you Really?
”no not really hahahahha… ”
”Paris of course! Who doesn’t love Paris. Paris is like one of the biggest cities in the world. It’s a dream city. It’s one of those top cities there’s also Rome, New York, Hong Kong without doubt but yes should I win for France the contest has to be in Paris.”
And last but not least, Anggun, if you had to choose. French or Indonesian food. Which one do you prefer?
”Ok … well… they are both fattening hahaha but I am definitely going for the Indonesian. ”
Anggun, thank you so much for this interview. We wish you all the best in your preparations and rehearsals for Baku.
”Thank you very much. ”
See Anggun’s entry for Eurovision ‘Echo (You and I) below. Anggun is representing France in Azerbaijan, Baku during the grand final on May 26.