Eurovision brings artists to the attention of music fans all over Europe and beyond. However when they inspire you to learn a foreign language – Macedonian in this case – so that they can sing your songs, well we though we had to find out more.
The wonderful Kaliopi from FYR Macedonia managed to “Light The Fire” of a young school girl in the west of Ireland with her Eurovision performance of “Crno I Belo”. She happens to be a great supporter of us here at “Eurovision Ireland”, so we had to get to know more about Mary Lenehan from County Sligo in the West of Ireland.
So tell us Mary, what was your first memory of Eurovision?
My first memory of Eurovision was as a child sitting with my family altogether. It was more the sense of occasion – all gathered in the sitting room and watching amazing singers perform on huge stages. Even if I didn’t know the songs, I would try to sing along to the songs. I wasn’t a good singer back then, but my family thankfully didn’t mind me “trying” to sing.
We see that you are a big fan of Kaliopi from Macedonia. Can you tell us how you came to know about her and her music?
Ah yes! I just adore Kaliopi. It was Eurovision in 2012 when I first saw and heard of her. I immediately looked for her on YouTube. What I managed to find was awe-inspiring. What I saw was that she had the most amazing personality I have ever seen in a celebrity. Her voice just captured me but her energetic personality……well I was just lost for words. She always talks of her fans and her love for them. You can feel her love and it makes you feel special. My grandmother has started to call me “Kaliopi” as a sing of how big a fan I am of her.
What was it about her style of music that you like so much?
It is like she sings with so much passion in her instrument – her voice. For me this is so unique and nobody else performs like this. She brings so much style and personality to her songs when she is on stage. I can’t stop looking at her videos and listening to her songs.
Now be honest – how any times have you listened to her Eurovision Song “Crno I Belo”?
Ooo I will be honest. I was in a singing contest called “Stars in Their Eyes”. When I heard “Crno I Belo” for the first time, I said “Ok. I want to be Kaliopi” so I did! I learned the song first in English and then in Macedonian. I have listened to the song well over 1000 times trying to make it perfect – since I don’t speak Macedonian.
So have you started to learn the Macedonian language so you can sing Kaliopi’s songs – how is that going?
Yes I have. It is a very interesting amd beautiful language. I am not very good but I am slowly getting better. I will try my very best to learn the language – just like in life. You must try your very best at everything you do. If you want something in life, then you should work very hard for it. Just like in my singing – I may not be the best singer in the world but I will keep practicing and will get better.
How would you feel if you were to meet and sing with Kaliopi?
OOMG – even just asking me that question and I start to tear up. I would cry – but they would be happy tears. I would be sooooooo excited, I just don’t know what I would do. You cannot believe just how much meeting and singing with Kaliopi would be a dream come true. I place it up there as one of my ultimate dreams in life – To meet Kaliopi and like her represent my country at Eurovision – but one step at a time.
We know you are in an “International Kaliopi Karaoke” contest? Tell us about that?
Yes. I saw this contest on Kaliopi’s website and I HAD to enter. I am the only Irish entrant in the contest – and I am putting my Macedonian language skills to the test. You must get views on your YouTube video of you performing Kaliopi’s songs. On the official Kaliopi Facebook Page you just have to hit the like button after my name. I am number 15 “Mary Lenehan – Vucica” – so please please please vote for me. I would be so thankful if you could look at my performance and maybe vote for me. The winner gets to meet kaliopi and spend the weekend with her. I am dreaming of that!
To vote for Mary just follow the link HERE and “Like” song 15 – Mary Lenehan and like her video here on YouTube too.
So what are your future hopes for your singing career?
My hopes for my singing – Well first I hope I at least entertain people in the “Kaliopi Competition” – I have tried my best to learn the Macedonian language – all for Kaliopi. After school I hope to study music at college and then I dream of representing Ireland at the Eurovision Song Contest. I would also love to create a school for children with disabilities and help them to pursue their dreams in singing, acting and dancing. I just like helping others like my family and friends have done for me.
If you were able to say anything to Kaliopi – what would it be?
Just “Thank You” Kaliopi for helping people believe in themselves! Thank you for giving us your music and most of all, thank you for being you!
Here is Mary covering Kaliopi’s Eurovision song “Crno I belo” from 2012. With so much Irish talent out there – we should have no problems finding future Eurovision singers.
Thanks to Mary for sharing her love of Eurovision and Kaliopi with us. We would ask you look at Mary’s Competition Video, Vote for her and share this article with your friends – learning a new language to follow your Eurovision Heroine – Well that is true Euro Devotion.
Best of Luck Mary
Author/Website co-founder and Editor in Chief Garrett Mulhall
Source : Eurovision Ireland