FeaturesRotterdam 2021

🇨🇾 Elena Tsagrinou: “I prepared a lot to do this” [INTERVIEW]

We chat to Elena fresh from her triumphant first rehearsal

Today I had the pleasure of [virtually] sitting down with the wonderful Elena Tsagrinou following her triumphant first rehearsal of “El Diablo”. In this interview, we discussed the staging, the challenges of performing on the Ahoy stage, artists she would like to see participate in Eurovision in the future…and we even compared the weather in Athens and Larnaca! I also gave her a hint about the press poll, in which she finished second behind Ukraine’s Go_A.

Elena will be performing 8th in the first semi-final of Eurovision 2021 on May 18. You can read our review of her first rehearsal here.

You can watch our full interview below:

Fresh from her first rehearsal

Following her rehearsal and press conference, Elena took the time to speak to us from the press centre in Rotterdam. With all the interviews and press, she hadn’t even had the chance to watch her full performance back! Having seen both the run-throughs via the online press centre, and the positive reaction, I assured her that we were all very impressed!

I saw just a shot! I’m hopefully gonna go straight and see the performance and relax.

Elena on what she knew about her rehearsal at the time of the interview

We even gave her a teaser of what was to come from our press poll. Having observed the reaction from fellow journalists, it came as no surprise to see her finish top two in the poll, behind Ukraine’s GO_A. After first rehearsals, she currently has the joint-third highest points in the semi-final overall with 61 votes.

Her staging

After a lovely conversation about Mediterranean weather, we discussed her staging, directed by Marvin Dietmann, which she had yet to see come together. She told me how much preparation it had taken to get the choreography and vocals on point. She also gave a some of behind-the-scenes tidbits, reminding me that she had the song blasting in her ear as she sang.

I prepared a lot to do this live voice on stage, because it’s completely live. We have to dance and sing completely live. The song is hard because it’s very quick and production is inside our minds! I like this, that’s why I chose El Diablo. It’s a powerful song.

Elena explaining how it felt to perform on the Ahoy stage for the first time

Today was the first time she saw all of the elements of her performance come together. Despite not yet watching it back, she was pleased with how it felt on stage.

I can’t wait to go on stage and perform this song, you know! It’s crazy, it’s the vibe, everything. The dancers, the lights, the mirror. It was the first time that I saw every scene of the performance.

Elena on her first rehearsal

We also spoke about the difficulty of securing her microphone pack to her costume, which fell off her during her second run through. Thankfully, it stayed on during the last few run throughs and she absolutely nailed it.

Greek artists she would like to see at Eurovision

In recent years, CyBC have invested in bringing popular artists from the Greek music scene to Eurovision, such as Eleni Foureira and Tamta. Being signed to Panik Records, I asked Elena which Greek artists she would like to see on the Eurovision stage in the future, be it for Greece or Cyprus.

I would like to see Matina Zara, I would like to see Anastasios Rammos. We have a lot of performers in Greece.

Two artists Elena would like to see represent Greece or Cyprus in the future

Before I let her go to watch her performance back and relax after a busy day of rehearsals and press, she said she would love to come to perform in London, and I assured there that there are plenty of Greeks and Cypriots in North London to come to see her live!

What do you think of Elena’s performance so far? Are you rooting for Cyprus this year? Let us know! Be sure to stay updated by following @ESCXTRA on Twitter@escxtra on Instagram and liking our Facebook page for the latest updates! Also, be sure to follow us on Spotify and YouTube to see our live streams in the run-up to Rotterdam!

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