Meet the ESCXTRA team! Mila

Mila Kovalj

Good evening Europe, Australia and everywhere else! Or good morning, or g’day! Whenever you’re reading this, I want to say a big hello! My name is Mila, and I come from the tiny and cold, but super cozy country of Denmark. When I’m not spending all of my time on Eurovision, I’m doing a Masters in Eastern European Studies, and working at an Escape Room! I love culture, languages, music and glitter, so it was really a no-brainer that I would end up with Eurovision being as such a big part of my life as it is. I am currently preparing for my next exam, where my topic will be – you’ve guessed it – Eurovision! So Eurovision is truly a big aspect of my live in every sense, and I wouldn’t have it any other way.

Your first Eurovision memory

I vaguely remember that my whole family was going to watch Eurovision 2001, and everyone was pretty hyped about it, since it was held in Copenhagen. I remember also being excited, but being a young child, I never actually made it to 9pm, and fell asleep before the contest even started. Thankfully, I got better at staying up later the very next year, and I loved every second of what I saw, despite Denmark finishing last. I was particularly in awe of the Maltese entry 7th Wonder, and to this day, it has stayed my favorite song from Eurovision. Ever since, I have fallen more and more in love with the contest, and I also love watching all of the national finals, and getting to see a little piece of the countries participating in that way.

Your Eurovision journey?

As mentioned my Eurovision journey started in 2002, and in the years after I watched it on TV, bought the CDs and DVDs, and played repeatedly until they couldn’t handle it no more. Literally! My CD from 2002 actually broke from being played too much. In 2006 I started watching national finals besides Dansk Melodi Grand Prix. At first it was just the shows from Sweden, Norway, Germany and Serbia, since we had those channels at home, but since streaming became I thing, I watch everything from San Marino to Latvia to Ireland. In 2008, I watched my first Eurovision live in Belgrade, and I have since watched eight more Eurovisions live, as well as national finals in Denmark, Sweden, Germany, Malta, and Albania, and a couple of pre-parties too. What I love about watching these shows live, is that I get to experience them with other fans, as well as getting to travel to new countries, and experience the wonderful different cultures we have in Europe.

Why is Eurovision special to you?

Of course I love the music and the shows and all the glam and glitter, but I also love the cultural and historical aspect of Eurovision, and getting to know the story behind the songs, especially those with a deeper mening. I love the diversity of Eurovision. There is room for a lot of different styles of music, that you never get to hear on the mainstream radio, and from countries that you would never hear of otherwise. I also love the Eurovision fandom. Although it can be a very toxic and negative place at times, it is also filled with a lot of love and acceptance, and there is room for so many different people, who shares the love for Eurovision. I met some amazing people through Eurovision, both online and in person, that I’m very happy to have in my life.

What attracted you to ESCXTRA?

I have followed ESCXRA for many years as reader, and it’s been my go to site for all things Eurovision, as I always really liked the way the coverage was done in a respectful and interesting way. Throughout the years I have gotten to know many members of the site in person and online, and they’re great people! So I’m very excited about getting to work with all these lovely people, and share my Eurovision enthusiasm with both them, and the readers.

Your top 5 Eurovision songs of all time?

This is probably the hardest task ever, but let’s try!

5. Mocedades – Eres Tú (Spain 1973)

I first heard this song at a quite young age, and it has just always stuck with me as a very nice, calming, beautiful song to listen too. To me, it’s a timeless classic, that never gets old

4. Johnny Logan – Hold Me Now (Ireland 1987)

This is a power ballad the way a power ballad should be. This slow and gentle beginning that builds up to epic climax during the three minutes always gets me. There is a reason he is the king of Eurovision!

3. Sergej Ćetković – Moj Svijet (Montenegro 2014)

In 2014, I signed up as a volunteer for Eurovision in Copenhagen, and got assigned as a delegation host for the Montenegrin delegation, which meant I got to spend the two weeks leading up to the contest with them. It was a dream come true, and this song reminds me of the amazing time I had with those lovely people. It’s also just such a great song, that, in my opinion, was very underrated.

2. Loreen – Euphoria (Sweden 2012)

I know this is the most basic answer you can give, when someone asks you what your favorite Eurovision song is, but it’s just so good. Euphoria is an incredible song, and Loreen just takes it to another level. This song has really defined Eurovision this millenium, and I understand the great succes it has had out the contest as well.

1. Ira Losco – 7th Wonder (Malta 2002)

Well, this should comes as no surprise, as I spoiled it earlier in this article, that it is my favorite Eurovision song of all time. It’s a great pop song, delivered brilliantly by Ira, and it has a very special meaning to me, since it was essentially this song, that got me into Eurovision.

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