Tamra Todevska will represent North Macedonia at the 2019 Eurovision Song Contest in Tel Aviv with song “Proud”. She is going to perform in the second semi-final. We talked to Tamara about her music, Eurovision’s experience, this year’s song and why we should be proud.
PFE: When did you start to deal with music? Have you known what you want to do in your life since childhood?
Tamara Todevska: Music has been ever present in my life. I was raised in a musical family. My mother is an opera singer at the Macedonian Opera, my father a professor at the Academy of Music in Skopje and my sister Tijana Dapcevic is also a singer. She represented the country at the 2014 Eurovision Song Contest.
PFE: Who or what inspires you to create music?
Tamara Todevsla: Music is in my genes. It is something that is part of me and defines me. I create music from my heart and I am feeling so blessed to be doing what I am doing. Not so many people have the opportunity to do on daily basis what they really love.
Being on stage and performing is my life. I don’t remember a moment in my life where music didn’t play a central part.
PFE: Why did you decide to take part in this year’s Eurovision?
Tamara Todevska: I had just given birth to my son when I got the invitation to represent my country at this year’s Eurovision Song Contest. I said immediately mostly because I feel that I am more mature now, more experienced and I got much more to say.
PFE: What did the work on the song and the music video look like?
Tamara Todevska: We received so many great songs from so many amazing composers and it was really hard to make a decision, until I heard the first notes from the song Proud. I immediately knew that this was the right song for me. I even started crying. We recorded the vocals in one go and I am so happy with the result. Proud is more than a song. It is a call for a better world. A world where you should embrace your greatness and be proud of who you are, just the way you are.
Recording the video was such a magical moment. So many amazing women agreed to be part of it and having them around me for two days was a day I will never forget. They were my little girl power gang and having them around me made me even more confident about the message that I want to convey with the song.
PFE: What do you want to convey with your song “Proud”?
Tamara Todevska: The song is dedicated to my daughter but it is a song about everyone out there fighting for their dreams, believing in their dreams and not giving up on them.
I am a mother of two: a three-year-old girl and a three-month-old boy. I know it sounds like a cliché, but they truly changed my life and I feel, both, as a mother and as a parent, that it is my responsibility and OUR responsibility to bring positive change to our children’s lives.
My whole life I have been told that I wasn’t girly enough, good enough, that I walked and acted like a man. Lower your head, put something sexy on, no one cares what you really think, they would say. You see, in their minds, I was just another lost girl.
Today, as I look at my daughter, I want her to grow up in a world where people will not judge her, tell her how to act, smile and move. I want her to know that she doesn’t have to follow the rules to be accepted. I want her to be whoever she wants to be and most importantly, be proud of who she is. That’s the least I can do for her.
PFE: Who is a modern woman for you?
Tamara Todevska: A woman should be whatever she wants to be!
PFE: What should we be proud of?
Tamara Todevska: I think as humans, most of the time we focus on the negative things about ourselves. At least, that’s what I was doing. It was so easy for me accept someone’s opinion that I wasn’t good enough until one day I realized that I am always good enough and I should embrace my positive attributes instead of cluttering my soul with negative things. We should all be proud of ourselves and accept ourselves and most importantly, love ourselves.
PFE: Have you already had an idea for a performance on Eurovision?
Tamara Todevska: I have a great team working with me on my Eurovision performance and I cannot wait for May 16th to come so I can share it with the world.
PFE: Have you listened to your competitors this year?
Tamara Todevska: There are so many amazing songs at this year’s contest. I can’t wait to meet the artists in Israel.
PFE: You’ve performed on Eurovision several times already! In 2004 as a chorister, in 2008 together with Vrčak and Adrian, and in 2014, when you supported your sister Tijana. How do you mention these eurovision adventures?
Tamara Todevska: Being on the Eurovision stage has been an unforgettable experience for me. And to be on that stage 3 times is just something that I wouldn’t have imagined even in my wildest dreams. Those 3 minutes on that stage are simply magical and something I will cherish my whole life.
PFE: Do you think that previously Eurovision’s Experiences will help you achieve success or gain self-confidence?
Tamara Todevska: I have a great team working with me and I am confident in our success.
PFE: Are you going to perform at some Eurovision Pre-Parties?
Tamara Todevska: We still haven’t decided. My main focus in this moment is delivering a top-notch performance at the Eurovision Song Contest on May 16th.
PFE: How do you rate the previous performances of Macedonia in the Eurovision Song Contest?
Tamara Todevska: Some of our best artists have represented at our country at the Eurovision Song Contest and I am confident that they have given their best. I am so proud of all of them.
PFE: What do you think about last year’s winning song “Toy”? Was your favorite? Or did you love other songs?
Tamara Todevska: I loved Netta’s song and the whole message she conveyed with the song.
I think we have pretty similar opinion on Eurovision.
You see, for me, Eurovision has never been about entering the finals, being in the top 10 or even winning. Eurovision, to me, has always been so much more than that!
Eurovision is about accepting the different, defying the norms and being proud of who you are, just the way you are. Eurovision is that one night in the year when the entire continent comes together to celebrate boldness, bravery and individuality! It is the place where being different means being PROUD.
PFE: Do you have songs from Eurovision which are your favorites?
Tamara Todevska: There have been so many songs and so many amazing performers at Eurovision and all of them have, in a way, have defined me as an artist and as a person. If I had to pick one, and this is only because of my emotional attachment to it, it would definitely be Carola’s Fångad av en Stormvind. Watching her perform was a truly defying moment in my life and my career. I learned the song by heart and was performing it to my parents and my friends for months.
PFE: Have you ever been to Poland?
Tamara Todevska: I haven’t but would loved to come. Hopefully soon.
PFE: What would you like to convey to our readers?
Tamara Todevska: Just be proud of yourself and never hide your greatness!
Konkurs Piosenki Eurowizji oglądam od dziecka, chociaż z przejęciem śledzę go od 2010 roku. Uwielbiam piosenki, w których odnajdujemy folkowe brzmienia oraz wyraziste ballady. Cenię utwory w językach narodowych, wspaniałe głosy oraz różnorodność Eurowizji. Doceniam piosenki, które się wyróżniają i świetną prezentacje sceniczną. Wśród moich ulubionych piosenek eurowizyjnych królują: “Fuego”, “LoveWave” czy “Düm Tek Tek”. Interesuję się także Bałkanami i Bliskim Wschodem. Jestem studentką Collegium Civitas w Warszawie.