🇮🇱 Dana International believed in Netta (although she supported UK), ignores Cyprus and forgives the PM
ISRAEL 🇮🇱 Reading the latest interview of Dana International in Haaretz.com we were kinda surprised. First of all wee read that Dana International believed that Netta would have won the Eurovision Song Contest although speaking to oikotimes.com during the Israel Calling 2018 party, she openly supported the UK entry. She also undermines the Cypriot entry calling it a cookie-cutter song and also explains how she forgot the fact that PM didn’t congratulate her 20 years ago, at least as openly as he did with Netta this year.
Dana International watched the finals of the Eurovision Song Contest from Moscow of all places. “To be honest, I didn’t really enjoy it,” says Dana about the viewing experience in a country that for the first time didn’t make it to the finals. “I reached the conclusion that when Israel is an almost certain favorite to win, and you want so much for it to happen, viewing the entire contest isn’t really an experience. You can’t really enjoy any song, you only want to see Netta and to get to the awarding of points already. “That part, the points, which is usually the nicest and most interesting part of the contest, was nerve-racking this time, tense and unbearable. In short, the evening ended amazingly for me, and filled me with happiness, but the entire three preceding hours were superfluous.”
Dana, who won the contest exactly 20 years ago with the song “Diva,” became a fan of Barzilai a month and a half ago, when she came to Tel Aviv’s Rabin Square in honor of the “Israel Calling” show, and declared that Barzilai would bring Eurovision back to Jerusalem. When asked if she really believed that Barzilai would win this year, she says: “When I first saw Netta, I fell in love with her. I was somewhat amused that they made a big deal of the looper, and all the excitement about it, as though the judges had just discovered a new musical invention. That looper was far less important than what they made of it, or than all the talent and charm and uniqueness that Netta brings with her.”
“Producer Yoav Tzafir, who since ‘The Next Star’ has become the biggest expert in Israel at deciphering the Eurovision contest, understood that the contest had entered a new phase and the familiar cookie-cutter songs – from Cyprus, for example – are less popular. On the other hand, a personal statement by an artist, which contains truth and uniqueness, would be more successful at capturing the audience. So already from the start it was clear that Netta has a strong suit, but only after I heard the song written for her by Doron and Stav [Doron Medalie and Stav Beger], which was as though they had sewn a made-to-measure haute couture outfit for her, I realized that there couldn’t be anything better. It was quite clear to me that Netta would win this year.
“I’m really happy that this time we were spared the talk and the moaning, explaining the lack of success and the criticism of us by blaming politics and anti-Semitism and that everyone is against us, excuses that were already in the pipeline. Moreover, it was demonstrated that there’s no truth to them. When we deserve to win, to succeed, to be embraced, it happens. It’s a fact.”
What did you feel when you saw Prime Minister Netanyahu congratulating Netta for winning? After you won, he didn’t say a word. “Look, it’s complicated. The insult of 20 years ago has long since melted away. Really, it was a different period, and it wasn’t even surprising. I admit that for a moment there may have bit a little twinge that reminded me of that insult, but it was so marginal within all this joy and pride about everything that’s happening, that it wasn’t really significant. Since then, incidentally, the establishment and the embassies, and the Foreign Ministry and the Tourism Ministry have turned me into a kind of ambassador, and someone of whom they’re very proud. So that I prefer to look at it as a victory over what used to be, and not to become mired in insults.”