CROATIA – The song My Friend, with which Jacques Houdek will be representing Croatia at this year’s 62nd Eurovision Song Contest in the Ukranian capital Kiev, will be performed entirely by Jacques Houdek in two roles and in two different languages. A video of the song collected more than one million views in just one week after being published, and is constantly among the most-viewed videos on YouTube. Just a few days after it was published it was the most-viewed video on YouTube, and the accompanying #beMyFriend campaign also includes people from all over the world in original ways.
“I used the idea of me singing a duet with myself to reconcile two completely opposing musical styles and two languages I find equally beautiful in the musical sense, and allowed me to join two incompatible worlds. I sing alone, and that has awakened people’s curiosity, and those who have noticed so far have asked me how it’s even possible,” says HRT’s Eurovision representative. He further explains: “We wanted to write a song in which I am the only performer, but such that we have two characters present: a high voice and a low voice, pop and opera, English and Italian. Somehow, we managed to perfectly incorporate this conceptually into a message of a celebration of diversity, which is the Eurovision motto this year.”
This year’s competition has attracted a record number of countries – viewers will be able to watch performances by representatives of 43 countries. “It’s not like before, when around twenty countries were competing. There are two semi-final rounds, so we can even consider making it to the final evening a smashing success,” says Jacques Houdek, adding: “I really wanted to write a song that would be different both in its theme and its execution, and so I decided to write a kind of hymn. So, not a typical love ballad, but a song that carries a general message that everyone can relate to. This is a song that celebrates the miracle of life and a moment of friendship, but also friends as a chosen family, and as the foundation of one’s support in life.”
The team of authors for My Friend consists of Jacques Houdek, Siniša Reljić, and Tony Malm, the lyrics are by Jacques Houdek, Ines Prajo, Arijana Kunštek, and Fabrizio Laucella, and the song’s message was given a wonderful interpretation by violinist Antun Stašić and cellist Neven Šverko. The video was directed by Dario Lepoglavec, the text in the video was written by Deniss Grvić and Annamarija Gržetić, and Jacques’ drawing was made by Deniss Grgić. The photographs from the recording attached to this statement were especially dear to Jacques Houdek as they were a surprise from his team.
The #beMyFriend campaign, the point of which is to spread love and community by creating a positive and friendly atmosphere, is still ongoing. It has been recognised and supported by big stars and many public figures, with photographs and messages of support to Jacques Houdek having been published by Rade Šerbedžija, Nina Badrić, Kaliopi, Lana Jurčević, Karmela Vukov Colić, Endi, Nina Kraljić, Vanda Winter, Dalal, Ivana Marić, Bojan Jambrošić, Marija Šestić, Siniša Kovačić, Dalibor Petko, Mia Dimšić, Damir Kedžo, Novi fosili, Željko Bebek, and many others.
Viewers of Croatian Television (HRT – HTV) and listeners of Croatian Radio (HRT – HR) will be able to follow Jacques Houdek’s performance on the big Eurovision stage in the second semi-final evening on 11 May, and if he enters the final round, he will also be performing two days later on 13 May.
All three Eurovision evenings will be broadcast live on Croatian Television’s channel one (HRT – HTV 1), Croatian Radio’s channel two (HRT – HRT 2), and on the HRTi multimedia service. This spectacle in the arena in Kiev is expected to draw more than 11,000 live audience members and a television viewing audience of more than 200 million.