Last night, in a contest broadcast live on BBC2 from the auditorium of the Brighton Dome, SuRie was chosen to represent the United Kingdom at the 63rd Eurovision Song Contest, which will take place this May in Lisbon, Portugal. SuRie took to the stage alongside five other hopefuls who all battled it out for the honour of representing the United Kingdom in a 90-minute musical extravaganza presented by Mel Giedroyc and Måns Zelmerlöw. Real name Susanna, SuRie is a combination of her forenames Susanna Marie.
Although this will be her first time as a featured artist, SuRie has prior Eurovision experience as she was a backing vocalist and dancer for Loic Nottet at Eurovision 2015 in Vienna, Austria, representing Belgium with Rhythm Inside. She returned two years later as Musical Director for Blanche’s City Lights in Kyiv, Ukraine last year. Both entries came fourth in their respective finals.
The winner of Eurovision: You Decide 2018 was decided by a combination of viewer and expert jury votes with an expert panel, comprising of Rylan Clark-Neal, Rochelle Humes and Tom Fletcher, also on hand to offer advice. As well as the acts battling it out for the public’s votes, the jam-packed 90-minute live show featured performances from 2017 Eurovision Song Contest UK delegate, Lucie Jones and 2015 Eurovison Song Contest winner, Måns Zelmerlöw.
On how she feels to be representing the United Kingdom at Eurovision 2018, SuRie said: “I can’t believe this is happening, it’s absolutely amazing. It’s such an honour to have the opportunity to represent a country I’m very, very proud of and that I know I can do good things for in Lisbon, so thank you to everyone who voted and supported me. This is amazing!”
After performing on the same stage that propelled ABBA to Eurovision glory and worldwide fame back in 1974, I asked SuRie about the composers of Storm, and how she got the song, and she told me…
“Storm was written by Nicole Blair, Gil Lewis and Sean Hargreaves who are part of the Tileyard Community, the creative hub based in King’s Cross. I was involved a lot last year with songwriting hubs and, although I had heard a lot of songs, none of them was right for me. My plan was to enter the competition as a songwriter, as I thought it just wasn’t going to be my year as a vocalist. Tileyard was a hub that I hadn’t worked with and, at the very last minute towards the end of last year, Storm was played to me as an option and I thought, I’ll have that!
With Storm, I knew it was the song for me straight away. I listened to it a couple of times and I just knew it, I had learned it, it was already “in me” and that, to me, was a very good sign that this was the right song. With the piano it’s a very singer/songwriter style and that’s what I do, so it ticked all the boxes.
The grand final of the Eurovision Song Contest 2018 take place in Lisbon on Saturday 12th May, folowing the semi finals on Tuesday 8th and Thursday 10th, and will be broadcast live on BBC TV.