The next stop on our preview trip takes to the land of waltzing, the Sound of Music and robotic mercenaries from the future. It’s Austria!!!
Austria first participated in the Eurovision Song Contest in 1957 and will make their fiftieth appearance in the contest this year. Their first victory came in 1966, with Udo Jürgens singing “Merci, Chérie”. Almost 50 years later, Conchita Wurst gave the country its second victory with “Rise Like a Phoenix”. Last year, Zoe came thirteenth in the final with “Loin d’ici”.
The Austrian broadcaster, Österreichischer Rundfunk (ORF), internally selected both the artist and the song. Nathan Trent was announced as this year’s Austrian entrant.
Nathanaele Koll, better known as Nathan Trent, was born on April 4th 1992 in Innsbruck in Western Austria. He was raised speaking both German and Italian, as his mother is Italian and his father is Austrian. He made his singing debut in 2003, participating in the Kiddy Contest with the song “Fußball” (Football). He later auditioned for the first season of the X Factor Germany in 2011 as part of the group “Boyz II Hot” and finished 11th. Last year, he released his debut single “Like It Is” and also graduated from the Music and Arts University of the City of Vienna. At the time of his selection, he was one of the 33 shortlisted artists for the German national selection but had to withdraw upon being selected for his native land. His entry for Kyiv, “Running On Air”, was written and composed by Nathan himself, alongside Bernhard Penzias.
Sweet, simple, radio-friendly but most of all, delivered with a smile. This guy has charm and charisma for days. The message of not giving up is delivered in an almost inspirational way. The simplicity of the song could either help or hinder its success. It will either stand out from or get drowned out by the louder, more in-your-face songs. I wouldn’t mind seeing this qualifying!
What Could Have Been
Before the announcement of Nathan Trent, it was rumoured that that band Russkaja would be representing Austria in Kyiv. The band combines elements of metal, ska, punk and Russian folk music and the result? High energy and catchy songs. This would have been apt for this year’s contest, seeing as we won’t have Russia with us. Maybe another year. Imagine all those points from Russia….
Viel Glück Österreich!
Will Nathan be running on air or skating on thin ice? Leave your comments below. Stay tuned tomorrow for another Eurovision preview!
(Sources: eurovision.tv, ORF, YouTube)