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Liverpool Echo
Liverpool Echo
Christopher Megrath

Eurovision star Alessandra on why Queen of Kings is about being your true self

Norway's Eurovision hopeful Alessandra's source of inspiration for her song comes from having to hide her true self from those around her.

The vocal powerhouse has remained a strong contender for the 2023 trophy ever since she stormed Norway's national selections, Melodi Grand Prix. Over the course of this year's contest, she's been praised by fans for her showstopping performances and generally humble demeanour despite her popularity.

Her track, Queen of Kings, is a heavy dance anthem, one that's remained on fans' playlists since it was released. The 20-year-old and her delegation team arrived in Liverpool a few days ago and with the Eurovision journey spiralling toward a close, it all feels surreal.

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Speaking to the Liverpool Echo, she said: "It's such a contrasting feeling because I feel that it's going very fast in some areas and then slow in others. I feel like one week has gone by here in Liverpool but it's been like three days. That's because there's so much going on but still, I'm loving it."

Before she was selected as the Norwegian representative, she spent several months at a songwriter camp honing her craft. It was then she created Queen of Kings and the delegation decided she should be this year's entry.

She added: "It's super funny because when we were on the plane to Liverpool, [Snapchat told me what I was doing a year ago] and I had just left The Voice Norges and about to go to the camp.

"I remember the day because I sang Beyonce's One Night Only from Dreamgirls. I was so proud I got to do that because I remember saying to the camera, "You going to see me again," and when the camera stopped I started crying. That's what I saw again on the plane here. It's very surreal and it gets me a little bit emotional."

The songstress penned her Eurovision entry against critics from her hometown she felt she needed to hide from. Alessandra has spoken candidly on her bisexuality but admitted she never felt comfortable being her true self, which is why Queen of Kings acts as a vehicle of empowerment for those who need it.

She said: "I lived in Italy for so long and then I decided to come to Norway because like my mom is from there I had to be near my family because I missed them so much. I feel like there are stereotypes in small villages, especially where I was. There's a lot of conservative thinking. Norway felt more progressive and allowed me to have the freedom I always wanted."

Wiping away tears, Alessandra added: "Queen of Kings is about empowerment It's very uplifting as well. There's so much hate in the world especially online. The fact that it resonates with so many people and allows them to be who they are and allows them to be the queen they feel like inside... it's so heartwarming."

The Eurovision class of 2023 appears to be one of the most tight-knit lineups fans have seen in years. Throughout the pre-party season, all of the acts appeared on each other's social media and continued their relationships outside of contest atmospheres. Weighing in on who she personally grew close with, she said: "I have a very nice relationship with Kaarija, he's so sweet. He's like a big baby. I call him my big green teddy bear.

"I text a lot with San Marino because we have a little bit of the same universe but everyone has been so sweet I really like all of them."

The delegation teams arrived in Liverpool just a few days ago and opted to not overhaul their Melodi Grand Prix performance because "if it's not broken don't fix it." Alessandra said: "People liked it so we shouldn't mess with it." Pointing to her outfit in the corner of the room, she added: "You can see we've done it up a little, made it a little bit better, but I love everything that we're doing.

"I'm very happy with the rehearsals, I have to say because you don't know what to expect until you're on that stage. I felt like me in and everything went great. I'm so excited."

Regardless of her standing with die-hard fans who have followed her from MGP, she still needs to win over the general European public and juries before making it to the Grand Final. She's stacked against some fierce competition in the first round but doesn't plan on going anywhere.

She said: "I'm confident because I'm always confident, but that doesn't mean I'm not cocky. I'm going to say I'm confident and ready to face this head-on and hopeful for what might happen. I'm confident but I want to stay humble. I'm going to perform my best and of course I'll be super sad if it doesn't happen but no matter what happens I will always love the support."

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