‘Our people are everywhere!’, Yevhen Halych, the front man of O.Torvald shouted as he learned his rock band would represent Ukraine at the 62nd Eurovision, the European Song Contest. The love of people converted into phone calls and SMS helped the band overcome their opponents in the national selection. Several days before the contest began, as preparations were in full swing, we met with Yevhen at a promo event of Eurovision in Kyiv. As he spoke with correspondent of Kyiv 112.ua, he was holding a baby car safety seat – a gift from his friends. Recently, he became a father again – for the second time, which, according to him, is a hundred times cooler than the opportunity to perform in front of a multi-million European audience.
- When you moved to Kyiv in 2006, your career went up rapidly, so the moving to the capital brought you a lot of luck, apparently. Is the homeliness a reason for you to relax or is it the other way around – it’s going to make you concentrate and boost your efforts for the best possible performance?
- I don’t think it will be getting in our way – on the contrary, we’re glad that the contest takes place here. We’re saving a lot of resources to prepare for the contest. It saves us a lot of trouble – with logistics, for instance.
- Are they any interesting places you would recommed the foreign fans to visit while staying in the city?
- I like the neighborhood of Velyka Zhytomyrska street; there’s always a lot of hipsters there, they sing and have much fun. I always advise everyone to climb various viewing points to see the city from different angles. Besides, Kyiv’s got this greatly developed bar culture; a lot of nice pubs and bars opened over the last few years where one can have a nice time.
- Eurovision is traditionally taking place in May, the most beautiful month when everything’s in bloom. Can you specify a few places for our readers to have spring walks across Kyiv?
- Oh, it’s been a while since I walked elsewhere. Now, I’m an expert in children’s playground (laughs). But earlier, my favorite places to walk were old part of Podil, Yaroslaviv Val and Reytarska street. In all these places, the history meets the modernity.
- You wrote the song ‘Time’ for this year’s Eurovision. Time is a vital thing for those living in big cities. Give the busy people a couple of hints on time management.
- Well, for one, if you appoint a meeting in the downtown, the next meetings you planned on that day should take place there, too. Ideally, these appointments should be taking place at a walking distance from each other. If you heading for a location on the left bank of Dnipro river in Kyiv, you better do it in the morning – that’s when people go to work. And it’s better to go to the right bank in the evening, when people come back from work.
- Jamala once said she had won at Eurovision 2016 because she sincerely told her own personal story. What’s your message on this year’s contest?
- We want to return the spirit of live communication to the humankind! People should stop wasting their time on gadgets and the rest of these modern technologies.
- People treat rockers at Eurovision very carefully. So far, the only time rockers managed to win at this contest, in 2006; and they are Lordi, the true freaks, even by rock standards. What are your strong sides that you count on?
- Our honesty. Out tactics is about doing only what our hearts tell us to do. We always remember our motto: ‘I believe – so I can!’
- Kyiv is a really beautiful ancient city, but it does have a lot of disadvantages and shortcomings. Imagine you could do anything you want in the shortest possible perspective. What would you change for the better for the guests of Eurovision to remember their staying here forever?
- I think the city is ready to host the contest, and I’m inviting everyone to come here – while there’s still some time left!
As 112 International reported, Kyiv will be hosting Eurovisioon 2017 next week, from May 9 till May 13. O.Torvald, representing Ukraine, will be performing 22nd in the final.