MEET Nina Sublatti, representing GEORGIA would like to thank Nina and Tinatin Berdzenishvili (GBP.GE) for this interview (Interview by Douwe Reveler)

Published on by Gary Speirs




Nina Sublatti will represent Georgia  in the 60th Eurovision Song Contest with the song "Warrior". We caught up with Nina shortly after her victory and spoke with her about her career so far, her musical influences, the 'battle' of two Warriors and tattoos.
* Nina, firstly many congratulations ! How are you feeling and did you expect this victory?

Thank you very much! Of course it's very pleasant when people choose you, I feel excited. About expectations I would say that in some way I expect winning, because my fans persuaded me to take part in national selections and I believed in them.
* You were the favourite of both the international jury and the public voting. Of the other competing songs, which one did you feel was your biggest rival and why?

I think that all 4 contestants had equally good songs and songs were competitively.
* Before we talk about "Warrior" in more depth, lets talk about your musical background and influences. Can you tell us more about them and have you enjoyed a musical education?

In this field my biography is too long. I was few months old when I started singing, I was 6 y/o when I started playing on fortepiano in musical school and I was learning playing during 7 years. After that I had worked with different bands and musicians, I was studying from best vocal coaches, choreographers. I won Georgian Idol, my debut album is the best selling in my country, for making second album I created my own studio. Today I'm studying at national conservatoire on the technology of the music faculty also I work as a vocal coach at musical school I also work on the second album and etc...

* Do you come from a musical family  and if so can you tell us more about them?

My parents are lovers of music despite of the fact that the music for them is just a hobby, they sing and play on different instruments. My husband is also a musician, he is a trumpet player at Georgia 's national symphonic orchestra.
* Where were you born and where are you living now ? What can you tell us about these places?

I was born in Moscow , my grandparents live there and I was raised with them before being 3 y/o. Then I came to my parents in Georgia and I live here. Georgia is a lovely country, in few days you will love Georgian people. I canít say a lot about Moscow it's been a long time since I've been there.

* If you were not involved in music what other profession would you like to pursue?

If I were not a musician I would be an artist, designer, writer or a psychologist.
* You won the Georgian version of Idol (Saqartvelos Varskvlavi). Can you tell us more about that experience and what it taught you?

It's not a Georgian version of idol. Itís officialy licensed idol. Before an Idol, I was an undergrounder, after that I decided to make commercial music and I wanted to present it to audience. For this purpose I used Georgian Idol and I acquired a huge audience and fans. I learned 2 things from idol: To put up war for my ideas being realized and also who works the most, wins (hard work pays off).
* Georgia is a relative newcomer to the Eurovision Song Contest (you will be the 8th representative of your country). How popular is the contest in Georgia ?

For artists Georgia is not a winning country. In most cases we don't have enough possibilities to leave the country and because of a huge distance our voices are not being reached in Europe . That's why Eurovision is the best opportunity for every musician or a singer. Also a lot of people are inscribed in it they would like to know how does a Georgian performer look like outside Georgia . Almost everyone watches Eurovision.
* You wrote and composed "Warrior" yourself. Did you do this with the Eurovision Song Contest specifically in mind or was it more of a happy coincidence?

I created this song specially for ESC . Despite the fact that I work in ambient genre and I don't have any relation to commercial music, I tried hard to foresee every standard of ESC and to make sure that the song was not out of context.
* Can you tell us about the inspiration for the song and what it means to you?

It was little hard for me working on this song, because I have not worked in POP for too long, it takes a lot of time to create whole composition and solely a song for competition and I had not had time. Despite of my fans I was hesitating taking part in national selections. The final decision is closely connected with the death of my favourite vocal coach Efrem Channel. He told me everyday that I had to go on risks I had to make the new things up. My song is for women. In our country (and like anywhere else) a woman is an important figure. She has to do a lot of things to achieve goals and I wanted to express the lifetime style of these women.
* What is it about "Warrior" that in your opinion will encourage the people around Europe to vote for it?

Warrior is created with the whole heart it won't be a plastic performance, where you need to read lyrics to understand what the singer means. Everything is clear here and I hope Europe will evaluate our sincerity.

* Malta this year will also be represented by a song called "Warrior". Have you heard their song yet and if so what is your opinion ? Do you feel that having two songs with the same title might be a disadvantage with people comparing them?

I don't think that 2 same titles are bad. I don't know what the maltese song carries as a content but I think it's very interesting to hear different considerations about the same topic.
* It is still some months before the contest but have you thought about how the song will be performed on stage in Vienna ? Are you planning any significant changes ? Some backing vocalists perhaps?

I think about the performance even during the time I create music, I will make some adjustments to my song because I wrote my song and it was balanced in only 5 hours and of course you can't do your best in a little time like that and about back-vocals it's already in song.
* Are there plans for international promotion of the song in the build up to the contest and if so where will you travel to?

These kind of details is not clear yet, I will tell you in future.
* You looked stunning during your performance of "Warrior". Can you tell us who designed your dress?

I always take care of my image, Iím interested in creating clothes' design and in nearest future I plan to issue my line of clothes. Correspondingly Warrior's look was created by me.
* You have several tattoos which you sketched yourself. Can you tell us about them?

Tattoos are symbols of my life at different stages. when one phase is complete I name it and I mark it on my body. Every piece has a huge history. 

* Do you have a favourite Georgian Eurovision song and if so which one is it and why do you like it so much?

I respect each and every representator of Georgia at ESC but I canít distinguish anyone.
* Do you have a favourite Eurovision winning song?

* Have you followed the contest closely over the years?

I started to watch ESC when Georgia first appeared there.

* What was your main motivation for entering the competition?

The main reason for me taking part in ESC is my fans. They were asking me to take part during the whole year that's why I though about taking part in national selections.
* Have you received any messages or words of advice from previous Georgian representatives? If yes, what did they tell you?

Participants were my friends. I did not get advices but I've got a good appraise from them.
* In your free time what do you enjoy doing apart from singing?

I don't have free time. Iím at studio or I write songs, study or I teach. Despite my hard schedule I never get tired and I never take my work as a job and art for me is a pleasure not a liability.
* Can you tell the readers of this interview some things about Georgia  which you feel they really should know about ? The nature ? The culture ? What is your favourite (Georgian) food?

Very beautiful nature, warm people, interesting ideas, the oldest culture, the most delicious cuisine Georgia is mix of these.
* The contest will be held in Vienna this year. Have you visited this city before ? What are you most looking forward to seeing and experiencing there?

I've never been In Vienna I don't know if I have time to see the sights of the city. When Iím working for concert I try to evade any kind of new info. I meditate.
* Do you perform any specific rituals before going on stage?

For me that kind of ritual is the concentration of energy.
* What are your plans after the contest?

I hope that Eurovision adds some plans to my life.

* Do you have a special message for the readers of this interview?

I would like to thank each and every person who likes my song and who likes me as an artist. Itís very important for and gives me huge power.
Nina, every success with your preparations for Vienna and thank you very much for taking the time to speak with us!