Zlata Ognevich is a very beloved celebrity in Ukraine. She is no stranger in the Eurovision Song Contest. Her first attempt was in 2010 where she finished fifth in the Ukrainian national final. Last year, Zlata took part in the Ukrainian national selection with her unique entry The Kukushka but came second. This year, Zlata will have the honour to sing for her country in Malmö. She is looking forward to new experiences, new acquaintances, new emotions and feelings!
Zlata Ognevich was born in the city of Murmansk located in northwest part of Russia. Her father is a military doctor serving on submarine. Her mother is a philologist, a teacher of Russian language and literature.
Zlata’s life sharply changed when the family moved to Ukraine, a picturesque city of Crimean’s peninsula Sudak. Since then two passions appeared in Zlata’s life - the mountains and the sea. And a little bit later the third one - music.
The elements of water and rock attracted Zlata from an her early age. She likes to swim and dive while storms rage at the sea. Being a kid, she frequently ran away from home, spending hours in the rocky cliffs in order to sing, keenly listening to the mountains echoing her voice. Zlata liked the extreme from the childhood: diving into water, she vanished there for a long time; developing the ability to hold her breath that, however, became very useful for her: now she can sing in one breath 5-6 high notes of maximum length.
After finishing two schools, comprehensive and music ones, at the age of 18, Zlata went to Kyiv, where her professional singing career started. Here, at the R.M. Glier Kyiv State Higher Music College, she refined her pop vocal skills. Then she continued her studying in the Kyiv Institute of Music, but that time at the department of jazz.
In the race for success, Zlata gained an invaluable experience in The State Song and Dance Ensemble of the Armed Forces of Ukraine where she is still a solist.
To be a singer in Ukraine is not a unique profession. Without exaggeration you can say that almost everyone sings there. To become famous and show your talent is a very difficult task. But in Zlata’s occasion, the "blood code" worked: parental Serbian and maternal Italian roots. This "cocktail" showed the best merits of the singer: the Balkan unrestraint and sense of freedom, the Italian affectivity and beauty, the Ukrainian heartiness and tunefulness. And the severe northern land reflected in Zlata as an indomitable will and pursuit of goals.
Zlata has already five videos in her creative baggage. The numerous wins that she has received in a remarkably short period, say a lot about the incredible talent of the young singer:
- The winner of the contest The First Singing Radio Hosts;
- The winner of the popular TV show People’s Star 3;
- Zlata had the honor to perform the Ukrainian anthem and open the concert dedicated to the 75th Anniversary of FC Shakhtar in a huge stadium Donbass Arena;
- In June 2011, foreign diplomats of the Embassy of Argentina awarded Zlata with the title “The Best Voice of Ukraine” and presented a special prize;
- In the autumn of 2011, Zlata represented Ukraine at the first international competition of young performers, held during the festival Crimea Music Fest in Yalta, where she took the first place and received an additional prize from press;
- In the winter of 2011, in Kazakhstan, Zlata became "Person of the Year" in the nomination "The Best Foreign Artist".
Open, sensual, very hardworking Zlata is ready to spend lots of hours in the studio, where she loves to experiment. A huge part of Zlata's success is her cooperation with a gifted composer and producer Mikhail Nekrasov and his team. Nekrasov is like no one knows what it takes to succeed. That was the song Wild Dance arranged by Nekrasov with ethnic music that greatly assisted the well-known Ukrainian singer Ruslana to win the 2004 Eurovision Song Contest.
About the specialty of her entry Gravity, Zlata says: “The most special is the song itself. We’d like to bring the idea that life is fragile and there’re a lot of things making us feel the weight of responsibilities. But one should always find strength in oneself to open the wings and soar, overcoming the difficulties. We’d like not to disclose the performance, it is under a painstaking work process now, but the efforts of the team are being made to make it interesting."
Zlata gets her inspiration in travelling, in human spirit, in interesting acquaintances. She adores nature. At her leisure she cycles, jogs in her favorite park with a small lake, sit with her friends on the highest bridge and lights sky lanterns.
About her personal relationship to Eurovision Song Contest, the Ukrainian representative says: “For me the contest associates with an enormous job, not only of the artist, but also of hundreds of people off screen. Eurovision is a holiday, where emotions go off scale, new stars and songs appear! Emotions are what everyone needs. That’s why the Eurovision Song Contest has such a vivid history and devoted fans!”
Zlata has a special message for all her fans: “Love more, laugh more, open your heart and have no fears!”