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A colourful and feel good start for Norway

01 May 2011 at 13:39 CEST


Stella is wearing a golden dress with large silver ear rings and a dark jacket… Cool colours that suit the style of her song. The five backing singers are wearing shades of red, representing the fiery nature of the song. 

The rehearsal of Haba Haba started with a sound check where each of the backing singers and Stella each made sure the sound levels were working and of course their microphones were in working order! A crew from Norwegian broadcaster NRK were also on stage with Stella during her sound check to record parts of Stella's rehearsal for the Norwegian public. 

Haba Haba is an African inspired pop song with a very infectious dance. In the hall the watching press and crew were imitating some of the moves as the beat emanated around the arena. The vocals were very good and obviously very well rehearsed. Each time the song was performed it was received by rapturous applause and seemed like a good way to wake up on a Sunday morning! 

The performance starts with a wind machine and the huge LED screen behind the stage lighting up with shades of blue, purple and black whilst the actual stage flashed in orange, red and pink intermittently. As the song progresses silhouettes of orange, red, green and yellow take over in the background giving a sense of summer, party and feeling good. Stella and the backing singers kept smiling with their now well-known dance moves throughout, really adding to this party feeling. 

At the end of the rehearsal shiny confetti was fired over the stage, landing on everything (and everyone!) in its path!

Some pictures from the rehearsals below:

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See the video of the first rehearsal, giving an impression of how it will look on the 10th of May!

Some comments from backstage

Stella was very concentrated before the rehearsal.

"I'm fine. I have to put full focus on the rehearsal right now," Stella said.

Being in full makeup and with the in ear devices set, she was very focused on her new stage performance. 

"I will have more to say afterwards," she said.

Press Conference

Stella Mwangi's press conference was relaxed, all sitting on stools around small tables with small Norwegian flags placed on top. 

The conference started with the preview video for Haba Haba being played on screens in the Press Conference room. The delegation then walked in and took their places in front of the waiting press, waving Norwegian flags. Some of the backing performers were bearing instruments, ready to show us some of their skills. 

Stella was asked about her impression of the first rehearsal. She answered saying it was "huge and like a space ship really!".

She was also asked about whether or not the Germans are good hosts to which she replied that she loves the coffee in Düsseldorf!

The subject of the song is Stella's grandparents who told her that "little by little, fills up the measure", which are also lyrics of the song. She also chose to sing the song in Swahili in order to make the song "more real" and so that her grandparents could understand it. 

The Head of Delegation spoke of the amazing team spirit of the Norwegian team, saying that they have so far really enjoyed their time in Düsseldorf.

Stella asked what she would do to improve her performance for her next rehearsal. She said that it went very well but that she needs to get something on her feet as the stage is very slippery. She also said she does get a bit of stage fright but tries very hard to hide it. 

One journalist asked Stella to rap, after which she filled the hall with the sounds she was known for before she entered Europe's favourite TV show. 

The press conference finish with Stella teaching the press and fans how to dance to Haba Haba... Which has now become quite famous! She then went on to sing a acoustic version of the song. 

Below are a few pictures taking from Stella's press conference in Düsseldorf:

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Who is Stella Mwangi?

One Saturday in February 2011, Stella Mwangi (24) went from being an unknown talent to a household name in her home country Norway. After a landslide win in the Norwegian selection to the Eurovision Song Contest, Stella has topped the sales and radio charts fencing off the likes of Lady GaGa and Bruno Mars. Stella's song Haba Haba marked the commercial breakthrough for the young woman who has been around for some years as a talent to look out for. She had persistently toured and played some of Norway’s biggest festivals when she decided to submit Haba Haba for the Norwegian selection. She was surprised to find out that she was one of the 21 national entries, where she evidently won the third semi final and later won it all.