Dustin the Turkey is a very popular figure in Ireland. He is famous as a pop star, builder, politician and Irish TV personality. He has been a star since the 1990’s when he joined Irish broadcaster RTÉ’s children’s television programme The Den with fellow furry friends Zig and Zag. He currently presents The Once A Week Show with Sinéad Ní Churnáin on Saturday mornings on RTÉ Two television.
Dustin's rehearsal went very smoothly, the stage is dark as the group arrive, and they are all dressed in black cloaks. When the music starts, the cloaks disappear. Dustin is in the shopping trolley as he was in the Irish national final. There are a few alterations to the props, the main one being a heart shaped monitor which alternates various European flags. Dustin also has a doll spinning around on his revolving record decks. There are two male dancers sporting feathers in the Irish colours, and the same two ladies from the national final are backing Dustin, one of whom is the niece of 1994 Irish Eurovision Song Contest winner Paul Harrington. Finally, there is a fifth man who pushes Dustin around at various intervals during the song.
The press conference which followed was the most heavily attended to date, and Dustin did not disappoint the waiting media!. He began by saying that he really enjoyed the rehearsal. A cheeky first question was met with an equally cheeky reply, Dustin was asked if he was served as a meal, what would he like to be served with, he replied "I'm not 100% turkey you know!, i'm 10% vulture so i'm not edible. Anyway, if I had to be served with anything i wouldn't mind being served with Isis Gee, she's a good looking bird and I know she fancies me rotten, who wouldn't with my looks."
Dustin then commented upon being described as a novelty act when he was at the recent Eurovision Preview Party in London, "Can you believe the British said I was a novelty act, what about Andy Abraham their singer! He used to collect rubbish now he sings it!" Dustin's witty replies invited questions of the same nature, in particular one question stood out as Keith Mills from the Irish Eurovision Song Contest website asked Dustin about his sexual preferences, whether he was a hen man or a cock man!. This didn't embarrass Dustin at all, he then said "Whatever gets me the votes, i'll take it any way. There are a lot of good looking birds here as well as myself. Isis Gee is a good friend of mine, but we haven't planned the honeymoon yet!"
On a more serious note on the contest itself, Dustin commented "We want to bring back respect to the Eurovision Song Contest, there is a message about change in the song, and since the song was written the Irish football and rugby manager have changed and so has the president!" Dustin was also asked about British commentator Terry Wogan and the reference to his wig within the song. He said "How dare you say it's a wig, that's his own hair he even has a receipt for it! Don't forget Terry was born in Ireland back in 1592, then we sent him over to you in Britain as revenge for the Irish famine!".
All in all a truly entertaining press conference, with some very quick witted and intelligent answers. Dustin the Turkey is sure to be a controversial and incredibly popular figure during his time in Belgrade. Dustin will perform in the First Semi-Final of the Eurovision Song Contest on Tuesday May 20th.