Fans in focus: Mila's story13 August 2013 at 20:02 CEST
This is Mila's story, which she wrote herself and kindly sent to us at Eurovision.tv:
"My Eurovision story started on a cold February night in 2002, the 9th of February to be exact. For the first time ever I was going to watch this show called Dansk Melodi Grand Prix, which was (and still is) used as the Danish selection show for the Eurovision Song Contest. I didn't know much about it, except for what my dad told me, that it was a music competition where a song would win. The reason I was going to watch the DMGP was because a singer that was my idol was competing. Her name was Malene Winther Mortensen. As you probably know, Malene won the competition and I was absolutely thrilled! I found out that winning meant that she would go on to a big European version of DMGP, which was of course Eurovision.
A few months later on the 25th of May I sat excited in front of my tv waiting for my first ever Eurovision to begin. I hadn't heard the other songs but I read in the newspapers that Malene was one of the favourites, so I was sure that we would be taking the Eurovision trophy back to Denmark. Until song number six from Croatia came on, Vesna Pisarovic, who happened to be one of my favourite singer from the former Yugoslavia. Even though I'm born and raised in Denmark, I have roots in Bosnia & Herzegovina, F.Y.R. Macedonia, Serbia and Ukraine, where I visit every year so I knew Vesna from visiting my family there. I was of course even more excited by having 2 of my favourite singers in the contest, and I was absoulutely sure that one of them would win, especially since I thought Malene gave a good performance as well. Then song number 20 was about to start, the country was Malta. I knew Malta was a small country so I didn't excpect much from them but from the first second the song began I was enchanted. I was actually thinking that this was one the best songs I have ever heard and that the singer Ira Losco was amazing.
Even though I still supported Malene and Vesna, my heart was hoping for a Maltese victory after that performance. Soon the voting began and Malta came 2nd which made me extremely happy, even though I was a little sad they didn't win, since they were so close. Croatia and Denmark came 11th and last respectively, which I wasn't so happy about but it still didn't change that those last couple of hours had been the best ones in my life at that point. It was so exciting seeing all these different countries showcase their music and put their all into their performances, it was like you got a little piece of that country in those 3 minutes and I loved that. I forced my dad to buy the cd from Eurovision 2002 to me and I listened to it all the time and learned all the lyrics to the song, I actually listened so much to the cd that it broke and my dad had to buy a new one. Basically my love for Eurovision was born and it only grew stronger and stronger througout the years.
In 2004 I started using the internet to watch the other National Finals other than DMGP which made it even more exciting as I got to know even more amazing music from all around Europe. 2004 was also the first time that my favourite, Ruslana from Ukraine won the contest, which was also a great experience. In 2006 I met an artist who had competed in Eurovision for the first time, Elena Risteska from F.Y.R. Macedonia. That was awesome, not only because she was my favourite in 2006 but also because I, for the first time, got to talk to one of the artists who every year make Eurovision so amazing by being part of it.
"My biggest dream was finally coming true"
In 2008 for my birthday my dad and uncle surprised me by giving me the greatest possible gift. I was going to Belgrade to watch the 2008 Eurovision Song Contest 2008! I remember crying and screaming out of happiness and I was completely extatic, it was my biggest dream that was finally coming true. I didn't only have tickets to the 3 shows, but also the rehearsals, so you can imagine how happy I was that I was finally going to become a part of the show that I loved so much as a part of the audience. So in May I went to Belgrade and experienced it all, I remember being so happy when I saw Montenegro rehearsing for the first time that I cried. Other than watching the show live, I also for the first time met other people who loved Eurovision as much as I do. I had always been a very shy person and had problems making friends because I was afraid to approach people. But here it all felt so natural, everyone was so friendly and open and it made it easier for me to open myself up and bond with them, and I still have contact with them today even though we live in different countries.
Because attending Eurovision 2008 was the best time of my life I wanted to go again so I started saving all my money and in 2011 and I finally had enough to go to Düsseldorf. Düsseldorf was, if possible, even more amazing. I had in the last 3 years become way more open and less shy because of the experiences I had in Belgrade, so it was much easier for me to make new friends and it was also really great to meet some of my old Eurovision friends.
On the 4th of February 2012 I was about to watch the 1st Semi Final of Melodifestivalen like I do every year, but this time it was a very special and life changing night for me. Song number 8 was song called Euphoria and sung by a singer named Loreen, I knew her from Melodifestivalen 2011, where I liked her song ”My Heart is Refusing Me” so I had big expectations. But never in a million years could I have imagined, that she would give the most amazing performance I had ever seen in my life and sing the best, most beautiful song I had ever heard. That night I became a fan of my biggest idol, who changed my life by being a role model for me, and she has, by being such an wonderful person and artist inspired me so much. I never planned that I would go to Baku in 2012, I mean it was 4000 km away from Denmark and I didn't really have the money to go. But when Loreen won the right to represent Sweden in 2012 I knew I had to go and in some miraculous way I found myself in Baku, Azerbaijan a few months later. That was another unforgetable experience that I will never forget and especially because Loreen ended up winning, which of course made me very very happy.
With the contest taking place in Malmö in 2013, it was much much easier and cheaper for me to go, also because I have family in Sweden. I was particularly excited this time because for the first time since I started watching Eurovision, my home country Denmark was my favourite. I had of course always cheered for Denmark and would have been happy if we have won before, but for the first time I could support Denmark with all of my heart because it was geniunly my favourite song. What also made this year's contest very special for me was that I for the first time had fan accreditation, which meant I could do a lot of fun stuff such as watching rehearsals live, attending the red carpet event and party at Euroclub and Eurocafé. Being an even bigger part of Eurovision and getting to experience all of this as well as meeting more fabulous people made this the best Eurovision of my life. On the final night when Emmelie won, all of us Danish fans were so happy, we sang and danced, laughed and screamed, it was truly one of the best nights of my life and I was so proud and happy.
"Eurovision has made me the person I am today"
So Eurovision means a lot to me, actually it means the world. I don't know where I would be today without it. It's not just a tv-show for me that lasts for 3 nights, it's something way bigger and way more important. It has helped me through so many things and made me the person I am today, it's the reason I went from being a shy unhappy child to a girl full of happiness and confidence, it introduced me to my idol that has inspired me so much, it has taught me so much about the world and how it's great that we're different and that we should embrace that and make sure there is room for everyone to be themselves, it made me visit some wonderful places that I would never have went to otherwise, it introduced me to some great music and artists that I would never have heard of if not for Eurovision, but most importantly it was the reason I got to know so many amazing people from all over the world, that I am really really happy to call my Eurovision family.
For this I'm forever grateful to everyone from producers, to people working behind the scenes, to the artists and to the fans for making Eurovision possible every year. I hope one day to be able to work at Eurovision preferably as an editor, and who knows, maybe that will come true one day, until then I will keep following the best tv-show in the world".