Australian broadcaster, SBS, announced Isaiah Firebrace as Australia’s contestant at the 2017 Eurovision Song Contest, to be held in Kyiv, Ukraine. Isaiah’s Eurovision song 'Don’t Come Easy' was also revealed today, on stage at an intimate performance in Melbourne, Australia.
Hailing from the small country town of Moama, Victoria, 17 year old Isaiah first stepped into the spotlight last year when he was crowned winner of The X Factor Australia 2016. Isaiah’s story is one of determination and passion for music, honing his craft with six hour round trips from regional Victoria to singing lessons every week, aspiring to become a professional artist.
Isaiah is already experiencing global success, with his first hit It’s Gotta Be You going Platinum in Sweden, and charting in over 15 countries including Australia, Denmark, Norway, Sweden, Canada, and the US.
Isaiah’s Eurovision song Don’t Come Easy is an emotive ballad showcasing his vocal range and unique ability to connect with powerful lyrics, which, in this track, speak to fighting for your dreams even when it isn’t easy. Isaiah will have to be voted through Semi-Final 1 to then have the chance to compete for the Eurovision title in the Grand Final.
Listen to Don’t Come Easy and take a first look at Isaiah’s Eurovision video clip here:
Don’t Come Easy is written for Isaiah by DNA Songs duo David Musumeci and Anthony Egizii, the same team who wrote Dami Im’s Eurovision hit Sound of Silence which won the prestigious Marcel Bezençon Composers Award for the best original composition at last year’s Eurovision Song Contest where it placed 2nd.
I'm so proud to be representing Australia as our entrant for the 2017 Eurovision Song Contest. Even though it has been a dream of mine, never did I think for one minute it would be a possibility. To be able to share this news with my family and friends is unbelievable. I can't wait to go to the Ukraine to perform Don't Come Easy. I will make Australia proud. Thank you to SBS and my label Sony for believing in me and giving me the opportunity of a lifetime.
SBS Managing Director Michael Ebeid said:
The theme of Eurovision this year is ‘Celebrate Diversity’ and we are once again thrilled to be participating in a global event which could not be more aligned with SBS’s own purpose. Isaiah is a young artist who beautifully embodies the Australian spirit with his passion, hard work and humility, not to mention immense talent at just 17 years old. We are proud to have him represent our country, and can’t wait to see him shine in Kyiv.
Denis Handlin, AM Chairman & CEO, Australia & NZ, President Asia, Sony Music Entertainment said:
At only 17, it’s a truly remarkable achievement for Isaiah to be representing Australia in Eurovision this year and I am very proud that he has been given this opportunity to showcase his immense talent on this global stage. Isaiah is currently capturing the world’s attention with his first single, It’s Gotta Be You which has surpassed 50 million streams on Spotify after only 3 months and is already Platinum sales in Sweden and just about to reach Gold in Denmark. incredible voice, humble nature and great determination will win the hearts of Europe with Don’t Come Easy, written by powerhouse song-writers DNA songs (David Musumeci and Anthony Egizii). I am also delighted that Sony Music Entertainment Australia will be partnering again with SBS CEO & MD Michael Ebeid and his team along with the very talented Paul Clarke from Blink TV in bringing Australia’s voice to the Eurovision Song Contest.
Australian Head of Delegation, Director of Blink TV, SBS’s Eurovision production partner, Paul Clarke said:
It was exciting for all Australian Eurovision fans to come so close to winning last year. We wanted to come up with something totally different for this year, yet just as powerful as Dami. With Isaiah we have an artist who has a unique ability to cast a spell with his voice, and we will build our stage production around showcasing his quite staggering vocals. DNA's composition is a perfect vehicle for Isaiah, and it was such an exciting collaboration to be part of. It literally gave me tingles to hear it completed. We can't wait to present it on the stage in Kyiv.
Isaiah received a gift on his 17th birthday that’s pretty hard to beat – winning X Factor Australia 2016. Eliminated the year prior because of some forgotten lyrics, Isaiah was determined not to let that happen again, making the six hour round trip from his country hometown of Moama in regional Victoria to Melbourne every week for a year for specialist singing training.
A softly spoken kid, at high school no one even knew Isaiah could sing, until he unleashed a powerhouse vocal at a school event in year 8. Isaiah’s debut single It’s Gotta Be You hit #1 on the Australian iTunes chart and currently has hit over 50 million streams worldwide. It’s Gotta Be You has been storming the Spotify charts in over 15 countries including Australia, Denmark, Norway, Canada, the US and Sweden, where the single is now Platinum.
Isaiah’s biggest musical influence is Mariah Carey, and his hero is Jessica Mauboy. Jess has invited Isaiah to support her on her All The Hits Live Tour kicking off March 30th. Isaiah has looked up to Jess not just for her incredible talent, but also the inspiration she’s provided to follow your dreams, and now Isaiah has a chance to do the same when he takes his place at the 2017 Eurovision Song Contest.
Australia and the Eurovision Song Contest
First broadcast on SBS in 1983, Australia has a long standing history with the Eurovision Song Contest, the world’s largest song competition that celebrates and brings together diverse cultures through music. Isaiah is the third Australian artist to be invited to compete, following Dami Im who was runner-up in 2016 and Guy Sebastian who finished fifth in 2015, with Jessica Mauboy a guest performer in 2014.
The 2016 Eurovision Song Contest was a success for SBS with the competition reaching 3.7 million Australians across all three broadcasts combined, with a 13% audience growth in the Live Grand Final and an 82% lift in online visits year-on-year.