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Montenegro's Vladana - WIDE
Montenegro's Vladana
Photo: EBU / Corinne Cumming

Montenegro: Vladana encourages a moment of reflection with 'Breathe'

Montenegro is back at the Eurovision Song Contest for the first time since 2019. For such an occasion, the broadcaster couldn’t ask just any artist to compete for them – it had to be someone special. Step forward Vladana, who will be representing the Balkan nation with her song ‘Breathe’.

Vladana performing Breathe, representing Montenegro, Second RehearsalEBU / Corinne Cumming

With Breathe, the fashion-conscious Vladana has got a suitably stunning outfit planned for performing in. It’s sure to be an eye-catcher for viewers at home, and it means that Vladana can sing in something that she knows she exudes style in. But how did she feel on those first few run-throughs on the PalaOlimpico stage overall?

I already feel really really comfortable. At the rehearsals I was very relaxed. I know I have to enjoy these three minutes of my life. I don’t want to be nervous! I know that many people will be watching. But I want to be present for those people. With the staging, we wanted to share the story of my lyrics, of my song. But you haven’t seen it all yet, so it’s going to be a surprise. It’s going to be a warm story.

📺 Watch: Vladana – Breathe (Official Music Video)

When Vladana says it’s a warm story, that’s putting it lightly. With Breathe, the artist has put to paper a personal story of a loss that she recently had to grieve through. From her experience, she’s ended up sharing a song that she hopes others, who have gone through a similar situation, can use to find strength and remember ones that they’ve lost, too.

It’s very personal and it’s very emotional for me. I wrote it after my mum died from COVID. Two days afterwards. I couldn’t say a word, but I wrote it for her. I dedicate it to all those families who lost someone during these last two years. It’s a tribute to them and all those people. Because everyone wants to forget COVID, and me too. But I don’t want these people to be forgotten.

Since her mother has become such a focal part of Vladana’s Eurovision song, it feels only right to the artist that she in some way brings the memory of her mother on stage with her, too.

I will be wearing something of my mother’s while I perform. All I want from these three minutes is that she will hear me. I just want that.

Vladana from Montenegro prepares for her First RehearsalEBU / Andres Putting

With her song Breathe, Vladana ushers in something of a return to the Eurovision Song Contest for her native Montenegro. But she’s also reviving her own career on the stage, too. And for her, it feels perfect that she gets to combine her own personal renaissance with that of her homeland.

It’s challenging because we haven’t been in Eurovision for three years. It’s great to come back. And it’s a comeback for me, too, because I was out of music for ten years. I was singing, but I hadn’t been recording anything for ten years. I gave birth to a son. And some things happened in my life. I didn’t think that music would ever stop. I knew I would return one day. And this is my return. I do feel under pressure. It’s an honour to represent Montenegro, and I feel rewarded that I get to represent my country.

📺 Watch: Vladana – Respira (Italian version of Breathe, Eurovision House Party)

The theme of this year’s Eurovision Song Contest is The Sound of Beauty. To Vladana, the sound of beauty can be heard outside.

It’s the sound of nature. The singing birds. The wind. The ocean waves. When I think about the sound of beauty, I only think of the sounds of nature.

To experience the magical staging that Vladana has planned for us during the performance of her song Breathe, you can watch her represent her country Montenegro at the Second Semi Final of the Eurovision Song Contest, on Thursday 12 May.

📺 Watch: All 40 Songs Official Recap

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