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"New Beginning" is not just the translated title of Birgit Õigemeel's Eurovision entry, it also describes the recent developments in her life very well. She is not only facing the challenge of performing in an international arena, she is also expecting her first child!
Birgit Õigemeel is without doubt one of the happiest people in the world right now. Her life is full of love and great expectations: the challenge of performing in an international arena, settling in to her new home in Tallinn, and looking forward to the birth of her first baby. There could be no more exciting time for her to be taking part in Eurovision than now, when she and her partner Indrek Sarrap are expecting their first child. And she's not alone - composer Mihkel Mattisen is about to become a parent for the first time, too!
It's clearly fate that Et Uus Saaks Alguse (known in English as 'New Beginning') is representing Estonia at the Eurovision Song Contest. Children have played a big role in Birgit's life throughout her professional career, which began in 2007 when she won the first ever series of Estonian Pop Idol. A year later she set up the Tähelaps ('Starchild') charity with politician and good friend Margus Tsahkna in support of the education of children from orphanages.
Born in the small Estonian town of Kohila, Birgit has three sisters: two older and one younger. Her father is a furniture maker, but it's her mother -- a singing teacher -- whose footsteps she has followed, teaching children to sing in one of her older sister's song and dance studios.
In 2009 she teamed up with the internationally acclaimed deep house production duo Rulers of the Deep on the album Teineteisel Pool ('The Other Side'). A showcase of intelligent club music, it won her the award of the Female Artist of the Year 2010 in Estonia. In 2010 she took the role of Maria von Trapp in the 'The Sound of Music' in Estonia. She has also taken part in the national selection for Eurovision on two previous occasions, in 2008 and 2012.
Birgit is only too aware that resting on your laurels is a step backwards, which is why she's studying music therapy at Tallinn University. "I'm interested in the deeper effect that music has on people," she explains. "I've been studying music therapy for four years now, and I've realised that music can have a very positive therapeutic effect. I know from experience that you can use it to help people."