Finland: Katri Helena looks back on her musical career

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Finnish artist Katri Helena, who represented Finland twice at the Eurovision Song Contest, performed on the show På Resande Not (Travelling Note) on YLE FEM, and in an interview looks back on her musical career.

Katri Helena Kalaoja is a beloved artist in Finland, and looks back on a career that spans some fifty years. The Finnish singer represented her country twice at the Eurovision Song Contest: in 1979 in Jerusalem, Israël with the song Katson sineen taivaan, earning a fourteenth place with 38 points, and in 1993 in Millstreet, Ireland with Tule luo, placing seventeenth with 20 points. Both songs have become Eurovision-evergreens. Katri Helena is among the best-selling artists of Finland, having released many albums and singles. Saturday 19 December 2015, 21.00, the singer will be featured in the TV-show På Resande Not (Travelling Note) on YLE FEM, Finland’s national Swedish television channel. In advance of the show, Tobias Larsson of YLE had an interview with the singer.

Katri HelenaThis is what Katri Helena had to say about her musical career:

As a young woman, I thought that my singing career would probably be quite short. It was not so special and I did not consider it real work.
It was only when I sang for ten years that I realized that maybe this was something I could continue. Only then I started to work harder at finding myself, who I really was as an artist. Then I started to try different styles of music and try to give a slightly different picture of myself.
Now, the short career has kept on into fifty years. It is difficult to comprehend that there are so many years.

Asked what the most important song of her career was, Katri Helena replied, laughing:

That’s a horrible question! I could easily name fifteen of my songs that have meant very much to me. May I name two? Then I choose my two songs about heaven, Anna mullet tähtitaivas and Katson sineen taivaan. But Vasten auringon siltaa and Katson autiota hiekkarantaa are not far behind. Do you see? You cannot choose one. Now it was four…

The artist also mentioned the fact a musical had been based on her life, Katri Helena – Sinivalkoinen ääni, in 2011:

It was nice to be recognized in that way, but it was probably really life in card formats that was presented there. The first time I read the script I thought: ‘this was all’?
It was all fine songs that were the actual main characters. It was very touching that the musical was made and I was very moved by the final result.

Of course, Katri Helena’s Eurovision-participations could not be overlooked. The singer looks back positively on her performances at the ESC:

The journey to Jerusalem, I will never forget. It was nicely organized and we travelled around to several biblical sites. It was very special, but it was a nice trip to Ireland too.
Isn’t it exciting to be part of such a contest as Eurovision? It is not everyone who gets that chance!

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