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Lena (Meyer-Landrut)

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AboutIt's a story that only pop music could write. Lena Meyer-Landrut from Hanover is actually right in the middle of preparing for her high school exams. She's doing Biology, Sport and History and she's got a lot of revising to do. But now she's going to be representing Germany at the Eurovision Song Contest in the Norwegian capital Oslo. On the 29th of May, 2010, just after her 19th birthday, she'll be up on the big stage performing the song "Satellite". "It's going to be hard going up to the exams in April, but I'll manage," she says with a sigh. "Then it will almost be relaxing to head off to the Eurovision final."

Pretty much out of nowhere – apart from the homemade dance videos and a few attempts with the school band – she conquered the audience's heart. "I didn't tell my friends about my first casting, so there wouldn't be any stupid comments if I got kicked out straight away," she says, thinking of her terrible stage fright. Even though Lena danced regularly during her childhood – from Ballet to Jazz and Hip Hop – she made her way to music without piano lessons or vocal training. But she got her chance, grabbed it and developed rapidly.

In her television performances she sang "My Same" by the British singer Adele, "Foundations" by Kate Nash and "New Shoes" by Paolo Nutini. The viewers and the jury were enthralled by her genuine, natural charisma. Her musical mix was unique and uncommon for prime time TV. The tracks she chose were edgy. Her personal top-ten, which ranges from Erykah Badu and Yann Tiersen to Clueso and Freundeskreis, is dominated by very individual characters. She herself impresses with a clear and versatile voice. The way she moves radiates a laid-back and self-confident aura from the stage. It soon became clear that she's an exceptional talent. In the end, songwriter duo John Gordon and Julie Frost's rhythmic "Satellite" provided just the right level of energy for Lena Meyer-Landrut to walk away with victory in the final round.

When her name was announced, Lena was lost for words and needed a glass of water before she could continue. The joy was almost overwhelming. When she describes what she likes though, she represents a generation who build their individual styles from the building blocks of pop history. She's of an age group who had CD players by the time they were 10 or 11. "The first record I listened to on it was 'Flugzeuge im Bauch' by Oli. P," she says. "After that it just developed randomly. I've always tried everything without tying myself down to one thing." She sees herself as a down-to-earth person, who "is really at home in Hanover". Her personal 'going out' tip in her hometown is a long-standing independent club, where they play almost everything from skewed guitar music to electronica and dance. It's no surprise then that she also counts House music ("but more towards the Deep House sound") and the Norwegian electro act Trentemoeller amongst her favourite music. She mentions genres such as Minimal Techno in a matter of fact kind of way, although she definitely doesn't want to be thought of as a specialist. She looks for new favourites in the internet or finds things in her friends' music collections - a colourful mix from a broad cosmos of sounds.

Lena Meyer-Landrut's fresh impetus is the best evidence that the reform in the German selection procedure for the Eurovision Song Contest was justified. Stefan Raab's "Unser Star für Oslo" ("Our star for Oslo") broke new ground, both in terms of structure and in the standard of the content. A series of shows dedicated to talented newcomers were created, through a unique joint venture between the broadcasters ARD and ProSieben. The concept made use of moderator and music producer Stefan Raab's many years of knowledge in the field. In each episode Stefan Raab, head of the jury, was joined by two successful artists from the national music scene and the focus was always on the musical quality of the candidates. 4.5 million TV viewers saw Lena's victory in the final – a huge 'yes' vote for this new start.

A thrilling future lies ahead for Lena, of which the final in Oslo is just another step. In terms of a planned album, she has complete confidence in Stefan Raab's team. "We'll look at that together, just as we have up until now. I'm really looking forward to it."

Directly after the final, her single "Satellite" is already at the top of all the most important download portals. A new German download record: never before has a song sold so well in such a short time. The single has also shot from zero to number one in the singles charts. She rolls her eyes and makes one of her typical gestures, conveying "let's not get too carried away" in an ironic and charming manner. "I'm trying not to be overawed by it", she says with a disarming smile. "Of course, it's all pretty crazy at the moment, but I'm just at the beginning. It's a snapshot, that's all. A lovely picture for the moment! I'm excited to see what moments the future will bring."

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