ICELAND 2019 – HATARI interview

INFE Cyprus contacted HATARI in Iceland and the group gladly accepted to answer the questions for their interview.

ESC Covers publishes the interview since this group is a favourite of many Eurovision fans.

1) How do you feel about representing your country at Eurovision?

Our overwhelming victory in the Icelandic preliminaries tells us that Icelanders agree with our agenda of upholding a critical discussion about the competition’s context. Eurovision is a political affair.

2) Since your participation is not something ordinary for Eurovision. Why did you decide to take part in the national final of Iceland?

Eurovision is part of our distributor’s plan to end the capitalist world order.

3) Could you tell us a few things about your career so far?

Hatari was founded in Reykjavík, Iceland in 2015 by Klemens Hannigan and Matthías Tryggvi Haraldsson with masked drummer Einar Hrafn Stefánsson joining shortly after. Joining them on the Eurovision Song Contest stage to dismantle capitalism are dancers / choreographers Sólbjört Sigurðardóttir, Andrean Sigurgeirsson, and Ástrós Guðjónsdóttir.

4) What is the message of your song Hatrið mun sigra?

Hatred Prevails is, in our view, a dystonia, a reflection on power and the powerless, hope and hopelessness. It is a dark vision of the future, a warning against what we see as a possible reality if we do not love one another. Populism is on the rise in Europe.

5) We know your group is an anti capitalist trio. In which way do you act against the capitalism and what do you think of this system?

The system is unsustainable. However, bringing it down is an expensive affair. That’s why we would like to thank our sponsors, SodaDream, for their support along the way.

6) In an interview you said that you will defend Palestinians’ rights against Israel with your act on the stage of Eurovision. This statement caused some reactions from the host country (Shurat HaDin proposed to ban your participation at Tel Aviv). What is your answer for all these things and what exactly will you do?

We view Eurovision as a political entity; no less so than this year, when the contest is being held in Israel. The Palestinians would have been shown support through action if Iceland and other nations had simply decided to withdraw from the contest. If Iceland’s entry ignores the fact that the song contest is political by nature, it undervalues the need for critical dialogue concerning Israel. However, what happens on the stage itself is closely managed, so any last minute attempts to change the act will be foiled. This is the paradox we now face.

7) Do you feel ready to bring Iceland back to the final of Eurovision again?

Yes. We feel ready.

8) Which is your favorite Eurovision entry and why?

The lyrics of Euphoria perfectly describe the impossibility of a capitalistic world order.

9) A message for our audience?

Remember to love before hatred prevails.


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