Kejsi Tola, a student at the Art College of Tirana, will be heading to Moscow this year for Eurovision. She cleared her own path to Moscow by winning the National Song Festival in December.
Although only a few points separated her from the runners-up, she gained broad support from the public. Albanians have liked her voice and singing style ever since the 2007 Ethet singing contest.
Public voting favoured Tola in the contest, which is a national event aimed at discovering young professional singers.
"Representing my country in Moscow is a big responsibility that requires a lot of work," the 16-year-old says. Music critics cite her enthusiasm and hard work as contributing factors to her success, along with her powerful voice.
Her song "Me Merr Ne Enderr" ("Take Me in Your Dreams") tells of two lovers who choose to meet in their dreams, as it is not possible to meet in reality. It is the work of the team of Edmond Zhulali and Agim Doci, whose "Image of you" represented Albania at the 2004 Eurovision -- the first in which the country competed.
Performed by the newly discovered Anjeza Shahini, that song won Albania its best result in the contest so far, seventh.
Tola says she will sing solo in Moscow, dispelling rumours that she plans to appear alongside Kosovo singer Flaka Krelani. Three male dancers featured in Julian Bulku's vivid choreography for the song will be retained.
Her goal? Victory, of course -- or at least a spot among the final ten.
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