Vancouver native singing to win at Eurovision 2016
Published Tuesday, February 16, 2016 10:08AM EST
An artist who was born and raised in Vancouver is one step closer to making her dreams a reality, after clinching a spot in the annual Eurovision Song Contest.
Singer and songwriter Rykka will be participating in the high-profile competition in May, where she will represent Switzerland with her original song "The Last of Our Kind."
Rykka's grandfather was Swiss, and she still spends a lot of time in that country. However, her musical roots run deep in Vancouver. She's even performed on CTV Vancouver's Morning Live show in 2013.
She told CTV Vancouver that her hometown is never far from her thoughts.
"I love Vancouver; I have all my family there," she said. "And I really have so many nice friends, and it's so great to perform in Vancouver."
Rykka wrote her Eurovision song with Vancouver-based songwriters Mike James and Jeff Dawson.
The two say they're thrilled that their friend has landed such an amazing opportunity.
The annual contest sees participating countries submit original songs, which are then performed in a live TV program. Viewers from participating countries vote for the best song, but they are not allowed to vote for their own country.
The Eurovision Song Contest broadcasts in 60 different countries to more than 100 million viewers. This year’s contest starts on May 10 in Stockholm.
James said that while the stakes are definitely high, Rykka is ready for it.
"She has a star quality. That's pretty rare, when somebody steps on stage and immediately looks like they belong there," he said.
Rykka is not the first Canadian to participate in Eurovision. Celine Dion won the contest in 1988, when she also represented Switzerland.
As for Rykka, she is keeping focused on practising during the next few months until the first semi-final begins on May 10.
"Practice and practice and do my best, and have fun," she said.
With a report from CTV Vancouver's Penny Daflos