Asael Cuesta is one of the youngest singers in this years contest, but the young Colombian is hoping to shine on stage in Vitebsk.
As Slavianski Bazaar draws closer we bring you the second in a series of interviews with some of the participants in the International Pop Song Performers Contest this year. Asael Cuesta will be representing Colombia in just a couple of days time. The counter-tenor has already performed across Europe and South America and will now perform for viewers across Eastern Europe.
We’re a matter of days away from the start of Slavianski Bazaar, how are you feeling?
I am very excited to present Colombia in Slavianski Bazaar.
You will be representing Colombia this year in Vibetsk, Belarus how did this opportunity come about?
During my participation in the “Contratenores del mundo” festival in Cuba, I was selected by the Latin American delegate of the “slavianski bazar” festival and for me it is an honor to represent Colombia in this competition.
You have a very distinctive voice, when did you discover your talent and what is it that you love about singing and performing?
I began my singing studies when I was 10 years old and over time teachers revealed a peculiarity in my voice, now I am a counter-tenor and I feel a great responsibility. Singing is what I love with all my heart.
Alongside the singer from the Netherlands you will be the youngest singer in the competition, do you think this will have an impact on you at the contest in Belarus?
I think the great impact must be to get the music to the heart of the public and the jury.
As part of the contest you will be performing several songs, can you tell us more about the songs you have chosen?
As a coincidence I have 3 songs that represent 3 majestic birds:
- National Colombian song: Aguila (bambuco)
- World success song: The Condor Passes
- Russian song: Lebedinaya Vernost (Fidelity of the swans)
This isn’t the first time that you have traveled to Belarus, what expectations do you have?
I have recently completed my participation in the Venok Druzhby festival in Belarus and I fell in love with Belarussian people. Being surrounded by these people and being able to spend time with them makes me feel the the warmth of my home, I am very grateful.
On the day after the competition and everything has finished, what do you want to be able to say to yourself about your performance at the competition?
It will be an honor to be able to exchange experience with different talented contestants. Making Colombia come to this festival has a great meaning, whatever happens – I will give my all and I will learn everything I can.
Finally do you have a message for your fans and our readers?
You cannot miss this meeting of different countries and cultures, it will be very stimulating not only for us participants, but also for the audience that listens and appreciates the art, it will be very important for me, to count on their support and this way to legitimize even more the role of counter tenor in different repertoires.
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Slavianski Bazaar has been held annually in Vibetsk, Belarus since 1992. The event consists of two competitive contests, the International Pop Song Performers Contest for singers age 18 to 31, and the Children’s Contest for those age between 7 and 12. The competition is popular in the former Soviet Union, Baltic States and the Balkans. Winners include Ruslana, Zeljko Joksimovic, Donny Montell and Alyona Lanskaya. The Children’s Contest has been held since 2003 and former winners include singers who have gone on to compete in the Junior Eurovision Song Contest. This includes former winner Ksenia Sitnik who won for Belarus in 2005.