Former X Factor contestant Lucie Jones has been announced as the United Kingdom's official Eurovision entry for 2017.
The 25-year-old pop hopeful won the chance to represent the nation in Kiev, Ukraine later on this year after beating five other hopefuls on Eurovision: You Decide.The Welsh singer, a finalist on series six of the X Factor, broke down in tears of joy as she was declared the winner after performing her song, Never Give Up On You. It has been co-written by Emmelie de Forest, who won the Eurovision Song Contest for Denmark in 2013 with the song Only Teardrops.
Pitted against other hopefuls on the BBC show, hosted by Mel Giedroyc, Lucie was declared the winner after impressing the panel of judges: Bruno Tonioli, Sophie Ellis-Bextor and CeCe Sammy.
The singer, who is currently starring in the musical Rent, said there would be no bigger honour than representing the nation at the up-coming Eurovision song contest.
Following her performance Sophie, said Lucie injected some magic into her performance by immersing herself in the moment. Jones was overwhelmed to hear she'd been chosen and thanked the viewers and jury (whose votes each account for 50 per cent of the final tally) for giving her the opportunity to represent the UK.
The song is a slow and simple folky Nordic style ballad that lets the vocal lead the song. Lucy Jones is an experienced West End performer and a very popular one at that, with over 100,000 twitter followers but this song risks getting lost in a 26 song, high-energy, big-impact television show that is the Eurovision Song Contest.
She'll now join the entrants from France, Spain, Italy, Germany and Ukraine (who all automatically qualify for a spot in the grand final) on the Eurovision stage in Kiev on May 13th.
When asked about the result, the Legally Blonde: The Musical star confessed that she didn’t think the contest was hers for the taking (even if the bookies had her down as the front-runner for several days). “It was crazy,” she said. “I had a very clear name in my head on who I thought it was going to be, and when Mel [Giedroyc] didn’t say that, I genuinely thought she made a mistake. And then I realized it was me.”
She brushed aside questions about political voting and the suggestion that Brexit would hurt her chances at the contest.
“To be honest, I’m looking forward to going, being part of an event that is globally unifying. It’s all about unity and including everyone. What a great year to be an ambassador for our country. And I’ll do what I can to try and make us proud.”
Whispers have been heard since Jones’ victory of changes being made to „Never give up on you”, which were mentioned on BBC Breakfast:”The public are calling for slight changes, and this is the great thing about social media. Everyone’s loving the song which is great and they’re loving my voice on it which is very flattering and wonderful to hear, but we’re definitely listening to people when they’re saying they want slight changes. The record producers and the BBC are looking into it, we’ll see.”