After performing as an interval act at the 2014 Eurovision Song Contest, Jessica Mauboy is now taking her pop cri de coeur “We Got Love” to this year’s Eurovision in Lisbon, Portugal (airing live on SBS from May 9–13), as a competitor.
Here, Mauboy shares with WHO her passion for Eurovision, her vision for this year’s performance and her dreams for a wedding— and kids—with partner Themeli Magripilis.
WHO: What appealed to you about Eurovision the most?
MAUBOY: The lights, the concepts and the ideas, the kind of never-ending songs and the outfits. It became a diving point into the music world.
WHO: Can you give any hints of what your performance will be like?
MAUBOY: I feel like there’s a lot of colours involved. I feel that there’s some kind of earthiness to and about Australia that I would love to take and hopefully embody the landscape, perhaps, and that might be a projection of the land or the elements of the world. Perhaps water, earth, fire. I definitely see that visually.
WHO: Who will be part of your entourage in Lisbon?
MAUBOY: Well, my parents are planning to go. They’ve got friends and relatives in Portugal, so they will be staying with them. My partner, Themeli, will be a part of the whole ceremony. The whole SBS family, my Sony Music family, my makeup artist, who’s a dear friend of mine, Vic Baron, and my stylist, Mikey Ayoubi. We’ve been working hard to bring it all together.
WHO: The same can be said for your relationship with Themeli.
MAUBOY: Yeah. I remember telling him the first time we started going out, “Look, my job is very random and I just wanted to let you know I’m never in one place. But if you’re willing, I will be happy to make this work.” His reply was like a dream come true: “If you are happy to make it work, then we've got nothing to lose, really."
WHO: Are you thinking about marriage or kids?
MAUBOY: I want to be married one day! The craziest thing is I actually haven’t envisioned us being married, and I think it will happen when it happens. It’s that thing, like, what would heaven be like? You can’t know until it’s time and it’s ready. And I’ve never actually envisioned myself in a dress, although now that I think about it, I’m envisioning it, but I don’t know. I want to have children, but I love my job. I love my work. So I’m still kind of on a pathway where I’m not satisfied yet. But all I know is that the love is great. The connection is great. Like, we’re so in tune that I know that we’ll be married one day. I know that we’ll have kids one day.
WHO: But until then?
MAUBOY: But right now, Eurovision. Eurovision—my costume. What am I gonna pass out? What am I gonna bring? It’s so crazy. And that’s the thing, I think, when you are so on the move and visually in tune with what you love, that’s all you’re thinking of. That’s all your body’s moving towards. I mean, on a set [earlier], we had one of my friends there, who’s a photographer, and his wife’s just had a baby girl, who’s only 6 weeks old. And she came in and it was the first one I had seen for a long time, and I was like, “Oh my gosh, it’s a baby! It’s so beautiful.” It just kind of made me think, “I do want to have children one day.” I have a lot of siblings who have a lot of children.
WHO: So you’ve had practice?
MAUBOY: I’m a great auntie because I just love them. I adore them and they adore me. So it’s like, it will happen. There’s just so many things that are still to be conquered.
WHO: Such as a new album?
MAUBOY: Yes, as well as Eurovision, I’ve been working on a record, so that really excites me. I’m still in the studio writing. Music will never leave my body. It’ll never leave me.