Eurovision 2023 Switzerland profile: 'Watergun' by Remo Forrer
Switzerland in the Eurovision Song Contest
The Swiss city of Lugano hosted the inaugural Eurovision Song Contest back in 1956, at which the Swiss representative Lys Assia became the first winner with one of her two entries: the French ballad 'Refrain'. Three decades later in 1988, a Canadian songstress by the name of Céline Dion secured Switzerland's second victory - albeit by just one point! - with 'Ne Partez Pas Sans Moi'.
More recently, after four consecutive Grand Final non-qualifications in the mid-to-late 2010s, Luca Hänni ('She Got Me', 2019) and Gjon's Tears ('Tout l'univers', 2021) have ensured a return to earlier successes, coming 4th and 3rd respectively, with the latter also topping the Grand Final jury scoreboard and picking up the Marcel Bezençon Composers Award.
Last year, Marius Bear qualified for the Grand Final with his song 'Boys Do Cry', ultimately placing 17th out of 25 acts.
2023 Entry: Remo Forrer - 'Watergun'
Remo will compete in 8th spot in semi-final 1
My Eurovision Scoreboard ranking: 24th
Odds to win ranking: 13th
(Rankings as of 1 April 2023)
About the artist
Remo is a 21-year-old Swiss national from Hemberg in the primarily German-speaking canton of St. Gallen.
An accomplished musician (flute, accordion, piano), he's no stranger to competitive live singing: he won the third season of talent show 'The Voice of Switzerland' in 2020 and took part last year in the national version of the popular 'I Can See Your Voice' franchise across the border in Germany.
He has gone on to release four singles since his The Voice triumph: 'Home', 'Sweet Lies', 'Let Go' and 'Out Loud'.
About the song
'Watergun' is a power ballad that speaks of the powerlessness felt in the face of conflicts around the world, including - of course - on the European continent. According to Remo, 'my generation is having to live with the consequences of decisions that we didn't take. That is frustrating, but I still have hope that change is possible'.
Remo explains that his song - a call for peace - means a great deal to him and has, in his view, "ear worm potential". It is also very demanding on his voice, going from very low in some parts to very high in others.
The music and lyrics were written by a trio of composers: Argyle Singh, Ashley Hicklin and Mikołaj Trybulec. Hicklin and Trybulec have previously collaborated on 'River' (Ochman, Poland 2022) and 'Universo' (Blas Cantó, Spain 2020), with Hicklin also contributing to - amongst other past Eurovision entries - 'Me and My Guitar' (Tom Dice, Belgium 2010).
How Remo was selected for Eurovision
Since 2019, Swiss broadcaster SRG SSR has opted for the internal selection route to choose its Eurovision artist, achieving a 100% Grand Final qualification rate with Luca, Gjon and Marius. Adopting the "if it's not broken, don't fix it" logic, Remo Forrer is once again the broadcaster's pick, having been announced as the 2023 Swiss representative only on 20 February.
Switzerland will compete in semi-final 1 on May 9 (European time) in Liverpool.
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