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Fer Dillema

Joining our writing team from the Netherlands is our language, chocolate, and bread loving Dutchie Fer! Their knowledge in Dutch, Greek, and Norwegian has been a tremendous benefit for our coverage – and so has their adorable cats. To date, Fer serves as our correspondent for the Netherlands and Norway.

Tell me about your first Eurovision memory?

We used to always watch Eurovision with the family, but I don’t remember much. So, what I do remember is one special night in 2008 when I was home alone and noticed “that international song show” was still on. I thought it had ended because we hadn’t watched it anymore because my parents really disliked Lordi. And that’s how I ended up watching it, and I fell in love with Sirusho, Maria Haukaas-Storeng and Kalomoira (and now I’m wondering if this started my linguistic obsessions with Norwegian, Greek and Armenian, too). Also, can we talk about what an amazing winner Molitva was? After the 2008 contest I looked up why it was hosted by Serbia, and, well, I still know the words to Molitva today.

What’s your favorite Eurovision song?

This is like picking a favorite among my two cats! Ever since I started watching, I’ve discovered several of my favorite songs and artists again and again, but I think my favorite is Qele Qele because it’s THE song that got me to watch Eurovision. Close seconds to demonstrate my music taste are Sound of Silence, Tears Getting Sober, Fuego, Crno I Belo, Čaroban, Milim, Há Um Mar Que Nos Separa, Walk on Water, Goodbye (Shelter), Euphoria, Arcade, and Düm Tek Tek.

What are some of your favorite musicians outside of Eurovision?

I mostly listen to European music and especially several types of pop. I’ve never been one to fully stan just one or two artist, I like to switch it up and I am always on the hunt for that new song I’ll be addicted to! But currently some of my favorite artists that haven’t done Eurovision (yet) are Froukje (Dutch), Evangelia (American-Greek), Dagny (Norwegian), Sigrid (Norwegian), Sanah (Polish), Noemi (Italian), Tom Aspaul (British), Marta Sango (Spanish), Dua Lipa (Kosovan British), Tabitha (Dutch), Rosalía (Spanish), and Kylie Minogue (Australian).

What about your favorite food?

I’m basic, it’s pizza and chocolate. I’ve never had chocolate pizza though, because I fear it would be like meeting your idol and I don’t want to risk disappointment. But if you want to win over my heart, anything bread-like will do. And I also recently discovered how much I love Tteokbokki.

Do you have a favorite place to visit?

I love and miss Norway so much! I studied with 19 other Norwegian-learners in Kristiansand for a summer back in 2013 and those were legit some of the best weeks of my life. We had people from Germany, Serbia, Azerbaijan, Russia, Estonia, Spain, it was such a great experience and Kristiansand forever has a special place in my heart.

Besides doing work for ESCUnited, how do you spend your free time?

I studied to be a linguist, so I usually spend most of my time not spent on Eurovision on languages and linguistics. Besides wishing I could learn every language there is, I spend most of my free time on conlanging and writing. Conlanging, writing and music have been my three passions since I was a little kid, so they’re always on my mind.

Tell us one interesting fact about yourself?

Only 1?! I usually lead with that I went to the same school as a Victoria Secret model, but now I’ll go with: my native language is (Western) Frisian, so despite being Dutch, I learned Dutch as a second language. Here’s to hoping one day the Netherlands will send a song in Frisian!

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