Image: Pedro Pina / RTP
Mimicat won Festival da Canção on Saturday 11th March with her song “Ai Coração” (Oh heart), giving her the right to represent Portugal at the Eurovision Song Contest 2023. Active in the music industry for a decade now, we take a look at Mimicat’s career so far and how she came to represent her country at Eurovision this year.
Who is Mimicat?
Marisa Isabel Lopes Mena is better known by her stage name Mimicat, a Portuguese singer and songwriter. Releasing musi since 2014, her highest success in the Portuguese charts achieved a 43 position for her 2017 album “Back In Town.” She also had previously participated in Festival da Canção in 2001 with the song “Mundo colorido” under the stage name Izamena, but did not advance beyond the Semi-Finals. Outside of music, she has worked as a real estate agent for numerous years.
The Song: Ai Coração
Mimicat’s entry for Eurovision 2023 is presented in the style of many of the Iberian country’s entries: simply Portuguese. The song is highly dosed in cabaret with a traditional Portuguese twist. It’s strongly influenced by musical theatre, accompanied with lyrics about being hopelessly in love. In an interview with wiwibloggs, Mimicat discusses about the origins of the song as we know it today.
“I wrote the song ten years ago out of boredom…I was at this house waiting for someone [as a real estate agent] and starting singing “ai coraçãoooo”. And I thought: “this sounds kind of cool, let’s see where this goes”…so I actually did this song in five minutes right there.”Mimicat speaking to wiwibloggs about how she wrote the song.
It’s super impressive that she managed to win the prestigious Festival da Canção with a song written in such a short time frame!
Mimicat won the Portuguese national final in style, she was joint first-place in the jury vote and first with the public, taking out the competition overall. Now her next challenge is the Eurovision Song Contest where she’ll perform in fifth in the first Semi-Final on May 9th. At this moment in time if you’re one to believe the bookies it could go either way for Portugal but the delegation have already committed to trying to better the Festival da Canção performance. Mimicat will be joined by two female and two male dancers on stage, without the sofa from the national final performance and in a modern cabert style.
There are certainly lots of variables impacting her final placing but one thing is for sure, Mimicat will bring fun, energy and show stopping vocals to the Eurovision stage!