© Corinne Hermès
On 23 April 1983, the French singer Corinne Hermès won the 28th edition of Eurovision with her song “Si la vie est cadeau” for the Grand-Duchy.
Six countries gave the maximum amount of points, and she received a total of 142 points. RTL Today talked to Corinne ahead of today's anniversary to get the story behind the win.
Corinne Hermès had been working with the composer of the song, Jean-Pierre Millers since she'd been sixteen years old. And when he approached her to record "Si la vie est cadeau" she immediately fell in love with the song. "I got chills when I heard the song for the first time."
After recording a demo version of the song, they went looking for a producer and found Ryan Saban. He was the one who initially had the idea to submit the song to Eurovision.
Since France had already selected a song for 1983, they decided to propose it to the Luxembourgish delegation. They asked her to audition and among 300 other candidates she was chosen to represent the Grand-Duchy.
Corinne described the Luxembourgish delegation as really amazing people who gave her the confidence to go through with the whole thing. Because the running order was not in her favour that fateful evening in April 1983. She was the very last to perform.
At the time contestants had to wait in an isolated room before going on stage, so she remembers that experience as being particularly stressful. Twenty countries participated in that year's edition of the ESC.
But when she finally went on stage it was an explosion of emotions. She described participating in Eurovision as being the "event of her life." Being able to sing in front of a live audience in the Rudi-Sedlmayer-Halle in Munich but also in front of 500 million international TV-viewers. This edition of the contest was also the very first one to be televised in Australia.
When it was announced that she'd won, it took her a moment to grasp what had happened. "It took me a week to realise that I had won Eurovision. It was a very strange feeling/sensation. I thought I would faint."
After she had won it felt like all the doors in the world had suddenly opened for her. "I went from being completely anonymous to having worldwide fame. My whole life really changed from then on."
Following the win, Luxembourg hosted the contest for the last time on 5 May 1984 at the Grand Théatre, near Glacis. The host was Désirée Nosbusch, who was only 19 years old at the time, making her the youngest presenter in adult Eurovision history.
Between 1956, the very first edition of the Eurovision Song Contest and 1993, Luxembourg's last participation, the Grand-Duchy competed 37 times. With its 5 wins Luxembourg is tied at 3rd place of most victories by countries. It's only surpassed by Sweden and Ireland with six and seven total wins respectively.
Now 40 years after the historic win, Corinne Hermès wanted to do something for all Eurovision fans. She's re-releasing "Si la vie est cadeau" with a new piano instrumental and re-recorded vocals. The song will be out on 23 April 2023 on every platforms.
© Corinne Hermès / Nathan Reinds
Fans of Corinne can also look forward to her new tour, the "Paris New York Tour", where she re-imagines French classics and including her Eurovision song.
Luxembourg has yet to return to the song contest, but should they ever decide to do so, Corinne has stated she'd love to compose a song for Luxembourg to participate with.