Get to know the Croatian Eurovision singer better with out 10 Things About…Franka!
1. Franka Batelić was born on June 7, 1992 in Rijeka, Croatia.
2. She is the daughter of Ingrid and Damir Batelić and she has a younger brother Nikola who is the guitarist of the Labin-based band called Storm. Her career began at the tender age of three when she joined the Minicantanti choir.
3. At just sixteen years old, Franka made a name for herself when she won the talent show ‘Showtime’ in 2007. The judging panel on the show consisted of none other than Eurovision 2017 star Jacques Houdek, as well as Ivana Husar and Boris Banović. Batelić defeated Marijo Ponjavić, Mijo Lešina and Artemija Stanić to win the competition on 22 December 2007, receiving the highest amount of televotes in the final. As a prize for winning, Franka signed a recording contract with the record label Hit Records. Her winner’s single ‘Ovaj daj’ was released officially on November 14 2007.
4. Since winning the show Franka regularly released singles throughout the rest of the decade, including her two attempts at ‘Dora’, the Croatian national selection show for Eurovision. She competed in both 2009 and 2010 but only managed to come in seventh and eighth place respectively with the songs ‘Pjesma za kraj’ and ‘Na tvojim rukama’.
5. Her other hits include the songs ‘Ne!’, ‘San’ and ‘Ruža u kamenu’ which was performed at the 12th Croatian Radio Festival in Opatija where it won the Public’s Award in the Pop/Rock category by receiving the most televotes.
6. In 2009, Franka won ‘Ples sa zvijezdama’, Croatia’s version of ‘Dancing With the Stars’ with dance partner Ištvan Varga.
7. In 2013, it appeared that Franka have left the music industry, with no new material imminent. She did however make her return to singing in 2017, with her latest single ‘S tobom’. The song performed very well and rocketed her to number three in the Croatian national charts.
8. Franka is in a relationship with Croatian football player Vedran Ćorluka.
9. Franka is a champion of a number of social causes and most notably is both an advocate of LGBT rights and is an animal rights activist. This lead to her being the face of the Croatian 2009 ‘Animal’s Friend’ campaign.
10. When she was announced as Croatia’s pick for 2018, she explained her love of the Contest from a very early age:
“When I was two, holding a remote control instead of a microphone, I was standing in front of our TV set, blundering through Tony Cetinski’s Nek ti bude ljubav sva when he represented Croatia at Eurovision 1994. I gushed to my mother and father, saying: ‘Do the same, do the same!’ That little girl inside me never stopped dreaming and now that dream is coming true! I will represent Croatia at Eurovision. I would like to thank Croatian Radiotelevision for inviting me and trusting me. My team and I are aware of the responsibility that this contest requires and we are ready to take on this challenge. We will do our utmost to represent Croatia in the best possible light in Portugal in May.”