Sofia Rol was born on 13th August 2002 in Kyiv, Ukraine. When she was four Sofia started attending the Ukrainian Song and Dance Ensemble, Zerniatko. The following year she attended the Sunflower Show Group, Soniakh, at the Kids and Youth Creativity House in Ukraine.
In 2008 she started working over her first album, Sofia Rol – for the Children of Ukraine which featured songs written by Iryna Kyrylina. The album also included karaoke versions of the songs and was released internationally in November 2009 and became popular with the Ukrainian diaspora.
Despite her young age Sofia already has a wealth of experience at performing at concerts and festivals and has won many prizes. In 2008 she won an award at Sim-Sim Festival in Kyiv and in December that year and in May 2009 she won the Sim-Sim Grand Prize. In June 2009 she won two awards, Popular Vocals and most popular Ukrainian Song at the Zorianyi Symeiiz (Starry Symeiiz) Festival in Yalta. She also won the audience choice award. In 2013 Sofia participated in the same festival, Zorianyi Symeiiz, winning first prize.
In October 2009 Sofia won the Grand Prize at the XIII all-Ukrainian Art Festival of Children and Youth called Funny Autumn Holidays – 2009 held in Kyiv. In 2010 Sofia took part in the television contests Krok Do Zirok (Step to the Stars), Nashchadky (Future Generations) Kumyry Ta Kumyrchyky (Big and Little Idols), Pisennyi Vernisazh (Song Vernissage).
In 2014 Sofia finished first in the Kyiv Art Time Contest and also participated in the Ukrainian national selection for Junior Eurovision. In 2015 she represented Ukraine at the Junior Sanremo Music Festival.
In addition to singing Sofia enjoys swimming, dance and acting classes and spending time with her friends and family. She especially loves the Ukrainian Carpathian region and enjoys visiting this part of her country on religious holidays when the whole family gets together. Sofia is proud of her cultural heritage and Ukrainian language and literature are her favourite subjects at school.
ESC+Plus: Hello Sofia! First of all, congratulations on having won the Ukrainian national selection for Junior Eurovision 2016!
How did you feel when you were named the winner of the Ukrainian national selection? Did you expect such an awesome ending?
If to be honest, I didn’t expect that. I even don’t remember properly that moment. I was absolutely delighted.
E+: This was your second attempt to represent Ukraine at Junior Eurovision; do you think that these previous attempt helped you to finally reach the top? What has been your musical evolution since the first time you entered the national selection back in 2014?
I am a very ambitious person. It was my dream to participate in the high level contest like this. I learned my lesson in 2014. I worked really hard and now I am there. It’s a big honour for me to represent Ukraine.
E+: Tell us what your song is about. What is the thing you like the most of “Planet Craves for Love”?
There is a message to spread. With my song I pray for peace in Ukraine and in the whole world. I hope that many people hearing my song will stop for a while and think what good things they have done and could do to make our planet better.
E+: Ukraine has been sending to Junior Eurovision songs talking about nature for the last few years, why do you think this happens?
Have never thought about that. We have absolutely amazing nature in Ukraine! You are very welcome to come and check! This is a very nice thing to tell about my country.
E+: Will you revamp the song for the Junior Eurovision Song Contest or you will keep the original version?
We work with my team on new music arrangements for the song.
E+: Have you already decided about how your stage performance will look like? How about the costume?
We work on it now. I wish to keep it in secret until everything is done. Agree everybody likes nice surprises. I would say that everything will look completely different comparing to my performance during Ukrainian national selection.
E+: What do you expect from the upcoming experience at Junior Eurovision? What do you think it will mean for your musical career?
I am looking forward to singing on the stage in Malta. Generally it should be the highlight of this year and my life so far. For my career it is very important and also – a good preparation to senior Eurovision☺
E+: Do you usually watch the senior Eurovision? Would you like to take part in the future?
Yes, I am very into it. As for the future, guess I’ve just given the answer.
E+: If you had to choose a Ukrainian singer or band to compete at Eurovision, what would be your choice?
Till last year it was Jamala… but she has already won. I love Svyatoslav Vakarchuk. He would be my new choice.
E+: This year, Ukraine was the winner of Eurovision with Jamala and her song 1944. How did you experience the victory of your country in such a big event?
I was screaming and jumping of happiness when Jamala won. As I mentioned I am a very big fan of her. I am looking forward to Eurovision in Ukraine.
E+: Tell us more about yourself, your favourite music style, favourite school subjects, hobbies, musical career….
I have a lot of influences. I listen to very different music depending on my mood. Also – always looking for something new. I aim to know all musical novelties. I don’t remember myself not singing. I started when I was 4.
As for school subjects I like humanities. My hobby is cooking.
E+: What do you feel while singing on stage? Do you have any lucky charm you carry during your performances?
I feel a lot of energy singing on stage. My mom is always there watching me. I feel her support very much.
E+: Can you send a message for our readers and Junior Eurovision fans?
My dearest! I would like to say thank you for reading my interview, thank you for your support and I kindly wish you all the best. Let’s make our planet better together!
E+: Thank you very much for your time and see you in Malta!
Sofia also has a video message for all the readers of ESC+Plus, watch it below:
Ukrainian National Final for Junior Eurovision 2016 (September 10, 2016)
Ми живемо на планеті, де шумлять степи, гаї,
Завітайте, завітайте, завітайте хоч на мить
We live on the planet where fields, groves rustle,
Welcome, welcome, welcome at least for a moment
Mu zhyvemo na planeti, de shumliat stepy, haii,
Zavitaite, zavitaite, zavitaite khoch na myt