Quest for Eurovision for Justine Eltakchi ends: new single out

Former St Columba's College student, singer songwriter Justine Eltakchi, narrowly missed out on her song being selected for Eurovision last year, but in a few days time she's rebooting with the release of a new song.

The song Demons will be out on Friday May 14 and she said she is "super excited".

"Since Eurovision I have been working on lots of music, and the album I wrote on, for country artist Jasmine Rae was nominated for an ARIA at the end of last year.

"I have also been working with APRA-AMCOS advocating for disability awareness, and during COVID I starteda song camp for professional songwriters called Resound."

She said the song is about "putting yourself first" and "focusing on your own needs". She calls her new sound "experimental synth" but her achy, honest voice is still there in the more funky upbeat pop track.

"The song demons is about taking full responsibility for ourselves and facing our demons. It is about self-development and growth. I wanted to do something left of centre in terms of production, and what was important to me was that I took risks, as I believe we cannot grow without taking risks. I hope everyone feels a sense of freedom and empowerment through this song."

Eltakchi enjoys working behind the scenes as a songwriter for bigger names but has also enjoyed focusing on her own image as well as helping the sound of emerging artists like 17 year old Alanna Vullo.

She designed camps "to fill the gap between emerging artists and writers and established/signed producers and writers. The first camp included a diverse range of talents including those from multicultural backgrounds, the LGBTQI+ community, and those identifying as having a disability".

"Having a disability has naturally made me a trusting person and through my life has left me vulnerable. I think part of empowering myself as someone with blindness, was finding my independence and self-assurance within my mind first, and my music is really an exploration of this next level of growth and self-empowerment."

Eltakchi narrowly missing out on her song being selected for Eurovision in 2020. It was performed by former Australian Idol winner Casey Donovan and ended up the runner-up out of 10 songs performed in the Australian live TV vote. She was beaten 107 to 100 - a narrow seven votes from the combined jury and public vote. She won the public vote. The winning song was Montaigne's Don't Break Me.

"We got the people's vote," she said. "It's amazing that the public wanted it and voted for it, that to me was what I wanted. I wanted it to resonate with people, it doesn't feel disappointing."

Casey Donovan said the Eurovision song Proud was "such a beautiful track" and "meeting her [Justine] completed the picture".

Ms Eltakchi, 30, lives in Sydney's inner west and has been working towards a music career since studying three unit music at high school.

Her first gig ever was at Winter Magic in Katoomba. Her family still lives in Glenbrook.