Petra and Malin: “We both love the craziness”

Petra Mede and Malin Åkerman
Petra Mede and Malin Åkerman / EBU

At today’s media conference, presenters Petra Mede and Malin Åkerman shared their experiences of last night’s Eurovision Song Contest semifinal. They discussed the anticipation for the upcoming semi-final and Saturday’s grand finale.

Malin Åkerman expressed her awe at the experience: “It was so exciting. I’ve never experienced an audience like that. The energy was so high. It took me a good few hours afterwards to come down and get some sleep.”

Screaming

Despite this being their first collaboration, the duo had prepared extensively. “I was so nervous,” Malin admitted, “but Petra calmed me down. We had a great head start.” Petra echoed this sentiment, highlighting their synergy: “We just huddled together and said ‘We’ve got this’ because we did. We made each other calm and if Malin was nervous, I never spotted that. The love from the audience for both of us was so great and you can’t ever go wrong when there’s a room so full of love.”

The presenters also reflected on the pressures of hosting. “We both love the craziness and the love and the energy, but the two of us have to work against it sometimes and remember we’re there to do a job or we’d just be there screaming too.”

As this is Petra’s third time hosting, questions about her returning for a fourth were inevitable. “It’s probably the last run for me, as there’s so much new energy coming up.” When asked if a rumour she was called and offered the presenting job last year ahead of Loreen’s victory, Petra laughed. “That’s not what happened at all. Sorry, it’s just a rumour.”

The best therapy

Petra also shared her relaxed approach to hosting Eurovision for the third time. “I’m too old to get nervous about things like that these days. One thing I’d add is, that I’ve spent years paying therapists to sort me out, but the best boost you can have is a room filled with eight thousand people chanting your name. It’s that kind of ego boost that can save me from ever needing to pay for therapy again.”

Both hosts praised the collaborative effort behind the scenes, particularly highlighting the contributions of head scriptwriter Edward af Sillén. “He creates such a great atmosphere of calm and is so prepared for anything. Edward is so calm and professional. I feel so taken care of, like there’s a safety net and if anything goes wrong, Petra is there to catch me,” Malin noted.

Bambi on ice

Reflecting on the difference between acting in movies and hosting live events, Malin described the unique vulnerability of the latter: “I guess it’s so very different from movie acting. Sure you have lines to learn and say, but in movies, I’m not playing myself. And that’s the scariest thing, because I’m putting myself out there. I’m saying this is me. This is what I can give you. And I just hope it gets taken well. I guess I felt a bit like Bambi on ice.”

Petra praised Malin’s transition to live hosting: “It’s like you’ve been doing this all your life.”

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