Laura Pausini (Digital Cover)©Hola

Exclusive: Laura Pausini earns historic Oscar nomination for Best Original Song

The songwriter and Golden Globe winner talks to HOLA! about her historic Oscar nomination for ‘Best Original Song’

In the midst of her personal and professional success, Italian singer, Laura Pausini received one of the most exciting news in her 28-year career as an artist. Today, she was nominated for an Oscar.

At the beginning of March, she was also awarded a Golden Globe for best song in a movie for ‘Io Sì,’ a song from the soundtrack of the Italian film “La vita avanti a sé,” starring Sophia Loren. As if that wasn’t enough, her next big dream was to be nominated for an Oscar, to be on the prestigious list of Academy Award nominees for best original song.

Because of the pandemic, the by-product of the world of entertainment has been quite atypical and with unpredictable award winners, Pausini managed to gain the attention of film scholars with her masterful performance that represents an ode to hope in these difficult times. The 46-year-old artist was overwhelmed with the excitement of achieving this new milestone in her life. She is extremely proud to carry the banner of freedom and acceptance through one of the greatest forms of expression, song. Laura had the right idea by translating the lyrics of the song written in English by Diana Warren. The song ended up being recorded in five languages which amplified its message and popularity: Seen in English, Yo si en español, Eu sim in Portuguese, Moi si in French and of course, the Italian version, which forecasted the possibility of getting that long-awaited golden trophy.

HOLA! USA was the first media outlet to speak with Pausini, to see her overcome with joy, getting her first reaction to receiving news of this magnitude, which will take her to the Oscars on April 25th in Los Angeles.

Diane Warren & Laura Pausini Earn Oscar Nomination For “Io Sì (Seen)©Hola
PHOTOS: Paolo Carta | MAKEUP: Cecilia Camporesi | STYLING: Andrea Mennella | TOTAL LOOK Maison Valentino
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Congratulations! How did you receive news of the nomination and what was your first reaction?

I’m in Rome, in the house where I live. I was with my husband, my daughter, and with some friends. I don’t know exactly how to define this moment in my life, but it is a very special day. It is a very strange day.

In what sense?

Because it falls on a day that, until today, was always in my thoughts as a sad date, because it is the day on which I had to say remember my grandmother, the same grandmother to whom I wrote the song ‘En cambio no’ and then I feel her here next to me as if she were going to show me the true meaning of the song that is nominated for the Oscars. ‘Yo si’ is a song dedicated to people who feel abandoned or who think that nobody protects them, that nobody sees them, and ends by saying: ‘but I do.’ Today more than ever, I know that the one who sings the words that my hand has written is not me. A great thing for my nation too.

The idea of winning an Oscar is one of the greatest honors. Did you expect this moment?

When I was a child, I sincerely dreamed of singing and my biggest dream was to be able to do it at piano bars. Because I’m a girl from a small town, my dreams weren’t too ambitious, they didn’t fly too high until I became a famous person. No, I wasn’t dreaming about it, honestly. Imagine then when our first Latin Grammy arrived, then the Grammy ...

What does this nomination mean after winning a Golden Globe?

I don’t know. I don’t know what to say. The Golden Globe that we received a few weeks ago had already left me floored and now with this... I don’t really know what to say. Leaving me speechless is a bit weird, because those who know me know that I talk a lot, but today my teeth will show a lot because I smile. I am really very happy.

Laura Pausini, de camino a llevarse el Oscar©Hola
PHOTOS: Paolo Carta | MAKEUP: Cecilia Camporesi | STYLING: Andrea Mennella | TOTAL LOOK Maison Valentino

Is the best moment of your career for you?

For me, having a career is already a luxury. I have a career of so many years, 28 now. I belong to my land, to my Italy, to the Italians. They have discovered me. They have wanted to give me opportunities during those years. But I also feel Latin. I feel that Latinos are part of everything I do, from my personal life, to my career since forever. I sang in Italian and Spanish from day one. I owe this nomination a lot to what Latinos have given me in these years. That tachycardia heart that I have now, I have had many times with my Latino fans. They have taught me to love cultures different from mine. They have taught me to respect many new values that I didn’t know and well, it may seem absurd, but it is a coincidence in which I believe so much the fact that this song is such an equal song. The message that the film itself says, is to love people you don’t know, who aren’t there, who are different from you, who are people who are not part of your family; but you feel a part of the family. I feel that way about you.

What is the meaning of the song ‘Yo si’?

This song, which has been nominated for an Oscar, says exactly what I have wanted to say for years. I mean thank you. Now I sing it to everyone. In Italy, it is a great thing; an Italian song it is at the Oscars, so we are like in shock.

How have you celebrated it with your family?

I owe everything to my father. Although my mother and sister are my life and everything and have always supported me, they have always believed in me. Also, that they have put up with me because living with a daughter who is never there, living with a sister who is very absent, is difficult. And so I owe a lot to my mother and my sister. But my father, who is a piano bar singer, is a keyboardist, a bassist, he also plays the accordion and sings very well.

What does this moment mean to your father?

Perhaps, he deserves this nomination more than me, but it is he who has always said that I had something different and that then my dreams should be bigger than the ones I had since I was little. It is him, who has not slept in these days. It is he who, from the beginning of my career, 28 years ago, told me that he has dreamed of all this and that when I was in my mother’s belly he wanted me to be a singer. He put a small radio on his belly so that throughout the pregnancy the music was a procedure between my body, my soul that was being born and the future that he wanted for me.

Laura Pausini, de camino a llevarse el Oscar©Hola
PHOTOS: Paolo Carta | MAKEUP: Cecilia Camporesi | STYLING: Andrea Mennella | TOTAL LOOK Maison Valentino

Who do you dedicate this nomination to?

Obviously I dedicate it to him [my father]. I think he almost had a heart attack (laughs). Our reaction was via Zoom, because in Italy we are now in confinement and everything is also rare; because I can’t hug him, I can’t be with the people I love at a time like this. I am lucky that my parents are in me, with me, although without being able to physically hug them. It is huge news for the Pausini because the original Pausini is far from Rome but lives in me.

Were there tears of emotion?

There were tears at one point after knowing and reading the name between nominations, because I needed to be alone for a moment to scream. I was with my daughter too. I didn’t know how ... there are those a little strange moments that I do not know well in this sense. Although I have had many nominations in the past, this one is different. The Oscars are a movie thing. A singer cannot imagine being there. So, I wanted to take care of my emotions, to show my daughter, but not too much so that she wouldn’t worry, because if she sees me cry she worries. We are all very excited.

What did your daughter say?

She wanted to call her schoolmates on Zoom. She said: ‘Can I call the teacher and my classmates?’ And then we called and said, ‘friends and teacher, my mom is nominated for the Oscars.’ All the children clapped and screamed. It was a very beautiful moment and she is very happy. She has lived through the whole story of this song because, of course, I live with her every day and since August, when I received the song in English, she has spent every month wondering why you don’t sleep at night and are up working.

What was your answer

I have explained everything about the movie. We have seen it together just a week ago, and at the end she was very excited. She has told the whole story of the film to her friends at school. And she has also asked me to know more about Sophia Loren, that she wants to be like Sophia Loren when she grows up. And now, she begins to ask me about titles of other films and we slowly show them. That is very nice, it also helps in the relationship between mother and daughter, to become more mature, talking about more serious issues. I owe a lot to this movie, to Eduardo Ponti and Sophia.

Laura Pausini, de camino a llevarse el Oscar©Hola
PHOTOS: Paolo Carta | MAKEUP: Cecilia Camporesi | STYLING: Andrea Mennella | TOTAL LOOK Maison Valentino

What is the message you want to convey at this moment?

Everything I say and sing, especially traveling the world, in Italy, I feel like they want me to represent my land in some way. So, I feel so much responsibility and being a very instinctive person of character sometimes I can make mistakes and that always scares me. I hope to be always polite and gentle in my elections because I am very interested in gentleness today. I am interested in people seeing that my land can be respected from the Italian musical culture and also in front of my daughter, my family.

Do you feel that you have achieved all your goals?

I always want the most and that was something that I have learned through this life because when I was younger I did not have that concern. Since I started traveling I have always been afraid of being judged in a different way than I am, so I always tell myself that I should not be content, that is, say that it is enough. I do not like that something is enough. I must give more than my maximum because it is not only me when I sing. There is a nation, there is a culture and I am very proud.

Laura Pausini, de camino a llevarse el Oscar©Hola
PHOTOS: Paolo Carta | MAKEUP: Cecilia Camporesi | STYLING: Andrea Mennella | TOTAL LOOK Maison Valentino

What is the responsibility of being a public figure?

It’s a question that I love being asked because it’s one of my biggest concerns. Not so much as one looks but as one gets real in front of an audience. What does not worry me much is at the time of writing a song or singing it, I am not able to sing songs with which I do not identify. So, knowing that I am very honest, that makes me feel comfortable because I know that I have never lied and I know that I have always sung songs that I truly love.

What will your speech be when you win that Oscar?

I already have the tissues ready to cry into. I don’t know, I have no idea, I don’t even want to imagine it. Every time, even the Latin Grammy, I go if I am nominated and I think 100% that I will not win and I am convinced of that because if I do not win, later it is a disaster for me. I feel like dying, so I go because I will see many friends who are in Los Angeles and I will see all these movie stars that I would like to meet, take a photo, take a selfie or tell my friends that I have seen it live, but no I don’t know if I will win ... and if I win, we talk (laughs).

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