This year’s 60th Eurovision Song Contest saw its first contestant who uses a wheelchair take to the stage. Monika gave an emotional and heartfelt rendition of the ballad, “In The Name Of Love” when she represented Poland in the diamond anniversary contest which was staged in Vienna, Austria this weekend.
Monika began her musical career in 2001 as lead singer with the Polish band, Varius Manx. Monika, now 35 years of age, released four albums with the band before her musical career was violently and abruptly cut short.
Just when everything was going well for Monika and her fellow band members, they were involved in a horrendous car accident that left several of the other band members dead and Monika partially paralyzed. Despite her mobility needs and the emotional trauma of what had happened, Monika didn’t give up and clung on to her dream of performing on stage again.
Following the accident, several years of intensive rehabilitation followed during which time Monika learned to cope with living life while using a wheelchair. During that time she became involved in numerous social and charity projects as she struggled to rebuild her life. Throughout the years her passion for singing remained undimmed and in 2012 she released her first solo album entitled, ‘Ocalona’ which means ‘saved’ in her native tongue. Monika says that she feels truly blessed to be alive and is certain that she was destined to represent her country in the prestigious competition.
In February 2013, Monika’s active involvement in artistic projects saw her awarded The Golden Cross Of Merit which was presented to her by Bronislaw Komorowski the President of the Republic of Poland in recognition of her charity work and efforts in promoting sports for people with disabilities.
This year year her compatriots chose her as their representative for Eurovision, but although the performance was undoubtedly a triumph for Monika, the voters were less than impressed and her song finished in 23rd place out of 27.
Image source: independent.co.uk