Australia’s Eurovision hope has been sticking to a tight schedule since arriving in Austria, balancing repeated rehearsals with nursing a bout of the flu.
Speaking exclusively to SBS in Vienna, Sebastian said he was excited but concerned about onstage nerves.
“It could go either way - sometimes when there’s an audience and there’s adrenaline and there’s a vibe, it can actually lift you and make you perform even better than the rehearsals,” he said.
“But then it can also go the other way. Nerves can get you up sometimes and totally throw you off. I’m hoping it’s going to go the former.”
'Nerves can get you up sometimes and totally throw you off.'
But any missteps won’t be for lack of practice - the 33-year-old said he has already sung his Eurovision hit “Tonight Again” more than 100 times in the past week.
It may seem extreme, but Sebastian said that “the more I run it, the better”.
“We had the first rehearsal on the huge stage the other day,” he said.
“To sort of visualise it and to actually be on that stage was good for my nerves. The stage is just insane.”
Nerves aside, Sebastian and his team have been making the most of the experience – in his words, having fun and “taking the mickey a fair bit”.
While he reassured SBS that he knew there was work to be done, he was “concentrating more on the fun aspect” – as well as scoping out the competition.
'It’s now up to the rest of Europe.'
“Obviously the kitsch and the colour are there, but there is some incredible talent as well,” he said.
“We’ve been doing a bunch of pre-Eurovision gigs and meeting some of the other contestants. The performances that they’ve been doing are mind-blowing, so it’s going to be an incredible show and quite competitive too.
“I’m nervous, but of course excited.”
Sebastian was vocal in thanking fans and supporters – who have been flocking to Vienna in the lead-up to the weekend’s songs and sequins – but Australia’s man of the moment was staying coy on his country’s chances.
“I don’t know where we’re going to end up,” he said.
“… Australia could have chosen anybody and I don’t take it lightly that they chose me. It’s now up to the rest of Europe.”