21 year old Yosefin Buohler will take part in the German national final on the 9th of February. She replaces Wilhelm “Sadi” Richter who withdrew from Unser Song today due to personal reasons.
This afternoon German broadcaster NDR released a press release saying that Wilhelm “Sadi” Richter had withdrawn from the German national selection Unser Song which is scheduled to take place on the 9th of February. The reason was given as “personal reasons”.
As a replacement the broadcaster added the 21 year trained actress Yosefin Buohler. She is half Swedish, half German and is familiar with TV shows and big crowds. At the age of 13 she was in the final in the talent show “Das Supertalent” an in 2013 she sang the German national anthem in front of 50,000 spectators at the World Cup qualification match between Sweden and Germany in Stockholm.
The five contestant in Unser Song now are:
Axel Maximilian Feige
Felicia Lu Kürbiß
Isabella “Levina” Lueen
On the 9th of February they will compete to represent Germany at the Eurovision Song Contest. The winner will be decided 100% by televoting.
See alsoEurovision 2017: 11 artists known so far
At the 2016 Eurovision Song Contest Germany was represented by Jamie-Lee and the song Ghost. At the final in Stockholm, she came last just as the country also did in 2015. In the video below, you can refresh your memory with her performance.
Will Aleksandr Panayotov be representing Russia at the 2017 Eurovision Song Contest? The rumours are heating up after Grigory Leps has announced that both he and Panayotov are preparing for the contest.
The rumours that Alexander Panayotov will be representing Russia at the 62nd Eurovision Song Contest this year have seriously heated up. Today Grigory Leps has announced on Instagram that he is working with Panayotov on a new album and also preparing for the Eurovision Song Contest. It has also been published on life.ru that Leps and Panayotov are working together to prepare for Eurovision and that Panayotov is being strongly considered by Russian’s Channel 1.
Panayotov is currently on this year’s series of the Russian version of The Voice (Golos). Leps is Panayotov’s mentor in the contest where other mentors include former Russian participants Dima Bilan and Polina Gagarina.
Aleksandr Panayotov has contracted with Grigory Leps who will do his promotion in show business. The first stage of the co-operation with Leps will be a concert by Aleksandr Panayotov, which was announced by the HRC will be held at Krokus City Hall on March 8th. The plans include the release of a new album and preparing for the contest of Eurovision”
However, a couple of days ago Channel One music director, Yuri Aksyuta stated that Russia had not yet made it’s decision. He told RIA “I do not know where this information came from. The candidate who will represent our country at Eurovision this year has not yet been selected. We can consider Alexander Panayotov and other artists. We have a number of artists to potentially consider as candidates.”
See alsoEurovision 2017: 11 artists known so far
Who is Aleksandr Panayotov
Aleksandr Panayotov was born in Zaporizhia in Ukraine but has lived in Russia since the early naughties. In 2002, Aleksandr participated in the Russian version of Popstars, where he finished in the top 10. The following year he competed in Russian Idol where he did much better and finished in 2nd place.
Panayotov has also participated in both the Russian and Ukrainian Eurovision selection processes. He competed in the Russia selection in 2005, 2007, 2008 and 2010. In addition, his Ukrainian attempt was made in 2009 where he placed second with the song Superhero.
Hovi Star was chosen to represent Israel at the Eurovision Song Contest 2016 through the Rising Star for Eurovision selection format.
Information about the Eurovision 2017 Israeli selection surfaced today. Details about the date as well as the format with which the country’s representative to Kyiv will be chosen were reported in the Hayom paper.
The report confirmed that the Israeli representative will be selected through the Rising Star format for Eurovision and that the final of the selection will take place on Monday 13th February.
It was also reported that native singer-songwriter Nathan Goshen will be involved in the semi final of the show, though it has not become known yet what his exact role will be.
Whether the winner of the selection will go on to represent Israel with the song they will be competing with in the national selection or with a different entry has not been clarified either.
Rising Star is a singing competition show with editions in many countries around the world. These are all based on the Israeli HaKokhav HaBa (The Next Star) concept. Contrary to similar talent shows, it is largely the home audience who act as the judges using a special mobile voting app.
HaKokhav HaBa La’Eirovizion (or Rising Star for Eurovision as it is sometimes called outside Israel) is a special version of the show that, for a second year in a row, will be used as the Israeli national selection for the Eurovision Song Contest.
Last year, it was Hovi Star who had won Rising Star for Eurovision and went on to represent his country in Stockholm with Made Of Stars. Hovi Star managed to qualify to the grand final and finished in fourteenth position, having placed seventh in the professional jury voting.
Will Israel manage to improve on Hovi Star’s satisfying performance this year?
Israel in the Eurovision Song Contest
It was back in 1973 that Israel first joined the Eurovision Song Contest. With three victories in 1978, 1979 and 1998 and no less than nineteen top ten placements in 39 appearances, the country has been rather successful. Since the introduction of semi-finals in 2004, results took a turn for the worse however.
Israel failed to qualify for the grand final in 2004 when David D’Or finished twelfth in the semi-final. In 2007, Teapacks missed out on the final as well, and, in 2011, Eurovision 1998 winner Dana International’s comeback kicked off a four-year run of Israel not reaching the final.
Things started looking better again for Israel in 2015, when Nadav Guedj with his song Golden Boy managed to bring Israel back to a Eurovision top ten placing finishing ninth in Vienna.
In the following video, you can watch Hovi Star taking part in our Would You Rather interview game in Stockholm. Enjoy!
Mel Giedroyc will present British selection Eurovision: You Decide.
With the date of 27th January for the British selection fast approaching, we though it was time for an update in regards to the information that has become known so far about the show.
1 The venue and broadcasting channel
2 The competing entries
3 The voting
4 Guest performances
5 The presenter
The venue and broadcasting channel
Eurovision: You Decide will take place at London’s Eventim (Hammersmith) Apollo. It will be 90 minutes long and be broadcast on BBC2. This will mark a return to one of the two ‘major’ BBC channels, as opposed to recent years when the British entry was announced on the broadcaster’s Red Button service or, as was the case last year, the British selection being broadcast on the ‘thematic’ BBC4.
The competing entries
Submission for entries opened on 6th October 2016. Like last year, the BBC invited representatives from Eurovision fan club OGAE UK to evaluate and shortlist the songs submitted. The British Academy of Songwriters, Composers and Authors (BASCA) was also called in to seek talent from within the British music industry.
Rumours that have surfaced online mention Eurovision 2013 winner Emmelie de Forest as well as acclaimed singer/songwriter Emeli Sandé being involved in Eurovision: You Decide. De Forest in particular is thought to have collaborated in the creation of one of the competing entries. Though, given the similarity of their names, it is likely that there has been a mix up. These rumours should thus be treated with caution.
On the night, there will be six shortlisted songs competing for a chance to represent the UK in the upcoming Eurovision Song Contest in Kyiv. These will be announced beforehand on Ken Bruce’s Radio 2 show on Monday 23rd January (the show is broadcast on weekdays at 09:30 GMT) as well as on the BBC Eurovision page.
The result will be determined by a combination of public vote (televoting and online) and the vote of a professional jury. A panel of experts will be present to share their views on the competing acts during the show and thus provide guidance for the people at home. The expert panel will also provide an insight into the potential of each entry to be revamped and staged successfully in Kyiv.
As we reported last month, Eurovision 2009 winner Alexander Rybak has been announced as one of the guest performers on the night.
Just like last year, Mel Giedroyc will be back to present Eurovision: You Decide. Mel is a household name in the UK. Having co-presented all seven series of exceptionally successful The Great British Bake Off, she is currently co-presenting Let It Shine, a talent show to find the cast for Gary Barlow’s upcoming stage musical The Band. It is worth mentioning that Mel’s fellow presenter is the popular presenter and BBC commentator for Eurovision, Graham Norton.
A self-confessed Eurovision fan herself, Mel Giedroyc sounded enthusiastic about the upcoming Eurovision You Decide Show:
I am positively giddy for Eurovision 2017 and chuffed that Eurovision: You Decide is back! I’ve been hearing great things about the standard of the songs this year and I just wish January would hurry up so that I can hear the songs and meet the performers! We’ve got an even bigger venue, exciting guest performers and a brilliant expert panel. It’s going to be great.
Eurovision: You Decide will be broadcast on Friday 27th January at 19:30 GMT on BBC2.
In the following video, you can watch last year’s Eurovision: You Decide winners, pop duo Joe and Jake, performing the 2016 British entry You’re Not Alone in Stockholm.
Latvia have announced the songs that will compete in the Supernova competition 2017. Latvia have used this show to pick their entry for the last two years.
Aminata has been the winner of both Supernova contests, first as a performer in 2015, then as a writer in 2016. It seems this year she is focused on Lithuania, so let’s take a look at what Latvia have to offer.
There will be 22 songs competing in two quarter finals. The top four from each week will face off in the semi final. Eight acts will compete in the semi, where the top four will proceed to the final.
1 The Men
2 The Women
3 The Groups
4 Latvia In The Eurovision Song Contest
The men are led this year by Markus Riva, making his fourth appearance with the self penned song Dynamite. It is a solo boy band type song but Markus’ vocals continue to improve. Competing alongside Markus will be:
Edgars Kreilis – We Are Angels – An electronic number which builds as the song progresses
First Question – Naked – Song is not as saucy as the title indicates but is very experimental
Lauris Valters – Magic Years– A bit of a nondescript pop song
Miks Dukurs – Spiritual Priest – An anguished pop ballad
Miks Galvanovskis – Runaway – A country tinged dance number
Pikaso – U (can Keep Your Cools) – Rapping Eminem style with gospel style chorus
THE HiQ – Таю От Любви – The only song sung in Latvian in the contest, a little arty
The Ludvig – I’m In Love With You – A nice love ballad, similar to Cyprus’ The One Thing I Should Have Done Toms Kalderauskis – We Won’t Back Down – A soft rock-type song with a noisy chorus
There are five female singers:
Anna Zankovska – Rage Love – A catchy uptempo modern pop song
Katrina Cirule – Blood Runs Quicker – To date, this song has not been heard but Katrina is a gospel singer
Katrine Lukins – Silhouette – A Zara Larson-type pop song
Linda Leen – Who Is In Charge – Indie pop with loud vocals, tune all over the place
Santa Danelevica – Your Breath – Breathy vocals sounding a bit like Emeli Sandé
Rounding up the line up are seven groups. Leading the pack here is My Radiant You with the song All I Know. The verses sound very much like Kings Of Leon’s Sex On Fire.
The other groups are:
Franco Franco – Up – This mixed sex quartet is a female-led electro pop song
Laura Lo and Chris Oak – Little Weird – The girl sounds like Roxette, a nice little love duet
Rock’n’Berries – Feel The Love – An old school dance song from this quintet, the most uptempo of the bunch
Triana Park – Line – Electronica again, upbeat and very modern from the quartet
UP – One by One – Airy vocals on an old-fashioned folk song
Crime Sea – Escape – This song has not been published yet.
See alsoSpain 2017: full list of Objetivo Eurovisión finalists determined during Eurocasting concert
Two shows to introduce the acts are to be held on 22nd and 29th January, when it will be revealed in which heat each act will compete. The heats are held on 5th and 12th February. The semi final will be held on 19th February, and the final is on 26th February. Will the Riga beaver make an appearance or will they have set him free, back to the forest?
Latvia In The Eurovision Song Contest
This year will see Latvia compete at Eurovision for the eighteenth time. Their debut came in 2000 with the third placed My Star by Brainstorm. With Marie N winning only two years later with I Wanna, it seemed as if Latvia were going to be one of the top performing countries of all time.
However it wasn’t to be, and, in the next twelve years, Latvia only made the Top 10 one more time. This was in 2005 with Walters and Kazha with The War Is Not Over. In fact they did not qualify to the final for seven years, between 2009 and 2014.
Their fortune changed in 2015 when Aminata took Love Injected to sixth place. She then wrote the highly fancied Justs entry last year, Heartbeat. The song placed 15th. It remains to be seen if Latvia’s luck will continue this year without Aminata.
The second week of Lithuania’s contest to find their Eurovision 2017 entry, saw more acts qualifying to the next round. However as the music standard remained high, the judges grew more confident and ruthless.
Thirteen acts show cased their songs this week, with more than half of them being eliminated. Six more acts continued to the next heats which will start in three weeks time.
1 The Songs
2 The Show
3 The Results
4 Lithuania In The Eurovision Song Contest
Grupe E.G.O – My Story
Having the misfortune to open the show, E.G.O are now a trio. As a quartet, with the catchy Long Way From Home, they were knocked out before the finals last year. This year, Karolis, Mantas and Mažvydas are back with a more complex tune. With no popular boy band around at this time, why can’t E.G.O fill the void. The judges correctly compared the band to One Direction, with the All My Life line being exactly the same note for note as in Drag Me Down. There was more to the performance though, than being a mere copy. The group all dressed in black were very impressive, with their modern pop song. The judges said they would be happy to see E.G.O in the final, one even going as far as to say the band gave them hope after last week.
Monee – Nnn
Next up we have some dramatic music from Monee. Praised for using Lithuanian composers, Monee was also complimented for her vocals. In a telling comment about future shows, the panel announced that if Aistė Pilvelytė was watching, she should be worried. A tip for Monee was that she should polish up the background video. A tip for the judges is that if they want to see a polished video, giving the act 3 points won’t make that happen. The song should have been called Running. Dressed all in black, this was a powerful performance, of a song that could be a real grower.
Varietė – My Story
Yes you read right, a second song called My Story, but hold on. This time the judges were scathing. First, the song was not nearly as good as E.G.O’s. In fact, scolded the judges, the song was not even worth any attention. As the five girl band took their criticism, it was topped by one judge saying that if this was all Lithuania had, and all the other contestants got sick, they should withdraw from Eurovision this year. To be fair, the girls, all dressed in black were not that bad and the harmonies were pretty tight.
Gabrielius Vagelis – Feel Myself Free
Gabrielius was next and after the attack of the judges, there was plenty pressure. Fortunately the song was praised for its creativity. So creative in fact, that it was compared to OneRepublic’s If I Lose Myself. The modern feel of the song drew judge Justė, to declare it her favourite so far. The song is a very slow heart felt melodic ballad. Gabrielius was backed by a male female duo, and was very listenable. So far, black is this weeks costume choice. There were a few flat notes but they can be worked on. His singing partner from 2013 awaited back stage to perform next.
Ieva Zasimauskaitė – You Saved Me
Unfortunately, Ieva had the horrible task of following up a treasure of a song from last year in Life (Not That Beautiful), with, had the stars aligned better, we could have been heading to Vilnius this year for Eurovision. The judges pointed out that Ieva’s voice is filled with warmth. She looked regal in her white dress. However on the negative side, the judges all agreed that the performance needs to be a little more dynamic. Surely a safe qualifier for the next round, let’s hope Ieva takes the advice. The song is a mid tempo inspirational ballad. Ieva’s singing is world class. Wonderful.
Rugilė Daujotaitė – Perkūne ugniaveidi
A confusing stage show left the judges declaring the performance a bit of a shambles. While Rugilė impressed with her high notes, it was likened to an episode of Game Of Thrones. The song was described as like a plate of porridge. The judges are warming up. To top it off, the tune was described as seven songs in one. This means that Rugilė could take all the qualifying slots but would need to drop a song, as only six will be getting through. The word frantic was invented for this type of stuff. Dressed in a white robe and red cloak, she looked like a Greek goddess.
Mia – Sacrifice
Mia appeared on a very comfortable looking white throne, all dressed in black. This year she’s decided there’s no one going to stand in her way. As she descended the staircase, the judges feared that she would take a tumble. The song and presentation impressed. Mia was warned not to lose momentum towards the end. It was suggested Mia lose the dancers as her vocals are impressive enough on their own. This is another really good modern bombastic pop song. Again the vocals were perfect. Lithuania is going to have a very difficult decision to make this year.
Deividas Žygas – Only You
With the judges in full throttle, a brave Deividas was next. He didn’t receive the best review for his song last year so must have wondered what was going to come. He didn’t have to wait long till the judges asked if it was possible for him to write a good song. Lashing it on they added that he really has a long way to go even with the vocals. Our musicologist suggested that after this cheesy and tedious performance, Deividas should give up singing. The three female backing vocalists also looked as if they wanted to run away. The backing video with the stick men was very good though.
Rasa Kaušiūtė – Fly
Raven haired Rasa must have breathed a sigh of relief when a smiling quartet of judges, praised her song as beautiful and magnificent. It was described though, as a little black and white and needed more colour. Nevertheless her voice was described as lush, giving the impression she had a good chance of making it to the next round. This is another empowering song which with a little work could do well at Eurovision. The black stage costume was back. The fire like backdrop was very like Conchita’s in 2014.
Gabrielė Vilkickytė – Jūra
This song of the sea was also praised for its excellent arrangement and performance. But as waves go up and down, so too must the critique. It was described as totally unsuitable for Eurovision. In fact it was barely suitable for Lithuania, agreed the judges. The song is a slow mournful number. Certainly not something you’d want to be lost at sea with and have nothing else to listen to. Bleak.
Lawreigna – Freedom
The singing here was well praised, but not for Lawreigna, no, it was for the backing singers. Her look received high compliments, but Lawreigna was told to get a bit more crazy on stage and not hold back. The whole package was described as formulaic. The song is a nineties housey housey disco number which would have benefitted from a more pounding backing. Lawreigna did well in her white and gold costume with two male dancers. The most up tempo song of the evening.
Kotryna Juodzevičiūtė – Love Shadow
This performance was described, visually as the best of the evening. The song though, was considered a grower and needed more listens. The judges are correct. All dressed in white the ensemble is a visual treat. It was very similar to Loic’s Rhythm Inside staging. Who noticed the song. It was a slow song with a number of melody changes with a banging synthesizer in the verses which disappeared during the chorus. The lack of a memorable tune will surely be its downfall.
Valdas Lacko – It’s So Unfair
Valdas’s song was described as very dramatic. The judges reminded Valdas, that as last years breakout star, he was to return this year with a better song. However the judges did not think that he has done that. On a positive note though, they thought that the song had a feel of twenty years ago and radio listeners will love to hear it played. It was felt that Valdas’ singing is better than the song. Valdas was also dressed in black and had a large clock as his background. The singing was very good and the ballad had a certain powerful feel.
See alsoLithuania 2017 Eurovizijos Week 1 Sasha Song and five others qualify
The hosts, Ievai Stasiulevičiūtei and Gabrielei Martirosianaitei, tonight wore red and black respectively. Similar to last year, they are very good hosts. They opened by introducing the judges, who looked as if they were out for blood. E.G.O opened and led the interviews back-stage. Each act also commented as they left the stage. After Monee had performed, there was a video from behind the scenes of last weeks show. After the ripping apart of Varietė, even our hosts were worried but jumped for joy at the good review for Gabrielius.
Before Mia performed, we were treated to another behind the scenes video about the costumes and staging. A commercial break followed. When we came back Te Deum was playing. The final acts performed and then it was time for the scores after one final recap.
Tonight the judges were singer Darius Uzkuraitis, musicologist Ramunas Zilnys, female singer, Justė Arlauskaitė-Jazzu and music critic Kazimierz Šiaulys. After they had voted, the top five seemed as if they’d qualify leaving E.G.O and Rasa fighting for the sixth slot.
You can see who qualified in the score board below.
Lithuania In The Eurovision Song Contest
After their debut in 1994, Lithuania went back into hiding and did not come out again until 1999. This year, the country ended up with the opening slot in the contest. On the last day of 1998, Aistė Smilgevičiūtė beat out Aistė Pilvelytė amongst others to be chosen to represent her country with the song Strazdas (Song Thrush), sung in the Samogitian dialect. A powerful opening performance, Aistė sang alone on stage hoping to receive her countries first points in the contest. The Croatian spokesperson, Marko Rašica became the first to ever announce a point for Lithuania at Eurovision, when they awarded Strazdas, 2 points. Cyprus gave the song its highest points on the night, giving it 5. In total Lithuania was awarded 13 points. placing the country 20th out of 23. Not great, but at least Lithuania had finally arrived at Eurovision.
While performing solo in the contest in 1999, Aistė was also a member of the group Skyle. They have been together since 1996 playing folk and jazz all over Europe, releasing the 20 track double CD Dūšelės, only last year.
Due to not receiving enough points in 1999, Lithuania had to withdraw again in 2000, but they were soon to return as you will learn, if you continue to follow our Lithuanian 2017 coverage.
For now here is the winner of last weeks competition, Edgaras Lubys with Could It Be. He will compete again against tonights qualifiers and the other five winning acts from last week