CYPRUS – Cypriot national selection marathon continues. The preliminary jury auditioned the 60 applicants for thee 2018 national final and they are now narrowed to 24. Alex Papaconstantinou, Harris Savva and Christer Björkman concluded to the 24 best voices. The next step is to narrow those 24 to 4 or 5 for the national final. In the national final the finalists will sing cover songs and the Eurovision 2018 entry will be presented later on.
LITHUANIA – Greta Zazza and Paula Valentaite are returning to the national selection. In a recent interview to Zmones newspaper Great said: “If before, it can be said, I was only warming my legs, then this time I will go to the stage completely confident in my strength, knowing everything and anything, and with a piece of work with which I have a very strong emotional connection.” Speaking about her bidding entry “Broken Shadows” she said: “I really believe in the song,” she says. “A small ‘chemical reaction’ has taken place between me and the music, which can be the key to success in both the national selection and, I believe, in the great Eurovision.” Paula on the other hand hasn’t released her song but she said to the newspaper: “Participation in the Eurovision selection was the biggest experience of my life, and helped me to make a firm decision not only to connect the future with music, but also to try to win this competition. This time I go into the competition feeling calm — I’ll be a hundred percent.”
FRANCE – The latest news from France say that the semi finals will be recorded on January 8th and 9th but there is no date fo their broadcast announced yet. It is also announced that OGAE France will have special invitations for the show. The recording will take place at Studios de France – Bât 217, 50 Avenue du Président Wilson, 93210 La Plaine – Saint-Denis. Interested persons may register for the attendance here.
AZSRBAIJAN – Aisel Mammadov attended the music awards in Moscow, where Philip Kirkorov was awarded (once again) the annual award. The meeting of Aisel and the famous Russian pop star who by coincident had alongside his best friends from Greece, the Greek Dream Team sparkled rumours for collaboration with her on the Azeri Eurovision project.
ALBANIA – Riccardo Cocciante has been announced as the Guest of Honour at Festivali i Kenges 56 next week in Albania. Cocciante began achieving success as a musician around 1972. In 1976, he covered the Beatles song “Michelle” for the musical documentary All This and World War II. That same year, he released his sole English album in the US, with the single “When Love Has Gone Away” peaking at #41 on the Billboard Hot 100. In 1991, he won the Sanremo Festival with the song “Se stiamo insieme”, and for Christmas 1997 legendary Spanish operatic tenor and friend Plácido Domingo invited him to sing at Domingo’s annual Christmas in Vienna concert, together with Sarah Brightman and Helmut Lotti. As of 2008, Cocciante has three musicals running, with Notre-Dame de Paris being the most known. His oeuvre includes recordings in Italian, French, English, and Spanish; he has recorded some of his songs in all four languages, including “Pour Elle” recorded as “Per Lei” in Italian, “Para Ella” in Spanish, and “I’d Fly” in English. Kozeta Kurti a Spokesperson for Festivali i Kenges says: “His presence is not a way to attract the public to the festival, but it’s a reward for the Albanian audience who is passionate about Italian music”.
EUROPE – Google published the annual reports for the international trends by country. We can see the Eurovision Song Contest 2017 and various Eurostars dominating in various European countries. It is interesting to see that there is no top ten search or trend for #eurovision in Australia while the host country ranks it as 7th only. It is also interesting to see that the top music event of the world is number one in Spain!
THE 2017 EUROVISION SONG CONTEST EDITION
Eurovision 2017 is 4th trend in Belarus
Eurovision 2017 is 1st trend in Belgium
Eurovision 2017 is 3rd trend in Croatia
Eurovision 2017 is 2nd trend in Estonia
Eurovision 2017 is 2nd trend in Germany
Eurovision 2017 is 3rd trend in Greece
Eurovision 2017 is 1st trend in Hungary
Eurovision 2017 is 9th trend in Ireland
Eurovision 2017 is 2nd trend in Latvia
Eurovision 2017 is 2nd trend in Lithuania
Eurovision 2017 is 9th trend in The Netherlands
Eurovision 2017 is 7th trend in Poland
Eurovision 2017 is 5th trend in Portugal
Eurovision 2017 is 8th trend in Romania
Eurovision 2017 is 7th trend in Serbia
Eurovision 2017 is 1st trend in Spain
Eurovision 2017 is 4th trend in Sweden
Eurovision 2017 is 7th trend in Ukraine
Blanche is fourth trend in Belgium
Kristian Kostov is 2nd most searched person in Bulgaria
Jari Sillanpää is 2nd most searched person in Finland
Lena Meyer Landrut is 4th most searched person in Germany
Sanremo Festival is 2nd most searched topic in Italy
Salvador Sobral is 1st most searched person in Portugal
Luisa Sobral is 3rd most searched person in Portugal
Melodifestivalen is 2nd most searched topic in Sweden
Eurovision is 2nd most searched topic in Ukraine
ISRAEL – Will US-born Hassidic rapper represent Israel at Eurovision? Nissim Baruch Black, the 30-year-old Hassidic recording artist behind the albums Nissim and Lemala, competed Sunday night for the chance to represent Israel at next year’s Eurovision contest. Performing his song “Fly Away” on Channel 12’s HaKokhav HaBa (The Next Star), Black advanced past the preliminary round – but only after judges discovered that he had used pre-recorded vocal parts for part of his performance. When the judges found that the vocals were his own – and the song his own original composition – they agreed to advance him to the next round, on the condition that no pre-recorded parts be used. Born as Damian Jamohl Black to a Muslim family in Seattle, Black began his spiritual journey as a teenager, converting to Christianity when he was 14, before drifting towards Messianic Judaism. By 2010, however, Black had left Christianity for Orthodox Judaism, later converting along with his wife.
UKRAINE – Tayanna hot favourite to represent Ukraine in the 2017 Eurovision Song Contest returns in the Ukrainian national selection this year. In order to decide which song she should submit to Vidbir, the national selection show through which the country will decide its participation, she will give to the fans, through the social media, four songs to decide the bid song for Ukraine 2018.
NORWAY – NRK announced that Kåre Magnus Bergh and Silya Nymoen will host the 2018 Melodi Grand Prix which will take place at the Oslo Spektrum on March 10th. Stig Karlsen, the Producer of Melodi Grand Prix says: “I’m very happy to have Silya on the team. She is the born entertainer, a rock-solid programmer, with lots of charm, attitude and musicality. In the two-team with Kåre Magnus Bergh, it always gets a great mood. We are looking forward to presenting a solid collection of songs, artists and composers. Everyone knows that MGP will be a festive night with confetti and pyrros, but nobody will doubt that it’s the music that is the bar of MGP.” Tickets for the Grand Final of Melodi Grand Prix 2018 can be bought on www.ticketmaster.no as of this Friday
THE NETHERLANDS – Organisers of Eurovision in Concert 2018, the tenth edition of the annual Eurovision pre party in the country, announced that on April 14th we will also see Sandra Kim as special guest star of the show.
ROMANIA – If by any chance you are in Cluj-Napoca tomorrow 13.12.2017, starting at 7pm, don’t miss the chance to help a child and hear Ilinca perform her songs at Zaza Cafe situated on 5 Horea Street. You will definitely see Ilinca (Romania 2017) performing!
UKRAINE – Eugene Filatov will join Jamala and Andreiy Danilko in the jury of Vidbir, the Ukrainian national selection. The announcement took place yesterday ending the rumours for the third jury member name.
PORTUGAL – The EBU and RTP gave some extra photos of the magnificent stage design which will endorse all participating acts this year. It is already challenging that the stage has no LED screens as the designer revealed. Florian also added that he wants to see how creative the delegations will be. In the meantime tickets for the Grand Final and its dress rehearsals will be on sale on December 20th, called the second wave of Eurovision 2018 ticket sales.
BELGIUM – Finally some news from Laura Groeseneken, the 2018 Belgian representative. As you can see in the following video she performed the 2015 Belgian Eurovision entry on December 4. Laura appeared as a guest on Radio 1’s BELPOP Session
HUNGARY – One more withdrawal takes place in A Dal, the Hunagrian national selection show. Nemzenekar withdrew from the line up of the show as they couldn’t commit to the dates of the show. 2016, 2017 NF participant, Viki Singh is replacing them. Viki was also a runner up when in 2016 A Dal national selection Misztrál withdrew from the line up. In 2016 she ranked 5th in the third heat and 7th in 2017.
SWEDEN – Ride is the second studio album by Swedish recording artist Loreen. The album was released on 24 November 2017 through BMG, five years after her debut album Heal. The album also follows an EP titled Nude, released in August 2017. Two singles have so far been released for the album, “71 Charger” and “Hate The Way I Love You” released on 29 September 2017 and 27 October 2017 respectively.
The album was recorded from 2014 through to 2017 going through many stages. In 2014, Loreen stated about the album “It’s completely different. There are a lot of hip-hop influences. I create based on how I feel. Right now I’m in a period where there is an aggressive touch to the music.” At this time, she performed two songs “Jupiter Drive” and “Dumpster” expected to be singles from the album.
During Loreen’s visit in Montenegro in July 2014, she announced that her new album will be probably released in October 2014 however, Loreen stopped performing these songs and the album was seemingly delayed. In 2015, she released the single “Paper Light (Higher)”, and performed it at numerous events including as the interval act during the Second Chance round of Melodifestivalen 2015. Following this, another single was released “I’m In It With You” in August of the same year however, news of an album was sparse. Both songs received critical acclaim.
In December 2015, Loreen announced her next single “Under ytan” (“Under the Surface”), a cover of the original song by Uno Svenningsson. This was her first official Swedish-language release and was available in the Nordics on 18 December and worldwide the week later. “Under ytan” received critical acclaim.
On 30 November 2016, it was revealed that Loreen would compete in Melodifestivalen 2017 with the song “Statements” for a chance to represent Sweden again at the Eurovision Song Contest 2017. During interviews for the event she stated that two EPs were being released, one in the Spring and one in Autumn. In August 2017 it was announced that Loreen had parted from Warner Music and had signed with BMG Scandinavia. Following this new signing, music news rapidly accelerated with news of an EP, two singles and the full-length studio album in November of the same year.
CZECH REPUBLIC – On Monday all dancers rehearsed together for the first time. Next to the two minute solo that every dancer will perform on the live show, there will also be two group pieces. They are choreographed by Petr Zuska and will be performed by two groups of four dancers. The judges will take the group dance into account when judging the dancers. Rehearsals for the group dances will take place throughout the entire week to make it perfect for the show! (source: youngdancers.tv)