UKRAINE – Kseniya Simonova is a Ukrainian sand animation performance artist, alongside additional work as a graphic artist, illustrator, film director, and is a Merited Artist of Ukraine. In 2009, she won that year’s series of TV contest Ukraine’s Got Talent, a part of the Got Talent franchise, and competed in 2019 in America’s Got Talent: The Champions, the spin-off series of America’s Got Talent, reaching the finals and finishing in third place.
She introduced her art at various events – from Eurovision Song Contest in 2011 to Champion League Final Gala in Milan in 2016. Simonova has performed in the presence of presidents and royalty in different countries. Among her audience were President of Malta George Abela; Her Majesty Queen Margrethe II of Denmark; Princess Sirindhorn of Thailand, Princess Marie of Denmark; Princess Lalla Hasna of Morocco; Members of British Royal Family and others. From 2009 to 2016 she has created and shown more than 300 sand animations, more than 200 of which are presented in YouTube.
Following the first rehearsal of Moldova two days ago, there was huge criticism for Anna Odobescu for using the idea of the 2011 Ukrainian singer Mika Newton. The 2011 Ukrainian entrant was also surprised with this and in a diplomatic way she expressed her surprise for the copy f her stage presentation.
“Dear Eurovision fans! Let’s make it clear cuz I’m tired of waking up to so many messages about Moldova’s entry this year. The only reason why I made a story about it was because so many people were asking what my thoughts were. I didn’t even know Eurovision was on! I’m living my happy life in America and I don’t watch it. So I wasn’t the one who started to compare myself to her, because I didn’t even know Anna exists.
Guess what? People and journalist will compare it’s a natural thing do when you see or hear something familiar and if someone’s gonna do it again they will say they copied Ukraine and Moldova! So please let’s be respectful to each other and wish Moldova luck and to win Eurovision 2019! Sending you all love! Let’s be kind to each other.”
Kseniya Simonova of course responded
“Yes! I am back! To this amazing stage and great festival called Eurovision Song Contect [sic]! How it happened? I was dreaming to back for a few years, and at the same time – as an international performer – I felt that sand animation is not more enough for me. I want to create something else, something different. That’s how the SNOW ART (or snow graphic) appeared. Again only live hands and fantasy of an artist, but now it is more complicated and requires much more work.
I proposed my snow fantasy to Anna, who I consider one of the strongest voices of Eurovision, and was proud and happy to be invited to do her staging act as #TeamMoldova. It had to be a theater, not a mapping, or computer graphics, it is live, magic and… snowy! Yes, we indeed brought some winter breath in hot Tel Aviv! Moldova is a very relative country to me, it is a Motherland of my husband and producer, I come there very ofthen [sic], our big family lives there. So, I am proud and honored to be a part of #TeamMoldova!”