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Returning Artissts

🇲🇩 Road to Malmö: Moldova

We can not wait for the Eurovision Song Contest in Malmö. Therefore, we have a closer look at one of the contestants every day. Today: Moldova. Natalia Barbu Natalia Barbu, born on August 22, 1979, in Bălți, then part of the Moldavian SSR, USSR, has firmly established herself as a versatile artist in the Moldovan music scene. Daughter of esteemed musician Ana Barbu, Natalia has blended rock and pop genres with her heritage of folk and stage music. Her early collaborations with Trigon on jazz-folk projects set a creative foundation, which evolved as she penned the lyrics for most of her songs. A pivotal moment came in 2006 with a contract from Cat Music Records (Sony Music) in Romania, marking her entry into a wider European market. Her single “Îngerul meu” soared to No. 1 in the Romanian Top 100, cementing her popularity. In 2007, her Eurovision entry “Fight” achieved a commendable 10th place finish. Embracing change, her 2012 single “I Said It’s Sad” showcased a major style evolution, topping Moldova’s Airplay charts. Esquire’s “sexiest woman alive” title in 2015 further celebrated her appeal. Returning to Eurovision in 2024 with “In the Middle,” Natalia Barbu continues to be a prominent figure in Moldova’s cultural tapestry. Etapa națională The national final in Moldova is called Etapa națională. Usually, the contest starts with an audition round, broadcast live on Moldovan television. 32 songs were submitted this year. However, two (a.o. Aliona Moon) withdrew before the contest and one was disqualified. Eleven songs headed to the final, which was won by Natalia Barbu. It was not an easy match: Natalia received the most votes of the jury, while Valeria Pasha won the televote. The rule in Etapa națională is that, in case of a tie, the jury winner goes to Eurovision. Moldova in the Eurovision Song Contest The first Moldovan entry for the Eurovision Song Contest was “Boonika bate doba” by Zdob şi Zdub in 2005. It was the first of 3 entries by this band in total, and reached a 6th place. The best scoring entry so far for the country was “Hey mamma” by Sunstroke Project in 2017. They were 3rd. Also Sunstroke Project took part before, in 2010. With “Run away” they became famous: the sax player and his solo became the ‘epic sax guy’. The Bookmakers Currently the betting odds for Moldova are not too positive: a 36th place for Natalia Barbu. But we all know that  everything still can change until the very moment of the voting. The song And this is the song:

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Sakis Rouvas

About Quick Facts NameAnastasios Rouvas Born05 January 1972 Nationality🇬🇷 Greek National SelectionEllinikós Telikós 2009Internal selection 2004 In Eurovision2009 Moscow2004 Istanbul SongThis Is Our Night (2009)Shake It (2004) Biography Sakis Rouvas is a famous Greek singer, actor, and former pole vaulter. He was born on January 5, 1972, in Mantouki, a village near the town of Corfu on the Greek island of the same name. His full name is Anastasios Rouvas, but he is widely known as Sakis Rouvas. Early Life and Sports Career Sakis Rouvas showed a talent for music and sports from a young age. As a teenager, he excelled in athletics, particularly in pole vaulting. He became a member of the Greek national athletics team and won several national awards. However, his passion for music was equally strong. He started playing the guitar and performing at local events, showing early signs of his future career in entertainment. Music Career Sakis Rouvas’s music career began in 1991 when he moved to Athens and signed a contract with PolyGram Records. His first single, “Par’ ta,” became an instant hit in Greece. His self-titled debut album, released the same year, established him as a rising star in the Greek music scene. Over the years, Sakis released numerous albums that achieved great commercial success. Some of his popular albums include “Min Antistekesai” (1992), “Aima, Dakrya & Idrotas” (1994), and “Kati Apo Mena” (1998). His energetic performances and charismatic stage presence made him a favorite among fans. Eurovision Song Contest Sakis Rouvas gained international recognition through his participation in the Eurovision Song Contest. He first represented Greece in 2004 with the song “Shake It,” which finished in third place. His dynamic performance and catchy song made a lasting impression on the European audience. In 2009, Sakis represented Greece again with the song “This Is Our Night.” He placed seventh in the competition, further solidifying his status as a prominent international artist. His involvement in Eurovision greatly contributed to his popularity outside Greece. Acting Career In addition to his music career, Sakis Rouvas has also pursued acting. He made his film debut in 2007 with the movie “Alter Ego,” where he played the lead role of Stefanos. The film was a commercial success in Greece and showcased his versatility as an entertainer. Sakis also appeared in several television series and theatrical productions, further expanding his career in the entertainment industry. His acting skills received positive reviews, and he continued to balance both his music and acting careers. Television Hosting Sakis Rouvas has hosted various television shows in Greece. He became the host of the Greek version of “The X Factor” in 2010, showcasing his ability to engage with audiences in a different format. His charisma and popularity made him a natural choice for hosting, and he continued to appear on television as a presenter for various programs. Personal Life Sakis Rouvas is known for his private nature regarding his personal life. He has been in a long-term relationship with Katia Zygouli, a Greek model and actress. The couple has four children together: Anastasia, Alexandros, Ariadni, and Apostolos. They got married in 2017, after many years together. Philanthropy Sakis Rouvas is also involved in various charitable activities. He has supported causes related to children’s welfare, health, and education. His philanthropic efforts have earned him recognition and respect beyond his entertainment career. Awards and Achievements Throughout his career, Sakis Rouvas has received numerous awards and accolades. He has won multiple MAD Video Music Awards, Arion Music Awards, and other honors for his contributions to music and entertainment. His impact on the Greek music industry and his success in international platforms like Eurovision have solidified his legacy as one of Greece’s most prominent artists. Legacy Sakis Rouvas remains a significant figure in Greek pop culture. His contributions to music, film, and television have left a lasting impact. With a career spanning over three decades, he continues to be a beloved and influential artist in Greece and beyond. Entries This Is Our Night Country🇬🇷 Greece Year2009 LanguageEnglish LyricsCraig PorteilsCameron Giles-Webb MusicDimitris Kontópoulos BackingsAlexandros PanayiAnna Strandberg AnderssonAnna NilssonGeorgios PapadopoulosNikolaos Marianos Results Semi Points: 110Position: 4Running order: 13 Results Finals Points: 120Position: 7Running order: 8 Shake It Country🇬🇷 Greece Year2004 LanguageEnglish LyricsNektarios Tyrakis MusicNikos Terzis BackingsApostolos PsihramisAndonis ThominosYianna Fafaliou DancersIrina MansurovaMaria Lyraraki Results Semi Points: 238Position: 3Running order: 10 Results Finals Points: 252Position: 3Running order: 16

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