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Russia

Russia is suspended.

The European Broadcasting Union has come with an official statement regarding the situation with Russia. In short terms: Russia will not participate in this years Eurovision Song Contest.  

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Will we see Russia in Turin?

As you all may know, there’s a war going on in Ukraine. The Eurovision Song Contest is a non-political event, but the war between Russia and Ukraine has raised attention from countries all over the world. Even in the tiny world of the Eurovision Song Contest this war strikes. Broadcasters from all over the continent have asked the European Broadcasting Union to suspend Russia from this years Eurovision that will be held in Turin Italy.   The EBU has stated that they still welcome Russia at the Eurovision Song Contest, despite them invading Ukraine. As we speak, the broadcasters that have asked the EBU to suspend Russia are: NRK (Norway), SVT (Sweden), LRT (Lithuania), Avrotros (The Netherlands) and UA:PBC (Ukraine). Few broadcasters have taken a step that goes even further than just suspending Russia. If Russia still participates, YLE (Finland), ERR (Estonia) and RUV (Iceland) will withdraw from this years Eurovision. Some Eurovision artists have spoken out aswell about the situation in Ukraine. Manizha (Russia 2021) has stated this: The Roop (Lithuania 2020 and 2021) have posted on Instagram that they stand with Ukraine. Sergey Lazarev (Russia 2016 and 2019) said that he is against this war. Artists from 2022 that have stated something are Citi Zēni and Subwoolfer. Citi Zēni have contacted the EBU about suspending Russia, while Subwoolfer have posted a picture in their yellow (as usual) and blue wolf suits.

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After the Eurovision fame: Dima Bilan

Dima Bilan won the 2008 Eurovision Song Contest for Russia. Early life Dima Bilan was born as Victor Belan on December 24, 1981. He was born in Ust-Dzheguta, in the Autonomous Soviet Republic of Karachay-Cherkessia. He took part in several music competitions. For example, he won the “Young Voices of the Caucasus” competition. His first performance on television was in 1995, also in a talent show. In 1998, when he was 16 years old, he went to Moscow to participate in the Chunga-Changa festival, where the chairman of the jury gave him a diploma. He chose ‘Dima Bilan’ as his stage name; Dmitriy was his grandfather’s name. So Dima is a tribute to him. Breakthrough and first two albums Once he lived in Moscow, Dima began to record his first songs. The video of his debut single “Osen” became a success. The video was shot in the Gulf of Finland. At the time, under the pseudonym Dima Belan, he was regularly seen on MTV Russia.Although he studied to become an opera singer, he dreamed of a career as a pop singer. The dream came true when a classmate introduced him to producer Yuri Aizenshpis. His first real big success came in 2002, when he took fourth place in the New Wave festival. A new single and video, “Boom”, followed and in 2003 there was Dima Bilan’s debut album “Ya nochnoy huligan”. Television appearances followed, and his single “Na beregu neba” reached number 2 in the Russian charts. The album with the same name went gold in 2004. It became one of the best-selling albums of 2004 in Russia. First steps in the field of Eurovision After this success, producer Aizenshpis registered Bilan to participate in the national final of the Eurovision Song Contest. He sang in English: “Not that simple”. Although he was close, Dima Bilan didn’t win the ticket to the Eurovision song contest in Kiev. He did, however, have a hit with the song. The Russian version “”Ty dolzhna ryadom byt’” became one of the biggest hits of 2005. Several other hits followed. When Yuri Aizenshpis passed away in late 2005, producers lined up to take Dima under their wing, eventually Yana became Rudkovskaya his new producer. That caused another problem with his name, because it was officially owned by Aizenshpis’ company. When this conflict was resolved, Dima decided to officially register under the name Dima Bilan. Eurovision 2006In 2006, the Russian broadcaster wanted to be sure that Dima Bilan would represent the country at the Eurovision Song Contest. They decided to single him out without a national final. His song “Never let you go” did very well: a second place was awarded to him. Never had a Russian candidate finished higher. He subsequently represented Russia at the MTV Europe Awards and won an Award as best-selling Russian singer at the World Music Awards. Winning the Eurovision Song Contest In 2007, Dima Bilan recorded an English-language album with the famous producers Jim Beanz and Ryan Tedder. Again, he won awards at the MTV Russia Award. In 2008 a new Russian album was released. He also took part in the national final for the Eurovision song contest again. During the contest in Belgrade he sang “Believe”. The song was co-written by Jim Beanz. Dima was accompanied by Hungarian violinist Edvin Barton and Olympic figure skating champion Evgeni Plushenko. Dima Bilan managed to win the Eurovision Song Contest. No return to Eurovision The album “Believe” soon followed. In 2010, Dima Bilan had a song ready to participate in the Eurovision song contest: “White nights”. However, he decided not to. Joining again two years later would be too soon, according to Bilan. In that year he did play the lead role in a short film. In 2011, he released another new Russian album. The return to the song contest came in 2012: in duet with Yulia Volkova (known from t.A.T.u.), “Back to her future”. Despite their favorite role, they did not win but had to make do with second place. The Voice After the 2012 Eurovision Song Contest, Dima Bilan released four more studio albums. He was also a coach in several seasons of the Russian version of The Voice. He was in the chair in seasons 1 through 3, in seasons 5 and 6, and will soon be seen again in season 10. He also coached the first four seasons of The Voice Kids in Russia.  

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UEFA 2020: DAY 11

It’s day 11 of the European Championship soccer already. Today, no less than four matches will be played. To start with Ukraine against Austria. Both countries once had an act containing a burning fake piano. It was Mélovin who played the piano in his song “Under the ladder” in 2018. He was not the first one to do so. In 2015 The Makemakes had a piano burning during the performance of “I am yours”. The second match is between North Macedonia and the Netherlands. Both countries once had a song about darkness and light. The 2012 North Macedonian entrant Kaliopi sang “Crno i belo”, which means black and white. The Dutch sisters of O’G3NE sang “Lights and shadows” in 2017. Russia will meet Denmark tomorrow. It was back in 2000 when Russia and Denmark ended up in the top, Denmark as the winner, Russia as the number 2. When The Olsen Brothers won with “Fly on the wings of love”, Alsou was the runner up with “Solo”. Another match will be the the one from Finland against Belgium. In 1977, both countries were favorites to win the contest. Both ended up disappointed. Finnish Monica Aspelund and her “Lapponia” ended up in 10th place, while Belgian Dream Express brought their “A million in one, two, three” to a 7th place.

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UEFA 2020: Day 6

Again, three matches in UEFA 2020. To start with Finland against Russia. Where have we seen this battle before? Well, remember the 2006 contest. Lordi from Finland won with a landslide. Their song “Hard rock hallelujah” broke all the records. It was hard for Dima Bilan from Russia to get there with his song “I never ever let you go”. But you don’t have to feel sorry for him: two years later Dima got the prize! Turkey and Wales meet today as well. In 2004, the contest was held in Turkey. For the host country the group Athena participated with the song “For real”. One of the other contestants that year was Welshman James Fox. He represented the United Kingdom with the song “Hold onto our love”. Italy will meet Switzerland in the arena today. In both countries, Italian is one of the main languages. So that might be an easy connection. But in fact, we found another one. Both countries once sent a song in a minority language. In 1991, host country Italy sent Peppino di Capri who sang “Comme e’ ddoce o’ mare”, sung in the Neapolitan language. Switzerland, also host country but in 1989, decided to sing a song in Romansh: “Viver senza tei”, song by the group Furbaz.

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UEFA Euro 2020 started!

With a year of delay, Euro 2020, the European soccer chiampionship, has started. The fun thing for a Eurovision fan is that a lot of matches remind us of Eurovision Songs, because it’s with (partly) the same countries. Yesterday, Italy won the match from Turkey. Many people on the internet mentioned Måneskin (of course) and Sertab (of course). But the match reminded us of another performance. You see Italian host Toto Cutugno (1991) learning Turkish. The Turkish contestants are Can Uğurluer, İzel Çeliköz & Reyhan Karaca singing “Iki dakika”. That is a hard one to pronounce for Toto. Today, Wales meets Switzerland. Wales is a part of the United Kingdom in the Eurovision Song Contest. But did you know that a Welsh woman almost won Eurovision? She became 2nd in 1970 and her name was Mary Hopkin. Also for Switzerland we chose someone who became 2nd: Daniela Simons in 1986. Both ladies have in common that in their years, one contestant could impossibly be defeated. In 1970 it was Dana and in 1986 Sandra Kim. Denmark meets Finland this year. Opposites attract, that’s what people say. We have a Eurovision winner from both countries. A ballad, sung by two man in their 40s from Denmark: “Fly on the wings of love” by the Olson Brothers. And a rock song from Finland, sung by Lordi, dressed as monsters: “Hard rock hallelujah”. And last but not least, Belgium meets Russia. They did so too in 2003. Turkey (as mentioned), Belgium and Russia struggled for the first place. Belgium became 2nd with Urban Trad, with a song in a non-existing language. Russia became third with the famous duo t.A.T.u. and their “Ne ver’ ne boysia”. Who is going to win? We put our money on Måneskin. Or were you talking about soccer?

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Manizha

Road to Rotterdam: Russia

For a long time, Russia was very secretive about the submission. In the end, Manizha’s “Russian woman” was chosen from a preliminary round with three songs. Manizha was born in Tajikistan but soon moved to Moscow. In addition to making music, she draws attention to feminism, LGBTI + rights and domestic violence. It meant that not everyone in Russia was happy with her selection.

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Manizha

© EBU/Thomas Hanses About Quick Facts NameManizha Dalerovna Khamraeva Born8 July 1991 Nationality 🇷🇺 Russian National SelectionYevrovidenie 2021 In EurovisionRotterdam 2021 SongRussian woman (2021) Biography Manizha is a Russian singer, born in Tajikistan. When she was 2 years old, Manizha and her family moved to Moscow, where she later studied  piano and singing. Meanwhile she graduated from the Faculty of Psychology at the Russian State University for the Humanities in Moscow. Since the age of 12, Manizha has been participating in various competitions and festivals. In 2005, Manizha recorded several songs in both Tajik and Russian. The songs were actively played on radio stations in Tajikistan. At the age of 15, from the beginning of 2007, she began performing under the pseudonym Ru.Kola.In February she recorded her first song – “Prenebregayt”. The song received a lot of airplay. It reached the top of the Russian charts. In 2007, Manizha became a finalist of the All-Russian Pyat’zvozd competition in Sochi. In the spring of 2008, the debut album “Prenebregayt” was released. After this, she left the Ru.kola project. In 2011 she met the soloist Alexei Kosov, she received an offer to sing at a concert of the band Assai. She was supposed to perform one song, but in the end she sang the entire concert. Then Alexey convinced Manizhi’s mother to allow her to go to St. Petersburg in May to record the album “OM”. She also sang in the band Krip de Shi. In the summer of 2012, she recorded an EP with the group. The group performed at the Stereoleto festival in St. Petersburg , in September – at the Red Rocks Tour festival in Ryazan, but then, due to different views on creativity, Manizha left the band. She studied vocals at gospel schools in London and New York. In 2012, Manizha participated in a soundtrack. She also worked with musician Mikhail Mishchenko. The album “Core” was the result of their creativity in 2014. In March 2018 Manizha joined a project of the French music service Deezer,  “Deezer Next” 2018 (a global program created to discover new talent around the world – along with George Smith (UK), Lewis Capaldi (UK) and other independent artists).As a solo singer, Manizha released two albums: “Manuscript” in 2017 and “ЯIAM” in 2018.In March 2021, Manizha won the national selection for the Eurovision Song Contest. Not everybody in Russia appeared to be fan of Manizha’s song “Russian woman”; traditional Russian women claimed they didn’t recognize themselves in the song. Even threaths followed. However, Manizha was successfull and reached the Eurovision final. On February 24, 2022, Manizha stated on her Instagram account that she did not agree with the Russian invasian in Ukraine, mentioning the Ukrainian background of her husband. Entries Russian Woman Country🇷🇺 Russia Year2021 LanguageEnglish/Russian LyricsManizha Sanghin MusicOri AvniOri KaplanManizha Sanghin BackingsAlexandr KudinovArtemiy CheersVasilisa SavoskinaIyulina Popova Results Semi Points: 225Position: 3Running order: 3 Results Finals Points: 204Position: 9Running order: 5 https://youtu.be/V-Di9A28e5E

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Little Big

About Quick Facts Members Ilya (Ilyich) Prusikin Sergey (Gokk) Makarov Sophia Tayurskaya Anton Lissov Born 2013 Nationality ???????? Russian National Selection Internal selection 2020 In Eurovision 2020 Rotterdam (cancelled) Song Uno (2020, cancelled) Biography The group first announced itself on April 1, 2013, releasing the clip “Every Day I’m Drinking” on YouTube. Soon after this, the band had its first public appearance: they opened for the band Die Antwoord. The first album of the band “With Russia From Love” was released in 2014. In 2015, a video for the song “Give Me Your Money” was released in cooperation with the Estonian artist Tommy Cash.  In december 2015, the band released their second album, “Funeral Rave”. It took the 8th place in the Russian iTunes chart. In 2016, the band’s video clipsfeatured at the Berlin Music Video Awards 2016. “Big Dick” got the award in the Most Trashy category, and “Give Me Your Money” was one of the nominees for Best Performer. The “Big Dick” clip overcame 35 million views. In 2017, the group released the single “Rave On”, followed by the track “Nightlife”. The latter wasrecorded in collaboration with the German electronic band Eskimo Callboy. In February 2018, the video clip of their song “LollyBomb”  won the Best Music Video nomination at the Global Los Angeles Film Festival. On April 1, 2018, one of the vocalists, Olympia Ivleva, announced her resignation from the band. On May 8, 2018, the group released the first part of the album  “Antipositive” and the clip “Punks Not Dead” , on October 5 – “Antipositve, part 2” and the new clip “Skibidi”. In December 2018,  the group released the clip “Boys Slam” together with Sergey Zhukov. In February 2019, the single “Skibidi” received platinum status. Later, the album with the same name was released. In 2020, Little Big was supposed to represent Russia in the Eurovision Song Contest in Rotterdam with the song “Uno”. To perform at the competition, Yuri Muzychenko and Florida Chanturia joined the concert line-up as session backing vocalists. Unfortunately, due to the cancellation of the contest, the group did not participate. In 2021, the band members said they didn’t want to perform at Eurovision in order to “Not compete with themselves”. The musicians also added that there are enough talented performers in the country, each of them should have the opportunity to show themselves abroad. In September 2021, Little Big released a four-track collaborative mini-album with American singer Oliver Tree, “Welcome to the Internet”, as well as videos for the title track and the song “Turn It Up”, which featured Estonian rapper Tommy Cash. In 2022, the band plans to release a fourth studio album. However, the last thing Little Big posted on Instagram was a statement containing the words “No war”, posted on 24 February 2022, the day of the Russian invasion in Ukraine. Entries Uno Country ???????? Russia Year 2022 Language English Spanish Lyrics Little Big Music Little Big Backings – Results Semi Points: – Position: – Running order: – Results Finals Points: – Position: – Running order: –

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Peter Nalitch & Friends

About Quick Facts NamePeter Andreyevich Nalitch Born30 April 1981 Nationality🇷🇺 Russian National SelectionEvrovidenie 2010 In Eurovision2010 Oslo SongLost And Forgotten (2010) Biography Youth and education Peter Nalitch, born on April 30, 1981, is a Russian musician and composer. Peter graduated from the Moscow Architectural Institute (MARCHI) in 2003, showcasing his aptitude in both technical and creative fields. However, music was an ever-present force in Peter’s life. His paternal grandfather, Zahid Omerovich Nalitch, was a renowned lyric tenor and broadcaster for the Yugoslav section of Moscow Radio, instilling in Peter an early appreciation for music. Zahid’s life story, marked by war and resilience, deeply influenced Peter. His grandfather, originally from Bosnia and Herzegovina, faced severe hardships during World War II, including the loss of his singing ability due to a tragic injury. This legacy of perseverance and passion for music became a cornerstone of Peter’s identity. Peter’s formal music education began at the Myaskovsky Children’s Music School, followed by studies at the Music College of the Moscow State Tchaikovsky Conservatory and the Orpheus studio under Irina Mukhina. In 2010, he further honed his skills by entering the Gnessin Russian Academy of Music, specializing in Academic Singing. Early career Nalitch’s music career took a significant leap in 2007 when he uploaded a self-made music video for his song “Guitar” on YouTube. The video quickly went viral, amassing 70,000 views in a month. This unexpected success led to his first public concert on November 9, 2007, at the Apshu club in Moscow. Following this, Peter formed the “Musical Collective of Peter Nalitch” (MKPN), which quickly gained popularity with successful concerts and a growing fan base. Between 2007 and 2010, MKPN toured extensively across Russia, supporting national sports teams at major events like the European Football Championship and the Beijing Olympics in 2008. Their first album, “Joy of Simple Melodies,” was released in 2008, followed by a concert film and maxi-single “Sea.” Eurovision In 2010, Peter Nalitch and his band represented Russia at the Eurovision Song Contest in Oslo with the song “Lost and Forgotten.” Their heartfelt performance earned them 11th place, cementing Peter’s reputation on the international stage. Eurovision was a pivotal moment in Peter’s career, exposing him to a wider audience and solidifying his status as a versatile artist. 2010 – 2018 Following Eurovision, Peter continued to diversify his musical repertoire. He ventured into classical opera, performing roles such as Rodolfo in Puccini’s “La Bohème” and Lensky in Tchaikovsky’s “Eugene Onegin.” He also released several more albums, including “Merry Baboons” (2010) and “Goldfish” (2012), showcasing his evolving musical style. Peter’s innovative spirit led to the creation of albums like “Kitchen” (2013), featuring songs in the fictional Babur language, and “Reflections in Puddles” (2018), funded through crowdfunding. His involvement in multimedia projects, such as composing for the RT channel’s “Romanovs100” project, further highlights his versatility. From 2018 onwards, Peter’s career continued to flourish. On November 9, 2018, he released his eighth album “Reflections in Puddles,” which featured complex arrangements performed by a chamber orchestra. The album was funded by a successful crowdfunding campaign on Planeta.ru. 2019 – 2024 In 2019, Peter’s work on the RT multimedia project “Romanovs100” received significant recognition, earning a shortlist position for Clio Music in the “Best Use of Original Music” category and winning the Original Music award at the 2019 New York Festival TV & Film Awards. Additionally, he composed the soundtrack for the film “Call Me Drozd,” which premiered in December 2020 and received accolades at several film festivals. The same year, Nalitch participated in the All-Russian competition for young composers “The Score of the Future,” where he was awarded the first prize in the “Composition for Voice and Piano” category. In December 2019, he also performed at the opening of the independent opera house — the Moscow Opera House (MOD), taking on the role of Vaudémont in Tchaikovsky’s “Iolanta.” 2020 saw the release of Peter’s ninth album “Morra” on October 23. Initially announced as a maxi-single, it expanded into a full-length album with 14 tracks, all funded through a crowdfunding campaign. The album’s presentation took place on December 19 at the Gorbunov Palace of Culture. In 2021, Peter released his first vinyl record, which included 11 tracks from his “Morra” album. He also contributed to the soundtrack of the film “Call Me Drozd,” which faced delays due to the pandemic but was well-received upon its eventual release. In May 2021, the film was presented at the V International Film Festival named after Vyacheslav Tikhonov in Pavlovsky Posad. Peter’s tenth album, “Pirates’ Songs,” was released on November 25, 2021, funded by his supporters on Planeta.ru. This album continued his tradition of blending various musical styles and exploring new creative territories. In 2022, Peter released his eleventh album “VIVAMUS” on February 4, again funded by a crowdfunding campaign. He was also recognized as the laureate of the first prize at the First All-Russian Competition for Composition and Instrumentation for the Orchestra of Russian Folk Instruments. In 2023, Peter appeared on the TV show “My Hero” with Tatyana Ustinova, and in May, he defended his diploma at the Gnessin Academy by performing the suite “Oblomov’s Marshes” for symphony orchestra, choir, and soloists. His compositions continued to captivate audiences, with premieres of new works like “Diary of an Old Master” and his participation in significant cultural events. In 2024, Peter released his twelfth album “Vanya, the Bird, and the Striped Shirt” on April 12, featuring 55 tracks and created in collaboration with Herman Mogilevsky. The album’s concert version premiered on April 26 and 27 at the Central House of Architects in Moscow. Entries Lost And Forgotten Country🇷🇺 Russia Year2010 LanguageEnglish LyricsPeter Nalitch MusicPeter Nalitch FriendsYuri KostenkoSergey SokolovKostya ShvetsovDima SimonovDenis Marinkin Results Semi Points: 74Position: 7Running order: 2 Results Finals Points: 90Position: 11Running order: 20 https://youtu.be/nFEwKjpDD2c?si=GKPf1NNZsCOLA5Ca

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