The Eurovision Song Contest is the most-watched live music event in the world. In 2021, it catapulted Maneskin, who performed Zitti e Buoni, to worldwide fame. In 1974, an unknown Swedish band called ABBA won the ESC with Waterloo and became the third biggest selling group in the history of music after the Beatles and Queen.
This year, Turin will host the 66th Eurovision Song Contest and put young artists from 40 countries into the spotlight. The capital of Piedmont will be the third Italian city to host the international event after Naples (1965) and Rome (1991), thanks to Maneskin’s victory in Rotterdam the previous year. The Italian band will perform their new song Supermodel at the ESC in Turin on 14 May 2022.
CYPRUS – ELA BY ANDROMACHE
Andromache, a 27-year-old Greek artist, will perform Ela, a song with English and Greek lyrics as well as folkloric elements and Greek instruments. The song is about the healing power of love.
Andromache was born in Germany in 1994, but moved to Greece with her family when she was ten. In 2015, she competed in The Voice of Greece, signing to Panik Records shortly after. Her single, Na Soun Psema, became the artist’s big breakthrough hit across radio and streaming platforms.
Andromache has 100’000 followers on Instagram.
In the acoustic version of Ela (watch video below), Andromache proves her great vocal ability. She never sings out of tune, her acoustic version sounds nearly as perfect as the recorded version.
The live performances at the Eurovision Song Contest will be the stumbling block for those singers who don’t have Andromache’s ability and who can’t sing live. The live rehearsals have revealed some of the poor performances (afterwards they always blame it on technical problems).
UKRAINE – STEFANIA BY KALUSH ORCHESTRA
Kalush Orchestra, an Ukrainian hip-hop band that combines ethnic motifs with modern sounds using different folk instruments, will most probably win the Eurovision Song Contest 2022.
The band was named after the Ukrainian city of Kalush. Set in the foothills of the Carpathian Mountains, it serves as a mascot that inspires the band to involve different folk elements and authentic Ukrainian music within their songs. Moreover, it is the hometown of lead singer Oleh Psiuk.
Their Eurovision entry, Stefania, is a tribute to Oleh’s mother, which she only heard for the very first time when she saw the band compete in Ukraine’s Eurovision selection show, Vidbir. Today, Stefania can also be seen as a metaphor for the Ukraine, the homeland of 40 million people, a democratic country that was invaded by Russia on 24 February 2022.
Kalush Orchestra has 278’000 followers on Instagram.
SPAIN – SLOMO BY CHANEL
Chanel Terrero, a 31-year-old singer, dancer and actress who was born in Havanna, Cuba, has over a decade of musical theatre experience, having starred in productions of The Lion King, Flashdance, The Bodyguard and Mamma Mia in Spain. She has also danced on stage with Shakira at the 2010 MTV Europe Music Awards.
SloMo is Chanel’s debut single, which was composed by a team of songwriters who have collaborated with the likes of Madonna, Black Eyed Peas, Britney Spears, Ricky Martin, Mariah Carey and Nicki Minaj.
Chanel left Cuba at the age of four and moved to Barcelona with her mother, who adored Coco Chanel and who named her daughter after the iconic fashion designer.
Chanel has 154’000 followers on Instagram.
ISRAEL – I.M. BY MICHAEL BEN-DAVID
A great choreography, cool costumes and a chorus that is as catchy as Netta’s Toy. Michael Ben-David’s song I.M. is a disco hit that you will hear from Ibiza to Mykonos this summer.
Michael, who was born into a Georgian-Ukrainian family in Israel in 1996, enrolled at the Beit Zvi School of the Performing Arts after he finished military service. Upon graduation he successfully auditioned for the show The X Factor Israel, where one of the judges was 2018 Eurovision Song Contest winner Netta. Michael’s emotional openness won him more and more fans as he went on a journey of self-affirmation that’s thoroughly explored in his Eurovision entry: I.M.
Michael Ben-David might become an icon of the gay community. He’s handsome, well-groomed, self-confident, charming, a great dancer and a real drama queen. When he’s not on stage, he loves to cook and bake.
Michael Ben-David has 72’000 followers on Instagram.
Michael Ben-David is not all about glamour, dancing and action. The acoustic version of his disco hit I.M. is amazing.
ITALY – BRIVIDI BY MAHMOOD AND BLANCO
Brividi, the winning song performed by Mahmood and Blanco at the 72nd edition of the Sanremo Festival, is a powerful song with poetic lyrics that describe the desire and the fear of loving someone.
FRANCE – FULENN BY ALVAN & AHEZ
A linguistic premiere: France’s entry doesn’t feature any French lyrics. The song Fulenn has been written in Breton, a language that is spoken only in Britanny, a region in northwestern France. A strong Celtic background distinguishes Brittany from other parts of France.
The band is composed of Alvan, a multi-instrumentalist musician who specialized in electro, and Ahez, a Breton vocal trio (Marine, Sterenn D. and Sterenn L.) that refers to ancient myths of Britanny in its songs.
The song tackles the Breton legend of a young woman who emancipates herself from social norms by dancing at night bathed in the light from a bonfire.
CZECH REPUBLIC – LIGHTS OFF BY WE ARE DOMI
We Are Domi started as a project at Leeds College of Music in 2016. Lead vocalist Dominika is Czech, guitarist Casper and keyboardist Benjamin are Norwegian.
Their music has been described as alternative electro-pop with hints of indie. From 2019 to 2021, We Are Domi have released six singles. They have 10’700 followers on Instagram.
GREECE – DIE TOGETHER BY AMANDA GEORGIADI TENFJORD
Amanda Georgiadi Tenfjord is a critically acclaimed 25-year old Greek-Norwegian singer and songwriter. She spent the early years of her life in Greece, before relocating to Norway with her family, where she found herself in the same school class as Nordic popstress Sigrid Raabe.
Lauded by publications including The Fader and NME, her songs have travelled globally with support from the likes of Spotify and Apple, as well as thanks to features on Netflix series Spinning Out and the NRK and BBC3 co-production Nudes.
Amanda has 20’000 followers on Instagram.
AZERBAIJAN – FADE TO BLACK BY NADIR RUSTAMLI
22-year-old Nadir Rustamli won The Voice of Azerbaijan in January 2021. His mentor was Eldar Gasimov, who is best known for winning the ESC in 2011, with Running Scared, a duet with Nikki.
Nadir has 44’500 followers on Instagram.
THREE ARTISTS WITH A GREAT VOICE BUT A MEDIOCRE SONG
23-year-old Sheldon Riley, who was diagnosed with the Asperger syndrom at the age of six, is one of Australia’s most talented young artists. He’s known for strong visuals and extravagant costumes. His style of music has been described as dark pop with a cinematic and passionate expression.
Speaking about his Eurovision entry, Sheldon said: “It is the story I never thought I’d ever feel I’d be able to tell. Written from the memories of a child who at age 6 was diagnosed with Asperger’s syndrome. Growing up in public housing, moving from home to home, unaware of my sexuality, among a deeply religious family. A path already laid that I would never be able to properly understand or interact with other people”.
In 2016, Marius Baer toured Germany and Switzerland as a street musician. A famous producer discovered him and invited him to New York. In 2017, the Swiss artist began to study music production at the prestigious BIMM Institute in London.
It was this journey of self-discovery that ultimately led to the release of his first album, Not Loud Enough, which soared into the Top 20 of the Swiss album charts.
Jérémie Makiese started singing at the local church choir, instilling a lifelong love of gospel music, before he moved on to professional vocal lessons at school. In 2021, he won The Voice Belgique. His career in music runs parallel with his aspirations of becoming a professional footballer. A talented goalkeeper, the singer recently signed a contract to play for Excelsior Virton FC.
(This article on the Eurovision Song Contest 2022 will be updated every day.)
Cover photo courtesy of EBU / Andres Putting
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