Ukraine reveals 18 semi-finalists for Eurovision 2016!
With Ukraine back in the Eurovision Song Contest, the country is gearing up for its national final, to select who will represent the country in Stockholm.
Today, national broadcaster NTU revealed the 18 acts that will compete in the two semi-finals!
The 18 acts
- Nastia (Anastasia) Prykhodko
- Viktoriia Petryk
- Aida Nikolaichuk
- Tonia Matviienko
- Arkadii Voitiuk
- Vladyslav Kurasov
- Svitlana Tarabarova
- The Hardkiss
- Brunettes Shoot Blondes
- Peaks of Kings
Several familiar names take part
The return of Ukraine also sees the return of several familiar names to the national selection.
Ukrainian Anastasia Prykhodko represented Russia back in 2009, after a failed attempt to represent Ukraine. Following the Russian military conflict in Ukraine, and annexation of the Crimean peninsula, Anastasia has voiced very pro-Ukrainian opinions and is extremely critical of Putin and Russia’s actions. She now wants to return to the Eurovision Song Contest for Ukraine.
Jamala attempted to represent the country in 2011 with the song “Smile,” but withdrew her song after a controversy over alleged tampering with votes, which resulted in a new final. She declined to participate in the new final, convinced the results were decided ahead of time. Mika Newton eventually went to Düsseldorf.
The girl group NeAngely has also previously attempted to represent Ukraine with the Swedish-created “Courageous” for 2014. They placed fifth, with Mariya Yaremchuk winning. This time, they are back with a song created by the same Swedish team, Alexander Bard and Andreas Öhrn. Andreas is also a part of the team that created “Victorious” for Xuso Jones in the upcoming Spanish selection.
Viktoria Petryk participated in the Junior Eurovision Song Contest 2008, placing second, and is the sister of Anastasia Petryk, who won the Junior Eurovision Song Contest in 2013. Viktoria attempted to represent Ukraine for 2014, placing just behind Mariya Yaremchuk.
Ruslana and Verka on the jury panel
The results will be decided in part by a professional jury, with a few very familiar faces. Ruslana, who won the Eurovision Song Contest in 2004 with her “Wild Dances” will be on board, and so will Andrii Danylko, much better known as Verka Serduchka, who of course came in second place in 2007. He will be judging as Andrii, the producer and composer.
The two will join composer and producer Konstantin Meladze on the panel, who is also the producer of the selection.
“We have selected the artists and performers who are well-prepared for the national selection and they will compete in the semifinals. The criteria for the selection were the following: Quality, original material, charisma of the performer, and the high level of the vocal abilities. The genres of the music that are introduced in the semi-finals vary from folk-music to hard-rock. We didn’t pay attention whether the artist is well-known or not or whether he/she is making the first attempts in the music career. Each of the semi-finalists could in the best way represent the country on the international level,” said Konstantin to NTU.
Running order January 27
The artists will be placed into the semi-finals and running order decided by a draw on January 27.
The shows will be broadcast live on NTU’s UA: Pershyi channel and partner channel STB TV simultaneously on February 6 and 13, with the national final on February 21.
Photo: Indrek Galetin / Alain Douit / EBU