It is time for the last entry from semi-final 2. It comes from the land of sunflowers, bread and Lasha Tumbai. It’s Ukraine!!!
Ukraine first participated in the Eurovision Song Contest in 2003. One year after their debut, Ruslana gave Ukraine their first ever win with the song “Wild Dances”. Ukraine then went on to place in the top 10 on eight occasions from 2005-2014, four of those being top 5 placings. Jamala gave its second victory in 2016 with “1944”, making Ukraine the first Eastern European country to win the contest twice. Last year in Kyiv, O.Torvald could only manage 24th place with “Time”, Ukraine’s worst result to date.
The Ukrainian broadcaster, National Public Broadcasting Company of Ukraine (UA: PBC), organised the third edition of Vidbir. 18 songs competed over two semi-finals. In each semi-final, an in-studio jury (50%) and public voting (50%) selected three entries to proceed to the final. In the final, the same system was used to select a winner. For the first time in the history of Vidbir, there was no tie for first place and after coming second in the jury vote and first in the public vote, Mélovin was awarded the Ukrainian ticket to Lisbon.
Kostyantyn Mykolayovych Bocharov (Костянтин Миколайович Бочаров), more commonly known as Mélovin, was born on April 11 1997 in Odessa in southern Ukraine. His stage name is a combination of Alexander McQueen and Hallowe’en. His interest in music came about at a young age as he participated in many concerts at his school, and later he graduated from theatre school. Mélovin came into the public eye when he participated in X-Factor Ukraine in 2015, which he went on to win. Afterwards, he toured Ukraine with the show’s other finalists, and a year later he released his first single “Не одинокая” (Ne odinokaya – Not alone). Although he started out singing in Russian, he soon switched over to English.
Mélovin attempted to represent Ukraine last year with his song “Wonder”. He ended up placing third in the final, receiving the highest amount of televote points but placing second-to-last with the jury. A year later he participated once again, this time placing first.
The song that Mélovin will sing in Lisbon, “Under the Ladder”, was written by Mike Ryals and composed by Mélovin himself.
This is just one of those songs I don’t get the hype for. It’s dramatic for no reason, messy and just confusing. I don’t even get what he’s singing most of the time. Still, I can see why this would qualify; Mélovin’s mysterious looks, closing the semi-final, fire and of course, just being Ukraine. This is definitely not one of Ukraine’s stronger entries. Still, I’m happy he set the stairs on fire, rather than the piano.
What Could Have Been
Well, call me a broken record because I want Tayanna to represent Ukraine so bad! This time, she came with the Ukrainian-language 60’s inspired “Leyla”. She wasn’t sick this time, so she delivered a note-perfect performance for the final. She got exactly the same score as last year; first from the jury and third from the public vote, giving her second place again. Tayanna certainly has the vocal prowess to take on Eurovision. Third time’s a charm, as they say…
Will going under the ladder give Mélovin good or bad luck? Leave your comments below. Stay tuned tomorrow for another Eurovision preview!
(Sources: eurovision.tv, UA:PBC, YouTube)