Cast your mind back 10 years ago, to a cold winter and a lovely city called Hasselt. One decade ago, Belgium hosted the Junior Eurovision Song Contest 2005. In 5th place was Alina Eremia, representing Romania with her Wild Dances inspired song "Turai!". As well as having some of the best costumes ever in JESC, she also had some powerful lungs on her.
She has done quite a lot since JESC. She is in a TV show called "Pariu cu viața" where she plays a character called Ioana. She's also currently appearing on Te cunosc de undeva (Your Face Sounds Familiar). She is also a member of Lala band which is a 12-member pop-rock group which launched in 2011 and is very succesful with 150+ hours of live performances under their belt and five studio albums (including the best selling album in Romania of 2012). Liviu from JESC 2006 (New Star Music), Andrada from JESC 2008 and Bubu from JESC 2003 were all also in this group.
She's also been on the Romanian version of "Dancing with the Stars" and has worked on Disney movies, dubbing the voice of Pocahontas in Pocahontas and Pocahontas II: Journey to a New World and both speaking and singing voices of Belle in Beauty and the Beast, Beauty and the Beast: The Enchanted Christmas and Belle's Magical World.
Now, she has just released a new single called "Played You", kind of a club music style, so check it out, it has 342,767 views in 3 days!
Exciting news for one of our JESC alumni. Sophie Debattista, who sang her self-written song "Extra Cute" for Malta in 2006 (and was extremely underrated I might add!), has been voted one of the top buskers in the world. Yes, I said world.
Now 20 years old, she has been living in London for the past two years and studying at The Institute of Contemporary Music Performance. When she was busking last summer while taking part in the "Mayor of London's Big Busk", she was noticed and invited to enter the Toyoya sponsored contest to find the world's best buskers, with organisors choosing people from over 50 different countries. So far she has made it into the top 50, and if she makes the final 12, she will be flown to New Zealand in June to perform at the Queenstown Winter Festival. The final six will form a new band made up of the ultimate street musicians.
Do you remember Dalita Avanessian who represented Armenia in 2011 with the very apt tune "Welcome to Armenia"? She has been pretty busy since her success in her home country, releasing many music videos and acting as a jury voter in JESC 2014. Most recently, she released the music video for her new song "It is Armenia". The video was filmed in Lebanon and was sponsored by the Holy Cross Harboyan High School. The song is sort of an ethnic ballad with lovely lyrics. Listen below:
The eight finalists for the 2015 edition of Junior Song Festival, the Dutch selection for Junior Eurovision, have been released. You can listen to the songs: HERE. Remember, these are the audition versions that the kids wrote themselves. Now each finalist will have their song professionally produced and the final versions will be presented to us with the official JSF CD. Here are our kids -
4LIFE - Singing Lead Daniel - Special Eliyha - Like Everyone Else Guusje - Let's Talk about Peace Katrina - Dit is Pas Het Begin Myrthe - Kinderen Van De Zon Nohr - Ik Ben Mezelf Shalisa - Million Lights
It's not so often that we get large groups in Junior Song Festival, so 4LIFE is quite unique in that (four girls).
Here is everything you need to know about Junior Eurovision 2015!
Host city: Sofia, Bulgaria
The capital of Bulgaria, it's located at the foot of Vitosha Mountain which must make for great views (and hiking/skiing!). The currency is Bulgarian Lev, meaning you will need to exchange Euros if you're planning to go to Sofia!
Venue: Arena Armeec
This is a fairly new venue, opened in 2011, so expect fairly good facilities. When famous artists (such as Lady Gaga) come to Bulgaria, they perform here, so it will be a great honour for our 2015 singers. The arena has a capacity of 15,000, however expect around 7000 for JESC due to needing room for the stage, lighting etc. The arena also boasts modern training and warm-up halls, that can easily be converted into large open spaces for the dressing rooms and delegation lounge. It has a purpose built press centre and conference area, as well as soundproof rooms which can be used for Junior Eurovision to accommodate in-ear monitoring and viewing facilities.