Junior Eurovision 2020 – all contestants and countries
The 2019 Junior Eurovision Song Contest (JESC) will be held Gliwice Arena in Gliwice-Silesia in Poland on Sunday 24 November. 19 nations will be taking part, including Australia for the fifth time in a row. The contest will be broadcast on delay by ABC ME on Monday 25 November.
JESC differs from the main competition in that there is online voting and it opens two days before the show and you can even vote for your country. It does still however have a 50/50 jury and public vote.
Below you can find details on each contestant and entry including their music video. All information provided by Aussevision contributors..
Info from Liv
Entry: Isea Çili - 'Mikja ime fëmijëri' (My childhood friend)
To represent Albania 11-year-old Isea Çili battled her way through the hotly contested Albanian Junior Eurovision Selection Show Junior Frest 2019 and came out on top in a field of 18 contestants. Her winning song "Mikja Ime Fëmijëria (My childhood friend)" is a sweet and soulful pop ballad about the love of her friends and yearning to never part. The song will be performed in Albanian. Çili is no stranger to television performances making it to Week 4 of The Voice Kids Albania in 2019.
Albania debuted in Junior Eurovision in 2012 with this years entry marking it their 6th participation. The selection process consists of a National Final - currently Junior Fest and historically Festivali i Këngës për Femije. For the 2019 selection the votes were 100% jury only.
On debut in Amsterdam, Netherlands, the first entrant to represent Albania was Igzidora Gjeta with "Kam një këngë vetëm për ju" - unfortunately the entry received the wooden spoon that year. Due to financial and organisational difficulties Albania withdrew in 2013 and 2014.
Bursting back on the scene in 2015, Mishela Rapo claimed their best JESC result 5th with the unique entry "Dambaje" - complete with six languages and the first appearance of Turkish at JESC. Iconic performances include Ana Kodra's "Don't Touch My Tree" and the infectiously fun number of Efi Gjika "Barbie". Albania overall has struggled to capture the votes at JESC but has provided some memorable and fun performances in recent years - let's hope 2019 brings them more luck!
Article by Dale
Entry: Karina Ignatyan - Colors of Your Dream
13-year-old Karina earned her place in Gliwice by winning 'Depi Mankakan Evratesil', the Armenian national selection show for Junior Eurovision. She finished 2nd in the adult jury, 2nd in the kids jury and 1st in the televote to win by just three points.
Karina is no stranger to competition though, she has taken part in The Voice Kids Russia, New Wave Junior, Pokolenie Next and Miss Ethno 2019.
Armenia has been competing in Junior Eurovision since 2007 where they finished runner-up on debut with Arevik performing 'Erazanq'. They finished second again in 2009 with Luara Hayrapetyan's 'Barcelona' before winning the contest in 2010 with Vladimir Arzumanyan performing 'Mama'. They went on to have another two 3rds and two 2nd (the last one being in 2016) before a slight drop in 2017 (6th) and 2018 (9th).
Info from Kyriakos
Entry: Jordan Anthony - We Will Rise
Jordan Anthony was internally selected to represent Australia at the 2019 Junior Eurovision Song Contest at the Gliwice Arena in Gliwice, Poland in November. The Australian broadcaster ABC picked the 14-year-old Jordan, from Perth, Australia, to become the first boy to represent Australia at Junior Eurovision.
He is familiar to those in Australia who followed The Voice Australia Season 8 this year. Where he impressed everyone with his powerful voice with his rendition of Pink’s song “What About Us” which locked him in The Voice coach Delta Goodrem’s Team Delta. At 14 years old he was the youngest competitor in The Voice. He came in at a very impressive fourth place in the competition. He has already released his first album ‘One World’ from money he collected busking in Perth and through a Kickstarter campaign. You can read more about Jordan in our Q&A interview with him.
Australia has finished in the top 10 since they joined the Junior Eurovision Song Contest in 2015. In the last two years Australia has finished at an impressive third place. In last years Contest Australia was the Jury's hot favourite with Jael Wena inspirational song “Champion”.
Info from Mike
Entry: Liza Misnikova - Pepelny (Ashen).
After winning the national selection contest, Liza Misnikova will represent Belarus with the song 'Pepelny (Ashen)'. She beat nine other young girls in the contest, finishing 2nd in both the jury and televote to scrape a two point win.
Liza is 14-years-old and has been studying music for five years. She studies foreign languages, is into travelling and mathematics and her idol is Rihanna. Her song will be performed in Russian.
Belarus has competed in every Junior Eurovision since its inauguration in 2003. They won the contest in 2005 with Ksenia Sitnik's 'My vmeste' and in 2007 with 'S druz'yami' performed by Alexey Zhigalkovich. They have finished second and third twice for a solid showing at the contest. They have only missed the top 10 twice, including last year when Daniel Yastremski's song 'Time' finished 11th.
Info from Ally
Entry: Carla - Bim Bam Toi
Carla Lazzari will be singing the song “Bim Bam Toi” and the song is all about falling in love for the first time. Carla Lazari is 14-years-old and reached the final of the Voice Kids. She was internally selected by the French broadcaster France Télévisions.
2019 will see the third time France will compete at the contest. France made its debut in the 2004 contest in Lillehammer, where Thomas sang the uptempo song “Si On Voulait Bien” and finished in 6th place. After a 14 year absence, France returned for last year’s contest, with 10-year-old Angelina. She sang the delightful song “Jamais Sans Toi”, a delightfully bubbly song about friendship, which finished as the runner-up.
Info from Fleur
Entry: Giorgi Rostiashvili - We Need Love
13-year-old Giorgi Rostiashvili from Tbilisi delighted audiences on Ranina, the Georgian national selection program for JESC. He beat two other singers for the trip to Gliwice in a competition with a 100% jury vote. Giorgi was the first artist selected for JESC 2019, a little over a week after the senior contest had concluded.
Giorgi has experience singing in choirs and he also plays the piano. He was the inaugural winner of the National Competition of Children's and Youth Choral Collections at age 8.
Giorgi Rostiashvili will be singing in Georgian and English at JESC. The song he will perform is called 'We Need Love'. It is a bright, cheery song about love and being happy.
A powerhouse in the contest, Georgia have an impeccable record in JESC. They first competed in 2007 and have won the contest three times in 2008, 2011 and 2016. They have finished second in 2012 and 2017. Also they have only finished once outside the Top 10 in 2014. Can Giorgi make it four wins?
Info from Ally
Entry: Anna Kearney - Banshee
Ireland will be represented by Anna Kearney, with the song 'Banshee'. She won the country’s national final Junior Eurovision Éire, after signing “Why Me?” by Linda Martin. The shows were pre-recorded and “Banshee” premiered after the final aired. The song is a love song between a Banshee and a mysterious figure. Banshees are witch-like creatures from Celtic Mythology.
Anna Kearney is 13 -years-old, and she is from County Dublin. She is a seasoned performer, who has appeared on Broadway and at the National Concert Hall in Ireland.
Ireland made its Junior Eurovision debut in Sofia in 2015 when Aimee Banks sang “Réalta na Mara”. She earned 36 points and finished in 12th place. The following year in Malta, Zena Donnelly was able to do better with her song, “Bríce Ar Bhríce”. She earned 122 points and finished in 10th place. In Georgia in 2017 Muireann McDonnell and her relaxing song “Suile Glasa" took Ireland to the first of two 15th places in a row, and the following year in Minsk saw Ireland represented by Taylor Hynes and his boppy song “IOU” which also came in 15th place.
Info from Liv
Entry: Marta Viola - La voce della terra
10-year-old Marta Viola was internally selected by the Italian broadcaster RAI to represent Italy at JESC 2019 with the song "La Voce Della Terra". Hailing from Chieri in the northern Piedmont region, Viola is passionate about protecting the Earth. "[her] song is about our planet, our shared home, whose voice can be found in every little and big thing around us. It is about the fragility of life and our duty to protect it.". The song is to be sung in Italian and English. Outside of JESC Viola's hobbies include making video clips with Tik Tok and attributes her passion for music, singing and dancing to her parents. Italy is a relatively new nation to Junior Eurovision with six appearances (including 2019) and a win on debut back in 2014! At the 12th edition of the contest Vincenzo Cantiello performed "Tu primo grande amore" - being Italy's first and only win at JESC to date. Cantiello won the Kids Jury vote and scored mostly 12s, 10s and 8s across the televote to take victory. Bravo Vincenzo! 2015 was the only year RAI opted for the national final Ti lascio una canzone to select contestants - it produced the delightful identical sister duo of Chiara & Martina Scarpari with "Viva". Although it failed to capture votes it certainly won my heart.
Similar to Eurovision Italy has had good success at Junior Eurovision with two Top 3 placings in the last 5 years. On their third attempt in 2016 Fiamma Boccia finished third with"Cara Mamma (Dear Mom)" - the powerful pop ballad was a stand out on the night with powerful vocals and beautiful musicality. The 2018 entry "What Is Love" was a cute music-theatre style duet between Melissa di Pasca & Marco Boni. Of points given by Italy, Australia has received the second most - including douze pointe in 2018, 10 in 2017 and 8 in 2016, impressive considering the short time Australia has been part of the contest.
Info from Ruby
Entry: Yerzhan Maxim - Armanyńnan qalma
Representing Kazakhstan at the Junior Eurovision Song Contest this year will be Yerzhan Maxim – a 12 year old from Oral, located in northwestern Kazakhstan.
Following Kazakhstan’s first participation in the contest last year with Daneliya Tuleshova, Yerzhan was internally selected by the broadcaster Khabar Agency. This however is not Yerzhan’s first experience with Junior Eurovision, having gone against Daneliya in Kazakhstan’s National Selection last year, coming in third place with the song, “Elimdi súıemin”.
Yerzhan comes to Junior Eurovision 2019 as such with a wealth of experience, having taken singing lessons since 2012, he has competed on and jointly won the Russian edition of The Voice Kids earlier this year, in addition to competing in a number of singing contests since 2016. He will perform in Gliwice with the song, “Armanyńnan Qalma”, written and composed by Aldabergenov Daniyar, Timur Balymbetov and Khamit Shangaliyev. The song, according to Yerzhan, explains how ‘the whole world will open up for you if you have dreams.’
Having only competed once before Kazakhstan will be hoping to match, if not better, their exceptional result last year coming 6th place having received 171 points with Daneliya Tuleshova and “Òzińe Sen”. For the 24th of November we wish the best of luck for the vocal powerhouse, Yerzhan Maxim, in Gliwice Arena.
Info from Ruby
Entry: Eliana Gomez Blanco - We are More
Eliana Gomez Blanco will represent Malta at the Junior Eurovision Song Contest in 2019 with the song, “We Are More” after being selected by the Maltese broadcaster PBS in their National Selection back in August. Aged 14, Eliana is the 15th entrant from the island nation, bringing to the contest a varied experience of performing. She has represented Malta at numerous international festivals, taking high level vocal exams, appeared as a resident singer on Maltese TV, and competed in Malta’s National Selection in 2018 with "Music Takes Control”.
“We Are More” was written and composed by Rachel Suter, Jonas Thander, Joe Julian Farrugia and Kevin Lee, and allows Eliana’s strong vocals to feature prominently as well as the showcased Maltese language.
Prior to Eliana’s participation Malta has done incredibly well in Junior Eurovision, winning on two occasions in 2013 and 2015, with Gaia Cauchi (“The Start”) and Destiny Chukunyere (“Not My Soul") respectively, sticking with the formula of predominately English-language songs: a formula which they are shaking up this year. Last year Malta was represented by Ela Mangion with “Marchin’ On” who received 181 points and 5th place, keeping with Malta’s trend of top 10 placing since their break from the contest in 2011-2012.
Info from Ruby
Entry: Mila Moskov - Fire
Mila Moskov, a 14-year-old from Prilep, North Macedonia, will represent her country this year at the Junior Eurovision Song Contest. She was internally chosen by the broadcaster MKRTV, with her song being worked on by Denis Dimoski, the 2005 Junior Eurovision North Macedonian entrant. Denis, post his 8th place performance of “Rodendenski Baknez (Birthday Kiss)”, has gone on to partake in a multitude of talent shows in the Balkan Region, and his past expertise will no doubt be a great help to the North Macedonian delegation.
Mila began singing at her local music school at 6 years of age, and has since performed at various festivals, including Mel Fest Prilep, and is a current member of the Little Angels Choir, which helps children with special needs.
Since the contest’s inception, North Macedonia has competed a total of 13 times under the provisional reference of ‘Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia’, with two absentees in 2012 and 2014. Despite their prolonged involvement, North Macedonia have never won the contest, with their best results occurring in 2007 and 2008, when they placed fifth, with the duo Rocisa Kulakova and Dimitar Stojmenovski, and Bobi Andonov respectively. Last year, North Macedonia raked in 12th place, with the 13-year old Marija Spasovska and her powerhouse emotive ballad, “Doma”.
Info from Fleur
Entry: Viki Gabor - Supehero
Kraków based Viki Gabor is the host country’s entrant this year. Viki is 12 years old and was born in Germany of Romani heritage. She comes from a musical family and has previously resided in the United Kingdom, thus she is fluent in English. Viki is a YouTube sensation as her song Time has over 2,500,000 views. She also has close to 51,000 followers on Instagram- the lasses from Tulia are big fans of hers as well.
Viki was a finalist in the Polish edition of The Voice: Kids. She won the right to represent her country in Szansa na Sukces (Chance for Success), the Polish National Selection competition on September 29. Szansa na Sukces uses a televote and jury voting system. Viki was one of three competitors in the final having come through a three semi final process. About 1,000 children had auditioned for the opportunity.
Her song is called “Superhero” and will be sung in Polish and English. Like many songs in JESC this year, “Superhero” is about saving the planet. Hope, love and unity are featured throughout the song.
This year will be the seventh time that Poland has competed in JESC. They have had a chequered history in the competition since debuting in 2003. After finishing last in their first two years, Poland took a hiatus and returned to the contest in 2016- finishing in 11th place.
The last couple of years have been kinder to Poland, as their previous two entries have finished in the top 10. Roksana Węgiel won the competition last year with the song “Anyone I Want to Be”.
Info from Fleur
Entry: Joana Almeida - Vem comigo (Come with Me)
One of the youngest singers in this year’s competition, 10-year-old Joana Almeida will represent Portugal. Joana booked her ticket to Gliwice when she was personally invited by Portuguese broadcaster RTP to represent her country, as a result of winning the children’s singing contest Gala Internacional dos Pequenos Cantores da Figueira da Foz in July.
“Vem comigo” (Come With Me) is the name of Joana’s song. Again, it is a song about climate change and hope. Joana wants to inspire her generation to believe that they can make a difference in protecting our planet. She is quite passionate about nature, the environment and music. “Vem comigo” will be sung in Portuguese and English.
Portugal is one of the minnows at JESC. This will be their sixth foray into the competition. They debuted in 2006 and also competed in 2007- finishing second last in both years. They did not participate again until 2017, the year when the nation won its first Eurovision Song Contest with Salvador Sobral’s "Amar pelos dois". Portugal has never reached the top 10 at JESC.
Info from Mike
Entry: Tatyana Mezhentseva and Denberel Oorzhak - A Time for Us
Tatyana Mezhentseva and Denberel Oorzhak will represent Russia and are the only duo competing in Gliwice. The pair met during the Children's New Wave contest and formed a close friendship. THey decided to compete in the Russian national selection which they won coming 1st in the online voting and kids jury, and finishing 2nd in the adult jury for a comfortable victory.
10-year-old Tatyana based in Moscow has been singing since the age of 4 and had a hand in writing the lyrics for the song song. 13-year-old Denberel was born in the Republic of Tuva, close to the border of Mongolia. Winning contests isn't new to Denberel as he won the show You are Super! on channel NTV in Russia and the winner of the contest Children's New Wave.
Russia has competed in Junior Eurovision since 2005 and won the contest twice. First in 2006 with the Tomalchevy Twins and their song 'Vesenniy jazz' (the sisters went on to represent Russia the senior contest in 2014) and more recently in 2017 with Polina Bogusevich's 'Wings'. They have made the Top 10 on every occasion.
Info from Ally
Entry: Darija Vračević - Podigni Glas
11-year-old Darija Vračević was internally selected by RTS and will represent Serbia. Her song is called “Podigni Glas”, which in English means Raise Your Voice. The song is all about protecting the environment.
Despite being only 11-years-old, Darija has done a lot. She has taken part in several music festivals in Serbia and abroad and is also an actor and a dancer. She has landed roles in the shows like Tesla and the Battle at the Magnetic Field, as well has done subbing for Disney, Pixar, Paramount and Nickelodeon movies. She is also a member of a pro dance team and has won five gold and two silver medals at dance festivals in Serbia.
Serbia made their debut in the contest as an independent country in Bucharest in 2006 (Serbia & Montenegro competed the year before). They had a pretty good debut, finishing fifth with the song “Učimo Strane Jezike” by Neustrašivi Učitelji Stranih Jezika. The following year they did even better, when Nevena Božović (yes the same one that’s represented Serbia at the adult contest) finished third with the song “Piši Mi”. In the following two years, they finished 12th and 10th before in 2010 they once again finished 3rd, which has subsequently been Serbia’s highest placing. They were then absent from the 2011, 2012 and 2013 contests, before returning to finish 10th in the 2014 contest in Malta. They did better in 2015 in Bulgaria, finishing 7th before finishing 17th in Malta the following year. In Georgia in 2017 they had another top 10 finish before last year in Minsk they only finished 19th.
Info from Laura
Entry: Melani Garcia - Marte
Melani García, born in 2007 in Valencia, will be representing Spain in Junior Eurovision 2019.
At just 12 years old, she already has a long list of achievements to her name. Her music career began at the age of 8, when she was a part of a local choir and her teacher taught her the Mozart opera “Due pupille amabili". This inspired her passion for opera and classical music.
Her young age has certainly been no obstacle to for her love of music - after she was unable to be admitted to the Music Conservatory due to not being old enough to get in, she decided to teach herself classical music! In addition to singing, Melani plays the violin and is currently studying piano. After winning the Spanish edition of The Voice Kids La Voz Kids in 2018, she has gone on to release two singles: “Vivo Por Ella” and “O Sole Mio” - both covers of famous opera songs. When she is not making music, Melani enjoys rhythmic gymnastics, ballet and contemporary dance, and she has won several sporting awards.
In the Spanish Junior Eurovision song for 2019, “Marte" (Mars), Melani sings a lyrical song of hope for the planet Earth, encouraging all people to act together to fight climate change. Through the song’s lyrics, she empowers herself and others to change the world by spreading her environmental message far and wide, singing that everyone has a “voice (that) could fly to Mars”.
Spain is returning to the Junior Eurovision Song Contest after a 13-year hiatus, which means that the last time Spain participated in Junior Eurovision, Melani García wasn’t even born yet!
Spain has participated from 2003-2006, winning the contest in 2004, and placing second in 2003 and 2005. After coming 4th in 2006, Spain withdrew from the 2007 Junior Contest, stating that "the Junior Eurovision promotes stereotypes we do not share". Fortunately for Junior Eurovision fans, Spain have decided to make their return to the contest this year for their fifth participation!
Info from Emma
Entry: Matheu - Dans Met Jou (Dance with You)
2019 sees 13-year-old singer and actor Matheu Hinzen representing The Netherlands after winning the Dutch national selection with “Dans Met Jou” (Dance with You). Sung partly in Dutch and English, the catchy number beat three other acts, winning top marks from the televote and both children’s and adult juries in the competition.
Matheu is quite an accomplished performer having appeared in musicals and acted in several television and film productions since the age of 7. With The Netherlands hosting the main event in 2020, can Matheu take out a double Eurovision win for the Dutch and take the junior crown?
The Netherlands has a strong association with Junior Eurovision. One of only two countries to participate every year since the inaugural competition in 2003, they were also the first country to host the event twice (2007 – Rotterdam and 2012 – Amsterdam). In fact, the 2007 competition in Rotterdam was held at Ahoy Arena, the chosen venue for the 2020 Eurovision Song Contest!
In 2009, they had their first and only victory to date (Ralf Mackenbach – Click Clack). However it is 2007 participants Lisa, Amy and Shelley who have perhaps gone on to have the biggest success. Performing as OG3NE, they finished 11th at Eurovision in 2017.
Info from Kyriakos
Artist: Sophia Ivanko - The Spirit of Music
Sophia Ivanko has been chosen through a national selection by PBC revealed by Ukranian broadcaster UA. She was chosen by a seven person expert jury out of 10 shortlisted candidates all who submitted their songs online. The 13-year-old from Kyiv enjoys writing songs and experimenting with different music genres. Sophia takes singing lessons and plays piano. It was her third attempt at entering Junior Eurovision as a Ukrainian representative. In 2018 she made it to the top 10 finalists. In 2019 she participated in the Ukrainian Voice and was part of Team Jamala.
Ukraine has competed in Junior Eurovision every year since 2006 with exceptional success. Over 13 years they have won the JESC trophy once and been runner up twice, placing them nine times in the top 10. Their win came in the 2012 Contest where Anastasiya Petryk won with her song “Nebo”. Her sister Viktoria Patryk, actually scored Ukraine’s first runner up spot in 2008 with her song “Matrosy”. Ukraine has also had the privilege to host the Contest twice, in 2009 and again in 2013 after their 2012 win.
Info from Kyriakos
Artist: Erin Mai - Calon yn Curo (Heart Beating)
Erin was selected through Chwilio am Seren (in English Search for a Star), run by Welsh broadcaster Sianel Pedwar Cymru (S4C), where she won the national final on 24 September 2019. Her winning song “Calon yn Curo” was selected internally by S4C.
The national selection process was through two rounds. Round 1 artists sung cover songs and were selected only by a jury. Then round 2 six finalists performed Welsh versions of the anthem from the Junior Eurovision Song Contest 2014 “Together”. Erin won through televoting.
13-year-old Erin is from Llamrwst, North Wales. She loves performing. She began singing traditional Welsh songs before switching to pop music. She is very talented with dancing skills in tap, jazz, modern and ballet. Keeping with Welsh traditions Erin is going to bring clog dancing to the 2019 Junior Eurovision stage!
Wales initially took part in the Junior Eurovision as part of the United Kingdom between 2003 and 2005, which was organised by ITV.
Wales first debuted on its own in Junior Eurovision in 2018 which was held i Minsk, Belarus. Organised by S4C they selected their first entrant through the same process as this year. They selected Manw and internally selected the song “Petra”. Unfortunately Wales came last receiving no jury points and just 29 point from the online voting.