The fourth Junior Eurovision saw it venture, for the first time, to a country that had never hosted the senior version. Romania’s nation broadcaster TVR beat the Dutch and Croatians for the honour to host. Naturally, as this was a first for Romania, they hosted it in Bucharest. The number of countries dropped to its lowest level – only 15 – but this doesn’t mean the quality of the songs was any lower. Serbia & Montenegro had ceased as an entity, and one of its successor nations did participate. Portugal and Ukraine also débuted, and Cyprus returned after an enforced year out. Sadly, the United Kingdom, Norway and Denmark withdrew, and all have yet to return.
A rule introduced for the first time in any Eurovision Song Contest was the ability to vote for songs during their presentation. As you may know, JESC has been a testing ground for concepts that eventually found their way into the senior ESC. The televoting during the songs was such as example. As was the parade of nations before the songs.
Some noteworthy names also came out of 2006. Molly Sandén came third, and has gone on to become a big star in Sweden. She’s also been involved with a certain Eric Saade and a certain Danny Saucedo. Anglo-Maltese Sophie Debattista is still a massive star in Malta. But the biggest acts to come from 2006 were undoubtedly the Tolmachevy Sisters/Twins. As well as running away with JESC (only dropping a total of 26 points), they featured in the adult ESC in 2009 in Moscow, the 2010 JESC in Belarus, and of course participated in the 2014 ESC in Copenhagen, finishing 7th. Their track record in junior and senior ESCs is unlikely to be beaten for a while.
This year also saw some countries making the most of the language rules. Russian is an official language in Belarus, and Andrey Kunets using that instead of Belarussian. Serbia’s début was sung in eight languages, naturally including Serbian. In other highlights, hosts Romania sent Spiderman and Harry Potter, Thor! came as Superman, and Sophie showed us she’s a demon with a drum kit.
Portugal – Pedro Madeira – Deixa-me sentir (Let me feel)
Cyprus – Luis Panagiotou & Christina Christofi – Agoria koritsia (Boys and girls)
Netherlands – Kimberly – Goed (Good)
Romania – New Star Music – Povestea mea (My story)
Ukraine – Nazar Slyuzarchuk – Khlopchik rock & roll (Rock & roll boy)
Spain – Dani Fernández – Te doy mi voz (I give you my voice)
Serbia – Neustrašivi učitelji stranih jezika – Učimo strane jezike (Learning foreign languages)
Malta – Sophie Debattista – Extra cute
Macedonia – Zana Aliu – Vljubena (In love)
Sweden – Molly Sandén – Det finaste någon kan få (The best someone could get)
Greece – Chloe Sofia Boleti – Den peirazei (It doesn’t matter)
Belarus – Andrey Kunets – Noviy den (New day)
Belgium – Thor! – Een tocht door het donker (A journey through the dark)
Croatia – Mateo Đido – Lea
Russia – Tolmachevy Twins – Vesenniy jazz (Spring jazz)
As mentioned above, the Tolmachevy Sisters/Twins ran away with the contest, giving Russia its first top three finish (but not its last). Belarus managed a second top three in a row, and ensured a one-two for the Russian language. Molly Sandén gave Sweden its only top three finish to date. She, however, had bigger plans, and has been in two Melodifestivalen so far. But Russia had fallen in love with JESC, and Europe appeared to have fallen in love with the Tolmachevys. And what are they all up to now (well, 2012)?
Which songs did you like best?
Author: John Stanton