Eurovision 2016

UKRAINE: Live Blog of Ukraine’s 1st Semi Final – #JoinUs at 18:00 CET


Dobroho vechora! Kiev calling! After taking a year out, Ukraine return to Europe’s favourite music competition and their road to Stockholm starts right here!

Tonight, 9 acts will compete for one of 3 places in the final for the chance to sing for Ukraine in Sweden this May. But that’s not all! Next weekend, a further 9 acts will also compete, before the 6 finalists battle it out on February 21st.

Join us, James and Bogdan, at 18:00 CET for our LIVE BLOG of ‘The Ukrainian 1st Semi-Final’. You know the drill – just refresh the page for full updates and our thoughts on the performances.

Are you excited? We are! Welcome back Ukraine – we missed you!


How To Watch

The Show starts at 18:00 CET

Tune in using the following this link or this one

Running Order

These are the first 9 acts taking to the stage tonight. If you want to see who’ll be singing next week too, have a look here!

#1 – Anastasia Prikhodko – “I Am Free Now”

#2 – The Hardkiss – “Helpless”

#3 – Tonya Matvienko – “Tin Whistle”

#4 – Vladislav Kurasov – “I’m Insane”

#5 – Lavika – “Hold Me”

#6 – Jamala – “1944”

#7 – Aida Nikolaychuk – “Inner Power”

#8 – Svetlana Tarabarova – “Never Again”

#9 – Brunettes Shoot Blondes – “Every Monday”


How The Finalists Will Be Selected

The 3 finalists will be selected through a mixture of:

  • Public Televote
  • Expert Jury – of which Eurovision superstars Ruslana and Verka Seduchka will be a part of!

LIVE BLOG – Starts 18:00 CET Here


You know the drill by now peeps. You just refresh the page after each song for our comments. Don’t forget we will be awarding our #MagicMic Award for the most memorable moment of the show!



JAMES: And we’re off! At least, they’re getting ready! Nice opera mask

Now we’re having a look at some of Ukraine’s past Eurovision glories and this year’s hopefuls


JAMES: Our hosts for tonight – the guy on the right hasn’t smiled once yet…

BOGDAN: They’re revealing tonight’s judges – should be some familiar faces for Eurovision fans!


BOGDAN: Ruslana looks amazing tonight!

JAMES: I almost didn’t recognise Verka Seduchka on the left!!!

BOGDAN: OK, here we go, our first contestant, Anastasia Prikhodko

JAMES: She sang for Russia in 2009, now wants to sing for her native Ukraine. Let’s have a listen…


BOGDAN: WOW! Very powerful voice!

JAMES: I agree, the staging works well too – doesn’t detract from her and her vocals

BOGDAN: I like it more hearing it live than I did the studio version

JAMES: It’s a very solid rock ballad. This could do well!

BOGDAN: The judges are giving their feedback. We’ll give ours too. I give it 7 out of 12

JAMES: I give it an 8. Anastasia looks worried, bless her

BOGDAN: She doesn’t need to be after that performance!


BOGDAN: Ruslana is very expressive and passionate giving feedback

JAMES: I like her shirt. She looks very different from 2004!

BOGDAN: Rise like a phoenix shirt? :)))

JAMES: Looks like the Albanian flag hehe – whatever it’s based on, it looks fantastic!

JAMES: Hardkiss up next, and the audience sound very excited by that


BOGDAN: What musical is this from?! Does she get HBO on that?

JAMES: I’m more worried about the guy in the corner with the hockey mask…

BOGDAN: It sounds haunted

JAMES: That it does! Very powerful staging and vocals, they definitely have presence. Scores, Bogdan?

BOGDAN: To be honest, it wasn’t my cup of tea… a 5?

JAMES: I agree, not sure if it’ll be a favourite of mine, but I’ll give them a 6 for the look of their performance. Was definitely memorable!


JAMES: You see him too, right?! 0_0

JAMES: Don’t worry, we’re still here – just a lot a lot of adverts

JAMES: On the plus side, Ukraine’s Got Talent looks like it’ll be good next week! :))))

BOGDAN: And I thought the Maltese Selection had lots of ad breaks!!

JAMES: And we’re back! Tonya Matvienko up next with Tin Whistle


BOGDAN: Oooh… very mystical! Lots of chanting and smoke

JAMES: Very natural sounding, started as a promising ethno-ballad

BOGDAN: She’s definitely in touch with Mother Nature!

JAMES: Reminds me quite a bit of Nocturne from Norway… as in, very mysterious music, but not a lot of singing… what she does sing though, she sings very well

BOGDAN: Not sure this would suit the Eurovision stage… but I didn’t dislike it

JAMES: A 6 from me. Very nice, but lacked a little something for me

BOGDAN: Same from me, a 6

JAMES: Ruslana certainly has a lot to say about Tonya’s performance

BOGDAN: We don’t know what she said, but it just got a big round of applause!

JAMES: Vladislav Kurasov singing I’m Insane now

BOGDAN: He looks too young to be mental 😉


JAMES: Well, I’m not crazy about it…

BOGDAN: For me, it’s a typical Eurovision ballad

JAMES: The audience are loving it!

BOGDAN: I liked it. I’ll give it a 6, or maybe even 7

JAMES: 5 from me. I liked it, but I prefer my ballads to build more than this did

JAMES: Ooooh… the audience just booed a judge’s comment! Told you they love Vlad!

BOGDAN: The first time any judge has been booed tonight


BOGDAN: Can you believe this is Verka Seduchka??

JAMES: Still has the DIVA! stare, but looks very different without her sparkly star head dress!



JAMES: Lavika and Hold Me, Now… no, not Johnny Logan’s song…

BOGDAN: The audience are clapping along, sounds like they like it

JAMES: A very heartfelt ballad… I’m impressed


BOGDAN: The audience were captivated by her dream catcher!

JAMES: I thought that was really good – maybe even my favourite so far!

BOGDAN: I agree, one of the best we’ve seen so far! 8

JAMES: 10 – just to out do you, Bogdan

BOGDAN: Of course!

BOGDAN: We haven’t seen a fun song tonight… and judging by the title of the next one, that’s not going to change…

JAMES: That might be true, but the audience just went wild – Jamala is next with 1944!

BOGDAN: The beginning sounds like Apricot Stone from Armenia


BOGDAN: Has a touch of Love Injected in there too!

JAMES: Reminds me of that New Age kind of music


JAMES: A standing ovation from Ruslana! Jamala, you should be honored!

BOGDAN: The audience loved it too

JAMES: I think this might be one to watch

BOGDAN: I can see this qualifying. 7 or 8.

JAMES: It’s very different, even for Eurovision. I’ll say 8

BOGDAN: Jamala seems pleased with what the judges have to say

JAMES: Another advert marathon for us! See you soon… we hope… we’re going to learn more Ukrainian from the ads!

JAMES: And we’re back!

JAMES: Aida Nikolaychuk is set to release her Inner Power… let’s have a listen…


JAMES: FIRE!! And lots of it!

BOGDAN: I like this one, good vocals and stage presence

JAMES: Probably the most contemporary song we’ve heard so far tonight

BOGDAN: 6 or 7 out of 10 for me. Might qualify

JAMES: 6 from me. Brilliant staging, gave us a real show

JAMES: Only 2 songs left tonight. Our penultimate singer is Svetlana Tarabarova and Never Again


JAMES: We both agree, Svetlana looks stunning tonight!

BOGDAN: Nice switching from Ukrainian to English

BOGDAN: It was a nice ballad, but think we’ve heard better tonight

JAMES: It was definitely a good ballad and performed very well. I think I’ll give it 7

BOGDAN: 6 from me… the first part wasn’t too convincing for me as I didn’t understand it

JAMES: Ruslana certainly likes to give detailed feedback… but the audience love it!

BOGDAN: Last act of the night up now – Brunettes Shoot Blondes with Every Monday

JAMES: Hopefully that’s the band’s name and not their act… Ukraine’s answer to One Direction??


BOGDAN: We had to wait all night, but at last we have a song with a bit more rhythm! Not so much of a ballad

JAMES: The staging is very colourful, but the performance lacks something… bit too subdued for my liking

BOGDAN: I enjoyed the change of pace from earlier ballads, but I don’t think this is enough to qualify. At most, a 6 from me

JAMES: I agree, not a fan. 4.

JAMES: Voting lines are open! Time for a quick recap!

JAMES: While Ukraine votes, we’ve been deliberating too and have been discussing our #MagicMic moments from tonight – so here it is!

Pic 2


JAMES: We are both in agreement for our #MagicMic moment – it just has to go to Hardkiss and Helpless! What can we say? We were both just it awe the moment they stepped on the stage – that head dress alone gets 12 points from me! As a song, it was dark, tempestuous and a touch on the weird side… (remember hockey mask man?!) it’s everything you could want from a Eurovision entry!!

BOGDAN: We had many ladies on the stage tonight, but this one was definitely the queen amongst them – she even had the crown to prove it!

JAMES: Eurovision thrives on whacky costumes and gimmicks, and this definitely had both – we loved it!!

BOGDAN: OK, so while the voting is still going on, we’ll make our own predictions for tonight’s 3 qualifiers. What do you think James?

JAMES: Well, there’s been a real mix tonight in Ukraine, a lot of ballads, but all very different ones too. For me, Anastasia and Aida are dead certs to go to the final.

BOGDAN: I think the judges loved Jamala the most, so think she’ll be going to the final too

So, our final predictions (at 20:45 CET) are Anastasia, Jamala and Aida to qualify tonight.

JAMES: For the moment, the voting seems to be going on and the show is on a break… and the interval act is a Ukrainian soap opera… we’ll be back as soon as the results are in!

JAMES: And we’re back in Kiev for the results! Woooo!

BOGDAN: While they’re verifying the votes, we’re learning to fly thanks to Ivan, this year’s Belarusian contestant for Stockholm!


JAMES: Ruslana’s on her feet again


JAMES: Either the hosts are tiny, or Ivan is really tall!!!

BOGDAN: All the contestants are being called on stage… the results must be close!


JAMES: The Jury Results are in! Jamala is in the lead!! Now for the results from the public….

BOGDAN: We’re surprised Anastasia isn’t higher up the scoreboard

JAMES: Time for another ad break… oh, the suspense!!

JAMES: Back. And the hosts have the envelope with the results…


JAMES: We have our finalists! Jamala, The Hardkiss and Brunettes Shoot Blondes!

Are you happy with the results? Did your favourite make it?

Thanks for joining us tonight – hope you had as much fun as we did! From Kiev, good night Europe! And from myself and Bogdan, good night!

Authors: James Scanlan, Bogdan Stefan

Source : Eurovision Ireland

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