Good Evening and welcome to the first live coverage of the Malta Junior Eurosong competition which this year is taking place within the auditorium of the St.Agatha, Secondary School found within the limits of Rabat. We are currently seated with an influx of people walking in and finding their seats which were given to the people free of charge. In fact the tickets do not have any seating information on them and therefore, seats are on a first come first serve basis. This evenings’ showcase is promising to be an extremely strong one as you might have noticed from our coverage of the dress rehearsals.
The Show (Part 1)
Alas, off we go, we are greeted on stage by this year’s hosts who are none other than former Junior Eurovision Song Contest representative Daniel Testa who had reached fourth place for Malta back in the event held in Limassol, Cyprus in 2008 as well as former spokesperson, presenter and Junior Eurosong participant Francesca Zarb who fronts the program “Iz-Zona” on the Public Broadcasting Services’ Channel. Both are dressed quite casually yet their selection of attire will become more formal as the night wears out as you can see above. Tele-voting is open as of NOW. In the meantime, they get ready to present the first five entries for the evening which are …
01. Sailor Girl – Melissa Fausel-Attard
The first act to take to the stage is none other than a young girl in a female suit who is joined by a number of backing dancers/vocalists. The tune starts off with a nice whistle which develops in the first notes as such by the the singer. The song is very cheery and one that will surely get the crowd going. This is quickly proven as the people are suddenly along. The vocals are good but they much better during the rehearsals. In the long run, a good entry to get proceedings going this evening.
02. My Star – Jasmar Cassar
The first and only male solo performer of the evening takes to the stage clad in a silver suit. The back screens are showing a lot of shimmering lights in the form of stars in the universe. He is joined on stage by a pianist and a ballerina. This is the typical modern ballad that many people are accustomed to in the Junior Eurovision Song Contest. The vocals are actually spot on in my opinion and he is hitting all of the notes in the right places. The way that this is being shown on screen is quite impressive and it is certainly getting the attention of most of the people.
03. Crazy Seasons – Althea Georgiovan
An older singer takes to the stage of the Malta Junior Eurosong for the very first time. She takes to the stage all alone in a very colourful dress featuring purple, green and pink. Her only accompaniment is none other than a violin which works quite well with the modern pop background being used within the musical arrangement. Another very good tune in my opinion and clearly sounds like something from the musical “The Sound of Music” with Althea being a younger form of Julie Andrews. Sometimes, the artist faces some diction trouble but nothing serious. It might not tick all the boxes but this is quite impressive.
04. Play for me – Michela Galea
The second ballad and last ballad of the evening comes in the form of “Play for me” which is performed by a older type of girl clad in a white dress. She is accompanied on stage by a pianist and this is showing that instruments during the festival are being used more and more with more talent being submitted each year. The slow ballad has a lot of modern touches to it and one should be overly impressed with the magnificent vocals being emitted by the singer. Clearly, a star in the making. The lighting along with the back screens are working very well on the screen and the overall outcome is dreamy. In my opinion and as history has it though, we have to opt not sending a ballad yet again because normally they do not do well.
05. Maestro – Elaine Haber
A huge round of applause from the song which has been a growing favourite with the people present in the hall during the week. The young singer clad in a red, black and white dress takes to the stage along with two violinists. The music is clearly something like an aria within a concert where an orchestra would be playing live. The level of the sound in the hall might be sounding a bit low at the moment but despite the diction which is a bit tedious, she is doing a brilliant job reaching the notes well. She looks cute and sounds good so we might have our first contender this evening.
06. Kitty-Kitty-Cat – Sarah Bonnici
The next performance comes in the form of “Kitty-Kitty-Cat” in which the singer is dressed in a purple top with a cat on her whilst also having paw prints on the design. She is joined by two dancers who are dressed like her as well. The cat tail is clearly the main prop though here. The song is a clearly a modern inspiration from clubs with techno becoming more and more popular amongst our younger talent. The vocals are quite good this evening and the best of the week. The choreography is basic and simple yet looking very strong on the monitors. This has been one of the most talked about entries this year. Can she meow her way to the win? We’ll See.
07. Shout it Out – Ylenia Vella
Well let’s see what Ylenia has in store for us this evening. The Thea Saliba lookalike returns to the stage of the Malta Junior Eurosong following a runner-up finish last year and her entry this year is quite different actually kicking off as a ballad before turning into a pop song. The styles intertwined together are like something that the group “The Saturdays” would come up with. The vocals are spot on this evening and this is clearly an amazing entry although I am almost sure that she will be underrated for some reason or other. A very good performance in general and a future star in the Malta Eurosong competition. Another rising star.
08. Jigsaw Puzzle – Domenique
The Malta Junior Eurosong will be missing Domenique next year and onwards as this is the last year in which she can compete. Despite all this though, she has managed to take up the young look quite well. The performance is mainly based on a jigsaw puzzle which one could see on the floor. The singer and her backing dancers are dressed in red jumpsuits with a piece of European Puzzle attached the song. This song sees the fusion of pop and techno yet again but works quite well. The screens being used represent the Universe when noting that several countries are being represented on the flags within the puzzle. Another good performance and a contender for victory.
09. Hooked on Samba – Jade Marie Vella
Huge applause from the audience with several people within the crowd being fans apparently. Clad in an orange leopard dress with flashes of black and pink. The daughter of the singer J.Anvil takes to the stage. The voice is spot on this evening yet what is really impressive is the exhilarating choreography which is being used. Mid-way through the song, Jade is joined on stage by five dancers who continue to use a very complex dance routine. The song is based on the singer who had met a brazilian boy who despite being quite handsome could not speak to her as he did not speak English and she did not speak Brazilian. Cute, fun and polished though in my opinion not a contender for victory though who knows?.
10. Wonderland of dreams – Mikaela Agius
Oohh..a singer who comes out of a book. The little girl is clad in a red princess like dress which compliments the background and the rest of the staging very well. The song is slow type of pop song which develops very well within the refrain. The vocals are quite good this evening although the diction is really suffering and I am barely understanding anything she says but she does look cute up there. This is pleasant but nothing special and in a very good year like this, I just cannot see such a song running to victory either. Still Good Luck to all of the participants this evening.
11. Its time – Antoine Farrugia / Kylie Cassar
The first and one of two duets this evening. The female artist is clad in a plaid black dress with splashes of pink red and yellow whilst the male artist is wearing a green top with some reddish lines and plaid trousers. The vocals are quite strong especially from the female counterpart but the male compliments quite well. The prop featuring stars is a very interesting addition yet has no apparent meaning within the song. The way that this is looking on screen is quite good. It’s just a simple pop rock song which could have also been submitted in the older version of the festival. Another good try but nothing extremely special.
12. Lady Lady Ga Ga – Maxine Pace
One of the performers who returns from the 2009 Junior Eurosong selection is Maxine Pace who had sung about a toy soldier. This year she is joined on stage by none other than four dancers clad in astronaut like outfits. In the meantime, she is wearing a blue dress with a very weird sort of frill adding a touch of Lady Gaga to the sound in the form of a small hat. The song is clearly inspired by the US/Italian singers’ hits “Just Dance” and “Bad Romance” yet Maxine is a showgirl and she sings and performs the song well. This could surprise this evening and end up as the winner. It is coming across quite well and the singer is really cute.
13. One Flag – Maria Debono
Pop/Rock returns to the stage of the Malta Junior Eurosong competition. Clad in a green dress, the singer is joined by another give people on stage, one on the guitar, two as backing dancers and another two on backing vocalists. Despite the problems that the artist had to encounter throughout the week, she is giving a very good performance this evening oozing charm and charisma throughout. The vocals are strong and the performance is well worked out with the way that things are appearing on screen. Despite ticking a lot of boxes, I think that the singer is a bit too old for the festival and therefore might miss her chance.
14. Knock Knock!….Bum! Bum! – Nicole Azzopardi
Despite being one of the favourites due to obvious reasons, the diction has been a bit of a problem. It kicks off as a ballad but with the word “Suddenly”, it quickly turns into a Latino flavoured song. The singer clad in a very colourful dress is joined on stage by four dancers who are dressed quite similarly. The music stays within the same genre mid-way through the song but what is really impressive a lyric within the Maltese language which is rarely seen in the Junior Eurosong. One vivid memory of such a song which did well yet did not win was “Eviva L-Muzika” sung by local star Dario Bezzina. The vocals are good this evening and she is definitely charming. Can she end up as the winner this evening? Well the hat is in the ring.
15. Fantazija – Jodie Farrugia
Shake, Shake, Shake … that is the impression one gets as the music commences. The singer is dressed in a yellowish/pink dress whilst the backing accompaniments are also dressed within the same colour. The singer is really sweet and cute and ticks all of the boxes of a possible Junior Eurovision Song Contest participant. The vocals are strong and the diction is really good this evening. She managed to hold onto her breath quite well despite her nice and simple choreography. The judges are going to have a very difficult time in order to decide who should end up as the winner this evening yet we hope that you are managing to cope with this evening cheer.
16. Love to share – Maria Christina Desira / Justine Delmar
The girl group that impressed me during last nights’ rehearsal returns for some more action this evening. Clad in red, white and black polka dot dresses. They are joined by three backing singers and dancers. This is a really catchy song and I just cannot help singing and dancing along to it. Despite it not making an amazing first impression on me, I am just hooked now and I extremely hope that a good result is what will be reaching these two girls who ooze charm and charisma. The vocals are just brilliant and this is a good contender for victory. They look fun, cute and professional in their performance.
17. Indian Girl – Kimberly Micallef
Just by any chance you did not hear the applause, it was just huge and suddenly the crown is off to Native America with the Indians. The costumes should be awarded the best wardrobe change of the year actually as they are just amazing. The main singer is joined by four backing dancers and vocalists along with a bongo player. The lyrics are kept extremely light and simple actually. A very good performance yet in my opinion, this is not a song that can truly impress the judges alas a very good effort and another very good entry in this years’ national selection which has been open to all kinds of styles and genres.
18. So Sweet – Courtney Farrugia
Well, three little ladies take to the stage on school desks whilst wearing red and black with some plaid designs. The main background being used looks like a logo takes from the company windows. The young singer has an extremely thin voice which does not sound really good when singing the title of the song. I heard quite an interesting comment about her voice but in my opinion, all singers should be treated fairly whatever their talent. The song is quite nice yet definitely not one that will be challenging for the victory this evening. It is cute, maybe a bit too much at times but nothing extraordinary.
19. Happy Day – M Five
How Cute!! It’s like a fairytale is starting in the beginning yet techno returns once more with the three girls in the group sporting a pink shirt and blue skirts whilst the boy is sporting a blue top and pink trousers. Now, during the rehearsals, I could barely get their diction at times but today, they are just amazing and really impressive. The vocals are strong and complimenting each other quite well. The choreography is really energetic and yet they managed to keep their voices in tune. Truly a professional bunch. The lighting game is used at one point and this is really looking great on screen. In my opinion, this is the fourth/fifth potential winner of the evening!
20. Let the Colours Shine – Nicole Marie Vella
Whoever can doubt that this is the daughter of former Junior Eurovision Song Contest representative Debbie Scerri is quite abysmal. She has taken off her looks actually but still. She takes to the stage alone actually with a song that should have had some choreography go along with it. The screens being used are really colourful and impressive whilst the vocals from the artist have yet again improved. In my opinion, she gotten better each time. This evening she is really blowing everyone away. She does have the cute factor actually yet can she be the first daughter of a former artist at the senior event to reach the junior event? We will see within the next 45 minutes. That is all from this evenings’ entries though.
The Show (Part 2)
The hosts are now back on stage clad in their second outfits of the evening with Francesca donning a blue evening gown with Daniel dressed in a rugged way. Before we head off to the recap, the names of the Jury are announced quite quickly. We have managed to note Francesca Aquilina, Joe Gatt, Jackie Pace Delicata who was a backing vocalists with Thea Garrett, Fr.Karm Debattista and Marushka Muscat although another person was mentioned. You are the seventh juror people so grab those voice and phone.
The atmosphere in the green-room is quite impressive actually as many people are just jumping around with joy whilst hearing their entries. The kids are really getting into the mood quite strongly and there is no apparent tension at the moment.
Following a duet between Francesca Zarb and Daniel Testa in which they perform a bit of his former entry “Junior Swing” as “Junior Eurosong”, Daniel takes to the stage alone in order to sing his latest single which is entitled “Crush” composed by Dominic Cini and written by Claudia Faniello. This show is really becoming an entertaining one indeed and therefore it will be one to keep on viewing in the coming minutes. Another recap is now on though only 10 seconds of each song this time round. If the crowd were the ones to go by the loudest applause are for Elaine Haber, Ylenia Vella , Nicole Azzopardi, Maxine Pace and Jade Vella although Elaine’s is the loudest!
Following the end of the clip, the tele-voting closes and the viewers are entertained with a clip edited by the Public Broadcasting Services in which last years’ participants are heavily featured. People are given a glimpse of their experience and also some interesting facts about Ukraine and it’s capital city Kiev. Then they end up performing the song “Double Trouble” and a new single entitled “Count Me In”. Following this though, another break before the big result is announced. The participants are all on the stage in order to see what are the results. The crowd is going bonkers at the moment. Joe Mizzi, Francesca & Mikaela are called onto the stage yet again.
3rd Place: Shout It Out – Ylenia Vella
2nd Place: Love to Share – Maria & Justine
1st Place: Knock Know … Bum Bum – Nicole Azzopardi