As from today, Ukraine has kicked off its preparations for its national final, in which 20 finalists will compete for the Baku ticket. The Ukrainian national broadcaster NTU has announced that the semi final will be held on January 20th whilst the national final will take place on February 10th. Details and information regarding the 2012 Eurovision national selection were announced today during a press conference.
19 candidates will be selected through the semifinal, whilst 1 candidate will be selected through the Inter Channel’s Show Number 1, bringing them to a total of 20 finalists. NTU, the Ukrainian national broadcaster is willing to put up an entertaining show, and first and foremost, select the best candidate for the 2012 Eurovision Song contest. Between the 15th January and the 20th January 2012, a special panel of judges will shortlist the 19 potential candidates. Ukraine hosted the Eurovision Song Contest in 2005, thanks to Ruslana’s ‘Wild Dances’ victory, just one year after its debut in the contest.
A very last minute invite by Real Radio Yorkshire, proved to be a magical moment for Sophie Debattista, the 17 year old Maltese teenager who is making huge success in the United Kingdom. On Sunday, 20th November, along with ex-Spice Girl Mel C and other artists, Sophie took part in the traditional “Christmas Lights Switch-on” concert in the city centre of Sheffield (UK). She performed three songs, including her new single “Love to Love You”, which song made it to the last 24 in Malta’s Eurosong final earlier this year.
“It was a very long way to come but I would not have missed it for the world. Everyone seemed to join-in and it was like a big party!” exclaimed a very excited Sophie after coming off stage. The song that she had submitted into the selection last year has been re-recorded and arranged in a different manner noting it's release on Thru The Mill Records. For more information regarding Sophie and her outstanding career, one may visit her official website. The singer opted against submitting a song to this years' Malta Eurovision Song Contest as she is currently working on her debut album set for release very soon.
Source: Press Release
The participants to perform the Latvian songs at the semifinals of Eirodziesma 2012, together with their running order were revealed today. Several artists that already tried their luck in the past are spotted in the list too.
"A couple of songs and performers were not initially approved, so the Artistic Council recommended to improve the quality of the song performances. We specified a period of time for it to be done, and the sound improved dramatically. We hope that the result of the semifinal live shows will be perfect", revealed today Aiars Dinsberg. Five acts will qualify from each semifinal, making 10 finalists in total. The final of Eirodziesma will take place on February 18th in Ventspils. The Latvian representative for Baku will be decided through a combination of jury voting and televoting. The following is the list of the performers, with song titles and running order for the two semifinals:
Semifinal 1: January 7th 2012
01. Atis Ievins - Dancer (Music and lyrics - Arturs Mangulis)
02. Nikolajs Puzikovs - Milestibas nevar but par daudz (Music - Arturs Palkevics, Lyrics - Guntars Racs)
03. Maia - No limits to dream (Music - Edgars Belickis, Edgars Jass, Raitis Auksmuksts, Lyrics - Maia)
04. Samanta Tina & Davids Kalandija - I want you back (Music - Martins Grunte, Lyrics - Oskars Maizitis)
05. Angelina & Alisa May - Rollin' up (Music - Jevgenijs Ustinskovs, Lyrics - Alisa May)
06. Laura Bicane & Romans Sladzis - Freakin' out (Music and lyrics - Laura Bicane)
07. Paula Dukure - Celebration (Music - Edijs Dukurs, Lyrics - Miks Dukurs)
08. Andris Abelite - We can change the world (Music and lyrics - Andris Abelite)
09. Ruta Duduma - My world (Music and lyrics - Ruta Duduma)
10. Group 'PeR' - Disco Superfly (Music - Ralfs Eilands, Edmunds Rasmanis, Lyrics - Ralfs Eilands)
Semifinal 2: January 14th 2012
01. Niks Dukurs & NBC - Sweet for me (Music - Miks Dukurs, Lyrics - Miks Dukurs, Georgijs Girbu)
02. Valters Gleske & Liba Ece - Better world (Music - Valters Gleske, Maris Orehovs, Lyrics - Valters Gleske)
03. Group 'The 4' - Get it started (Music - BuGaGa Project, Lyrics - Sandris Vestmanis)
04. Anmary - Beautiful song (Music - Ivars Makstnieks, Lyrics - Rolandins)
05. Paul Swan - Wanna be with you (Music - Kaspars Pudniks, Lyrics - Paul Swan)
06. Roberts Petersons - She's a queen (Music - Austris Rietums, Lyrics - Liga Markova)
07. Samanta Tina - For father (Music - Elmars Orols, Lyrics - Samanta Tina)
08. Elizabete Zagorska - You are a star (Music - Atis Auzans, Lyrics - Karlis Streips)
09. Group 'Mad Show Boys' - Music thief (Music and lyrics - Garijs Polskis)
10. Group 'Trianas Parks' - Stars are my family (Music - Aivars Rakovskis, Lyrics - Agnese Rakovska)
“We will choose the Hungarian song and its performer in a series of tv-shows", said Philip Rákay, Programme Director of MTV. MTVA, the Media Service Support and Asset Management Fund which is integrating the Hungarian public service media and Hungarian Television, jointly held a press conference confirming their participation at next year's Eurovision Song Contest and announced that the submission deadline for songs to compete in the national finals will be the 20th December 2011.
In today’s press conference, MTV presented the national selection plans for the upcoming 2012 Eurovision Song Contest. In two semi-finals, to be broadcast live on m1, four songs each will qualify for the national final by the joint decision of the TV viewers and a professional jury. The participants of the semi-finals will be chosen by a pre-jury out of all entries that have been submitted. Both Hungarian and foreign composers are asked to send in their suggested entries until December 20th, 2011. Next year, Hungary will mark their 12th participation in the Eurovision Song Contest.
The Monaguesque national broadcaster TMC does not intend to return to the Eurovision Song Contest, former head of delegation Phil Bosco told the media today; the reason being that TMC does not possess the financial resources to fund a Eurovision participation.
At the time being, TF1, a French broadcaster, owns 80% of TMC, while the rest lies in the Principality’s hands. In 2010, the Monegasque broadcaster was acquisited by TF1, but the Audiovisual Council put conditions to the agreement, and one of these was a clear separation between the two entities, which only enables TF1 to provide editorial support to TMC. Thus, financial assistance or sponsoring cannot be accepted in any case, leading to the lack of a sustainable budget to cover the costs of a Eurovision participation.
Monaco first participated in the Eurovision Song Contest in 1959. The country's first and only win in the contest came in 1971, when Séverine Ferrer. performed "Un banc, un arbre, une rue". In 1972 Monaco was expected to host the contest, but declined. It remains the only winning country never to have hosted it. The Principality withdrew in 1979 and didn’t return until 2004. Their last participation to date was back in the year 2006, with Séverine Ferrer once again, with the song, ‘La coco-dance’ in Athens, which placed in position number #21 in the semifinal with just 14 points.
Source: TMC, Eurovision-Info
We’re already in the 3rd day of December, the Christmas month, the month associated with shopping for presents, food, gatherings and celebrations. Nowadays, unfortunately, we tend to materialize way too much this festive season and put aside, or better, totally forget the true meaning of Christmas. The true meaning of Christmas is love, ‘For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believed in him, shall not perish but have eternal life. For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world through him.’ Thus, the true meaning of Christmas is the celebration of this incredible love. Out of gratitude for what God did for us, we remember His birth by giving each other gifts, worshipping Him and being especially conscious of the poor and less fortunate.
This wonderful meaning of Christmas is emphasized and described clearly in a great Maltese Christmas song released today. ‘Ħelu Bambin’ is described as ‘A ‘CHRISTmas song’, emphasizing, firstly, in keeping the word CHRIST in the word ‘Christmas’ and not shortening it to ‘Xmas’ and most important, to put the new-born Christ in the centre of these festivities. The lyrics of the song are wonderfully penned down by Fr. Geroge Ocar Buttigieg, whilst Andrew Zammit is the composer. Two renowned Maltese singers form the perfect duet for this song; They are none other than Chiara Siracusa, with her angelic voice and Ludwig Galea, with his operatic-kind of voice.
Their voices have given a wonderful texture to the song, which voices have blended perfectly with the lyrics and the music. A music video was also produced to accompany this song, in which we find scenes from ‘Betlehem f’Għajnsielem’, an enormous live crib put up in Gozo annually to celebrate the birth of Christ. The song was recorded in Andrew Zammit’s recording studio, Tone Studio. The video is produced by Angie Laus and Charles Ahar from ‘Where’s Everybody?’ As described by Fr.George Ocar Buttigieg, it is “a song message to the world today that knows of winter holidays specials only, when this year's season's time is really all about Christmas, the Birth of Jesus Christ the Lord!”
With this wonderful message through this Maltese song, we would like to wish you, dear readers, Season’s Greetings!
Francesco Renga, Marco Mengoni and Annalisa Scarrone among the big names. This, at least according to initial rumors. With just 71 days left for to the next Festival of Italian Song, the first rumours about Italy’s biggest show can now be confirmed. Gianni Morandi has already been confirmed as head of Italy's most famous singing event (after the refusal of Carlo Conti, Antonella Clerici and Federica Pellegrini) but the rest of the cast is still being decided.
Among the big names who should certainly participate include Nina Zilli, Francesco Renga (won Sanremo in 2005 with ‘Angelo’) , Marco Mengoni (started off from X Factor and placed 2nd in Sanremo 2010), Samuele Bersani, Nek, Naomi (participated with Marco Mengoni in X Factor) and Annalisa Scarrone, launched by Amici in 2010. Also from X Factor, Morgan, one of the judges of the reality show may surprisingly participate in this year’s edition after failing a doping test last year, and was eliminated from the competition.
In this year’s edition, more space will be given to upcoming artists from various talent shows and TV programmes, since in recent years, they seem to have become quite favourite with the Italians. Gianni Morandi, meanwhile, along with the artistic director of the Sanremo Festival, Gianmarco Mazzi, is listening to the various singers candidates for the singing competition, which is held from 14th to 18th February 2012 from the usual the big stage at the Teatro Ariston. It has also been noted that Italy should be returning to the Eurovision Song Contest with this competition serving as the platform through which the entrant is chosen. This is to be confirmed by RAI and the EBU in the coming days.
Big names who surely won’t be present in this year’s edition include Edward Jackson, who refused the invitation, whilst Samuel Bersani may be back after 12 years. As for ‘le vallette’ (the models), the rumors of a meeting in London between Morandi and the beautiful Tamara Ecclestone, daughter of the famous Bernie, the man behind Formula Uno may be included among the five (5) chosen to alternate next to the presenter during the evenings. International guests should arrive on the third night, and their performance, according to unofficial rumours, should also include an Italian folk song.
Source: lanostratv.it, diredonna.it, TV Sorrisi magazine
For the second time this year, following the huge success of last May’s first ‘battle’, brothers Richard Edwards and Wayne Micallef, have decided to move to the ‘second round’ of their battle; this time, bigger and better than the previous. It will be held at the City Theatre in Valletta on Halloween Saturday, that is, the 29th October. The Micallef brothers will be battling once again in aid of Puttinu Cares with Beatles and Pink Floyd songs, which the two ‘Mics’ have a particular taste for. The main idea behind this ‘battle’ is to expose more the musical talent in Malta, and at the same time, making it a charity event.
Richard Edwards made a triumphant entry in this year’s Maltese musical scene, following the 2nd placing in last February’s ‘Malta Eurovision Song Contest’ with a beautiful, country-ballad, “”. In fact, Richard Edwards’ fans are now eagerly waiting for the launch of his album, for which, he teamed up with producer/songwriter Jan Van Dijck. Surely, this collaboration and teamwork proved to be an overwhelming success with “Finally”, which surely was, is and will continue to be greatly appreciated here in Malta, but also, in other European countries.
On the other hand, Wayne Micallef was also ‘battling’ with Richard during this year’s contest, with a song written and composed by himself, under the running title “”, which, although didn't make it to the first three placings, it sticked to its name sake and made everyone sing. Wayne has a very particular style in composing and writing which personally, I think is influencing, the Maltese music style in a positive way, giving it a new modern twist.
Both brothers are still involved very much in the family band “The Mics”, which includes also their sister, Michelle Mifsud. The band, which was founded by the sibling’s father, was the start of the musical journey of both brothers, and, although both Wayne and Richard have now gone separate ways, they still find time to dedicate to family band gigs, activities, invitations etc. Tickets for the “Battle of the Brothers: can be bought online from www.biljetti.com or from a number of retail outlets which could be seen through the official event page on Facebook along with all of the companies sponsoring this particular event. We hope to see you there on the 29th October 2011
“Min Imissu?, Malta’s first ever satirical TV show aired prime time on Television Malta, has already gained success after just 2 programmes. “Min Imissu?” comes from the producers of popular TV Series Deceduti and L-Evangelisti. It’s a unique comedy show where a variety of elements and characters are all blended together and juiced up with a solid dose of actuality, satire and good natured humour in a cabaret style show. In each programme, we meet a particular guest, who meets up all the different characters and who surely must be ready for any type of comment! Next Sunday’s guest will be one of Malta’s most popular female pop rock and rock singers; Claudia Faniello.
She grabbed she captured the attention of many when she entered in ‘Hotspot’, a TV show aimed at promoting new talents in 2005. The following year, she participated in the ‘Maltasong for Europe’ for the very first time where she won the ‘Best New Comer’ award. In the same year she won a prestigious festival in Malta (Konkors Kanzunetta Indipendenza) with her song ‘Ma Nafx’ . She won her place in the national selection for Eurovision in 2007 & 2008, where on the same night she was awarded 2nd & 3rd placings respectively with her famous songs ‘Caravaggio’ & ‘ Sunrise’ . Subsequently, Claudia also launched her first video clip for the song ‘Wild flower’. She had then started showing more publicly her passion to rock orientated music. Following that, she never kept back from the national selection fro Eurovision, and yet again gave her participation in the national finals in 2009, 2010 & 2011.
Singer/Songwriter Clinton Paul recently published his very first album under the title 'I Know Who I am Now'. It is important to write that the individual first started to writer songs for other artists including the 2006 Malta Song for Europe entry 'It Just Comes Natural' by Josef & Amanda which made it through the Opportunity 2 Challenge.
The CD Album, released on the 19th December 2011, features 14 original tracks, written and composed by Clinton Paul himself. In this autobiographical album, the popular singer-songwriter expresses the gratitude in finding his new “himself”, with this album being the triumph of his, so called, “new life” and which songs are all evidence of Clinton Paul’s new style of music (Electro-Pop), but also, giving highly importance to the lyrics themselves. The album was recorded in Malta at Freetime Productions and was mastered in London by the company TubeMastering. As part of the CD Album launch, Clinton Paul has also released a new single named “Fake”, which is also on the debut album.
Source: Official Website