It’s Thursday again, which means it’s time to look back at a Eurovision classic. This week it’s Belarus’s time to shine and therefore it is the perfect opportunity to look back at their 2011 entry – “I Love Belarus”!
Europe didn’t Love Belarus…
Anastasia Vinnikova represented her country in 2011 with the upbeat song “I Love Belarus”. Unfortunately, she only came 14th in her semi-final, thus failing to qualify. Despite the poor result, ‘I Love Belarus’ has not be forgotten and is regarded as Belarus’s most memorable entry by many Eurofans. Personally, I love it. Her vocals may not have been the strongest but the performance was awesome and I really loved the national instruments that were used. I think Belarus deserved a place in the final, but sadly, the rest of Europe didn’t. Enjoy the song below:
Belorussian drama: Born in Belorussia
Anastasia Vinnikova was initially chosen to represent her country in Düsseldorf with the interestingly titled “Born in Belorussia”. Although soon after the song was released, the lyrics were changed, as it included references to the Soviet Union period. As we are all aware, political lyrics of any kind violates the EBU’s rules. Then a couple of weeks later, it was announced that “Born in Belorussia” would be disqualified, as the song was performed the previous year. This was not the first nor last time Belarus changed their song from their original choice. Let’s remind ourselves of this gem below!
What the others had to say…
I do not have a clear memory of this song being performed, to be honest. There is however a possibility that I never watched that semi-final. But I agree with Jack; this one of my biggest connection to Belarus at this contest, so the song has lived on in the Euroverse. However, my favorite Belarusian entry is Naviband. As for “I Love Belarus”, I kind of put in a category with songs like Iceland and Latvia in 2006: songs stating “I am the best” or in this case “My country is the best”. I have a soft spots for these kind of songs because they have this hint of humor. In addition, Anastasia performs the song well. Maybe she deserved a spot a the final.
I had the pleasure to watch this incredible performance live in Düsseldorf in 2011. Her performance was amazing and I really love thinking back about this entry. “I Love Belarus” is definitely ageing very well and is a bop you need to play at every Eurovision party. She should’ve made it to the final. More is more and I like how they threw everything into this. From catchy tunes to big fireworks during the performance. Maybe one of the best Belarussian entries ever. Love it!
I love Belarus, as it’s one of my homelands. What about this song? I can’t say I love it, but I remember it as a fun song that definitely caught peoples’ attention. The song is really simple, but the music is nice thanks to the national notes in it. I hope that after listening to this song many people would go to google maps and check where Belarus is situated. Believe me, you would be surprised that the majority does not know that this is an independent european country. All in all, I don’t think that this song deserved its spot in the final, but I truly think that it is one of the most memorable songs from Belarus at ESC after Naviband’s “Story of my life”.
I remember the chorus of course. The Swedish Eurovision bloggers used to describe it as a “dictatorship schlager”, which made me chuckle at the time. I do think Anastasia’s vocals weren’t the best, but she compensated with great energy and charisma. It’s a bit of a guilty pleasure of 2011 for me, but in the “dictatorship schlager” category, I prefer Belarus’ entry in Junior Eurovision in 2008, “Serdtse Belarusi” instead, I think it’s way catchier.
Do you think “I Love Belarus” deserved better? Let us your opinion in the comments below and on social media @ESCXTRA