Paris 2021🇳🇱 Netherlands

Paris Day 1 Review: The Netherlands’ Ayana dedicates her performance to her Japanese roots

It is time to head to La Seine Musicale in Paris for day 1 of rehearsals ahead of the Junior Eurovision Song Contest 2021! The countries rehearsing today, in chronological order, are Portugal, Ireland, Malta, The Netherlands, Germany, Italy, Georgia, Spain and Poland.

Read our handy guide for a more detailed look at this contest’s rehearsal schedule.

Also, don’t forget to support your favourite Junior Eurovision entries in our XTRA VOTE competition by voting here NOW!

Rehearsal review

Rehearsing today for The Netherlands inside La Seine Musicale is Ayana, performing “Mata Sugu Aō Ne”. As the first rehearsals are closed to the press, this review is based upon content made public by the EBU and France Télévisions.

For the first time during rehearsals today we see some dancers joining our lead performer(s) on stage. Ayana is joined by two female dancers who are performing the traditional Japanese dance “kamigata mai” which translates as “fan dancing”.

Ayana’s entire performance is inspired by her Japanese roots from her orange and gold costume to the famous Japanese pink blossom covering her LED backdrop. For a ballad, this is a very colourful and mesmerising presentation. We also see photos of her family attached to the LED pink blossom tree behind Ayana.

The Netherlands also make use of shadows as Ayana’s “kamigata mai” dancers appear as silhouettes behind Ayana during the first half of the song before the prop is wheeled away towards the climax. The use of Japanese imagery is undoubtedly very close to Ayana’s heart as her song describes how she has been unable to visit her relatives in Japan as a result of the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.

Rehearsal video clip

Stay tuned for our reviews for the rest of today’s rehearsals from La Seine Musicale. If you want to know what to expect for the rest of the day, check out our rehearsal schedule.

A fan of the adult contest too? Remember that you can also play ESCXTRA’s Eurovision Prediction 2022 on our brand new platform now at!

Ryan Cobb

My first memory of watching the Eurovision Song Contest was back in 2001 and, over the years, my passion and enthusiasm for the contest has very much turned into an obsession. I adore music and I love geography, so this contest is a natural fit for me. If la la loving Eurovision was a crime, I'd certainly be a criminal!

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