After a relatively quiet Saturday night, the Eurovision 2022 world is at the halfway point. 21 out of 40 songs have been revealed so far. Time for us at ESCXTRA.com to check the balance: Which songs do we have, when can we expect the others and where do we literally know nothing so far..? Today, semifinal 1!
Semifinal One – First half
🇦🇱 Albania: Ronela Hajati – Sekret
Traditionally, Festivali i Këngës is one of the first national finals of the season. This year was no different. Fan favourite Ronela Hajati took the victory with her Sekret. The 32-year old singer has been teasing the revamp of her song on social media. And once again, that is an Albanian tradition. Ronela will reveal the revamped version of Sekret, which will most likely include more English, this week on 4th March.
🇧🇬 Bulgaria: Intelligent Music Project – Intention
From being one of the last to being the first. Bulgaria’s broadcaster had a change of Eurovision team and a change of approach. 2007 and 2013 entrant Stoyan Yankulov is back once more with the Intelligent Music Project. Front singer of the group is Chilean rock artist Ronnie Romero. Their song Intention was written by Milen Vrabevski and was released in early December.
🇱🇻 Latvia: Citi Zēni – Eat Your Salad
Probably the most debate sparking lyric of the years can be found in Latvia’s entry. Citi Zēni deliver an anthem for a green lifestyle, sharing their… preferences. In Supernova, they managed to defeat Eurovision veteran Aminata with a difference of almost 20,000 votes. The band have written Eat Your Salad themselves.
🇱🇹 Lithuania: Monika Liu – Sentimentai
Pabandom iš naujo! 2022 was an event with one clear front runner: Monika Liu. The coach of Lithuania’s The Voice was without doubt the biggest star in their line-up this year. Sentimentai emerged victorious. The first fully Lithuanian entry since 1994 raked up over 23,000 televotes – compared to third placed Augustė Vedrickaitė’s 4000: a clear victory. With a new staging being planned, Monika Liu will head to Turin in May to fly the Lithuanian flag.
🇲🇩 Moldova: Zdob și Zdub and Frații Advahov – Trenulețul
Stepping away from O Melodie Pentru Europa and instead hosting live auditions with Eurovision veterans taking the crown, Moldova are doing Moldova things. After two years of Philipp Kirkorov and his new girlfriend Natalia Gordienko, it’s now time to bring back 2005 and 2011 entrants Zdob și Zdub with a song about a train journey from Bucharest to Chisinau…
🇳🇱 The Netherlands: S10 – TBA
The Netherlands, last year’s Eurovision host country, have not yet released their entry for 2022. S10 will be the singer of the first Dutch language entry since 2010. The artist announcement took place in early December, with the song being planned for the later stages of the season. Stien den Hollander, as her real name is, will début her entry for the Eurovision Song Contest 2022 on 3rd March.
🇸🇮 Slovenia: LPS – Disko
A shock winner in a national final doesn’t happen all too often. EMA however managed to stir one up this year with LPS. The band, whose name stands for Last Pizza Slice, will be performing Disko at the Eurovision Song Contest 2022, hoping to bring Slovenia back to the final. They have confirmed their song will remain in Slovenian for the contest.
🇨🇭 Switzerland: Internal selection
Switzerland is one of the more mysterious countries this year. We have no idea yet who the Swiss will be sending to the Eurovision Song Contest as a result of their internal selection procedure. Expectations however are high: Since changing their format in 2019, the Swiss have ended their streak of poor results and finished 3rd in 2019 and 4th in 2021. The Swiss will premiere their entry on 8th March.
🇺🇦 Ukraine: Kalush Orchestra – Stefania
Not Alina Pash, but Kalush Orchestra will represent Ukraine at the Eurovision Song Contest. After winning Vidbir, Alina Pash’s participation was suspended and she then withdrew. Kalush Orchestra were offered the chance to represent their country as runners-up of Vidbir. Their song Stefania was the overwhelming televote winner of the show. The thoughts of the country are of course nowhere near the Eurovision Song Contest at the moment, but there have been no rumours about a potential withdrawal.
Semifinal One – Second half
🇦🇲 Armenia: Internal selection?
Armenia may be the country where we know the least amount of information possible. Many names have been singing around for a while, but just two weeks ago, ARMTV confirmed they had not yet chosen their act. Due to the ongoing conflict in Armenia, the country did not take part in 2021. Therefore, some are claiming 2020 entrant Athena Manoukian may be a frontrunner to get her chance to shine at Eurovision after all. However, ARMTV have not yet confirmed a date for any release. It does however seem likely that national final format Depi Evratesil has been ditched.
🇦🇹 Austria: Lumix ft. Pia Maria – Halo
We have a name, we have a title – but we don’t have a song yet. World famous DJ Lumix, often styled as LUM!X, will represent his country at the Eurovision Song Contest 2022. The 19-year old has scored a few international hits with over a billion streams and will now be taking the Eurovision stage alongside Tyrolean newcomer Pia Maria. Their song is called Halo and will be released later this month.
🇭🇷 Croatia: Mia Dimšić – Guilty Pleasure
Croatia held Dora for the fourth consecutive time in Opatija and this time, a local star won the right to fly the Croatian flag at Eurovision. 29-year old Mia Dimšić convincingly won the jury and the televote and will therefore bring her Guilty Pleasure to Turin.
🇩🇰 Denmark: Dansk Melodi Grand Prix
On 5th March, this upcoming Saturday, Denmark will select their entry for the Eurovision Song Contest. After Fyr og Flamme‘s local success last year, five out of eight songs are now in Danish. Three entries will qualify for the superfinal, after which the winner of Dansk Melodi Grand Prix 2022 will be crowned. The Danes have not reached the top five of Eurovision since their last victory in 2013 with Emmelie de Forest. Can they turn their fortunes around?
🇬🇷 Greece: Amanda Tenfjord – TBA
(Former) Eurovision powerhouse Greece have once again opted for a diaspora artist. In 2020 and 2021, Greek-Dutch singer Stefania Liberakakis was the chosen one. Now, ERT have gone even further north after an open call for songs: Norway-based Amanda Tenfjord Georgiadis will represent the country in Turin. The songstress emerged victorious from a shortlist of five. No date has yet been set for the reveal of her entry, which is rumoured to be titled Die Together.
🇮🇸 Iceland: Söngvakeppnin 2022
After two years of Daði Freyr and his Gagnamagnið, who had to spend Eurovision 2021 in a hotel room after a positive COVID-19 test, RÚV have brought back Söngvakeppnin. A total of ten entries were chosen to take part in the competition. The first semifinal took place last weekend, with two acts making it through: Sigga, Beta & Elín and Stefán Óli. Next Saturday, the next five acts will take the stage to fight for two more final spots. A final wildcard may then still be awarded by a jury, to make a final of five.
🇳🇴 Norway: Subwoolfer – Give That Wolf A Banana
The title sounds surreal and so does everything about Norway’s entry for Eurovision 2022. Subwoolfer wear yellow masks and no one quite knows who they are. On social media, they present themselves as extraterrestial creatures: the best band in the galaxy. They managed to win Melodi Grand Prix after beating NorthKid in the Gold Final. Can Give That Wolf A Banana deliver Norway lots of televotes once more?
🇵🇹 Portugal: Festival da Canção 2022
Festival da Canção is of the two multi-show national finals that has not yet commenced this year, alongside Serbia’s Pesma za Evroviziju. Broadcaster RTP has selected twenty entries to compete in their national final: Some by invitation, some by winning an open call. The shows will take place on 5th, 7th and 12th March. With the scheduled end time, Portugal may be the last country to select their entry through a national final this year…
Semifinal One – Voting automatic finalists
🇫🇷 France: Eurovision France – C’est vous qui décidez
Twelve acts will compete for the right to represent last year’s Eurovision runner-up: France. For the second year in a row, their national final will be called Eurovision France – C’est vous qui décidez. Barbara Pravi brought France their first top two placing since Amina did so in 1991. Can France take the extra step and claim their first crown since 1977? France will select their entry on 5th March.
🇮🇹 Italy: Mahmood & Blanco – Brividi
Shivers galore when Mahmood made a sensational return to Festival di Sanremo this year. In Autumn 2021, Mahmood spoke of a potential guest performance at Eurovision 2022 and few expected him to actually represent Italy again. Alongside 19-year old Blanco, the song Brividi took the festival (and Spotify) by storm with a landslide victory. With a video recorded in last year’s host country the Netherlands, Mahmood and Blanco will now represent Italy on home soil. Can Mahmood improve on his 2019 performance and win the contest for Italy, giving them back-to-back crowns?
Tomorrow, we will bring you a look at the Eurovision Song Contest 2022, second semifinal, plus automatic qualifiers Spain, United Kingdom and Germany to see which entries we have so far!
Who are your favourites in the first semifinal of Eurovision 2022 so far? Let us know! Be sure to stay updated by following @ESCXTRA on Twitter, @escxtra on Instagram and liking our Facebook page for the latest updates! Also, be sure to follow us on Spotify and YouTube to see our reactions to the news in the run up to the 2022 national final season!