Kyiv 2017

For all the news about the 2017 Eurovision Song Contest taking place in the Ukrainian capital city of Kyiv.

UA:PBC to appeal EBU fine while Russia receives reprimand “as rule-breaks were provoked”

UA:PBC to appeal EBU fine while Russia receives reprimand “as rule-breaks were provoked”

This morning, we received breaking news that the EBU had given UA:PBC a “large fine”. UA:PBC, Ukraine’s national broadcaster, hosted the controversial 2017 Eurovision Song Contest at Kyiv’s International Exhibition Center last month. Nevertheless, it has now been revealed that UA:PBC is to appeal their fine. Furthermore, it has announced that the Russian broadcaster has received a reprimand for their actions. UA:PBC to appeal: “The travel ban wasn’t the broadcaster’s decision” The Director General at UA:PBC, Zurab Alasania, has spoken out this afternoon. He has confirmed that the fine the EBU has placed upon the broadcaster totals €200,000. Regarding the decision to appeal, Alasania explains that it wasn’t the broadcaster’s decision to ban Samoylova so should not be made responsible. He made the following statement to Reuters: “Formally, it wasn’t us who made the decision not to allow her (Russian singer Yulia Samoylova), but I don’t think that the SBU (State Security Service) or the government will want to take part in this.” Channel One reprimanded as “rule-breaks were provoked” It’s not just UA:PBC who is in hot water. TASS.ru has revealed that Channel One Russia received a reprimand from the EBU. This is due to their failure to attend the heads of …
UA:PBC fined after Russian Eurovision participation controversy

UA:PBC fined after Russian Eurovision participation controversy

2 months ago, we reported that the Chairman of the Eurovision Reference Group, Frank-Dieter Freiling, had suggested that the Russian and Ukrainian broadcasters were likely to face sanctions from the EBU. This was after the Russian participant was controversially banned from entering Ukraine for three years. Moments ago, the European Broadcasting Union have made good on at least part of that statement; the Ukrainian broadcaster will receive a large fine. The fine comes after there were severe delays in the organisation of the song contest in May, and a lack of co-operation with the EBU on the Russian participation. An EBU spokesperson said: “As a result of this, UA:PBC drew attention away from the competition and endangered the brand reputation of the Eurovision Song Contest.“ “Therefore the contest’s steering committee has recommended that UA:PBC should receive a substantial fine, in line with the rules of the competition.“ The EBU are yet to tell us how big this fine will be. All that is known is that it will be “large”. This year’s Russian participation controversy The Russian broadcaster, Channel One, announced on 12 March that Russia would be represented by Yulia Samoylova. However, only 10 days later, the Security Service …
San Marino’s Valentina Monetta & Jimmie Wilson confirm details for ‘Motown Party’ concert!

San Marino’s Valentina Monetta & Jimmie Wilson confirm details for ‘Motown Party’ concert!

Last month, Valentina Monetta and Jimmie Wilson took to the Kyiv stage to represent San Marino with their disco track Spirit of the Night. At the time, the duo had already announced plans for a live concert in San Marino on July 20th. Nevertheless, the duo has now announced the full details surrounding their ‘Motown Party’ concert! Get ready to get your groove on! Yesterday, Valentina created an event on her Facebook page outlining all the details you need. The concert will take place at 9pm local time on July 20th in San Marino’s Piazza della Libertà. The live ‘Motown Party’ will treat the watching audience to several great hits produced by the famous record company, “from Marvin Gaye to Jackson Five from Lionel Richie to Diana Ross and many other artists”! Europe’s best musicians will be on stage The event, in collaboration with the Tourist Office, RTV San Marino and the Fun4all Association will feature some of Europe’s best musicians who will play alongside the Eurovision favourites. Simone Migani will play piano and keyboard, Filippo Tirincanti will be on guitar duties, Marcello Sutera will be on electric bass and Massimiliano Castri will play the drums. In addition, Stefano Serafini and Antonangelo Giudice will complete the …
Review: Eurovision Song Contest Kyiv 2017 Blu-ray

Review: Eurovision Song Contest Kyiv 2017 Blu-ray

This is the second ever Blu-ray release of the Eurovision Song Contest, with the only other being of 2011’s contest in Düsseldorf.  The package comes with three Blu-ray discs: two containing the first and second semi finals in full alongside bonus content and disc three containing the grand final in full. As well of course being a way to watch the contest over and over again, one major advantage of these releases is it is presented in it’s original form – there is no commentary, interviews or VTs from host broadcasters and no phone numbers on screen. Features For each final you have the option to view it in full or select from each of the artists. There is also an ‘Information Track On/Off’ option giving you biographies of each artist during the postcards. Thankfully this comes as just subtitle text at the bottom of the screen, so doesn’t distract like the TV commentary. As well as chapters for each song, you can skip to each of the presenters’ introductions or say the jury points to the televoting points. The only thing missing I would of liked to see was a popup menu. This is something Blu-rays can do which …
LISTEN: Nathan Trent releases Italian version of ‘Running On Air’!

LISTEN: Nathan Trent releases Italian version of ‘Running On Air’!

Today, Nathan Trent releases his eagerly anticipated new single, an Italian language version of Running On Air. The new version, titled Fino A Che Volerò, is available to stream via several digital platforms including YouTube and Spotify. Last month, Nathan represented Austria with the English language original and finished in a very respectable 16th place. This brought Austria’s run of consecutive qualifications to 4! Furthermore, Nathan’s infectious personality and enthusiasm will have made him a fan favourite within the Eurovision community for years to come!
WATCH: Kristian Kostov hits the floor in remix music video for ‘Beautiful Mess’

WATCH: Kristian Kostov hits the floor in remix music video for ‘Beautiful Mess’

Just a couple of hours ago, Kristian Kostov released the official music video for Beautiful Mess (Hit The Floor RMX)! The remix gives the song a more uptempo feel. Meanwhile, the music video features some additional camera shots not seen in the video of the original version. Last month, Kristian Kostov represented Bulgaria in the 2017 Eurovision Song Contest. He finished in 2nd place with Beautiful Mess, becoming Bulgaria’s most successful entry of all-time. In addition, his score of 615 points is the second-highest total in Eurovision history.  
JOWST: We didn’t use “pre-recorded backing vocals”, we used “digital instruments”

JOWST: We didn’t use “pre-recorded backing vocals”, we used “digital instruments”

Throughout the build-up to the 2017 Eurovision Song Contest, one issue was constantly discussed amongst the Eurovision community. This issue was how Norway’s JOWST would replicate their so-called “pre-recorded backing vocals” live. As it turned out, the EBU allowed the Norwegian delegation to have these sounds on the backing track for their live performance. Last night, JOWST called for this rule change to be made permanent. “It is a song competition, not a singing competition” In a lengthy and insightful Facebook post posted overnight, JOWST answered many of the questions that surrounded his and Aleksander’s use of “vocal samples” in their song both in its studio version and during their live performance in Kyiv. “I am very happy that we got to change the rule [regarding “pre-recorded vocals”] for this year, and hopefully it will stay that way for as long as it is a song competition, and not a singing/vocal competition” Vocal samples are the sound of modern music The Norwegian producer went on to talk about the song’s Spotify success. Indeed, Grab The Moment is the fourth most streamed Eurovision song following the final taking place. JOWST believes this is due to Grab The Moment being one of the more …
Happy Birthday, Blanche!

Happy Birthday, Blanche!

On this wonderful summer evening all of us here at escXtra.com send our warmest congratulations to one of our all time favorite stream interviewees, Blanche, on her 18th birthday!  Blanche represented Belgium in this year’s Eurovision, with the contemporary and radio friendly song “City Lights”. She finished in an ever so deserved 4th place. During the two weeks we spent in Kyiv, Blanche, and her family, became Xtra family. She came over to chat with us and “the children” many times, and we all enjoyed it immensely. We hope she has had a wonderful 18th birthday!
Sing it! Romania’s Ilinca uploads piano cover of UK entry ‘Never Give Up On You’

Sing it! Romania’s Ilinca uploads piano cover of UK entry ‘Never Give Up On You’

The 2017 Eurovision Song Contest may be over but that doesn’t stop the artists showing their appreciation towards each other. Today, Romania’s Ilinca uploaded a cover of Never Give Up On You which, performed by Lucie Jones, represented the United Kingdom in Kyiv. Ilinca delivers on her promise Following Ilinca’s victory alongside Alex Florea at Selecţia Naţională in March, the Romanian yodel star hosted several webchats with fans. In one of them, she explained that she had recorded a cover of Never Give Up On You around the time of its victory at Eurovision: You Decide. Ilinca has now found the footage and uploaded it onto her Facebook page as promised! Give it a watch below: The beginning of an unexpected Eurovision journey At the time of recording, little did Ilinca know she would go on to represent Romania at the very same contest. Indeed, Yodel It! went on to finish in 7th place at the 2017 contest. This is Romania’s 4th best result in their Eurovision history! In addition, Never Give Up On You also finished in a very respectable 15th place marking the United Kingdom’s 4th best result since the turn of the millennium. It seems talent and quality certainly find other talent and …
Head of Reference Group speaks out on sanctions, organisational issues, political rivalries and more

Head of Reference Group speaks out on sanctions, organisational issues, political rivalries and more

Today, Eurovision.de published an interview with Frank-Dieter Freiling who is the chairman of the Eurovision Song Contest Reference Group. In the interview, Freiling speaks openly about several key issues following last month’s contest in Kyiv. In addition, he looks ahead to what changes will be made ahead of the contest travelling to Portugal this time next year. The issues discussed are the following: Sanctions towards Ukraine and Russia following the selection of and subsequent travel ban for Julia Samoylova. How this situation compares to similar rule-breaks by Armenia, Azerbaijan and Spain in the past. Organisational issues ahead of the contest and the show Kyiv put on for its European audience. What would happen if smaller countries such as Moldova and San Marino won the contest in terms of hosting. Changes regarding EBU influence looking ahead to Portugal’s hosting in 2018. Ukraine and Russia incident will “not be without consequence” Asked whether Ukraine should’ve acted more generously towards Julia Samoylova and lifted the travel ban, Freiling explains that the situation in his opinion was a “propaganda campaign on both sides”. He says that the Ukrainians had managed to “manoeuvre” themselves into a Russian “media trap”. In the end they had the extremely difficult decision …
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