Belarus has decided…it’s Alyona Lanskaya (again?)
Well, as the great Yogi Berra said, “it’s déjà vu all over again”!
Just as in last year’s Eurofest, Alyona Lanskaya was declared the winner in tonight’s 10-song National Final. Unlike last year, Alyona has brought an upbeat dance number, “Rhythm of Love”, to the table. Taking the maximum points from both the jury and the public televote, it looks like the 27-year-old from Mogilev will likely* get her shot at the Eurovision spotlight.
*I say “likely”, of course, since it was only less than a year ago when Alyona’s syrupy ballad “All My Life” had the victory stripped from it after allegations of vote-rigging, giving the tickets to Baku to pop-rockers Litesound. The year before, there was musical chaos in Minsk as the original song for Düsseldorf, “Born in Byelorussia“, was rejected due to an early release, and the subsequent re-write “I am Belarussian”, was deemed to not be quite different enough from the original. (Instead, Anastasiya Vinnikova brought Eurofans the cult-classic “I Love Belarus“, which may have used up half of the nation’s stockpile of pyrotechnic gear.) And in 2010, after some major confusion over which network would be sponsoring Belarus’s Eurovision participation, and how a song would be chosen, eventual representatives 3+2 swapped their song from the danceable “Far Away” to the soft, subtle “Butterflies” only days before the EBU’s deadline. Even in 2005, Eurofest winner Angelica Agurbash swapped her winning song “Boys and Girls” for the showstopping spectacle that was “Love Me Tonight“. More than any other nation in the ESC, Belarus has proven to be the most unpredictable when it comes to sticking with the results of their National Final! Just for the record, and for your reference, here’s tonight’s runner-up, rockers Nuteki with “Save Me”. Who knows? We might be seeing them again…:
“Rhythm of Love” was written by the songwriting team of Leonid Shirin and Yuri Vashchuk, who not only wrote “All My Life” and “Far Away”, but also gave the world Anastasiya Vinnikova’s 2012 Eurofest entry, “Shining in Twilight“.