Best of the Bunch: Belarus

This week, we’re looking at the last 10 years of Belarus in Eurovision. The nation debuted in 2004, and interestingly, have never sung in their native language, always English. The first three years of participation, Belarus struggled to get close to the top 10 of the semi-finals, meaning that they didn’t qualify until 2007.

Before we get to their first qualifying entry, let’s go back a year to 2006, where Polina Smolova sent the song Mum to the Eurovision stage. Unfortunately, the song was a flop, ending up in 22nd place in the semi-final with only 10 points.

In 2007, Belarus sent their first successful song, which was Work Your Magic, sung by the magical Dmitry Koldun. The stage show along with the catchy song left the country in 4th place in the semi, and 6th place overall in the final.

The following year, we saw Ruslan Alekhno take to the stage with the song Hasta La Vista. Again, the song wasn’t a fan favourite, and didn’t qualify, ending up in 17th place with 27 points.

In 2009, the nation stepped ever so slightly closer to the final once again, with the song Eyes that Never Lie, sung by the very over the top Petr Elfimov. The performance was bold, but not bold enough, ending in 13th place in the semi-final.

The next year, Belarus sent a bunch of butterflies… well, sort of… it was 3+2 featuring Robert Wells, with the song Butterflies. The reveal of the wings was enough brilliance to earn it a spot in the final, only just. In the final, the song ended up in 24th place with 18 points.

In 2011, one of Belarus’ most controversial entries hit the Eurovision stage. The original song to be sung by Anastasia Vinnikova was titled Born in Belorussia, however it was discovered that the song had been played before the cut-off date, meaning that it was ineligible to be performed at Eurovision. They came back with the song I Love Belarus – props for Belarus for sticking with the theme of national pride! The song ended up in 14th place with 45 points.

In 2012, the controversy followed. The nation had a scheduled national final, where Alyona Lanskaya was said to win with the song All My Life, however later on, it was announced that the Belarussian president himself had conducted an investigation into her win, labelling it unfair. Rumour has it that the producers had rigged the televote, and this turned out to be true. As such, Litesound were chosen to go to Eurovision, as they had come second place in the national final. After all that, they came 16th with 35 points in the semi-final.

The following year, Alyona Lanskaya finally had her chance to represent Belarus, after (fairly) winning the national final with the song Rhythm of Love. In true style, the song was changed to Solayoh. The song took Belarus back to the final, and ended up in 16th place in the final with 48 points.

In 2014, Belarus held a national final, where the song Cheesecake by Teo won with the top amount of 12 jury points, and 8 televote points. At Eurovision, Teo ended up in 16th place once again with 43 points.

That brings us to this year, 2015. After everyone expecting the girl band Milki to win, Uzari and Maimuna surprised everyone with their win at the national final with the song Time. Unfortunately, at Eurovision, the duo failed to qualify, reaching a close 12th with 39 points.

Which Belarusian song was your favourite? Vote down below:

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