Everyone loves a comeback! And we at Eurovision NI are no different. There has been a trend in recent years for Eurovision stars from the past making a return to the Eurovision stage. This year was no different with several of our faves making a reappearance. Here are the nominees for the category Best Returning Act at the Eurovision NI Awards 2017. The winner will be revealed at the Awards ceremony in October, but in the meantime vote for your favourite in our poll.
Best Returning Act
After two years representing Israel as backing singer, Imri Ziv graduated to main artist in 2017 when he performed his hit song ‘I Feel Alive’. In 2016 he backed up Hovi Star on song ‘Made of Stars’ and the year before he accompanied Nadav Guedj on the banger of a song ‘Golden Boy’. Unfortunately Imri failed to advance on his past performances in 2017 when he finished in 23rd place in the Grand Final (as opposed to 9th in 2015 and 14th in 2016). Check Imri out on his first Eurovision performance in 2015.
Almost 20 years on from his first Eurovision performance, Estonia’s Koit Toome teamed up with Laura Poldvere in 2017 for poppy duet ‘Verona’. Despite being an early favourite, the duo were shocked when they didn’t advance to the live final. This meant that Koit was not able to improve on his 1998 finishing position of 12th for his song ‘Mere Lapsed’. Check out his first Eurovision attempt:
Although Omar Naber has had two outings for Slovenia at Eurovision, he has yet to perform in a Eurovision Grand Final. Omar unfortunately failed to advance to the Final when he first represented the nation with ‘Stop’ in 2005 and repeated the defeat in 2017 when ‘On My Way’ finished in 17th out of eighteen acts competing in the first semi final.
Sunstroke Project’s Sergey Stepanov gained gif notoriety when the band teamed up with Olia Tira for Moldova’s 2010 entry ‘Run Away’ when his epic sax playing was shared billions of times over. Not satisfied with a mere 22nd in 2010, the band returned in 2017 with ‘Hey Mamma!’ which not only saw an improvement on their previous attempt, but gave Moldova their best ever Eurovision result when they finished in third place.
Blink and you’ll miss Tijana Bogicevic’s first Eurovision appearance. This came in 2011 when she was one of three backing singers to accompany Nina on her song ‘Caroban’ which finished in 14th place. Tijana returned in 2017 for Serbia but her song ‘In Too Deep’ narrowly missed out on a place in the Final, finishing in 11th place in her Semi Final, just three points of a qualifying position.
Most Eurovision returnees are satisfied with representing their nation on two occasions. Not Valentina Monetta. She first came to our attention in 2012 with
The Facebook Social Network Song, a tongue in cheek song about burgeoning social media obsession. Although the song had a kitsch humorous appeal, it didn’t make it to the Final, finishing only 14th in her Semi Final, however gave San Marino their best result to date. Monetta returned the following two years with ‘Crisalide (Vola)’ (2013) and ‘Maybe (Forse)’ (2014) both songs improved on her previous attempts with ‘Crisalide’ narrowly failing to make it to the Grand Final, finishing in 11th and ‘Maybe’ giving San Marino their first ever qualification to a Eurovision Grand Final. Valentina returned for a fourth time in 2017, partnering this time with Jimmie Wilson. ‘Spirit of the Night’ finished last in their Semi Final, however with four appearances at Eurovision, Monetta has tied the record for the woman with the most participations in the Eurovision Song Contest (tied with Denmark’s Elisabeth Andreassen and Sue of Peter, Sue & Marc from Switzerland).