Yulia Samoilova was chosen by Russia to represent them at the 2018 Eurovision Song Contest. We get to know the singer a bit better in our feature 10 Things About…Yulia Samoilova!
1. Yulia was born in Ukhta, Komi ASSR, Russian SFSR, USSR.
2. As a child, she began losing function of her legs due to spinal muscular atrophy and has used a wheelchair since childhood.
3. The singer says that exacerbation of the hereditary disease could have been as a result of an unsuccessful poliomyelitis vaccination, but specialists deny such a connection.
4. Samoylova started her career performing for oil workers at a restaurant in her hometown Ukhta.
5. In 2010 she graduated from Modern Humanitarian Academy with a major in psychology.
6. In 2013, Samoylova was the runner-up of season three of the Russian version of The X Factor. She performed a number of hit songs on the show including the Serbian Eurovision winning song ‘Molitva’, but ultimately lost out to eventual winner Mali.
7. In 2014 Yulia took part in the opening ceremony of the Winter Paralympics where she sang the song ‘Together’.
8. Yulia was chosen by an internal selection process to represent Russia at Eurovision 2017 with the song ‘Flame is Burning’. Shortly after her appointment as Russia Eurovision representative, the Security Service of Ukraine announced that she may be banned from entering Ukraine to compete at Eurovision, due to her visiting Crimea in 2015. This is due to Ukrainian law forbidding the entering of Crimea via Russia. Yulia has denied that she performed in Crimea in 2015. Subsequently Russia withdrew from the 2017 Contest and Yulia did not get to perform.
9. Instead of competing at Eurovision, Samoilova travelled to the Crimea to perform in Sevastopol on the day she was meant to compete in the Eurovision Semi Final.
10. In January it was confirmed by the Russian broadcaster that Yulia will be given the chance to perform at Eurovision in 2018 to make up for missing out in 2017.
Check out her 2017 song ‘Flame is Burning’: