When the Soviet Union collapsed in the early 1990s it shook the world. At the turn of the century, as a series of former Soviet Republics entered Eurovision, they shook our beloved contest. Yet Kazakhstan — which has a sizeable and growing music industry — has never joined the party, despite the fact a sizeable chunk of its land is within Europe’s borders, despite the fact the broadcaster has the ability to apply to the Council of Europe (which smoothes the path to the contest), and despite the fact it has screened the contest several times.

Well today Eurofans are abuzz with thoughts that Kazakhstan may one day enter. That’s because from January 1 the country’s Khabar TV will become an associate member of the European Broadcasting Union (EBU).

Will they be at Eurovision 2017?

Probably not. The EBU has already tweeted as much: “Under current rules @KhabarTV is not eligible for @Eurovision participation.”

That’s because associate members of the EBU do not qualify for participation. The glaring exception is Australia, who, of course, have a long association with ESC going back decades. That said, EBU officials have told wiwibloggs in the recent past that they would like to “involve” other countries outside of Europe in Eurovision. Perhaps Kazakhstan will appear as a special guest in the near future?

Why should Kazakhstan enter?

Turkey left after 2012, and with chances of them returning growing slimmer each year, we are left with a Turkic void that can’t be filled. The only Turkic country remaining as of now is Azerbaijan, but their constant borrowing from Sweden does no good for those of us who want to hear some authentic instruments every now and then. Kazakhstan is a country with a deep Turkic heritage, a beautiful Turkic language, and many capable singers. They can bring music from a completely different area to the contest and fill the void that Turkey’s absence and Azerbaijan’s preferences have left.

Who should represent Kazakhstan?

There are tons of talented artists in Kazakhstan that would be perfect for the contest. Take girl group KeshYOU, for example. They are three gorgeous girls who can do everything from R&B (Asykpa) to folk pop (Rizamyn). They can perform live with no problem, and are perfect for Eurovision.

http://youtu.be/lLZxqegpPck

There’s also A-Studio (pictured at top), the group that Tomas N’Evergreen once collaborated with. While Tomas may have zero intentions of ever hearing about Eurovision again, A-Studio may want to give it a try.

Dilnaz Akhmadieva is another option. She sings mainly in Russian (having covered former Luxembourg entrant/future Sanremo entrant Lara Fabian), but also in Kazakh, English, and Uyghur. Her voice is smoky and seductive, but she can belt a good ballad too!

One more artist who can represent Kazakhstan is this year’s Türkvizyon winner, Zhanar Dugalova. Having experience with Türkvizyon will help Zhanar conquer Eurovision by storm.

http://youtu.be/sCVupX8udIk?t=2m14s

Should Kazakhstan try harder to gain full membership to the EBU and enter Eurovision? Who would you like to see represent the country?

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Original and Balanced
Guest
Original and Balanced
Some people do not want Kazachstan to participate in Eurovision Songcontest, yet they cannot give reasonable facts. Instead of that, you see them using the same overthrown argument over and over again and even resort to strawmen arguments. First of all, Europe does not exist. The devide between Europe and Asia is an arbitrary obselete idea from hundreds of years ago. I mean, people, get some taste of the future. There are already countries that are not in “Europe” that participate so using the not in “europe” argument should be replaced with a better argument. If Kazachstan can provide very… Read more »
Briekimchi
Guest

It’s closer to Europe than Australia is and has more to offer from a musical perspective so, sure. Why not?

EscAddict
Guest

For me, it is about the music. I would love to hear more songs from more countries. I don’t care about borders.

Ariso Light
Guest

I hope one day Kazakhstan will be able to participate in Eurovision after all they are part of Europe!

Racal
Guest

@DR: You already went from “The official European Border is the Ural Mountains. Official” to “it is considered the European Border”. That’s a start. 😉

I have no problem with us not having the same opinion. That’s what makes conversations interesting. I’ve been in peace since the beginning, don’t worry. So yes, agreed. 🙂

DR
Guest

@Racal

I’m not conceding, I still believe I’m right, but neither of us will back down. So let’s except that the other one doesn’t agree with the other, and move on in peace. Agreed? ?

Racal
Guest

@DR: Ok, so let’s fight fire with fire and let me quote Wikipedia as well: “To the east and southeast, Europe is generally considered as separated from Asia by the watershed divides of the Ural and Caucasus Mountains, (…) Yet the borders of Europe—a concept dating back to classical antiquity—are arbitrary, as the primarily physiographic term “continent” also incorporates cultural and political elements.” “End of”, really? 😉

DR
Guest

@Everyone

Here’s my last comment on the subject.

Here is a quote from Wikipedia with 3 quoted sources.

“The entire length of the Ural River is considered the Europe-Asia boundary by most authoritative sources.”

End Of.

martin
Guest

It isn’t European Union its Eurovision and if Australia is in the contest then Kazakhstan might be in esc. It doesnt matter we can see different cultures and musics. I’m sure they will bring more colour to the contest because some countries dont care Eurovision and they just send shallow songs.

DR
Guest

@Racal
Here is a map showing Kazakhstan in Europe, just a little bit but it does.

comment image

@Everyone
Can everyone just stop with the slanderous comments about Jan Ola Sand. He probably has a case to sue, so many people accusing him of just wanting more money. Could it be just that he wants more countries to take part. It makes me sick that everyone is going to lowest common denominator and accusing him of being money hungry, with no proof.

Has Eurovision taught you nothing. We should be looking for the best in people not the worst. Shame on all of you.

DR
Guest

@Racal

Actually I did a quick googling. I always use fact in an argument. You’re right it’s not the Ural Mountains, it’s the Ural River. And it is considered the European Boarder. And you did talk about cultural togetherness. Your second paragraph was completely about that.

Racal
Guest
@DR: The Ural mountains are NOT an official border of Europe, and you can verify that yourself with a quick googling. There is no official border to Europe, it is an arbitrary concept that has changed through History depending on the geopolitic interests (there’s actually nothing separating the Eurasian continent in two). Where exactly have I written that cultural differences should prevent countries from participating? I personnaly love to see such culturally different countries as Sweden, Portugal or Poland perform on stage. That’s not the point. Eurovision was meant to unite EUROPEAN countries through entertainment after centuries of wars. That’s… Read more »
D
Guest
I think they should definitely be able to compete. They’re European, and honestly when their broadcaster becomes an associate member of the EBU, they’ll have more going for them than Australia. I can see Kazakhstan joining the Council of Europe around 2020, and then they’ll be able to become a full member of the EBU and participate. They have every right to compete, as they do meet the standards for participation, they just haven’t completed them. Hopefully we’ll see countries like Kosovo and Liechtenstein debuting in the future as well. @Everyone saying no because ‘Kazakhstan is in Asia’ – It… Read more »
Denis
Guest
Can’t believe the negativity of some people, and the outright xenophobia displayed on here.. Are you that disapproving of Kazakhstan? cause it’s different? I thought difference was good, and having something different in the contest. Not entries who sound the same. According to you only countries who are in Western Europe should take part cause it’s the true Europe, and the East has different taste and culture. Yes, they have different taste sometimes. That’s what makes the contest great and interesting. Not everything sounds the same. They brought Australia in cause it brought something fresh and new to the game.… Read more »
Riafup
Guest

Another country giving Russia 12 points every year? NO NO NO!

Gavin
Guest

What’s with the xenophobia from Europe??? Eurovision should be about the music. It’s exciting to have new people sing. It’s best when other countries join. If it was up to “real” Europeans, they would vote in blocks every year: Nordic, Former USSR, Balkan and no one would else would have a chance to win. That is so boring.

R
Guest

Blaaaah, you people are so negative all the time. Fresh new countries like Australia last year bring their A-game and give us quality performances. Countries like the UK and France don’t even try.

Esc
Guest

Kazakhstan shouldn’t be classified as European, it’s Central Asian! So should we have Uzbekistan, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan and even the Persians (Afghanistan and Iran) join? I’m up for more guests but it would mean losing the traditional Eurovision meaning

DR
Guest

@Racal
And one last thing. When does divergent cultures stop countries taking part. Turkey is nothing like Iceland.
Does that mean in the 1990’s Eastern European Countries shouldn’t have been allowed coz there were too different. Does that mean Algeria can’t be in the African Union because it’s more Middle Eastern in Culture than Sub-Saharan Africa. They are still the same continent, but according to your rules it can’t happen. Too late it has.
And isn’t Eurovision about different cultures coming together?

DR
Guest
@Racal The official European Border is the Ural Mountains. Official. Can’t be denied just because you don’t want Kazakhstan to enter, you are wrong. The Ural river is used by practically every state and organisation in the world as the eastern border. Like the Suez Canal separates Asia and Africa. Are you going to start saying that the canal isn’t a Globally agreed Continental boarder. No matter the history, the boarder still excists. If all historical boarders can be ripped up can I take a bit of the Shetlands, Stockholm and village outside Jerusalem and say “Mine now, these are… Read more »
Daniel/Cymraeg
Guest

Personally, I enjoy the idea of Kazakhstan being in Eurovision, just as I like Australia being there, because they’d probably bring their A game. The geographical debate is neither here nor there for me; I enjoy Eurovision and the idea of there being more of it is always exciting.
I’m not sure where one draws the line, however, as there gets a point where it just becomes silly.

@EugeneESCUK
Guest
Just to clarify :- Active membership of the EBU is open to authorised broadcasting organisations from countries which are EITHER within the EBA (European Broadcasting Area) (as defined by the ITU) OR, if their country is outside that area, are members of the Council of Europe. Kazakhstan is excluded from the EBA, but is still eligible to apply for membership of the Council of Europe. As yet Kazakhstan is not a member of the Council of Europe. Iceland has been a member of the Council of Europe since 1950, Israel is within the EBA, simple as that!! As it stands… Read more »
Racal
Guest
I am so sick of reading all these stupid geographical interpretations of Europe… That definition of Europe being west of Ural dates back to the 18th century and was created for the sole use of Russian geopolitics at the time. It is 300 year old it has absolutely nothing official, and it’s absolutely not applicable to today’s situation. So yes, a tiny part of Kazakhstan is west of the Ural, but how in the world does that make them European? Who the hell would consider that Kazakhstan is located in Europe? Have these people seen a map recently?! Kazakhstan is… Read more »
Denis
Guest
There’s no argument here. If your country is even partially in Europe then it’s a no-brainier. It should be in Eurovision the same way it is in UEFA, end of.. Russia is part in Europe, that’s why it’s there as is the Caucasus countries which is where Kazakhstan lies. No brainer Cyprus isn’t even in Europe geographically speaking , yet no one has problems with it. Iceland is closer to North Europe then it is to Europe, everyone is fine with that. Turkey has only a small part in Europe, yet everyone goes on and on how it must take… Read more »
Freyah
Guest

Australia should be the only exception to the rule. Kazakhstan does however lie within broadcasting range, therefore they should be allowed to participate if they so wish. HOWEVER, countries like China, the US, etc. shouldn’t be allowed. Australia have the cultural links with Europe and have broadcasted for 30 years beforehand, hence why they are an exception. Keep the participants in the EBU Broadcast range as the rules stipulate and it’ll be fine.

dragvision
Guest

who are the next? The Phillippines.

ME
Guest

Hell NO!

Sparrow
Guest

Everyone craps on about how far Israel is to Europe but Iceland is just as far away from the mainland and no one demands they leave the contest. I see no problem with Kazakhstan participating, if they Bing the culture then yes, if they bring better entries than what the Uk or Cyprus or Lithuania bring to the table then yes. Maybe they can take Australia’s slot and we (Australia) can just be permanent voters but not competitors.

Bouke
Guest

I would LOVE to see Kazakhstan <3 😀

DR
Guest

If part of the country is in Europe, then all your arguments are null in void. It is officially pan continental which is part European, there for any geographical arguments are stupid. Russia’s majority is past the Urals the most of it is Asian, yet it is Eurovision. France and the Netherlands are not fully in Europe as a lot of their dominions still count as part of the main nation. Yet they still compete. Geographically they can enter.
End of.

Leaf
Guest

And if they want to spice things up.

They should basically remove the automatic qualifier (and just have the winner from last year as a finalist) and then organize a special night before the contest in which by a random draw order 5 lucky countries will get a ticket to the final. So in that way everyone has a chance to become an automatic qualifier and this evens up the playing field for some less successful countries.

Leaf
Guest

I am already against Australia taking part (and being a automatic qualifier) NOW we have another country that has oil money like Azerbaijan taking part.
See you in Kazakhstan in 2 years.
This contest is a set up if they decide to do this, we know it is coming a non European country winning the EUROVISION song contest.
And then Portugal withdraws – with GOOD REASON !!!!!!!!

Daniel/Laburnum
Guest

I have decided to change my name to Laburnum. Too many Daniels here….ugh….and I like Laburnum trees so…

Robyn Gallagher
Editor

I’d love to see Kazakhstan invited as a one-off guest, maybe taking Australia’s place next year. 🙂

Ronnie
Guest

Lol trusting Azerbaijan to take over the “Turkic void” would be a bad bad idea and they know that very well.

Daniel
Guest

Yes. Australia only have associate membership so it would be completely unfair to turn down Kazakhstan for that reason. Also, they confirmed Australia’s debut in February 2015 and there were talks about 27 countries being in the final this year too. If Australia are in the semi finals, then don’t lose hope people! Maybe Kazakhstan are in for 2016 and are directly in for the final. Again another dumb theory….

Daniel
Guest

Kazakhstan has probably the best music industry in Central Asia, I’m sure they will send the best they can to Eurovision if they are given the chance. Something traditional ESc countries like Portugal or Spain should do more often instead of embarassing themselves each year.
I’m 100% for Kazakhstan in Eurovision!

davve
Guest

I wouldnt mind. if dictatorships like Turkey and Azerbaijan can participate so should kazakhstan

Jordie
Guest

It would be great is Keshyou or Zhanar could represent Kazakhstan <3

blondboybc
Guest

With the door now open to a more “worldly” ESC (eg: Australia’s repeated participation), I would NOT be surprised in the least if countries like Kazakstan are allowed to participate at some point. But, they aren’t the only country that fills the “Turkic void”. That role is being taken by Azerbaijan, tbh. Inevitably, we’re likely to see the country in the contest, and I don’t think it detracts from the “Europeaness” of the contest. Let’s just hope they don’t become Azerbaijian 2.0!

Racal
Guest

Given the last statements of Jan Ola $and and the direction the ESC is headed to, I wouldn’t be surprised to see Thaïland on the stage next year. So go ahead, invite Kazakhstan, Australia, Mexico, Qatar, Vietnam, Namibia, etc. You’ve already started destroying the ESC, piece by piece, so keep going.

Franco
Guest

Why not? They’re welcome.

Sarah
Guest

Them over Australia the reason I’m against Australia participatob is because they bring nothing new to the plate. Just typical western pop. Kazakhstan has their own identity I would be happy for them to join if they were to send something eurovision hasn’t seen

Thiefo
Guest

If they take the competition seriously and won’t try to be an Azerbaijan 2.0, (or a third Sweden) sending swedish songs sung in english with no kazakh flavor whatsoever… then I say yes! let them participate.

Kazakhstan has many great artists, I fell in love with A-Studio since I heard Falling for you last year, same for Zhanar who btw, won Turkvizyon LAST YEAR, not this year 😛

I’ve always said, ESC can always use more diversity, musically and culturally, not everything should be either pop, schlager or the same kind of ballads.

MirkoJoshua
Guest

Absolutely… YEEES

@EugeneESCUK
Guest

You have to laugh at the EBU Tweet :-

“Under current rules @KhabarTV is not eligible for @Eurovision participation.”

It’s as though the person sending the tweet does not know about Australia being an Associate Member?!?!

This is the problem the EBU creates for themselves, if you break the rules for one country, how can you then rely on those same rules to then not allow another country to take part? Quite Laughable, well done EBU!!

Leass
Guest

Israel is in… why not Kazakhstan? They do also compete in European football competitions. 🙂

Kjetil
Guest

I know, the border, yes, but didn’t a song in the Swiss Expertencheck tell us there were no boundaries? 😛

Kazakhstan has some interesting artists who deserve more attention and if they don’t send a Swedish ballad like Azerbaijan I’d be really happy with them as participants!

fikri
Guest

if kazakhstan gets invited to eurovision, i really believe will take eurovision very seriously like azerbaijan and will earn a place a final everytime. their debut performance in this year’s abu tv song festival is phenomenal. their artists are really the best in central asia and the fact that they’re largest hidden is a crime.

paco
Guest

Para mi si no depende de nosotros los fans, en el cambio está la evolucion a pasar del voto amigo…vecinos, Bienvenidos.