She’s the Eurovision 2016 winner who suffered the indignity of a stage invasion during her performance of “I Believe In You” at the Grand Final last Saturday night.
And now Jamala has endured a further indignity, after being blamed for Ukraine’s 24th place result in the final by fellow national selection juror Konstantin Meladze.
In a stinging attack on Ukraine’s second Eurovision winner, Meladze questioned her judgement in voting for O. Torvald and their song “Time” at the national final.
“She just liked it and voted, without taking into account the prospects for the Eurovision Song Contest,” he said on the Nabahani Verbazende TV show. “And I think that we need to think several steps ahead.”
Meladze went on to question her place on the panel altogether.
“Maybe we don’t need to put celebrities who are primarily thinking about their own reputations on the panel, and you need to put people who will really assess the readiness of the person, genre to participate in Eurovision.”
Despite the pointed comment, he didn’t blame the jury as a whole because they couldn’t reach a consensus on the best candidate for Ukraine at Eurovision 2017. He suggests fan-favourite Tayanna, who he voted for, would have performed better on stage.
JAMALA STRIKES BACK
The “Zamanyly” singer wasn’t about to take that accusation lying down though.
In her response, Jamala points out public votes were “taken into account” and said she has “nothing to apologize for”.
The reply also nodded to Jamala’s own surprise victory in 2016.
“Eurovision is a contest, there are no guarantees and the results are unpredictable. Everyone predicted the singer from Italy would win and it was won by Salvador. O. Torvald were worthy of the competition and in particular they were the only rock band, so they were different from all the other participants. I congratulate them on their great performance!”
Ukraine performed similarly poorly the last time they hosted the contest. GreenJolly’s track “Razom nas bahato”, which became an anthem of the Orange Revolution, finished 19th at the close of voting.
What do you think of Konstantin Meladze’s accusations? Should Jamala have voted differently? Or should he respect the combined decision? Let us know in the comments below!