The Next Star for Eurovision 2018: Izhar Cohen’s nephew among this week’s Israeli qualifiers

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Another week, another two episodes of The Next Star for Eurovision 2018 — Israel’s marathon national selection for its Eurovision Song Contest star.

In the recent episodes, we met another interesting mix of singers, who performed in genres from rap to pop to oriental. As ever, we’re going to take a look at the lucky ones who passed their auditions and will continue to the next phase of the show.

You can watch all of the auditions (including the ones from eliminated artists) at this link. And if you need a reminder of the rules, just click here.

EPISODE 7 QUALIFIERS

Keshet Ben Zeev
Keshet, 21, served in the air force band of the Israeli army and really loves hip hop, but the main focus of his audition was his Eurovision family connection.

He is the nephew of Izhar Cohen, the winner of Eurovision 1978 and Israel’s first Eurovision champion. Keshet’s mother, Vardina Cohen, participated in a few national selections for Eurovision (Kdam) and his father is a known music producer.

Keshet sure got the voice and the groove, although it felt like he was holding back a bit too much.

Anyway, SPOILER ALERT… his mother was interviewed recently for a radio show and revealed that Keshet was eliminated in the next phase of the show so he will not make it to the advanced stages of the competition.

Audition score: 75% (votes from four judges)

 

“The Yamanz”
Shay Sharabi
, 33, and Gilad Tzarum , 31, are “The Yamanz”.

They don’t just sing together as their voices blend together perfectly, which is a delight for the ears.

They got everyone excited, both the audience and the judges, except for the notoriously difficult judge Assaf Amdursky.

Audition score: 78% (votes from three judges)

 

Sama Jabbour
Sama, 18, mainly sings at family events, but her dream is to make a career of singing.

She is still young and a bit immature, but her voice still managed to charm the audience and most of the judges.

Audition score: 74% (votes from three judges)

 

Osher Bachta
Osher, 23, served in the air force band of the Israeli army.

His caressing voice and emotional performance convinced most of the judges and the audience, who gave him the ticket to the next round of the competition.

Audition score: 83% (votes from three judges)

 

Lior Chen
Lior, 18, serves as a criminal investigator in the Israeli army police, but she’s not as tough as you might think.

She also has a very soft side with her voice, that got her almost 90% of the vote in her audition.

Audition score: 89% (votes from four judges)

 

Bar grouzki 
Bar, 25, is a sailor officer in the Israeli navy, and if that doesn’t sound sexy enough for you, check out Bar in the sea (off-duty). He is also the brother of a famous TV presenter in Israel.

Bar used to only sing and play his guitar when he was alone by himself, but in the last couple of years he has built up his self-confidence and lets everyone hear his voice.

Opinions were divided during his audition, but Bar still managed to charm most of the audience and judges and to pass his audition.

Audition score: 78% (votes from three judges)

EPISODE 8 QUALIFIERS

Howie Danao
Howie, 17, sings at bars and on the streets. His mother came to Israel from the Philippines and worked as a housekeeper.

When she found out she was pregnant, the family that employed her offered her to move in with them and they have all lived as one big happy family ever since.

Howie impressed both the judges (except for judge Harel Skaat) and the audience with his voice and charisma, so he passed his audition easily.

Audition score: 81% (votes from three judges) 

 

Amir Moshe Oren
Amir, 20, is a young rapper that decided to perform the song he wrote by himself during his audition.

The song speaks about the life of a rapper and about Amir himself and how he is asking his parents for forgiveness, for him not being able to change himself and give up on his dream to become a successful rapper.

All the judges and the audience as well felt his honesty and emotions and couldn’t resist but voting him through to the next phase of the competition.

Audition score: 75% (votes from four judges)

 

Or Avramov
Or, 19, lives in a small moshav called Yesha, which is a collective agricultural town in southern Israel.

The opinions were divided during her audition as most of the audience didn’t vote for her and only half of the judges gave her their votes.

Although she only earned a score of 52%, the hosts — who can save five contestants during the auditions phase this year — threw her a lifeline.

Audition score: 52% (votes from two judges) – Saved by the hosts

In case you missed any of the previous episodes, you can read and watch all the performances on our recap posts.

Which artist do you like the most so far? Who do you think would do well for Israel at Eurovision?

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Photo credits: The Next Star for Eurovision