festivali i kenges 56 orgesa zaimi eugent bushpepa

The second night of Festivali i Këngës 56 was a much sharper affair than the first, as 11 more acts took to the stage. And once all the acts had performed, the jury revealed which acts they had sent through to tomorrow night’s final!

The always unpredictable Albanian jury are 100% responsible for this year’s result. The qualifiers from both semi-finals were confirmed tonight, with 14 making it through.

It wasn’t an even split — eight finalists came from the first semi-final which was dominated by older rock vocalists, while only six finalists came from the more youthful and poppier second semi-final.

Among those who qualified were Wiwi Jury favourites, Eugent Bushpepa, Inis Neziri and Orgesa Zaimi.

You can see the full list of who the jury selected for tomorrow night’s grand final below:

Festivali i Kenges 56: Finalists

  • Artemisa Mithi — “E dua botën”
  • Bojken Lako — “Sytë e shpirtit”
  • Denisa Gjezo — “Zemër ku je”
  • Elton Deda — “Fjalët”
  • Eugent Bushpepa — “Mall”
  • Inis Neziri — “Piedestal”
  • Manjola Nallbani — “I njëjti qiell”
  • Mariza Ikonomi — “Unë”
  • NA & Festina Mezini — “Tjetër jetë”
  • Orgesa Zaimi — “Ngrije zërin”
  • Redon Makashi — “Ekziston”
  • Rezarta Smaja & Luiz Ejlli — “Ra një yll”
  • Tiri Gjoci — “Orë e ndalur”
  • Voltan Prodani — “E pamundur”

Last year’s finalists LYNX, as well as Xhesika Polo are among those who missed out on the final this year.

Poll Results: First semi-final

We still don’t know the full results of the first semi-final, but y’all certainly had your favourite.

Eugent Bushpepa won our poll this morning with his song “Mall”. Eugent received 330 votes – or 41% – putting him well clear of the others.

Second and third were much closer, with Mariza Ikonomi pipping Manjola Nallbani. Mariza took 152 votes with “Unë”, whilst Manjola received 131 with “I njëjti qiell”.

  1. Eugent Bushpepa – “Mall”: 330 votes (41%)
  2. Mariza Ikonomi – “Unë”: 152 votes (19%)
  3. Manjola Nallbani – “I njëjti qiell”: 131 votes (16%)
  4. Rezarta Smaja & Luiz Ejlli – “Ra një yll: 71 votes (9%)
  5. Redon Makashi – “Ekziston”: 29 votes (4%)
  6. Elton Deda – “Fjalët”: 19 votes (2%)
  7. Bojken Lako – “Sytë e shpirtit”: 19 votes (2%)
  8. Endri & Stefi – “Mesazh”: 14 votes (2%)
  9. Genc & David Tukiçi – “Të pandarë”: 12 votes (2%)
  10. Voltan Prodani – “E pamundur”: 12 votes (2%)
  11. Evans Rama – “Gjurmët”: 9 votes (1%)

Total votes: 798

Were you surprised by the results tonight? Do you think a losing semi-finalist should have made it in? Who do you want to win FiK 56? Let us know all your thoughts in the comments section below.

Make sure to check back tomorrow for our Festivali i Kenges 56 final poll!

Read more Albania Eurovision news here

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39 Comments on "14 finalists revealed for Festivali i Këngës 56 after second semi-final"

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Matthew
Guest

What a coincidence! I made a makeshift final of 14 competitors with jury AND televote. The three acts that finished bottom of the jury vote were Ergi, Lorela and Lynx, none of which made the final.

Milkyy
Guest

Do you really want another female ballad from Albania (Piedestal)? It’s sure that it will flop in semi. Mall and Ngrije zërin are the only right choices.

esc freak
Guest

I loved Xhesika last year but this time it just didn’t work live. RIP…
Glad my favorites made it. Inis and Orgesa are just great and Mariza is my 3rd.

esc freak
Guest

Oh and I also like Artemisa and Eugent!

LULU
Guest

Inis Neziri — “Piedestal
Orgesa Zaimi — “Ngrije zërin
It will be between these two . hope it’s piedestal

Nikos
Guest

Very impressed with the FiK stage this year! It looked cool, very unlike two years ago when we had the salon hair dryer lol. I think Eugent and Orgesa would be the best picks. Sad and surprised about Lynx.

But knowing the Albanian jury’s love of dated electric guitars and female power ballads, I think Mariza or Artemisa will win.

Kyler
Guest

I hope either Mall, Piedestal, or Ngrije zërin will represent Albania in Lisbon. But what if a surprise winner would take the trophy? I would be dissapointed if that would happened.

blondboybc
Guest

Yes, all my favourites made it through, as expected! LYNX and Xhesika were weak on the night, so not surprised they didn’t make the jury cut. Cheering for Eugent on Saturday! If not, would be happy with Inis or Orgesa.

Kaz
Guest

Wish Xhesika and LYNX made it. Especially confused about LYNX but Orgesa passed so I’m happy. Really hoping she wins! My top 3 is:
1.Orgesa
2.Eugent
3.Inis

I’ll be happy if any one of these three win however I’m rooting for Orgesa. I think it’s also one of the only songs that’ll work well in English.

Briekimchi
Guest

Wondering how quite a few of those songs got through…
Inis killed it. Light years ahead of the others in terms of stage presence. Still think the song is Semi-Final fodder but she is fantastic.

Jo
Guest

New ranking:
#1: Mall*
#2: Ngrije zërin*
#3: Unë

*Acts ready for Eurovision (but Mall needs the final cut).

Purple Mask
Guest

Xhesika’s voice badly cracked on the night, and unfortunately the jury showed no sympathy. 🙁
LYNX were a bit unlucky not to have qualified; I think they were the victims of a tougher semi final.

The final I see as being between three acts: Eugent, Inis and Orgesa. These three are in a “different league”, in my opinion.
Other winning possibilities: Mariza, because of the song. Elton, because of his voice. 🙂

Robyn Gallagher
Editor

The FiK stage is merciless! There is no kind sound mix to smooth out any faults. If the singer and song can’t stand up to a raw, live, orchestral version, it’s out.

I hope that whatever song ends up winning, its strengths will be recognised and kept for Eurovision. As we’ve seen in recent years, the classic Albanian revamp is not a recipe for Eurovision success!

Purple Mask
Guest

I like the raw sound mix, because of the authenticity. It’s what us musicians deal with all the time. Live is live. 🙂
In theory, it also means that the better singers stand out easier. In theory, but not always in practice. 😀

Colin
Guest
My advice would be simply to keep it in Albanian. They did that in 2012 and ended-up fifth. Since then, their English translations kept flopping one by one. The one exception is wonderful I Am Alive, but that’s an entirely different song, not a translation. Sure, the language might be a barrier, but take it like this – If it’s a weak song, the people won’t vote for it either way. At least the juries might find it slightly less bad for the sake of diversity. If it’s a strong song, well… Occidentalis Karma, Grande Amore, Amar Pelos Dois, Je’… Read more »
Robyn Gallagher
Editor

Good point about sticking with the national language. I reckon both “Mall” and “Ngrije zërin” are strong enough to work in Albanian. Orgesa’s song would also work as a fun English pop, but there’s something magic about the Albanian lyrics in Eugent’s song.

Purple Mask
Guest

Ugh. I typed my commentary twice, and was twice rejected due to technical issues! Not my day

ImFromRomania
Guest

Inis Neziri — “Piedestal” my absolute winner <3 , go girl <3 . see you in Lisbon 😀

ESCViking
Guest

Eugent MUST WIN! He will bring back Albania back to the FINAL! Inis has a great voice, but she WILL fail in the semi, and here career will be over RIGHT win it started!

ESCViking
Guest

*When. It has been such a long day :/

Jo
Guest

I wonder if all this passion for her ballad will endure when all the other ballads will start to come out.

H5rre
Guest

Seriously Albania, Eugents song is not good at all. If he goes to Eurovision, he stands no chance of qualifying. They should totally pick Mariza since she clearly has the best chance of qualifying for Albania. Maybe if they released these songs in English, I will probably like them more.

William Lee Adams
Admin

It’s interesting to let the jury decide how many acts from each semi-final advance as opposed to having a hard and fast number. What do y’all think about that?

Purple Mask
Guest

That’s actually how we do it in local music contests in the UK, so I understand it perfectly. 🙂

Colin
Guest
It’s a slippery slope. In theory, it sounds great, because there could be more or less acts deserving of accolades that year. However, without at least a scoreboard it can seem random and whimsical. The principle isn’t bad, because, like in school, there can be certain number of points to win, regardless of how many people achieve it. For example, when writing a test, nobody knows will almost the whole class get an A, or just very few of them. But a perimeter for getting an A must be set in advance. I don’t speak Albanian, so I am not… Read more »
Purple Mask
Guest

Do you need keep your own scorecard? 🙂

Purple Mask
Guest

Do you not* keep your own scorecard? (Uugh, typo!)

Colin
Guest

I did that for 2017, rating originality, voice, lyrics, entertainment value and performance as factors. The songs that make a high score end-up in my playlist. There is no number in advance, although it tends to be between 18 and 25 per year. 🙂

Purple Mask
Guest

Very similar here. Ratings split by Song Content (lyrics & music), Performance (vocals & instruments), Styling (presentation) and Choreography (staging, dance routine and/or backing screen).
Song Content gets more marks than the other categories, but all of them matter. 🙂

Colin
Guest

I like it 😉 Can’t wait to read your song reviews next year as well. It was very nice reading them this year.

Purple Mask
Guest

Thanks. Same to you too. x

Jo
Guest

I don’t think it’s very entertaining. I prefer when the qualified acts are announced after each sf.

Colin
Guest

I am basically very happy with the results, with my top 6 all reaching finals. (Inis Neziri, Tiri Gjoci, Eugent Bushpepa, Rezarta Smaja & Luiz Ejlli, Mariza Ikonomi, Artemisa Mithi). I really like their songs and will be rooting for them tomorrow. Either of them could be someone to watch for ESC 2018. That said, I think LYNX and Xhesika were better than several qualifiers and it was sad to see them eliminated.

Jo
Guest

That’s my boy Eugene. Give to him. GIVE IT!!!!!!!!!

Also, very sad for Lynx, my former #1.

Jo
Guest

I’m not surprised that they qualified some acts solely based on the names, btw…

Matthew ESC
Guest

Xhesika was robbed :0

Briekimchi
Guest

Agreed. I see no possible criteria that would have Denisa ranked ahead of Xhesika. Better song, better voice, better performance.

Purple Mask
Guest

Didn’t Xhesika’s voice lose support (or “crack”) more than once? Or do I need to check my hearing? 😀

Briekimchi
Guest

Didn’t say she was perfect so your hearing might be ok. 😉
Apart from Inis, I don’t think anyone really got close to a perfect vocal. Generally, at FiK, they don’t!