Serbia: Sanja Ilic & Balkanika win Beovizija 2018 with “Nova deca”


Sanja Ilic & Balkanika will represent Serbia in the Eurovision Song Contest 2018 with the song “Nova deca (New Children), after the group won tonight’s Beovizija 2018.

The group received the twelve points from both the jury and the televote.

The runner-up Saska Jankovic and her song “Pesma za tebe” received ten points from both the jury and the viewers. Dusan Svilar and his entry “Pod krosnjom bagrema” ended up in third place, with seven points from the jury and eight from the audience.

About Sanja Ilic & Balkanika

Sanja Ilic & Balkanika emerged as one of the favourites for the win as soon as the participants were announced. In the 20 years of their existence, the group has become well-known for their eclectic style. They combine traditional Balkan music with modern beats, performing all over the world.

Many of this year’s Beovizija entries seemed to be in that modern-ethnic style. But Ilic and Balkanika stood out. It was obvious that the genre is their home ground and they are true masters of it.

The frontman of Balkanika, composer and multi-instrumentalist Aleksandar “Sanja” Ilic, was invited to the stage to accept the trophy. In his speech, he thanked his team:

“I would like to invite everyone from my group and our whole team to come to the thank all those members of our group – which, as you know, has twelve members – that, due to Eurovision rules, cannot be on stage with us. I want to thank my wife, who composed the song with me.”

Beovizija 2018 — Voting

The winner of Beovizija 2018 was determined by a combination of votes awarded by a jury panel and by the televote. The score system was the same used at Eurovision, with both the jury and the viewers giving two sets of ten points, 1–8, 10 and 12 points.

Jury vote

The jury pannel, comprising of acclaimed musicians Vojkan Borisavljevic, Dusan Alagic, Dejan Petrovic, Zeljko Vasic and Ivana Peters – who wrote Serbia’s 2016 entry “Goodbye (Shelter)” – were the first to award their points. They gave their top ten points to:

  1. “Nova deca” – 12 points
  2. “Pesma za tebe” – 10 points
  3. “Ni sunca ni meseca” – 8 points
  4. “Pod krosnjom bagrema” – 7 points
  5. “Samo nek se okrece” – 6 points
  6. “Svatovi” – 5 points
  7. “Vila” – 4 points
  8. “Nema te” – 3 points
  9. “Ruza sudbine” – 2 points
  10. “Zato” – 1 points

Public vote

“Nova deca” won the televote convincingly, receiveng almost three times more votes – more than 14,000 – than the runner-up Saska Jankovic, who received about 5,000 votes. The audience gave their top ten points to:

  1. “Nova deca” – 12 points
  2. “Pesma za tebe” – 10 points
  3. “Pod krosnjom bagrema” – 8 points
  4. “Svatovi” – 7 points
  5. “Samo nek se okrece” – 6 points
  6. “Vila” – 5 points
  7. “Ruza sudbine” – 4 points
  8. “Zemlja cuda” – 3 points
  9. “Ni sunca ni meseca” – 2 points
  10. “Nema te” – 1 point

All the profit from the public votes will go to the RTS national campaign Cancer is Curable, which raises money for prevention of the decease and care of the cancer patients.

Total points

Running order of the participants

  1. SevdahBABY – “Hajde da igramo sada” (Let’s Dance Now)
  2. Rambo Amadeus & Beti Dordevic – “Nema te” (You Are Not Here)
  3. Maja Nikolic – “Zemlja cuda” (Wonderland)
  4. Srdan Marjanovic – “Bar da znam” (If Only I Knew)
  5. Ivan Kurtic – “Ni sunca, ni meseca” (No Sun Nor Moon)
  6. Sanja Ilic & Balkanika – “Nova deca” (New Kids)
  7. Koktel Balkan – “Zato” (That Is Why)
  8. Boris Režak – “Vila” (Fairy)
  9. Lana & Aldo – “Jaca sam od svih” (I Am the Strongest of All)
  10. Dušan Svilar – “Pod krošnjom bagrema” (Under the Locust Tree)
  11. Igor Lazarevic – “Beži od mene” (Get Away from Me)
  12. Saška Jankovic – “Pesma za tebe” (A Song for You)
  13. Lord – “Samo nek se okrece” (Just Let It Turn)
  14. Danijel Pavlovic – “Ruža sudbine” (The Rose of Destiny)
  15. BASS – “Umoran” (Tired)
  16. Osmi Vazduh & Friends – “Probudi se” (Wake Up)
  17. Biber & DJ Niko Bravo – “Jutro (Svatovi)” (Morning (Wedding Guests))

About the show

Beovizija was presented by four of the most popular faces of RTS, quiz hosts Dragana Kosjerina and Kristina Radenkovic, news anchor Branko Veselinovic and sports commentator Aleksandar Stojanovic. The show opened with the video footage from Marija Serifovic‘s victory in 2007 in Helsinki, and from the opening of the 2008 contest, which was held in Belgrade.

Jelena Tomasevic, Marko Kon and Milan Nikolic, Regina, Milan Stankovic, Moje 3, Sergej Cetkovic, Bojana Stamenov, Knez, Sanja Vucic ZAA, Jacques Houdek and Tijana Bogicevic performed their Eurovision entries “Oro“, “Cipela“, “Bistra voda“, “Ovo je Balkan“, “Ljubav je svuda“, “Moj svijet“, “Beauty Never Lies“, “Adio“, “Goodbye (Shelter)” and “My Friend” and “In Too Deep“, respectively, as a part of the interval act.

Serbia is scheduled to compete in the second semi-final of the Eurovision Song Contest, which will be held on the 10th of May at the Altice Arena.

What do you think? Has Serbia made the right choice? Or could they have done better? Tell us in the comments section below?

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Photo credits: Radio Television of Serbia