Why settle for 15 minutes of fame when you can have an hour or two? It’s something that the most ambitious Eurovision and Junior Eurovision stars understand well. Last weekend a dozen of your fave ESC and JESC singers performed the “Slavianski Bazaar” international arts festival in Vitebsk, Belarus.
The festival may take place in the former USSR, but this was definitely a case of East meets West. Slavic artists included Belarus’ Teo (the “Cheesecake” singer with those funny dance moves), Russia’s Philipp Kirkorov (the one who slapped his personal assistant), Belarus’ Alyona Lanskaya (the chick who was disqualified in 2012), Prime Minister (Russia 2002) Alex Sparrow (Russia 2011) and Russia’s Tolmachevy Sisters (who weren’t responsible for all the drama in Crimea). Alexander Rybak, the Belarusian-born Norwegian singer and winner of Eurovision 2009, also attended.
Alexander Rybak and Donny Montell didn’t just perform their songs. They also judged young artists participating in the Slavianski Bazaar music contest. Among the contestants was Emils Balceris, one of the guys from Musiqq, who represented Latvia in 2011 and failed to make the final. Croatia’s Dino Jelusic—the very first winner of Junior Eurovision—also sang. Unfortunately neither managed to win—something several other Eurovision stars have done. Ruslana won in 1996, Zeljko Joksimovic in 1999, Donny Montell in 2008, and Alyona Lanskaya in 2011.
British group Blue – an “early inspiration” for Lorde – were invited as guest stars. They performed some of their greatest hits, including their Eurovision 2011 song “I Can”, and played to the local audience by singing the chorus from Belarus’ 2011 Eurovision entry “I Love Belarus”. That’s how to consolidate your Belarusian fan base, y’all…
Naturally a highlight of the evening was when Danish pop princess Emmelie De Forest took a turn on stage for the second year in a row. Not everything went so smoothly this time. As she reported on her Facebook and Instagram, her airline lost her luggage and she had to make a mad dash to a local shop for a costume.
You can watch perfomances by some Eurovision artists above.