Romania — the land of pop music starlets Inna, Alexandra Stan, and Antonia — celebrates its National Day today. In honor of Romanian unification, we’ve dreamed up a list of 10 acts we’d love to see represent the country at Eurovision 2016. Broadcaster TVR is yet to announce details for its Selectia Nationala and time is running out. Perhaps it can use our suggestions for an internal selection instead…
In previous years, we mentioned the fan favourites above, but this year we’re focusing on some new names. We’ve also dropped the comeback option, although we know that Paula Seling and Ovi, Luminita Anghel and Mihai Traistariu are always popular choices. It’s time to think outside of the box and come up with new artists that could bring Bucharest a good result.
Yeah, yeah, we know. We have already recommended Nicoleta Nuca for Moldova, but the truth is that she has made a name for herself in Romania and she holds dual citizenship, which makes her eligible to represent her country’s neighbour. Apart from her monster hit “Nu sunt” (which to this day has amassed well over 13 million hits on YouTube), she recently dropped her follow-up single “Linistea”, which has the potential to repeat its predecessor’s success. We would love to see Nicoleta on the Eurovision stage with such a beautifully produced ballad.
You may remember Smiley (real name: Andrei Tiberiu Maria) as Aliona Moon’s mentor on “The Voice of Romania” last year. He is also a hugely popular entertainer in Romania, who would benefit from the international exposure brought by Eurovision. His charisma and experience make him an ideal choice. Eurovision fans may also remember Smiley as part of the Andra Feat. Simplu song “Dracula My Love”, which was disqualified for plagiarism. We hope he’s put this behind him!
Junion Eurovision 2005 contestant Alina Eremia has mentioned that she would do Eurovision, which gives us hope. The “Turai” singer has evolved beyond recognition, and each of her singles is devoured by her fans. Take, for instance, “Cand luminile se sting”, which has over 27 million hits on YouTube.
Of all the acts on this list, Ami is the only one who has already performed on the adult Eurovision stage, in 2010. If you squint, you can see her among Paulia Seling and Ovi’s backing vocalists for “Playing With Fire”. Since then Ami (real name: Andreea Ioana Moldovan) has built a successful career in Romania for herself, with hit after hit starting with her breakout single “Trumpet Lights”, which propelled her to national stardom. We bet that she woudn’t mind performing by herself in Stockholm…
Ever since Nicole said that she was open to the idea of doing Eurovision one day, she’s been a Eurofan favourite. Currently topping the choices of the Romanian language Eurovision Fan Group on Facebook with “Vive La Vida”, Nicole Cherry (real name: Nicoleta Ghinea) remains a star to watch and root for.
Nicknamed Romania’s Adele because of her physical resemblance and raspy voice, Feli is yet another byproduct of The Voice of Romania. Although she was eliminated before the final back in 2012, she is one of the most successful singers to emerge from the talent show. Widely respected for her musical choices and collaborations, Feli would make a worthy representative.
We can’t speak about Romanian pop without mentioning dance music and Edward Maya. His song “Stereo Love” became a worldwide club sensation back in 2009, and he hasn’t stopped making hits since. Although Edward Maya (real name: Eduard Marian Ilie) has yet to repeat the tremendous success of “Stereo Love”, his music is still a staple on the radio and on dancefloors throughout the region.
ROBIN AND THE BACKSTABBERS
If your Eurovision tastes lean more toward “Kedvesem” than “Euphoria”, we’re glad to say that the Romanian alternative scene is as rich, although more underground than its dance counterpart. Robin and The Backstabbers is as popular as melodramatic pop bands go, and their unique sound and profound lyrics fill every venue they perform at with die-hard hipsters. Although Eurovision might be the last thing on their minds, we’d like to see them give it a go one day.
It’s difficult to listen to a Romanian radio station without listening to Delia. The X Factor Romania judge manages to steal the spotlight in national charts with every single she releases, and Eurofans have taken notice. Last year’s monster hit “Pe aripi de vant” was a top choice for Selectia Nationala in many fan lists on YouTube. Due to her immense popularity and busy concert schedule, Delia is unlikely to have time to do Eurovision — but one can dream, right?
Despite recording a song with Snoop Dogg (“Play Me Like a Violin”) and looking like Romania’s next top model, Brighitta Balogh has inexplicably failed to cash in on either. After a short stint on The Voice of Romania, she released a few songs but has remained largely invisible, which coincidentally is the title of her latest single. Maybe Eurovision is the next best step for her? Here’s hoping!
These are Team Wiwi’s choices for Romania this year. Given how incredibly rich and diverse the Romanian music scene is, surely we’ve missed some of your faves — who are they? And who from our list would you give your thumbs up to?