Every day until December 24, we’re stuffing your stockings with a new Eurovision poll. So far we’ve asked you to name your favourite Finnish entry at Eurovision and to decide who had the best follow-up single in 2015 (among other things). Consider this our advent calendar for 2015. Whether you celebrate Christmas or not, you can let us know your thoughts each and every day by casting your vote and sounding off in our comments section. After you’ve written your letter to Santa and lit up the candles, get ready to vote…
Day 7: Israel in Eurovision
Yesterday, December 6, was the first day of Hanukkah and the first of the eight candles was lit. We’re joining the Hanukkah festivities by celebrating the music Israel has offered us over the past ten years. From ballads calling for peace to cheesy pop numbers to club floor fillers, they’ve sent it all. But which of these ten Israeli entries is your favourite? You can vote for as many songs as you like, but you can only vote once, so choose carefully!
2006: Eddie Butler – “Together We Are One”
After Shiri Maimon achieved an impressive fourth place in Kyiv, Israel secured a spot in the final for the 2006 contest. Israel’s representative in Athens was Eddie Butler, who had previously represented the country with “Happy Birthday” as part of the group Eden. This wasn’t a happy day for Eddie, as France was the only country to give Israel points and they finished second to last.
2007: Teapacks – “Push the Button”
Teapacks won Israel’s national selection with their controversial song “Push the Button”. The opening lyrics explicitly addressed security concerns and tensions in the Middle East: “The world is full of terror, if someone makes an error, he’s gonna blow us up to biddy biddy kingdom come.” The EBU accepted the song to the contest anyway, and the group performed second in the biggest semifinal ever held. They failed to make an impact with the televoters. With only 17 points, they placed 24th in a field of 28.
2008: Boaz Mauda – “The Fire in Your Eyes”
Israel’s broadcaster selected Idol winner Boaz as their representative for Belgrade and staged a national selection to choose his song — out five songs he performed at Kdam 2008, “Ke’ilu Kan” emerged as the winner. Ahead of Eurovision it was renamed “The Fire in Your Eyes”. He finished ninth at the actual contest. Boaz made some good friends in Belgrade and subsequently released “Time to Pray” with Armenia’s Sirusho and Serbia’s Jelena Tomaševic.
2009: Noa & Mira Awad – “There Must Be Another Way”
For the first time ever, Israel sent an Israeli Arab to the contest. Mira Awad, born to an Israeli-Palestinian-Christian father, sang “There Must Be Another Way” together with Noa, an Israeli singer with a Yemenite background. Their song touched the hearts of Europeans and Israel placed 16th in the final.
2010: Harel Skaat – “Milim”
The IBA chose Israeli superstar Harel Skaat for Eurovision 2010 in Oslo. His song “Milim” was selected through Kdam Eurovision 2010, where it earned top marks from the jury and televoters. A pre-contest favourite, Israel finished 14th in the grand final. Harel was, however, crowned first runner-up in Eurovision’s Next Top Male Model.
2011: Dana International – “Ding Dong”
Dana International shook all of Europe when she became the first transgender person to win the Eurovision Song Contest in 1998. The “Diva” made a comeback by winning Kdam Eurovision 2011 with her self-composed song “Ding Dong”. Once again Dana performed in a dress designed by Jean-Paul Gaultier, but she failed to repeat her previous success, placing only 15th in the semifinal.
2012: Izabo – “Time”
After Miss International’s poor result, Israeli broadcaster IBA decided to choose their representative internally. Indie rock band Izabo went to Baku with their song “Time”. They placed 13th in the semifinal.
2013: Moran Mazor – “Rak bishvilo”
Israel’s selection for Eurovision 2013 — and its budget — was bigger than it had been in years. After three semifinals, a second chance round and a big final, Moran Mazor was declared the winner. During her semi-final at Eurovision she sang her dramatic number “Rak bishvilo” completely in Hebrew and wore a deliciously hip-hugging mermaid dress. The evening ended in tears after she failed to reach the final, placing only 14th.
2014: Mei Finegold – “Same Heart”
A special committee was put together to find Israel’s next representative, and after shortlisting sixteen artists, Mei Finegold received the gig. She sang three songs in the national selection to choose the song, and “Same Heart” won with 55% of the SMS vote. Israel quickly emerged as one of the favourites to win in Copenhagen. Eurofans wept when Israel failed to advance. Later it was revealed that Israel only placed 14th in the semifinal.
2015: Nadav Guedj – “Golden Boy”
Israel did not want to fail to qualify for a fourth year in a row. So they turned to the already popular televised singing competition HaKokhav HaBa. Sixteen-year-old Nadav Guedj was selected to sing for Israel through the show, and his song “Golden Boy” was internally selected by committee. It was the first Israeli entry ever sung completely in English. During his semi-final at Eurovision, producers kept the suspense high by leaving Israel as the final country to be announced for the final. Israel later earned a very decent ninth place in the grand final.