Hovi Star (Photographer: Ronen Akerman)

After a long season of auditions, duels, eliminations and plenty of sob stories, Israel finally staged the final of The Next Star for Eurovision 2016 on Thursday evening. Four acts sang, but in the end it was Hovi Star who emerged as the winner, earning the right to sing for Israel at Eurovision 2016.

Hovi Star (real name: Hovi Sekulets) won with his take on “Made of Stars”. The lyrics and music come from Doron Medalie, who also wrote  “Golden Boy” in 2015.

You can watch the full show of the Israeli national final on this link, if you missed it, or just the videos of the performances – on this link.

Judging from the comments in our comments section below, this song lacks the golden shine of its predecessor. Indeed, we’re already getting wind that fans are writing to Doron and Hovi Star, asking them to come up with a new song for Eurovision or a serious revamp of the current song.

 

The Winner: Hovi Star – “Made of Stars”

Our first reaction to Hovi Star’s win

Reprise: Hovi Star – “Made of Stars”

The full results

In the first round, the artists performed a cover of their choice in two duels:Final israel next star 2016

Duel 1: Ella Daniel VS. Hovi Star

  • Ella Daniel – “Happy” (Pharrell Williams) – Score: 67% (4 judges votes)
  • Hovi Star – “Stay with me” (Sam Smith) – Score: 79% (4 judges votes)

Duel 2: Gil Hadash VS. Nofar Salman

  • Gil Hadash – “The Show Must Go On” (Queen) – Score: 49% (1 judge vote)
  • Nofar Salman – “Mangina” / “Melody” (Eden Ben Zaken) – Score: 76% (2 judges votes)

The judges were then asked to pick one of the losers to continue in the next round. They picked Ella Daniel, meaning Gil Hadash was eliminated. And before

she even got to sing her Eurovision song!

 

The super final

In the second round, the artists performed their original Eurovision songs and the public alone determined the results via a mobile voting application. The results were as follows:

  1. Hovi Star – “Made of Stars” – 68%
  2. Nofar Salman – “Made of Stars” – 67%
  3. Ella Daniel – “Somebody Out There” – 58%

 

Second place: Nofar Salman – “Made Of Stars”

Third place: Ella Daniel – “Somebody Out There”

The finalists cover of “Heroes”

Interval act: Nadav Guedj – “Jump” & “Golden Boy”

About Hovi Star

Hovi Star is 29 years old and he is not new to the Israeli audience as he took part in the seventh season of the TV talent show Kokhav Nolad (A Star Is Born), together with Mei Finegold (Israel’s representative for Eurovision 2014). He didn’t make it to the final, but finished in a very respectful seventh place. Hovi was the only artist in the show that confessed that his dream is to go to Eurovision and that’s why he entered the competition in Israel.

According to rumours, Hovi first picked a song that he wrote and wanted to perform it in the final. But the professional committee didn’t approve, so he had to pick a song from those songs already shortlisted by the committee.

The song “Made Of Stars” was written and composed by Doron Medalie, the guy behind “Golden Boy”.
The song was performed by two artists on the final, Hovi and Nofar, each of them delivering a different arrangement.

As Dana International said:“Hovi is breathing Eurovision” (She also posted on Facebook after Hovi’s victory: “VIVO LA DIVO”) and you could notice it from the wind machine during his performance.
Hovi knows Eurovision very well and he’s also really into swarovski, so we can expect a grandiose show in May on the Eurovision stage.

Can Israel again make it to the grand final of Eurovision 2016 in Stockholm? Maybe even win? Let us know in the comments box below!

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TheFlow
Guest
TheFlow

I am positively surprised! Sounds better live than the studio version, but he really needs to turn off the wind machine!!! My favorite Israeli entry since Milim

Charles
Guest
Charles

@ct_greece: What is the point and relevance of sending the same Golden-crap every single year? Don’t you have enough of that in either Greece or Turkey? Isn’t that enough? Diversity darling, diversity and being able to listen to different things is a gift.

Shir
Guest
Shir

I think hovi is a really good singer and performer but his song isn’t good, it’s not very bad either but it will not stand out this year like last year’s golden boy. I just think that hovi was a lot of people’s favorite, and that’s why he was chosen . it was clear that Ella will not overcome hovi even though her song was my favorite. As for nofar and her version of made of stars , it may be more special and different, but I just hate her voice, she’s way too young and immature. Anyways it’s a… Read more »

Leaf
Guest
Leaf

The wind machine had me cracking the entire way through the song….. “Same heart” and “Rak Bishvilo” failed so I don’t think this song stands a chance.

Erin
Guest
Erin

There is a complete mismatch between Hovi’s outgoing and colorful personality to this rather dull and irrelevant Broadway musical or Panto reject song…If this is the song he really fought for all along, as the production and the songwriter want us to believe, then there was obviously very little to choose from. Nobody in his right mind is going to reward Hovi for acting like a Diva on stage with his unique hairstyle, fashion sense and bling no matter how distinctive, eye catching and ‘eargasming’ it can be. He’s likely gonna play the gay card in Stockholm in terms of… Read more »

PP
Guest
PP

My TOP 10 of 26
1.Latvia
2.Ukraine
3.Norway
4.Italy (they will maybe change the song or cut to 3 min)
5.France
6.Germany
7.Hungary
8.Spain
9.Belgium
10.Cyprus
…..
22.Slovenia
23.Moldova
24.Malta (they will change the song)
25.United Kingdom
26.Ireland

sg
Guest
sg

I hate this song.. this is so bad

shusha
Guest
shusha

Hovi will make it to the finals. End up 1-12. In the finals.
My fav so far are (first listening). 🙂
Spain
France
Finland
Belgium
Latvia
Austria
************
Hoping Austrelia will have a great song. I vote for ausrelia last year for guy.
And I am waiting for the sweden. And Holand.

shachar
Guest
shachar

with all due respect. nopar was my favorite but in the live show only hovi deliverd the goods.
the song is bad. no final for us. hovi and nopar didnt get 70% from the vote !!!! in a show that 70% is the minemom to pass the israeli public voted in the legs. doron madely dont know how to write balad. whats work well in golden boy fail this time. i hope that someone will wake up and change the song/
hovi is a very good singer he deserve a chance. a good one

John Christian
Guest
John Christian

I am completely neutral. I know that many of you hate his entry, but when you listen, you must assert your theory. For me, Israel is on the middle side of the spectrum.

mawnck
Guest
mawnck

“is this the worst year ever??”

Nah. There are many years I haven’t seen, but I can confirm that 1978 was absolutely horrendous.

Alex
Guest
Alex

At least it wasn’t the woman who was singing this… man, I don’t know how she even came close to Hovi, who has a much better voice.

Hovi has a great voice, actually, but the song is no Golden Boy, sadly. It’s pretty unexciting for the most part.

Tha
Guest
Tha

It sounds like an opening of an anime show.
So bad.

Briekimchi
Guest
Briekimchi

Bad song.
Nofar’s version was a bit better but I guess Israel did not really enjoy the Eurovision final last year and do not want a repeat.

Foxreyna
Guest
Foxreyna

NOFAR NOO. I even included her song in my video!

Eyal
Guest
Eyal

My least favourite of the four. Generic kitsch. It won’t do well as it will get lost in a sea of songs since nothing about it particularly stands out.

Denis
Guest
Denis

Don’t really know what to think about it. Very folk-inspired. Not bad but not good either.
Last year Israel was great, a guilty pleasure. Still listen to it. This year I think they will struggle. Not strong enough entry to convince the masses.

cheesecake
Guest
cheesecake

I really hated the studio version, but I got to admit that this is better live.
However I’m still not really happy with this.

mocosuburbian
Guest
mocosuburbian
mocosuburbian
Guest
mocosuburbian

this was the only one of the four i hated
he’s so camp it hurts
i was hoping for a year without a song like serbia 2015/romania 2013 but oh well

Marshpan
Guest
Marshpan

This year’s Eurovision trend: dudes with raspy voices and strange hair!

I may be in the minority here, but I didn’t particularly mind it as a song for the Eurovision? I wasn’t fussed by the studio, but it was brought alive on stage. In terms of qualifying, I’m not sure if it will, considering that France (who usually gives Israel a few) is voting in the first semi, while Israel is in the second… not to mention that there will be stronger songs in the second semi than this one. But nevertheless, work that windmachine, Hovi!

esc1234
Guest
esc1234

i think the song needs a revamp, it has potential but something is missing on the refrain

Graph
Guest
Graph

This is a good entry. I was not so fond of the first half of the song, but it builds up really well and the ending is great!

Criticca
Guest
Criticca

Not my cup of tea sorry Israel. Great voice though kind of like Middle Eastern Sam Smith.

#GayBoy
Guest
#GayBoy

Nofar’s version was so much better, they just wanted a gay boy to represent them..

Iberian
Guest
Iberian

Gosh, you people are sooo annoying. This is a great song and a guy with an amazing voice. I will never get why you people are so bloody negative all the freaking time. So tiring. Well done, Israel! Fantastic choice!

Mark dowd
Guest
Mark dowd

is this the worst year ever??

Alex
Guest
Alex

Oh god..
why Israel, WHY? the live version is far better than the studio one, but still.. Gil or Nofar would be such a better choice! I’m afraid Israel stays in semis this year. If Israel proceeds to the final, it can be nothing better than a bottom 3!

#Shiri4Israel2017

ct_greece
Guest
ct_greece

He is a very good singer but this is no “Golden boy”. I hoped Israel learned its lesson and would provide us with a party anthem this year as well but, alas, they decided to send another generic and characterless entry. At least Nofar would have given it some middle-eastern character…

My top-24 so far:

#1 Ukraine
#2 Austria
#3 Hungary
#4 France
#5 Switzerland
#6 Slovenia
#7 Latvia
#8 Iceland
#9 Spain
#10 Cyprus
#11 Norway
#12 Finland
#13 Malta
#14 Denmark
>>>#15 Israel
#16 Armenia
#17 Germany
#18 Ireland
#19 Moldova
#20 Belgium
#21 Bosnia Herzegovina
#22 UK
#23 Georgia
#24 Belarus

Skandar
Guest
Skandar

The format is weird. How can you eliminate one act when he/she has not showed their full Eurovision performance?

Paul D.
Guest
Paul D.

And yes, he had the best version of ”Made of Stars”. Nofar’s version was painfull to hear

Paul D.
Guest
Paul D.

People are overreacting, this is certainly not bad and Hovi sounds really good. In my opinion he’s a better singer than Nadav just saying…

Pastora Soler haha!
Guest
Pastora Soler haha!

Horrible but best choice. The 4 songs were crap.

Say bye to the final

Racal
Guest
Racal

I read the comments before listening to the song, so I expected something really bad… But I actually like this! A nice pop/rock song, it builds up to a nice end and his vocals sound impressive! Nice change compared to the mess that Golden Boy was (I now it placed in the top 10, but that’s no quality standard. How many awful songs have placed in the top 10 over the years?).

Good luck Israel!

Robyn Gallagher
Editor

I wasn’t too fussed by the studio version, but it really came alive on stage. More importantly, it’s a lot stronger than a lot of the other songs in the second semi. It should easily qualify.

Anfrers
Guest

Where can i watch the other performances?

Idan
Guest
Idan

I’m sorry Europe,
I voted for Ella… 🙁

Sannie
Guest
Sannie

Sorry Israel, but this is awful.. No final for sure.

shay
Guest
shay

When I first heard the studio versions I was so disappointed because Hovi my favorite was terrible but it grown on me and I was OK with it and thought third place but then the live version
He is a performer and was amazing choice

blondboybc
Guest
blondboybc

Preferred Nofar and her version over Hovi, but he does have a good, unique voice. But, the song is lacking somehow, and may struggle to reach the final. May do well with juries, but not televoters. Bring back Mei Feingold!

MGR
Guest
MGR

For me he was most obvious option. Last girl was very weak and boring, and advantage should be bigger.

bartosz
Guest
bartosz

Very bad choice. Almost as bad as last year. Nofar was much better than Hovi, the orient sound in song added a lot of beauty to it. Instead we have another bland song this year…

Charles
Guest
Charles

Trying to look like post Do-you-really-wanna-hurt-me-boy-george with the former chubby face of Sam Smith and wanting so bad to go Eurovision is … so cliché at this stage, but at least everybody now knows why the men in the front rows left their wives at home … moving on: not a bad singer despite the Sam Smith/Boy George looks but a very bland song with nothing to be impressed by … at least there is no turkish/greek cheesy chorus in it this time.

Laburnum
Guest
Laburnum

Nofar had the better version………….and that wasn’t great…

MTD
Guest
MTD

From the “Golden boy” to the “plain bad, mediocre, worst type of song” song.

Sane_Israeli
Guest
Sane_Israeli

Sorry Europe.

Iberian
Guest
Iberian

Wonderful choice! I’m so happy these days with the choices in France and, now, Israel. These are wonderful songs… So many favorites now, France, Israel, Germany, Poland (if Margaret), so many great artists. Looking forward to the contest.

omgosh
Guest
omgosh

Thanks god its not a next woman. Great choice Israel, we all hope for only men and bands in last 8 countries.

Jacob
Guest
Jacob

Straight to 2nd last on my list.

MTD
Guest
MTD

Well, hello Israel and bye Israel. Good luck staying in your Semi.