Yesterday the Wiwi Jury — our in-house panel of musical unprofessionals — travelled to FYR Macedonia. Our destination was the picturesque Lake Ohrid, where we sat at a lakeside cafe and discussed Kaliopi‘s song “Dona”. Were we delighted by “Dona”? Or was it a disappointment? Read on to find out!

Kaliopi – “Dona”

“Dona” reviews

Bogdan: My first impression of “Dona” was positive and I was surprised to see so much disappointment in the fandom. Despite the dated production, its chorus is unique and easy to remember. Not to mention that Kaliopi gets points for singing again in her native language and for choosing songwriting talent at home, quite literally. “Dona” will fare much better in the contest that many fans give it credit.

Score: 6.5/10

George: God, I have too many things to say for this song. It’s a really amazing and powerful song with Balkan sounds (thanks, Romeo) and quite meaningful lyrics. This is my second favourite this year and I think it will do really well in the final. Kaliopi slays and her wonderful voice makes the song even better. I know the live version is going to be even better and thus, I have really high expectations.

Score: 10/10

Angus: I didn’t like “Crno i Belo”, so “Dona” already had a hard job to do, before the crazy old school production kicked in and Kalipoi started wailing. The one thing the song has going for it is that the hook is crazy catchy, which totally worked for Kaliopi in 2012, and she has hella years experience on her hands. Unfortunately, however the rest of the song is weak and it feels like Kaliopi would have benefitted from something more upbeat.

Score: 2/10

Antranig: “Crno i Belo” is very close to being my all-time favourite song, so naturally I was excited about Kaliopi’s return. I was very disappointed hearing “Dona” for the first time. It has grown on me immensely since then but I don’t think this will be memorable when millions of viewers hear it for the first time in May. That said, Kaliopi missing out on the final would be an unthinkable travesty.

Score: 7.5/10

Chris: Oh, Kaliopi. Rumours about her return were going around all the way back in Vienna, so naturally the hype machine meant “Dona” was up against it from the start. Her standing in the Eurovision fan community will not be replicated in the general televote, I fear, and “Dona” simply isn’t as good a song as “Crno i belo” was. There’s no real wow moment and instead we’re left with a very able vocalist making the best out of a song that’s just…”there”.

Score: 5/10

Deban: “Dona” latches onto an emotional wave conjuring a deep sense of longing and gratitude. Authentic in its form, this entry was penned by Kaliopi’s former husband to mark her return to the contest. Although the lyrical structure may appear repetitive,  Kaliopi’s expression and rawness makes it magic.

Score: 7/10

Josh: I’m super disappointed in this effort from Kaliopi. “Crno i belo” was one of my absolute favourites in 2012 and perhaps my standards were set too high. “Dona” is like a dated ’80s rock ballad and the only thing I can honestly remember in the song is “Dona, dona, dona, dona, dona…”. I don’t think that will be enough to save FYR Macedonia in the semi-final.

Score: 4.5/10

Padraig: In 2012, Kaliopi delivered just a little too much Balkan realness for my sensitive ears to handle. Nonetheless, “Crno I Belo” was imprinted on my mind for evermore. Not even an amnesiac could forget that supersonic screech. Fast forward to the present day and she’s offering us a vastly different entry. “Dona” makes for a pleasant listen and is typical Kaliopi. However, the Macedonian singer is so deep in her safe zone that she may as well be inside a playpen. The track takes absolutely no risks, resulting in a fairly nondescript three minutes. It also possesses an old-fashioned feel and could easily be substituted with her first Eurovision entry 20 years ago. I never thought I’d say it, but I miss Kaliopi’s screech.

Score: 4.5/10

Rezo: A solid and well composed melody with a magnificent voice, this is what I can say about the song. Kaliopi has undoubtedly a great voice and her song grows on me because of that.

Score: 4/10

Robyn: Just like “Crno i belo”, “Dona” will have limited appeal to countries outside the Balkans. But that Balkan appeal was enough to get FYR Macedonia 12th place in 2012, so I can see it somewhat working again in 2016. “Dona” is an emotional ballad, expertly delivered by Kaliopi. While it doesn’t do anything for me, I still admire its artistry.

Score: 5.5/10

William: I don’t get the hate. You say dated, I say nostalgic. You say it does nothing for you, I say it’s massaging my G-spot! Kaliopi, a diva of the first order, excels live. A digitally re-mastered video cannot convey her power or her unique voice, which reminds me of an opera singer who has smoked for several years. This is not a slight, but rather an attempt to describe the indescribable. This song will fare far better than many Eurofans think. She’s too good of a performer for it not to.

Score: 6/10

William C: Kaliopi is back, and I am so happy that she is singing for FYR Macedonia again. While I loved “Crno i belo”, “Dona” just does nothing for me. Comparing the two, I just feel disconnected to “Dona”. It’s a lot more old style, and I find the chorus rather annoying. However, Kaliopi is a fantastic singer live, so maybe she can impress everyone with an epic performance. It’s nice to have a Balkan ballad in the competition though, but will the rest of Europe agree?

Score: 4/10

In the Wiwi Jury we have 40 jurors but only have room for 12 reviews. The remaining 28 scores are below.

Anthony: 7/10

Bernardo: 4/10

Cristian: 7/10

David: 8.5/10

Dayana: 6/10

Denise: 7.5/10

Diego: 6/10

Edd: 7.5/10

Forrest: 2.5/10

Gökhan: 3/10

Jason: 6/10

Judit: 5.5/10

Kristin: 7.5/10

Liam: 6/10

Luis: 6.5/10

Marek: 8.5/10

Maria: 7.5/10

Mario: 5/10

Max: 4.5/10

Mike: 5/10

Mikhail: 6.5/10

Patrick: 7/10

Renske: 6/10

Sami: 2/10

Sinan: 5.5/10

Steinunn: 6.5/10

Tobias: 2/10

Zakaria: 7.5/10

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The highest and lowest scores are dropped prior to calculating the average score. This is to remove outliers and reduce potential bias. We have removed a low of 2 and a high of 10.

WIWI JURY SCORE: 5.75/10

SEE OUR CURRENT EUROVISION 2016 REVIEWS AND RANKINGS

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CookyMonzta
Guest
CookyMonzta

@irish esc: I’m almost afraid to say this, but that about sums it up. 🙁 I was expecting something more unique.

Be that as it may It is #35 in my first evaluation, a non-qualifier.

Ohi
Guest
Ohi

My friends are convinced she is singing about a kebab…

Holden
Guest
Holden

An excellent singer with a bad song, 5.5 / 10

Frysk
Guest
Frysk

Nice voice, she should do something with that talent!

mawnck
Guest
mawnck

Karma Karma Karma Karma …

Arina
Guest
Arina

Kaliopi is just the best this year. my number one <3

Darren
Guest
Darren

Decent attempt from FYR Macedonia, definitely the most underrated country at ESC. “Dona” is a nice song, I don’t have many things to say about it only that it feels somewhat flat compared to kaliopi’s 2012 attempt. I don’t know if this will qualify, it’s hard to tell with FYRM but it is a nice song anyway. 6/10 🙂

Bastian
Guest
Bastian

It’s in my top 5. I just LOOOOVE this song. Although i cant understand the language, the song touches my soul. I can feel her emotion in this song. I hope it qualifies.

irish esc
Guest
irish esc

donut donut donut donut lol won’t make final hahahahahaha

irish esc
Guest
irish esc

donut dount dount dount lol won’t make final hahahahahaha

Millhouse
Guest
Millhouse

Overdramatic, all it gets to you is donna, donna, donna!

Doesn’t seem to be final’s stuff.

Ben Rafter
Guest
Ben Rafter

4.5/10
Stunning voice. Extremely outdated production. She is spectacular live though.

Briekimchi
Guest
Briekimchi

Good on her for coming back but her selection is a big step back for Macedonia. They have sold out after sending two really good acts in the last two years to going for a sure thing with Kaliopi and unfortunately, the end result is what you would expect from asking a 49 year old woman to compete at Eurovision!
It is getting a pass because of who it is but if this song was produced by the UK or another artist, it would be rightfully savaged.
2/10

Héctor
Guest
Héctor

At first, I thought ‘Dona’ was going to be overrated, but actually I agree with this score. I love Kaliopi as much as I love ‘Crno i Belo’, but while this song was modern, dark, catchy and impressive, ‘Dona’ is dated and boring. Kaliopi charisma and voice elevates it all, but it’s the same situation as Poland: good singer, bad song. I’m not sure about FYROM’s chances to qualify… As I said the song isn’t good at all, but Kaliopi makes it better, maybe her fame in the Balkans and her experience will help, but will struggle to qualify.

Anton
Guest
Anton

DONNA DONNA DONNA DONNA DONNA PRIMA DONNA YEAH!!!

Colin
Guest
Colin

Dona is a nice song, well sung and with touching lyrics.

Probably 7/10 for me.

love the baltic boys
Guest
love the baltic boys

Donny Donny Donny that’s all I can hear

Marco
Guest
Marco

I’m not a fan of her,not at all,but even if the song is so old fashioned I started to like it a little bit after her live version from Moscow.
I don’t think she will qualify….she’s overrated by ESC fans,’cause yeah… it’s Kaliopi.
Crno I Belo>>>>>>>.Dona by far

YAAAAS
Guest
YAAAAS

DONUT DONUT DONUT

Jerome
Guest
Jerome

4.5/10
How does this song go again? All I can remember is her repeating “Dona” non-stop. Her vocals are probably the only redeeming element here.

Euro16
Guest
Euro16

“Dona” is better than “What’s the pressure” ? :O :O :O :O
CRAZYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYY !!!
I want to sleep while listening !

boyan08
Guest
boyan08

I cant understand why people call this a song from 80’s?Latvia’s entry is older than this!People don’t like it because is in Macedonian.The all artists together from ESC 2016 aren’t good as Kaliopi.And Eurovision Song Contest 2016 will be the last time that Macedonia participated!

Tom
Guest
Tom

I find it hard to read this. I adore Kaliopi as a singer, she is vocally brilliant and “Bato” still gives me shivers. That aside I’ll try and be objective. I can see why people think the song sounds dated and some think it sounds nostalgic. To me it’s dated and a bit on the San Remo 1985 side. For the same reason my partner loves it and is up there as one of his faves. I constantly hear doughnut when she says Dona but then I find myself subconsciously singing it and knowing the words… I wasn’t a fan… Read more »

Bhrister Cjorkman
Guest
Bhrister Cjorkman

5/10
32/43

I think she has a chance to qualify but it doesn’t appeal me much at all. Feels very out of place.

Yudhistira Mahasena
Guest

Kaliopi should qualify to the final and end Macedonia’s non-qualifying streak since 2013. She was the last Macedonian entry to qualify her country to the final and I want her to do it again. Her rocky voice is stuck in my head right now and her hairstyle is decent.

8/10

Digital Style
Guest
Digital Style

Something about this song sounds really magical – I love how they combine the violins with rock music. It works so well. Crno I Belo was better but this is good. I did like last year’s song more – it had more meaning and touched me whereas this seems a bit less emotional, but it’s still a decent song.

AG
Guest
AG

Personally, I have never really liked Kaliopi’s music style, but she is really big in the Balkans and I understand why. She is such a charismatic artist with a great voice and they way she delivers her songs is stunning. We all remember 2012, Crno i belo was like “meh” for me, but when I saw her performance in the semi final I was like “OMG”. At the end she was my top 10. I don’t know what to expect from Dona, I am glad she came with something different. I have to see her staging to make decision, but… Read more »

Racal
Guest
Racal

I don’t like the song and I don’t think it’ll qualify (certainly doesn’t deserve to), but there’s one thing to highlight: I can’t believe that woman is 49 years old! She looks stunning!

Anton
Guest
Anton

Alex
You can watch Kaliopi’s live from Moscow Pre-party. It was very powerful!

Azotman
Guest
Azotman

Bonsoir Stockholm,

Voici mon vote :
10/10
10 points pour Kaliopi !!!

Cette chanson est magnifique, un vrai chef d’oeuvre, on vibre dès les premières notes. J’adore et je me demande comment on fait pour ne pas aimer cette chanson. Chacun peut se faire sa propre opinion.
Bon courage pour la qualification !!!

Maxime

Nicky91
Guest
Nicky91

I Like this song, Kaliopi is also a good live performer, i’ve heard a first live version in Moscow, it sounded very good

yeah I Like this song very much, having said that and Kaliopi for me being the best live performer in eurovision this year i think along with Poli Genova and Ira Losco

i would score this song a well deserved 9.5/10

Pollaski
Guest
Pollaski

I cannot get into this song at all. The verses are unremarkable, but the chorus is down right irritating, and while I love a good female rock voice, her sandpapery vocals aren’t cutting the mustard. I wasn’t doing much Eurovision back in 2012, so I don’t know how this compares to Kaliopi’s last entry, but if it’s anything similar in quality, FYROM made a huge mistake in bringing her back. Forget making the finals, for me it just avoids making the Bottom 10.

RANK: 33rd

Alex
Guest
Alex

Rezo, you seem to be rating out of 5 rather than out of 10…

I also think this song is a bit of a letdown since I was expecting more, but I pretty much agree with Bogdan’s review. Nonetheless, I eagerly await the live performance. Kaliopi had the best live performance of 2012 and there’s no reason to expect much different this year! 🙂

Anton
Guest
Anton

Wow! Amazing woman, amazing voice and amazing song! And not in English! Very brave, bravo Kaliopi! Prima DONNA!!!

GEF
Guest
GEF

This is really hard to analyse. On the one hand I very much appreciate the nostalgic and authentic approach. On the other hand, I find the song extremely uncreativ and a bit forgettable. There have been so much better Balkan ballads in the recent years. Therefore this is unfortunately a below average entry for me.

My rating so far:

Play / Say Yay: 9,0
Ghost / Pioneer / Slow Down: 8,0
What’s the pressure?: 7,5
Goodbye: 7,0
Icebreaker: 6,5
Colour of your life: 6,0
Dona: 4,5
Falling Star: 4,0
Soldiers of Love: 3,0