Today’s news that Romania has been excluded from the Eurovision Song Contest 2016 — due to TVR‘s not being able to pay its 15-million euro debt to the European Broadcasting Union — has come as a shock to many.
But perhaps no one was more shocked or saddened than Ovidiu Anton himself. The artist, who was supposed to take the stage in Stockholm after winning Selectia Nationala back in March, has reacted via Facebook, in a statement that expresses both sadness and anger:
Dear friends, I have also finally received the official news. I am trying to smile and not to be carried away, but… it’s unfair. I will remain the same honest artist, the same fighter who won both the jury and public vote, but at the same time I am forced to declare myself defeated. By whom? And why? Is it fair??? I don’t know how to answer this nicely, so I should better keep silent.
The EBU meanwhile have issued a number of statements on the matter, including Ingrid Deltenre, the general director of the EBU and Jon Ola Sand, the Executive Supervisor of Eurovision:
— SVT Eurovision (@SVTEurovision) April 22, 2016
Sonia Argint, Romania’s spokesperson, also expressed her disappointment with the news.
Eurovision stars react
Mihai Traistariu (Romania 2006)
The “Tornero” singer, also known as M I H A I, voiced his shock as well and announced that he was ready to bankroll Romania’s participation in 2016 with 100,000 euro, had he won with “Paradisio”.
Sergey Lazarev (Russia 2016)
When all things that have nothing to do with music effect an artist there is only one thing I can say : Unfair. I believe that the least that can be done now is to invite @ovidiuanton to perform as a guest during the final of #Eurovision Out of respect to all his efforts. #eurovision2016 #cometogether #Romania #Russia #repost_support
A photo posted by Sergey Lazarev (@lazarevsergey) on
Amir (France 2016)
— Amir (@Amir_Off) April 22, 2016
Poli Genova (Bulgaria 2016)
— Poli Genova (@poligenova) April 22, 2016
Lidia Isaac (Moldova 2016)
Eurovision fans react
Fan reactions have also been pouring in via social media. Many of them declare themselves stunned by the “unfair” decision to expel TVR from Eurovision, just a couple of weeks before the contest.
— ESCSamuel (@ESCSamuel) April 22, 2016
Must be so awful for Ovidiu. I’d be so devastated if the BBC had to withdraw from Eurovision 3 weeks before. I feel so sorry for Romania! ?
— Lukee! #Icebreaker (@lukejames1995) April 22, 2016
poor romania :/ feel so bad for the artist. after all the promotions and practice to hear you can’t participate must be awful #eurovision
— ayla (@taolyze) April 22, 2016
— Eurotrash (@eurovisio_trash) April 22, 2016
I am so gutted for Ovidiu. This has been handled in the worst possible way for everyone involved and it’s a disgrace to the contest.
— Disco Queen of SMR (@elainovision) April 22, 2016
— scandipop (@scandipop) April 22, 2016
A petition has been set in support of Ovidiu Anton to perform at Eurovision here.
More to come…
Watch all of our Ovidiu Anton video footage: