We are just a few hours away from the final of Junior Eurovision 2016. With the usual pre-contest nerves as we wait to see who will walk away as the winner, we thought we’d calm ourselves by revisiting some favourites. Of course, we couldn’t just keep them to ourselves. So, we’re flooding y’all with the Wiwi Jury’s top ten favourite Junior Eurovision songs!
Now, a few provisions here of course. The Wiwi Jury started to rank the Junior Eurovision songs from 2012 onwards, so any song from before then unfortunately won’t be included. Sorry, Maria Isabel! Also, these were our pre-contest favourites and not, of course, who we’re saying would be the ultimate winner. With that out of the way, there’s just an honourable mention to be given out to Anna Trincher, who misses out on our top ten by just 0.02 points. That’s how close this was!
10. Gaia Cauchi — “The Start” (Malta 2013)
What We Said Then: With vocals that deserve to be compared to Tina Turner, little Gaia has the knockout punch that may just win her the contest. The song is slower than most and very unusual, it’s almost tailored more for the adult contest. Add on a really cute face to a powerhouse voice, and you might just have our next winner! Good job Malta! (Zach)
9. Krisia, Hasan & Ibrahim — “Planet of the Children” (Bulgaria 2014)
What We Said Then: I wouldn’t be surprised if this song won. It has a talented and charismatic singer, two gifted piano players and a great hook. Despite being a ballad, it still sounds like a children’s song, which is a bonus. And the piano bridge is a killer. Kudos to Bulgaria, they nailed it this year! (Bogdan)
8. Lina Kuduzovic — “Prva Ljubezen” (Slovenia 2015)
What We Said Then: This just screams Junior Eurovision perfection to me. Her vocals are really on point and I’m sure it’ll catch the attention of older viewers and jury members. That said, it still has a nice JESC vibe to it: that Disney princess instrumental is definitely going to catch young girls’ attention – and hopefully their votes. I wish the chorus were stronger, but nevertheless this is perhaps my favorite entry this year. (Bernardo)
7. kids.il — “Let The Music Win” (Israel 2012)
What We Said Then: An absolute triumph. This song is mature, catchy and touching. It’s as if they’re singing about the conflict that surrounds the state of Israel. I suspect these kids know more about fear and war and trauma than most of us. Surely it’s in their collective conscience? If they sing as well live as they do digitally re-mastered, I see this winning the jury vote. (William)
6. Bella Paige — “My Girls” (Australia 2015)
What We Said Then: This is easily my favourite song for JESC 2015. It’s a great modern pop anthem and is perfect for Bella’s amazing voice. Bella’s performances on The Voice Kids suggests she has what it takes to bring the house down in Sofia. This could deliver Australia a JESC victory. (Robyn)
5. Nadezhda Misyakova — “Sokal” (Belarus 2014)
What We Said Then: Wow! This is a really great song – in fact, it’s probably better than most of Belarus’ entries to the adult Eurovision! Nadezhda is clearly a very confident performer and she delivers the song brilliantly. I hope that the routine stays much the same for the contest itself, as it’s effective and doesn’t steal the spotlight from Nadezhda and her voice. I really can’t find anything major to fault with this one. (Chris)
4. Ula Lozar — “Nisi Sam” (Slovenia 2014)
What We Said Then: A-M-A-Z-I-N-G. What an EPIC intro, just love that! Ula sings in such a lovely way and it fits perfectly with the song. This is one of my favourite entries this year and I hope that she does really well. It’s probably the most adult song of the year. Such a beautiful entry that gives me goosebumps. (Ramadan)
3. Destiny Chukunyere — “Not My Soul” (Malta 2015)
What We Said Then: Young Destiny serves Aretha Franklin realness from the very first note. The song is well-paced, builds from verse to verse, and gives Destiny plenty of space to fill it with her enormous vocals and range. It hints at black spirituals from the American South and funky jives straight outta Motown. Yet this remains accessible to kids. They can’t take Destiny’s soul, and honey, they can’t take her voice either! My favourite song of the year. (William)
2. Sofia Fisenko & Water of Life Project — “Water of Life” (Russia 2016)
What We Said Then: “This revamped version breathes life into what was originally an excellent offering. Sofia Fisenko is an excellent team player who engages well with her backing vocalists, whilst capturing key moments to shine as a soloist.” (Deban)
1. Sophia Patsalides — “I Pio Omorfi Mera” (Cyprus 2014)
What We Said Then: There it is… my favourite of this edition of JESC – CYPRUS! First of all, I’m so happy that the Greek language is back (one of the most beautiful languages on earth!). Sophia is the little Ivi Adamou of this JESC but hopefully with better live vocals! The girl is really talented, amazingly beautiful and yeah that’s it – PERFECT! Kalí tihi Sophia! (Patrick)
In fact, of all the Wiwi Jury scores we’ve ever given out, Sophia ranks as the third highest of all time. That is some real true talent there. Those were our favourites across the Junior Eurovision juries, but who has been your favourite? Let us know in the comments section below!