Julia Samoilova Flame Russia Eurovision 2017

Yesterday, she hoped that “everything is going to change”. Today, Russia’s Julia Samoylova seems to have had her wish come true — to some degree at least. The EBU has offered Russia the opportunity to participate at this year’s contest via satellite, a notion we floated in our original news item.

This would mean Julia could perform from an arena outside of Ukraine, getting around the travel ban that was issued yesterday. This applies to both the second semi-final and the grand final, if Russia qualifies.

It’s an unprecedented move from the EBU, but one that follows this year’s theme of “Celebrate Diversity”. In a new statement issued today, EBU Executive Supervivor Jon Ola Sand says:

“We are continuing our dialogue with the Ukrainian authorities with the ambition to have all artists present to perform in host city, Kyiv, which is, of course, our preferred option. It is imperative that the Eurovision Song Contest remains free from politics and as such, due to the circumstances surrounding Julia’s travel ban, we have felt it important to propose a solution that transcends such issues. We have offered Channel One Russia the opportunity for Julia to perform live via satellite as it is the EBU’s intention that every broadcaster that has chosen to take part in the Eurovision Song Contest does so, as has been the case for all previous events in the contest’s history.”

However, within hours Ukraine’s Vice Prime Minister, Vyacheslav Kyrylenko, suggested on Twitter that any performance by Julia would not be broadcast, as it goes against Ukrainian law.

“The broadcast of Julia’s performance by Ukrainian TV channels is as much a violation of Ukrainian laws, as her entry to Ukraine. EBU should have thought about it.”

Channel One subsequently declined the opportunity.

Writing in a statement the broadcaster said: “We feel it’s a strange offer — remote participation — and that it contradicts the very meaning of the event.”

As our editor William said during a live interview on BBC Radio 4’s Front Row earlier this evening, performing via satellite may have sent the message that Julia was a second-class participant. You can listen to his take from 18:14 here.

Would it have been worth it?

Many Eurovision artists often state that the Eurovision “experience” of being on the ground is the highlight of their journey. This would NOT have been afforded to Julia with a satellite performance.

If Russia had opted to compete in this fashion, it may have silenced naysayers who suggested their entire decision was focused solely on politics.

At the same time, it could have hurt her chances. No live audience waving flags. No massive LED background. No cauldron of energy from which to draw from. It would have been a logistical nightmare.

Hopefully, there’s a chance that the travel ban is voided by the Ukrainian government.

This would show that the music truly does win out in what is meant to be a song contest, not a political battleground.

What do you think of the EBU’s offer? And what do you think of the Ukrainian and Russian reactions?

Let us know all your thoughts on the wiwibloggs app, or in the comments section below!

Follow all of our Russia Eurovision news here

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Anka
Guest
Anka

I must admit that I thoroughly enjoy this complete chaos at Eurovision 2017 that was triggered by catastrophic stupidity of the EBU last year. I predicted the mess this year and posted a few comments in that regard at the point when the EBU appointed the fail state – Ukraine – to host the contest. It was simply unreal how much Europeans and the EBU are ignorant with regards to severity of the situation in Ukraine. The EBU idiots thought that it was such a great idea to f#ck around with Russia, relentlessly robbing Russia and Lazarev of well-deserved victory… Read more »

Zebb
Guest
Zebb

@Nika, maybe you’d adress your reflections about ‘Russia at ESC’ and crimean stories to those who actually wrote appropriate comments? It just doesn’t comply with mine. -yawns-

Nika
Guest
Nika

@Zebb Julia was not politically engaged. If Russia had refused to participate at once it would be accused of being political prejudiced. If Russia chose Alexander Panayotov, it would have been charged as using the artist of Ukrainian origin in order to avoid booing. If Russia chose Sergey Lazarev again, it would be accused of using proven tricks and so on… Russia has chosen the artist who will stand to “celebrate diversity”. Nobody cared that she had performed in Crimea two years ago. I’ve visited Crimea 8 times in my life including 2 times since 2014 and I am anticipating… Read more »

Zebb
Guest
Zebb

@Nika, and where was the clue of people who decided to sent policitally-opposite engaged person on wheelchair to meet multiple Oxanas?

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[…] Source: SBS, Wiwibloggs […]

Nika
Guest
Nika

@Zebb
There is one thing that you probably haven’t got for now. Nobody will be safe in Ukraine whether Russian delegation is there or not. Look closely to Oksana. She is a typical representative of those people who support the current Ukrainian government and she is not alone. Unfortunately, this is the reality of today’s Ukraine. And whatever happens there you can be sure that Russia will be blaimed.

Zebb
Guest
Zebb

The one important thing – knowing how various media works and contributes for countries agenda there (both RU and politically torned UA), after clash it’s obvious that Julia sitting at home is a safe option for everyone. I’m not even defending her as politically engaged person, supported by artists who roots for unrecognised ‘republics’ on the east of Ukraine – big difference if compare them all to Lazarev, who succesfully avoids statements. Just recently one runaway russian politician has been killed in Kyiv, and recriminations immediately have raised between two countries, using killer’s past. Why not imagine if some ultra-nationalist(s)… Read more »

Ant
Guest
Ant

These threads have gotten so poisonous lately. Let’s just not take whole geopolitical mess more seriously than it deserves to be taken, and, above all, not take it personally. If Russia doesn’t participate, it’s a pity, but it’s fine, nothing won’t fall apart, like it didn’t last year with Romania. If they somehow do, well great then! Anyway, we should remain friendly and enjoy the favorite show as a community, I think, instead of spoiling it for ourselves

Whatever
Guest
Whatever

@ Western Observer : ”200+ comments bashing on Ukrain, but asking why is off topic… That says enough.”

You are not an western observer, you are Tom the russian troll, and you want to imply that those 200+ comments are against Ukraine.
If Putin will find out how weak you are as a troll, you will became food for his tigers.

Purple Mask
Guest
Purple Mask

@Whatever: Understood; I hear you. Apologies to everyone. 🙁

AngieP
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AngieP

@Sing
I’ve just read it a couple of hours ago. I’m aware. And I’m also sad for Julia! I hope she comes back next year!

Western Observer
Guest
Western Observer

200+ comments bashing on Ukrain, but asking why is off topic… That says enough.

Whatever
Guest
Whatever

@ Purple Mask

Just let people talk about what they want, and don’t act like you are moderator here. If you are the moderator just say so, but don’t patronize other European countries because you seem a little naive about recent history.

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[…] satellite, but Ukraine said “nope, that’s still illegal” and Russia said “you’re weird, no thanks.” So we’re not entirely sure if Russia will send Samoylova, or anyone, to the Contest […]

Purple Mask
Guest
Purple Mask

@Whatever: Ah, careful. You don’t know my personal history, so please don’t assume anything in that regard. Such a conversation is perhaps best accomplished in person. 🙂 My only point is that a Eurovision blog is designed to have relevant topics. Yulia’s ban/postponement from a song contest is the topic here. Threatening the whole of Europe with radiation is not. Russia’s military strategy is not. If these topics do become connected to this action, then it would be the end of everything anyhow. (That’s called “Armageddon.”) Let me put it this way: Would you like me to discuss the IRA… Read more »

Whatever
Guest
Whatever

@ Purple Mask

I understand you are from UK and you are talking about Oxana that I guess, lives in Ukraine. Maybe you should respect more persons that see war with their own eyes every day. It’s easy to say Love Love Peace Peace when Russia is not your neighbor.

Purple Mask
Guest
Purple Mask

@Whatever: Maybe, but, for example, when one commenter in the thread below starts asking if Europe is prepared to die from radiation poisoning(!), I respectfully suggest that the scope of the conversation has drifted into the far-flung fields of irrelevancy. (Unless of course the commenter was talking about a song like Teapack’s “Push The Button.” :D) Also, Eurovision is supposed to be peaceful in principal, so asking about Russia’s military tactics is totally off-the-chart irrelevant to the contest. As I said, there are other blogs for that sort of thing. Keep it loving. Keep it peaceful. Keep it Eurovision. Love… Read more »

Whatever
Guest
Whatever

@ Purple Mask

Is nothing wrong if Eurovision makes people think and talk.
Occidentali’s Karma has lyrics that make people think (personally I think that both monkeys and modern humans should be offended for being labeled ”primitives”)
1944 makes people think about history
Racism (Hungary) is politics too
LGBT is politics too
People talk.

Tom
Guest
Tom

@Whatever
I am a person who is interested in the events and I say what I think. I’m not Russian, I live in an EU country.

Purple Mask
Guest
Purple Mask

There’s plenty I could type about world politics. But I will not do that here.
This happens to be a Eurovision SONG CONTEST blog. If you’d like to discuss how Russia is doing politically and/or militarily, there are plenty of more appropriate forums and blogs to be doing this on. Please use those other sites instead.
Thank you.

Western Observer
Guest
Western Observer

no, just someone who wants to understand Russia. Eastern Europe is full of conflicts, Russia is always involved and never working on a solution…

Whatever
Guest
Whatever

Western Observer, are you Tom (the Russian troll) ?

Western Observer
Guest
Western Observer

I think the USSR wasn’t that well disbanded. There are still a lot of disputes on all borders and all the time Russia is involved and sorry Russians: your government isn’t doing that much to help out. How many efforts are put in diplomacy to get a permanent peace in Abchazia, Transnistria, South Ossetia, Chechnia, Nagorno Karabach? If there are significant efforts from apparently the only country in the region that is modern and not corrupt, they’re not hitting the media here. So please explain: what does Russia do to solve all these issues?

Whatever
Guest
Whatever

@ Pink Pussycat

Neighbor voting : UK – Ireland, Sweden – Norway, ….
Because Eastern neighbor voting, Western neighbor voting doesn’t work anymore.
Tragedy !

Whatever
Guest
Whatever

The last day for submitting the song and artist was March 12. After that day the official Eurovision CD is produced, so Russia can’t change anything now, exactly what Russia wanted.
And diversity is about music, not about people.
Why not bringing isis in the name of diversity ?

Pink Pussycat
Guest
Pink Pussycat

Ah ESC was so much better without all these ex USSR countries. They brought only trouble : neighbour voting , political issues , scandals, bad hosting ( ukraine is an example ) etc. And each year at least 3 of those countries end up in top 5 all thanks to neighbour voting. So unfair. Other countries really don’t have a chance.

We love leds, visuals, air fans, divas, English and dated ballads!
Guest
We love leds, visuals, air fans, divas, English and dated ballads!

About Ukraine, a parlament creates and amends laws. They csn also create exceptions. Saying the law is the law is kind of stupid. They could allow Julia in if there was a good will to solve this issue. But there isnt. After this, both Ukraine and Russia should withdraw this contest until they understand what it is about: appreciate diversity and respect it.

fikri
Guest
fikri

@alexander: spot on. 😆

We love leds, visuals, air fans, divas, English and dated ballads!
Guest
We love leds, visuals, air fans, divas, English and dated ballads!

If they decline all alternatives… Bye Bye Russia! And you guys, no more votes for countries not politically nature enough to host an event of diversity like ESC.

wiwiman
Guest
wiwiman

@Shish Agree. When something happens in Russia, Russians don’t blame on “american hackers”, “pentagon agents” and so on. That’s why Russia is getting stronger day by day. Attribution Bias at its finest. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Attribution_bias

Whatever
Guest
Whatever

@ Shish

You are connecting random dots.

Alexander
Guest
Alexander

Oxana: “it’s funny how Tom have spent 2 days and nights to write various nonsence non stop”

That’s exactly what you’ve been doing for the past two years, isn’t it? C’mon call me a Russian troll now. 🙂

Shish
Guest
Shish

@Oxana It’s funny how you have been spending all your life on depending your corrupt, under-educated, sh*tty government. I love Ukraine, but you defend neither Ukraine, nor Ukrainians. You defend the government that has brainwashed you and millions of other Ukrainians. They say “We bomb Donbass, because we are fighting against Russian occupants”. You don’t ask them “Why aren’t you bombing Crimea. There are Russians there as well?”. They say “we have to make the tariffs and prices higher”, you don’t ask them “How can a pensioner live with 40 dollars per month?” (well they can live because their sons… Read more »

Windy
Guest
Windy

People who are saying that Julia has violated the law and should be punished cause law is law… you def. don’t know that the same festival in Crimea Julia was attending was also attended by several other russian artists (Bjanka, Julia Karaulova). None of them were punished and continue to have concerts in Ukraine. Julia was banned only because she was anounced as russian representative.
Moreover previously blaclisted russian acts visited Ukraine in case of emergency.
Taking this into consideration I highly doubt the nessesity of baning Samoilova

Shish
Guest
Shish

@guranda because it was a corrupt parasite.

Whatever
Guest
Whatever

Romania was disqualified because of debts to EBU but it was almost in the last moment, some fans accuse EBU that could have said earlier that 2016 is the deadline.

Now I have a question : can somebody say what Yulia said about gender equality?
Europe needs some quotes of her, how are we suppose to search in Russian language and alphabet ?

guranda
Guest
guranda

can someone explain me why Romania was withdrawn last year

Rufio Feelwix
Guest
Rufio Feelwix

Screw Russia. No sympathy whatsoever. Julia, who seems lovely, broke a Ukrainian law. Ukrainian laws superceed Eurovision, LOL!

Russia is very anti-Europe and it constantly shady. Maybe they’ll boycott forever. I’ve enjoyed their songs and artists, but they’re responsible for this mess here.

Russia, don’t let the door hit ya, where the good lord split ya.

Oxana
Guest
Oxana

it’s funny how Tom (or maybe his name actually Ivan from Lugandonia or from Crimea or even from Moscow) have spent 2 days and nights to write various nonsence non stop and not a single person have noticed him. he stopped to eat and sleep in his zeal to PROVE his point… I wonder, maybe he’s just writing it in invisible ink or something? c’mon people, you have to prase him at least for his persistence 🙂 I feel he’s about to cry because none of you (even who hates Ukraine) don’t give a dmn about his hard work 🙂… Read more »

azaad
Guest
azaad

I have to give kudos to Channel 1 for selecting Yulia for 2018. I thought she was only selected when no other big stars signed up for Kyiv, and I’m glad to hear that she’ll have her chance to shine. In all honesty, I think she should take it, and Russia can withdraw. They’ll still look sympathetic by citing safety reasons.

Although maybe I just feel this way because “Flame is Burning” is kind of underwhelming.

ESC 2016: Let’s come together by banning Romania two weeks before the contest
ESC 2017: Let’s celebrate diversity by banning a disabled Russian singer

Vladimir P.
Guest
Vladimir P.

“The broadcast of Julia’s performance by Ukrainian TV channels is as much a violation of Ukrainian laws, as her entry to Ukraine. EBU should have thought about it.” What laws are we talking about? I know about the Crimea law that doesn’t allow foreign nationals to enter Ukraine within three years, but what Ukrainian laws are they talking about here? What Ukraine fails to understand that Eurovision is not THEIR competition – it’s an international song competition that happens to take place in Ukraine this year. EBU should have thought about it? EBU should have thought about it when they… Read more »

Marina
Guest
Marina

@ Colin. The tune how you are sorry for Julia is pathetic. Julia was used and has agreed to be used by Russia for this spectacle. However, it back fired on Russia. I applaud Ukraine for standing up to Russia. I know that there are many other countries who have been humiliated by Russia at various times who will be happy to see the bully out for a year.

Colin
Guest
Colin

I think that at this point it’s only a matter of time when we’ll hear “Russia withdraws from the 2017 contest”. I have a feeling that they only avoid calling their explicit whitdrawal so Ukraine would officially ban them from the contest and look like the only culprits. Sadly, it’s apparent that some politicians from both countries are blinded by prejudice and are sinking lower and lower to humiliate the other country. I feel so sorry for Julia. I hope her dream comes true in 2018. I also feel sorry for O. Torvald. There goes their chance to win. Professional… Read more »

Mark
Guest
Mark

EBU clearly playing favourites. Where was this offer for Armenia when Azerbaijan hosted?

Russia declined the offer because it goes against their narrative to make Julia the victim in this situation.

Tom
Guest
Tom

@Mike
Very beautiful song.

Tom
Guest
Tom

@Marina
At once after a crime, Ukrainian President says that Russia is to blame. It repeats the Western press. Is not it funny? No study, however to blame Russia. Poroshenko should be liable for defamation.
Murdered politician was a thief, in Russia it has raised a criminal case, he fled.

Michael
Guest
Michael

“ESC will not be broadcasted on the territory of Russia in 2017. Despite that, Yulia Samoilova is confirmed to be representing Russia in 2018!”

source in Russian: https://www.vesti.ru/doc.html?id=2869145

MTD
Guest
MTD

I hope that EBU heads will roll after the Kyiv contest because this situation is just the tip of the iceberg. Who am I kidding? Nothing goes right in Kyiv atm nor in the previous months. The most troubled ESC BY FAR in recent 10-20 years or more.

Insane!

JOS, you better stand down after this ESC and the whole team and EBU. Fresh faces are needed.

Anton
Guest
Anton

Jesus, this kind of incidents could have been easily prevented if EBU had a rule by which all participanting countries should agree their lists of candidates with the host country in advance, and not make any? “surprises” with artists whose names were nowhere around the previously announced shortlists. Such a mess

Mike
Guest
Mike

“Let’s sort things out here. Julia broke the Ukrainian law by getting to Crimea not by land and giving her performance there. That’s an indisputable fact since she admitted it herself. And the consequences are known. Sure, ESC should stand over politics, agreed. I hate Russian performers having been booed for a couple of years and I hate voting for neighbours just for being neighbours. But the law is law and it should stand over any song contest. I don’t see any reason why Julia should be treated any different from anyone who break the law.” Exactly @Adam !!! Bingo!!!… Read more »