The Israeli national selection, The Next Star for Eurovision 2018, is getting closer to the finishing line of the competition’s first phase. On this week’s episodes, we got to meet the Israeli versions of Rihanna and Stevie Wonder, that passed their auditions and who will continue to the next phase of the show.

You can watch all of the auditions (including the ones from eliminated artists) at this link. Among the non-qualifiers this week you’ll even find  Joseph Guedj, the cousin of none other than Nadav Guedj. You can also read all the rules of the show at this link.


Jordan Uzan
Jordan, 27, originally from France, works as a piano teacher and a vocal coach.

His favourite music styles are soul and Motown. That special style and talent made quite an impression on most of the judges and the audience, that gave him their votes during his first audition.

Douze points, Jordan!

Audition score: 77% (votes from three judges)


Rivka Sium
Rivka, 22, is singing mainly in her city’s community centre, while during the day she works at a pastry factory (but she knows how to avoid eating them, as you can see).

We can call her “the Israeli Rihanna”, based on her looks and her voice.

This cute girl slays without too much effort. We can’t wait to hear more from her in the next phase of the show.

Audition score: 77% (votes from three judges)


Tzahi & Oded
Tzahi Musa
and Oded Sabag used to be a trio as a boyband named “boyband” (It sounds a bit strange in English we guess).

The band released nine singles and toured the country, but didn’t quite become a part of the mainstream music scene in Israel.

They did, however, make history when all of the three members of the group came out as gay during a special interview earlier this year.

In the interview right before their audition as a duo, Oded’s father, who is an Orthodox Jew, explained how he manages to maintain a good relationship with his gay son within the limitations of his religion.

During their audition, this duo’s voices have blended together beautifully, while impressing the audience and the judges, except for judge Harel Skaat who couldn’t see what makes them so special as a duo.

Audition score: 77% (votes from three judges)


Stav Vaknin
Stav, 22, is singing since she was six years old. She currently studies acting and she says the stage is her natural place.

In 2014 Stav won a talent show in Israel called “The band project”, as a part of a girl band named “Lollipop”, that didn’t survive for too long.

Her idol is Shiri Maimon (Israel’s representative at Eurovision 2005) and says people often compare the two.

Stav has many qualities, but opinions were divided after her first audition, as judge Harel Skaat didn’t give her his vote and told her she is quite generic.

Audition score: 81% (votes from three judges)


Karin Meri Soliman
Karin Meri, 22, is a singer, a dancer and an actress.

During her audition, she didn’t manage to impress most of the judges and the audience, as it seemed she might have picked the wrong song.

Even though she only managed to get a score of 50%, the hosts — who can save five contestants during the auditions phase this year — threw her a lifeline.

Audition score: 50% (votes from one judge) – Saved by the hosts


May Tor
May, 23, is a fitness trainer, which can be an advantage for her, since fitness is a very important issue for singers, as you might know.

Once she started to sing, it turned out that not only was her body is in shape, but also her vocal cords, as she managed to achieve almost 90% of the votes during her audition.

Audition score: 89% (votes from four judges) 


Eliran Elias
Eliran, 27, has already made plans for May 10. He is getting married! (But don’t worry – his fiancée is keeping flexible in case he gets selected to represent Israel at Eurovision 2018 in Lisbon).

Eliran works in a startup company during the day as well as performing at nights as a backing singer for one of Israel’s rising stars, Eden Ben Zaken.

He is much more than just a backing singer with a great voice, however, the judges were divided regarding his audition and he barely managed to pass it, with only half of the judges’ votes. Can he be the next IMRI? We aren’t sure, but we wish him the best of luck.

Audition score: 71% (votes from two judges) 

In case you missed any of the previous episodes, you can read and watch all the performances on our recap posts.

Which artist do you like the most so far? Who do you think would do well for Israel at Eurovision?


Photo credits: The Next Star for Eurovision

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5 years ago

I’ve been generally content with the selections until this batch. But now it seems they’re more interested in quantity over quality. I would have only advanced May and Eliran, but I guess my ears are different from the actual judges.