Two months on from Eurovision 2018, questions have been raised publicly about Belarus’ performance at the contest. Ukrainian-born superstar Alekseev sought to qualify Belarus for the grand final for the second year in a row, but the singer failed to do so despite plenty of hype and a show-stopping rosy performance.

While Alekseev has bounced back strongly since with the release of his latest single “Sberegu”, Ukraine’s 2006 representative Tina Karol has voiced her opinion regarding the controversy.

Performing at the Palace of the Republic in Minsk, the “Show Me Your Love” singer spoke to KP News 24 about Alekseev’s participation, saying that she believed Belarus should have been represented by a singer from their country, rather than enlisting the Ukrainian.

“There are citizens of Belarus to represent their country,” she said. “Even if they did not get to the finals, it’s still a competition where countries meet. If Alekseev took citizenship, it would be a choice — I want (it) to be Belarusians… Belarus was supposed to be represented by an artist with a Belarusian passport.”

Karol was not the only artist to speak about Alekseev’s participation. 2009 Eurovision winner and 2018 Norwegian representative Alexander Rybak threw his support behind the singer, saying that nothing in the rules prevented the Ukrainian from representing Belarus. Alekseev also received affirmation in the highest form — receiving the Seal of Approval from Alexander Lukashenko, the President of Belarus.

It’s also important to note that Alekseev was not the only artist in 2018 to represent a country without their citizenship. Bulgaria’s Equinox included members from the United States; Maltese singer Jessika represented San Marino alongside German Jenifer B; Latvian singer Laura Rizzotto spent most of her life in Brazil and the US; and the Polish entry featured the Swedish vocalist Lukas Meijer.

Many Eurovision winners have not hailed from the country they represented. Luxembourg counts five wins at the contest, with not a single winner being a Luxembourg national. Monaco’s only winner Séverine was said to have never visited the microstate when she won Eurovision in 1971. And global superstar Celine Dion won the contest for Switzerland in 1988, despite being French Canadian.

Do you agree with Tina’s assertion that acts should be represented by citizens of the country? Let us know in the comments below.

38
Leave a Reply

avatar
16 Comment threads
22 Thread replies
2 Followers
 
Most reacted comment
Hottest comment thread
31 Comment authors
DustinZebbSkimurMarkSvet Recent comment authors
  Subscribe  
newest oldest most voted
Notify of
Zebb
Guest
Zebb

Whatever Karol would speak on questions from trash media outlet in another country, she’d get a shade here, cuz it’s easiest for blindfolded westerner passing by.

Mark
Guest
Mark

Wait, so Celine Dion should have won for Canada or?

Dustin
Guest
Dustin

She’s not even an European lol

Svet
Guest
Svet

Alekseev has unique voice, I like it!

Ern
Guest
Ern

It’s a touchy issue in some places. Belarus is friendly to Russia, so that may be what upset Tina Karol.

In other places, such as Greece & Cyprus, it’s not an issue at all. They exchange artists all the time.

Take, for example, Eleni Foureira, who has zero connection to Cyprus, other than the fact that she is part Greek. Still, in both Greece and Cyprus, everyone seems to be perfectly OK with her representing Cyprus.

Thiago
Guest
Thiago

I think it’s more about protecting Belarusian artists than not allowing Ukrainians. Let’s face it, Ukrainian national final is tough to get through while Belarusian national final is not. Who is to say some Ukrainian person next year wont just get on the Belarusian national final for an easy way to Eurovision? I don’t agree that it should be just for Belarusian, but I can see how it could become a platform for those in Ukraine who have no chance at theit final.

Digital Style
Guest

I’m sorry but I staunchly disagree. It’s not about the country you have on your passport, it’s about your willingness to represent a nation and make them proud of you and themselves.

Apple
Guest
Apple

As long as the artist has a following in the country and a history of performing there, I don’t think it should matter. I mean, we’re talking about Belarus and Ukraine here. They share a border and lots of history. It’s not like Belarus was represented by a guy from Malaysia

PMinch
Guest
PMinch

I love Tina Karol. Definitely one of the hottest MILFs out there 🙂

Hebbuzz
Guest
Hebbuzz

I think Tina Karol is in principal right. No surprise Rybak backs up alekseev as he as Belarusian took part for Norway twice. ? I hope NAVI BAND will try again, they proved to be real live musicians on the J’aime la Vlie event in the Netherlands.

Victorielle
Guest
Victorielle

Oh come on. “proved to be real live musicians”… Alekseev can deliver too. Go and flip the YT to convince yourself. There are plenty of videos from his concerts.

Here: take this one par example https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Z_UzuUHPO0Y&t=237s

Bring me a video of Navi Band performing for an hour, and then will talk. OK? Cheers. 🙂

Victorielle
Guest
Victorielle

..or one of this Tina Karol performing 1-hour concert (if there is any)

Curve
Guest
Curve

Tina Karol concert in 1hr & 28mins while storytelling with her audience. Is searching Youtube videos hard nowadays?
https://youtu.be/QI2fI2JlRuY

Vladimir P.
Guest
Vladimir P.

You do know that Rybak is a Norwegian national, right?

srulik
Guest
srulik

I can understand if a belarusian singer would bring it up, but for a ukrainian to do that? why would she even care? i have a problem with things like “1IN360” which some see as a platform for a record deal with no real connection to eurovision, but if a broadcaster has no problem of an alien citizen to represent their country no one should have.

Curve
Guest
Curve

Well, the Belarussian NF was at fault for wanting Alekseev to represent them. Don’t hate the player; hate the game.

Lila
Guest
Lila

It’s a well-known fact of the Belarusian NF that things aren’t always democratic. The act with the most financial resources will always win, and that was by far Alekseev.

Yaa
Guest
Yaa

Navsegda song, with only a black& white picture has 6.3 mil Youtube views, and Forever with only a picture, another 1 mil. Over all, in both languages, it has more than 16 mil views on Youtube, so what financial resources are you talking about? Anyways, you can tell him to his face, as Alekseev is in Vitebsk now, preparing for the Slavyanskiy Bazar!

Aaron
Guest
Aaron

“Ukraine’s 2006 representative Tina Karol has voiced her opinion regarding the controversy.”

And who asked for her opinion exactly???

Vladimir P.
Guest
Vladimir P.

Apparently the Belarussian media outlet KP News 24 did – the ones who interviewed her.

Jo.
Guest
Jo.

Citizens of Belarus decide who they send to Eurovision, so this Ukranian lady has no business with the cause.

sevzch
Guest
sevzch

Well an Azeri singer almost represented Israel in 2016, sweden was almost represented by a girl from Poland this year… i think this is what makes EuroVision unique.. how the unity comes in different shapes and forms and we should embrace it!

KESC
Guest
KESC

Which Azeri singer?

Rick Nazarian
Guest

Ella daniel

Frisian esc
Guest
Frisian esc
Joe
Guest
Joe

Would’ve been so funny if Sweden was represented by a Pole when half of the Polish act was a Swede.

Hebbuzz
Guest
Hebbuzz

Not gonna happen swedes generally vote very nationalistic

Roy Moreno
Guest
Roy Moreno

Well, when it comes to Israel, it’s a bit different.
We all have foreign origins, like the US :3

Thomas
Guest
Thomas

This debate comes up every year in different countries. The simple truth is that, it happens sometimes. More common in say Micronations of Monaco or San Marino but bigger nations should really choose a person that is from their country or holds a passport with their country. Even Russia sent a Ukrainian in 2009, Moldova sent a Ukrainian in 2015, and now Belarus sent one in 2018. (Maybe Ukraine is just too tough a field) But at the same time, looking at a case as Albania, its a Traditional Albanian Music Festival, only Albanian language allowed, opening the pathway for… Read more »

Robyn Gallagher
Editor

Re Liechtenstein – the exec at the broadcaster who was championing their EBU membership died earlier this year. To date, no one else has picked up the project. 🙁

Thomas
Guest
Thomas

Oh no! That is very sad to hear, hooefully they honor his wishes. May he rest in peace

Thomas
Guest
Thomas

Who hurt you?

Igor
Guest
Igor

There’s a misunderstanding here. Unlike other countries mentioned above, Albania and Kosovo are the same nation, speaking the same language, and their passports define both of them as Albanians. Meanwhile, Ukraine, Belarus and Russia are related neighbours but NOT the same nation! You can either belong to one or another. In fact, we don’t even understand each other languages so we use Russian instead, just like Norwegians that would use Swedish or English to communicate with Danish or Finns.

Skimur
Guest
Skimur

Ukrainians and Belarusians understand each other with ease (~ 95% of words), both understand 100% of Russian words (Soviets legacy), Russians understand ~ 60% of Ukrainian and Belarusian words.

Latvian
Guest
Latvian

Laura Rizzotto has Latvian citizenship. She has dual citizenship.