We continue our series where we look at each of the current competing countries at Eurovision and why we love them so much. Today we head to south-eastern Europe because it’s time to introduce Romania.

Romania debuted at Eurovision 1994, and have built up a reputation as a power player. They have sent acts in a vast range of styles, operatic pop to yodelling rap, from fire to holograms. Here are our 10 reasons why we love Romania at Eurovision Song Contest!

1. A short but important Eurovision history

Romania made its debut in 1994 with Dan Bittman and the song ”Dincolo de nori”, which came 21st in the contest. Originally the country was supposed to debut one year earlier but it didn’t get through from the pre-qualifying round. Romania was relegated in 1995, 1997, 1999 and 2001 and in 2016 Romania was disqualified from the contest. This means that 2018 was Romania’s 20th participation. Even though Romania hasn’t had as long a Eurovision history as many other countries, they definitely have their own unique place in the history.

2. Romania beats the drums

Luminita Anghel and Romanian percussion band Sistem represented Romania in 2005 with the song “Let Me Try”. The song ended up in third place, which is Romania’s best result alongside with Paula Seling and Ovi’s 2010 Eurovision song “Playing with Fire”. The percussion band gave the song a unique sound, with the loud percussion contrasting with Luminita’s rich vocals. In what is surely the longest drum solo at Eurovision, we are treated to Sistems drumming for 26 seconds.

3. Girl power!

“The Balkan Girls, they like to party like nobody, like nobody…” Even after nine years, this song is still very catchy. Elena Gheorghe represented Romania in 2009 with the song “The Balkan Girls”, which finished 19th in the grand final. Elena performed on the stage with four female dancers, serving Balkan realness.

4. They play with fire

In Lisbon, Eleni Foureira had fire on Eurovision stage, but Romania harnessed the power of the flame eight years earlier when Paula Seling and Ovi represented Romania in Oslo with the song “Playing with Fire”. Paula and Ovi performed on the stage with four backing vocalists, surrounded by a lot of flames. This dramatic and powerful performance succeeded: it finished third in the final and the song won Pop Song of the Year at the 2011 Radio România Actualități Awards.

5. They know how to entertain

When we think about Romania, we think of many entertaining pop performances and one of them is Mandinga‘s performance with the song “Zaleilah” in 2012 Eurovision Song Contest. All the way from a moonwalking bagpiper to creative group choreography, Mandinga really knew what kind of stage show would lift up this happy, uptempo song.

6. They’re not afraid of trying new styles

Romania has brought many different acts to the contest, but they took their game into the next level in 2013 when they sent the countertenor Cezar to represent the country with the operatic pop song “It’s My Life”. The song — with its surprisingly high vocals and “camp Dracula” staging — got mixed reactions. Some viewers loved it and others hated it, but at least we can give Romania credit for sending something different and new.

7. Paula Seling and Ovi – again!

The power duo is back! Paula Seling and Ovi deserve a second mention in our list because of coming back to represent the country in 2014 Eurovision Song Contest with the song “Miracle”. Even though “Miracle” wasn’t as big as “Playing with Fire”, this great dance song finished 12th in the grand final. And they even brought a hologram!

8. They had an important message

In 2015, the Romanian pop rock band Voltaj won Romania’s national selection Selectia Nationala and head to Vienna to represent Romania with the song ”De la capăt (All Over Again)”. The band had an important message behind the lyrics: they want to help abandoned Romanian children. This song came alive on the grey-coloured stage, showing videos of children while Voltaj was giving us powerful performance.

9. Yodel It!

Yodelling isn’t normally associated with Romanian music, but last year Ilinca and Alex Florea joined forces and represented the country with the song “Yodel it!”. They brought a mix of yodelling and rap and proved those two genres could work together really well. We clearly are not the only ones who thought this way because Romania ended up seventh in the grand final.

10. Proposal on the Blue Carpet

The last but absolutely not the least mention in our list is the marriage proposal which happened this year on the Blue Carpet.  The Humans represented Romania this year with the song “Goodbye”. Even though Romania didn’t qualify for the final, the singer of the band, Christina Caramacu, achieved something else during the Eurovision journey. On the Blue Carpet, Christina’s boyfriend Rosario decided to ask for her hand in marriage and Christina said yes. The proposal was really touching and we are so glad we got to witness it! We wish only the best for this lovely couple!

Why do you love Romania at the Eurovision Song Contest? Let us know in the comments below. 

Read more Romania Eurovision news here

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Geo
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Geo

I can’t believe Mihai Traistariu’s Tornero wasn’t even mentioned. It was a huge hit all over Europe back in 2006, finished 4th in the grand final…. The Humans were awful, I’m glad they didn’t qualify

human melovina
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human melovina

You love or hate country?

Roy Moreno
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Roy Moreno

Paula is also the only one to win ENTM twice!
Should be a bonus fact :3

Jo.
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Jo.

Love or hate country.

AngieP
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AngieP

Romania is the kind of country which hasn’t long history in Eurovision but has already an impact. I love Romania because they have diversity in their entries, they dare to try new things and they have so much talent! It’s one of the countries I like to win some time soon, because it would be awesome! Some of my favourite songs are: 2005: mostly because of the drums, it was awesome! 2006: a summer hit here in Greece I remember, and such amazing vocals! That’s the best song Mihai has sang for Eurovision, including the national selection ones. Nothing can… Read more »

florin
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florin

ebu will never let us winn

Bake Those Falafels!
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Bake Those Falafels!

On the beggining this was good. But it gets worse and worse every article (for some reason)

Reality Checker
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Reality Checker

I like their appreciation of irony. Like, in 1998, their participant sang a song called “I believe” and later committed suicide. I wonder if it’s because she didn’t believe enough or she simply wanted to be closer to god. Anyway, they are highly overrated, in my opinion. Unless you love Eurotrash, then they are your country. 2015 was good because it was meaningful.

Polegend Godgarina
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They’re a country I want to see winning soon. Almost only great songs in their history!

Don’t Break My Heart by Nicola (2003) is my favorite entry from them, truly ahead of its time and avant-grade.

James
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James

This year’s non-qualification dispels the diaspora myth.

pp77
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pp77

Better song send Moldova than Romania, but Romania thansk to diaspora alomost every year go to final.
For me 3 best song from Romania 2005 than 1998 and 2010. I also like song from 2002,2003, 2006 2008, 2009, 2014
In 2005 they or Israel deserved to won, more than Greece , Malta
2006 good song, but for me aful stage performance and singer is good but he don t have for me charisma…
Overrated in 2007, 2012, 2017
Underrated in 1998, 2008, 2009
Don t deserved to be in final in 2011,2015

Kovalska
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Kovalska

“Goodbye” this year was underrated IMO 🙁 But I was so happy to see Voltaj qualifying back in 2015, beautiful song 😉

Joe
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Joe

Romania took a little while to get into their groove (not that they had many chances, given how often they were forced to sit out), but when they did, they were a force to be reckoned with until recently. It feels like they’re big on “playing the game,” so to speak, by which I mean putting their energy into making a song specifically for Eurovision and not necessarily anything else. This has its advantages and disadvantages (this was the first year not having a song to match the spectacle backfired on them), but there’s no doubt it keeps them in… Read more »

Ana
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Ana

I’m not a big fan of Romania but I love De La Capat so much… It’s so different from the other entries, touching and good as a song itself (I still have goosebumps watching the performance!). I remember I listened to it over and over again in 2015. 2015, what a year!

romania
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romania

romania should send fun uptempo songs like Zaleilah every year. that’s what they do best

Damo
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Damo

The most overrated country in the Eurovision! Glad they missed the final this year.

Fredrik
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Fredrik

Diaspora are not helping them anymore. The missed the final and deserved it to.

Fredrik
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Fredrik

Do anyoneelse thinks their 93 and 96 entrys DESERVED the final? Cant understand what the jurys where thinking…… 96 would have been epic in Oslo

ESCFan2009 (male, 22, German)
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ESCFan2009 (male, 22, German)

“Playing With Fire” is officially my favorite Eurovision song from 2009 to 2018! <3
(2nd is Saara Aalto's Monsters and 3rd is Anouk's Birds)

James
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James

Underrated Eurovision powerhouse with just one non-semifinal qualification under its belt thus far.

Mirod
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Mirod

Tornero? Was a hit in Europe 2006. One of Romania’s best results. No mention???

Alex
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Alex

One of my favorite countries. I hope they will win one day.