The 2019 Eurovision Song Contest for adults is in the early stages of planning — and plenty of fans and bloggers are taking a well-earned break in preparation for Tel Aviv. But the Wiwi Jury — our in-house panel of musical unprofessionals — has been busy dusting off our treasure chest of toys to get in touch with our inner-child. It’s all in anticipation of Junior Eurovision 2018 in Minsk, Belarus.

This year, we’re doing things a little differently with the Junior Eurovision jury. With a record 20 entries this year, including debuts from Kazakhstan and Wales, our 16 jury members have listened to all the songs and are just listing their personal top-five favourites, along with a review of their absolute Junior Eurovision winner. We’re dealing with young performers, so want to keep things positive. So which song from the pint-sized stars do we want to see take the contest this year? Read on to find out!


Jonathan

1. Kazakhstan – Daneliya Tuleshova “Ózińe sen”

Having been an avid listener of Kazakh music (often referred to as ‘Q-pop’ [Qazaq-pop]) over the past few years, I’ve long been waiting for Kazakhstan to bring its unique mix of traditional and modern sounds to the Eurovision and Junior Eurovision stage. And for their first outing they do not disappoint – a dramatic contemporary power ballad that stands way above the other entries in terms of production and emotive power. We know that Daneliya has the powerhouse vocals to take the roof off Minsk-Arena, and if she can deliver a confident performance with some dynamic staging, then there’s every possibility she could be taking home the trophy.

2. Georgia – Tamar Edilashvili “Your Voice”
3. FYR Macedonia – Marija Spasovska “Doma”
4. Netherlands – Max & Anne “Samen”
5. Ireland – Taylor Hynes “IOU”

Josh

1. Kazakhstan – Daneliya Tuleshova “Ózińe sen”

This song knocked me out the first time I heard it, and every time I listen to it, I end up repeating it multiple times. The incredible setting, the message of the song, Daneliya’s maturity and emotion, her fashion (that white dress!) and camera work (those close ups when she’s IN the white dress!) just work together to make an incredible package. Even with a difficult language such as Kazakh, I have this song near memorized, and that’s no small feat!

2. France – Angélina “Jamais Sans Toi”
3. Poland – Roksana Węgiel “Anyone I Want To Be”
4. Russia – Anna Filipchuk “Unbreakable”
5. Ukraine – Darina Krasnovetska “Say Love”

Lukas

1. France – Angélina “Jamais Sans Toi”

This is how you make a comeback. France really bring their best with Angélina and her song “Jamais Sans Toi”. Catchy and uplifting, it appeals to younger audiences, which is perfect for JESC. It also has a great message to tell and I think it can surprise by at least reaching the top 3. If the staging is as strong as the song I can see it easily winning the entire competition and giving France its first victory.

2. Albania – Efi Gjika “Barbie”
3. Kazakhstan – Daneliya Tuleshova “Ózińe sen”
4. Australia – Jael “Champion”
5. Ukraine – Darina Krasnovetska “Say Love”

Pablo

1. Armenia – L.E.V.O.N “L.E.V.O.N”

It was a tough decision between the one I enjoyed the most and the one I feel is better quality, but enjoyment won me over. L.E.V.O.N resembles the very successful past JESC entries “Barcelona” and “Mama” — it’s insanely catchy and the overall package feels fresh instead of overproduced. The staging in their national final may need something of a rework, but Armenia has never failed in making their entries look incredible on stage. I’m confident L.E.V.O.N will surprise everyone and go to the top.

2. Kazakhstan – Daneliya Tuleshova “Ózińe sen”
3. France – Angélina “Jamais Sans Toi”
4. FYR Macedonia – Marija Spasovska “Doma”
5. Albania – Efi Gjika “Barbie”

Mario

1. FYR Macedonia – Marija Spasovska “Doma”

Ethnic, deep, expressive and full-on emotional — this is everything a proper Balkan ballad (we’ve been missing so much in the contest!) should be. Bring it to Junior Eurovision, kiss it with sugar and you have my vote! Marija brings the ever-important topic of homelessness among kids to the table while conveying emotions beautifully in every lyric. It’s vintage but also wisely produced — you wouldn’t be too surprised to find it in a musical. Rumour has it the staging in Minsk will recreate the music video and I just can’t wait to see if luck is on Macedonia’s side this year.

2. Poland – Roksana Węgiel “Anyone I Want To Be”
3. Albania – Efi Gjika “Barbie”
4. Australia – Jael “Champion”
5. France – Angélina “Jamais Sans Toi”

Oliver

1. Kazakhstan – Daneliya Tuleshova “Ózińe sen”

Kazakhstan have really hit the nail on the head with this entry. It may be their first entry, but they are not pulling any punches. The song has an almost anthemic quality to it as well as a powerful chorus with Daneliya standing at the centre of all of it, boasting the credentials which won her The Voice Kids Ukraine.

2. France – Angélina “Jamais Sans Toi”
3. Ukraine – Darina Krasnovetska “Say Love”
4. Armenia – L.E.V.O.N “L.E.V.O.N”
5. Georgia – Tamar Edilashvili “Your Voice”

Sebastian

1. France – Angélina “Jamais Sans Toi”

My personal criteria for a great JESC track is one that straddles radio-friendly, but also child-appropriate and relatable. And with that France has bagged a winner. “Jamais sans toi” has an infectious tropical pop drop that is matched in joy only by Angélina’s infectious smile. She showcases a pop-personality well beyond her years. Combined with the subtle yet poignant use of English to hone the song’s message of togetherness and longing, this entry really ticks all the boxes. Toutes nos félicitations, France!

2. Ukraine – Darina Krasnovetska “Say Love”
3. Kazakhstan – Daneliya Tuleshova “Ózińe sen”
4. Belarus – Daniel Yastremski “Time”
5. FYR Macedonia – Marija Spasovska “Doma”

Antranig

1. Albania – Efi Gjika “Barbie”

All the fun is in the Balkans and this is by far the most modern entry Albania has sent, adult or junior. Efi is a diva with an impressive Shopkin collection and plenty of “Barbie” dolls at her disposal. Efi brings the attitude and the fun. The song is very child-friendly without being childish and can appeal to children and adults alike. My favourite thing about the song is that it doesn’t try to be an adult Eurovision song unlike many others. Go get ’em, Efi!

2. FYR Macedonia – Marija Spasovska “Doma”
3. France – Angélina “Jamais Sans Toi”
4. Kazakhstan – Daneliya Tuleshova “Ózińe sen”
5, Netherlands – Max & Anne “Samen”

Jack

1. Ukraine – Darina Krasnovetska “Say Love”

On paper, “Say Love” could be mistaken for any other Eurovision ‘Love Love Peace Peace’ anthem. But “Say Love” transcends the genre by pairing a dark, minor key with a soaring vocal performance to create an atmosphere that takes your breath away and chills your bones in just three minutes. Darina’s virtually flawless vocal control and range sets the bar unreachably high for her competitors.  And while “Say Love” has a chorus that’s relatively simple and easy to grasp, the song has less structural repetition and more melodic variation than any of its competitors – a distinction that, perhaps not coincidentally, was also held by this year’s Eurovision winning song.

2. The Netherlands – Max & Anne “Samen”
3. Georgia – Tamar Edilashvili “Your Voice”
4. Israel – Noam Dadon “Children Like These (Yeladim Ka’ele)”
5. Australia – Jael “Champion”

Deban

1. France – Angélina “Jamais Sans Toi”

Drop that bop! “J’amais Sans Toi” is a delicious slice of modern pop. Angélina’s flawless vocal delivery and bubbly personality give the song’s universal theme added relevance. Totally 2018 and even beyond, this is a teen anthem that isn’t misplaced on the adult playlist. Welcome back France — you’re most deserving of victory.

2. Azerbaijan – Fidan Huseynova “I Wanna Be Like You”
3. Poland – Roksana Węgiel “Anyone I Want To Be”
4. Kazakhstan – Daneliya Tuleshova “Ózińe sen”
5. Ukraine – Darina Krasnovetska “Say Love”

Antony

1. Kazakhstan – Daneliya Tuleshova “Ózińe sen”

Kazakhstan have certainly joined Junior Eurovision with a bang! The song shows real complexity aided by the maturity in Daneliya’s voice. It’s a very powerful ballad evoking the emotion within whoever listens to it. This will be a memorable performance that should lay down the foundations for the country’s longevity at Eurovision events.

2. France – Angélina “Jamais Sans Toi”
3. FYR Macedonia – Marija Spasovska “Doma”
4. Armenia – L.E.V.O.N “L.E.V.O.N”
5. Ireland – Taylor Hynes “IOU”

Luis

1. Ireland – Taylor Hynes “IOU”

I think I love this more than I should. In a sea of current pop songs, Ireland says “hey, you know what? I’m doing it my way” — and listen, it totally works. I don’t know what it is: Taylor’s natural air, the simplicity of the melody, the geeky vintage vibe… It’s just like Iceland’s Daði Freyr: celebrate awkwardness! Also, props for the music video. It’s one of the best things that has happened to the world this month. Go raibh maith agat!

2. FYR Macedonia – Marija Spasovska “Doma”
3. Georgia – Tamar Edilashvili “Your Voice”
4. Portugal – Rita Laranjeira “Gosto de Tudo (Já Não Gosto de Nada)”
5. Wales – Manw “Berta”

Dayana

1. Kazakhstan – Daneliya Tuleshova “Ózińe sen”

It’s the first time my home country is participating in the Junior Eurovision Song Contest, and I’m overwhelmed with pride, as Daneliya gave it her best. Hearing the Kazakh language with a mix of English, with a powerful voice just literally made me cry. If the stage performance is as impressive as the song, we might celebrate Kazakhstan’s victory this year!

2. FYR Macedonia – Marija Spasovska “Doma”
3. France – Angélina “Jamais Sans Toi”
4. Azerbaijan – Fidan Huseynova “I Wanna Be Like You”
5. Ukraine – Darina Krasnovetska “Say Love”

Lucy

1. Georgia – Tamar Edilashvili “Your Voice”

It was almost impossible to choose between Tamar and Angélina of France, but this won out in my heart, JUST. The fact this is properly anthemic with the Disney style has me loving this more each time. This isn’t cheesy though — there is a modern feel which brings it closer to adult Eurovision quality. Tamar has one of the more powerful voices this year: I’m really interested to hear what this sounds like live. The music video is so simple yet pretty too — it’s just the ‘total package’.

2. France – Angélina “Jamais Sans Toi”
3. Australia – Jael “Champion”
4. Malta – Ela “Marchin’On”
5. Poland – Roksana Węgiel “Anyone I Want To Be”

Natalie

1. France – Angélina “Jamais Sans Toi”

This is a very strong year for Junior Eurovision. Apart from the addition of brand new countries, and the record number of entrants, we have some really innovative and polished music. But France is the stand-out to me – it’s simple, joyful, infectious and very friendly, whilst demonstrating some very on-trend and modern influences. It’s the exact kind of thing that we love from Junior Eurovision — but it takes quality to another level. Merci, France! Your song would be a wonderful winner.

2. Wales – Manw “Berta”
3. Ukraine – Darina Krasnovetska “Say Love”
4. Ireland – Taylor Hynes “IOU”
5. Albania – Efi Gjika “Barbie”

Barnabas

1. Portugal – Rita Laranjeira “Gosto de Tudo (Já Não Gosto de Nada)”

If there’s a genre that’s very rarely seen at Junior Eurovision, it’s rock, so I credit the Portuguese for their originality to send a solid and catchy pop-rock number, which could actually work as a theme song for any teen sitcom out there. Rita is a lovable girl, whose adorable nature really fits with the song. It could actually work out for the Iberian nation with good staging. If it was possible to pick two number ones, I would’ve picked Kazakhstan — that dramatic ballad is also a gem. But well, there are hard decisions to be made.

2. Kazakhstan – Daneliya Tuleshova “Ózińe sen”
3. Italy – Melissa & Marco “What Is Love”
4. Ukraine – Darina Krasnovetska “Say Love”
5. Wales – Manw “Berta”

What are your favourite 2018 Junior Eurovision songs? Who do you think should win the contest in Minsk? Share your thoughts below and vote in our poll!

READ MORE JUNIOR EUROVISION 2018 NEWS

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La Signora
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La Signora

My top 5 from Italy is:
1. Ukraine
2. Armenia
3. Albania
4. Belarus
5. Italy

🙂

Nicola
Guest
Nicola

My top 5:
1. Kazakhstan
2. France
3. Poland
4. Georgia
5. Ukraine

And remember to vote for Australia!!!

Marcelo
Guest
Marcelo

My top has been changing a lot since the rehearsals began, I voted for nine songs (5 in my PC and 5 in my cellphone; voted for a song twice): 1. Ukraine (voted twice, I don’t know what changed, but the song really grew on me since rehearsals) 2. France (voted) 3. Georgia (voted) 4. Wales (voted) 5. Albania (voted) 6. Kazakhstan 7. Russia 8. Armenia 9. Portugal (voted) 10. Ireland (voted) 11. Poland 12. Azerbaijan (voted) 13. Malta 14. Israel (voted) 15. Australia 16. Italy 17. The Netherlands 18. Serbia 19. FYR Macedonia 20. Belarus I voted for many… Read more »

Matthew
Guest
Matthew

The Online Voting was such a flop last year. It was corrupt, rehearsal-based and unfair to Ireland and Australia. Why is it back another year just for Armenia, Poland and The Netherlands to troll?

Marcelo
Guest
Marcelo

Australia got 3rd in online voting, Malta got 2nd while Armenia and Poland ended in 8th and 7th respectively. So who knows what’s stored in for us…

Lou
Guest
Lou

1-Macedonia
2-Georgia
3-France
4-Ukraine
5-Poland
6-Kazakhstan
7-Portugal
8-Armenia
9-Serbia
10-Albania
11-Malta
12-Russia
13-Wales
14-Belarus
15-Netherlands
16-Ireland
17-Israel
18-Australia
19-Azerbaijan
20-Italy
I voted for 1-5 but I also love 6-10 as well <3
Plz don't hate Australia fans lol

Yanis2Y
Guest
Yanis2Y

From France :

01. Ukraine
02. Kazakhstan
03. Poland
04. Israel
05. Armenia
06. France
07. Malta (so. damn. underrated)
08. Australia
09. Georgia
10. Albania
11. FYR Macedonia
12. Wales (used to be my last place but the revamp is so good tbh)
13. Portugal
14. Azerbaijan
15. Belarus
16. Italy
17. The Netherlands
18. Russia
19. Ireland
20. Serbia

Anahit
Guest
Anahit

My top is 1 Armenia 2 Georgia 3 France I’m from Armenia????

Matthew
Guest
Matthew

My prediction 20 Serbia- it’s a nice song but I’m afraid it would be forgotten 19 Azerbaijan- it’s so sweet but the OV won’t respect it 18 Portugal- Good vibes but it’s a terrible running order position 17 Ireland- Juries, juries, juries will kill it 16 Italy- Kid friendly and might surprise a few 15 Wales- beautiful staging but the Gothic costumes ruin it 14 Israel- atmospheric, juries will rank it high 13 FYR Macedonia- her vocals aren’t at her best 12 Malta- the song just fades away at the end of the day but the juries would like it… Read more »

Maria
Guest
Maria

In my top:
1.Azerbaijan
2. Israel
3.France
4.Australia
5.Kazakhstan
Generally this year all the songs are loud no one is not bad! Is the best Junior Eurovision Song Contest of all time! Congratulations to Belarus for the impeccable and rich event! Many bravo Belarus!!!

Esc Vegi
Guest
Esc Vegi

My Top 5 :
5.Portugal
4.Georgia
3.FYR Macedonia
2.France
1.Ukraine

Greetings from Germany ??

SpirK
Guest
SpirK

I’m gonna give my top plus my prediction:
Personal top 20: (noting that this top is really hard to make cause there’s no bad song this year)
1. Ukraine
2. Albania
3. FYR Macedonia
4. Israel
5. France
6. Wales
7. Serbia
8. Georgia
9. Kazakhstan
10. Ireland
11. Belarus
12. Russia (grower on rehearsals)
13. Poland
14. Malta
15. Italy
16. Armenia
17. Australia
18. The Netherlands
19. Portugal
20. Azerbaijan
Here’s my prediction:
1-5: France, Kazakhstan, Ukraine, Georgia, Poland
6-10: Russia, The Netherlands, Australia, Albania, FYR Macedonia
11-15: Belarus, Ireland, Armenia, Wales, Israel
16-20: Portugal , Serbia, Malta, Italy, Azerbaijan

Roelof Meesters
Guest
Roelof Meesters

This is the best JESC ever. Amazing stage, amazing songs, amazing songers, 20 countries, and a lot of countries actually put effort into their staging. I honestly can’t wait. This is my top 20 before the rehearsals (I have seen all the rehearsals but I haven’t made a new top yet): 1. France (voted) 2. F.Y.R. Macedonia (voted) 3. Kazakhstan (voted and I think they will win) 4. The Netherlands (voted) 5. Georgia 6. Ukraine 7. Australia 8. Albania (voted because she is too amazing to not vote for) 9. Armenia 10. Poland 11. Belarus 12. Malta 13. Russia 14.… Read more »

Matthew
Guest
Matthew

I agree, such a good quality of songs and there’s no terrible entry. I think France will win but I’d be just as happy if my home country Ireland finished outside the Bottom 5.

West
Guest
West

After watching the second rehearsals I voted for: Armenia, The Netherlands, Poland, Ukraine and Israel. (my top 5 in that order)
If I could give 3 more votes, they would go to: France, fyr Macedonia and Ireland.

Colin
Guest
Colin

My top 5:
1. Kazakhstan
2. FYR Macedonia
3. Israel
4. Albania
5. Ukraine

PP77
Guest
PP77

My TOP 5 after 2 rehearsals 1. France 2. Russia 3. Ukraine 4. Serbia 5.Belarus My prediction TOP 5 with juries 1. Ukraine (so much overrated in points) 2. Malta (so much overrated in points) 3. Georgia (same as first 2 countries) 4. Australia ( EBU baby) 5. Kazakhstan TOP 5 with televote 1. Armenia (thanks to you can vote for own country) 2. Poland (same as Armenia) 3. The Netherlands (same as Armenia and Poland) 4. Kazakhstan 5. Ukraine TOP 5 juries plus televote 1. Ukraine 2. Armenia 3. Kazakhstan 4. The Netherlands 5. Georgia than Poland, Russia, Belarus,… Read more »

PP77
Guest
PP77

After rehearsals some countries don t sound good live. Not good live vocals from Azerbaijan, Portugal, Israel, Wales and some favorite don t sound good in live Poland , Macedonia, Kazakstan (for me sound so much better in video)
For me surprise good live vocals from Serbia , Georgia better than in video.

Angelo
Guest
Angelo

I’ve voted for: France, Kazakhstan, Italy, Ireland and the Netherlands… Although YouTube views point to a three way race between Kazakhstan, France and Poland. Either would be a delightful outcome.

Matthew
Guest
Matthew

I’m delighted you like Ireland

Jack Lawson
Editor

If anybody was wondering, here are the total WiwiJury results (giving 5 points to each person’s winner, 4 points to their runner up, and so on until 1 point to each person’s 5th favorite):

1) France (46 points)
2) Kazakhstan (43 points)
3) FYR Macedonia (26 points)
4) Ukraine (21 points)
5) Georgia (16 points)
6) Albania (14 points)
7) Poland (11 points)
8) Armenia, Ireland (9 points)
10) Australia (8 points)
11) The Netherlands, Portugal (7 points)
13) Azerbaijan, Wales (6 points)
15) Italy (3 points)
16) Belarus, Israel, Malta, Russia (2 points)
20) Serbia (nil points)

Jack Lawson
Editor

Keep in mind this is only based on each voter’s top 5 picks. Songs that didn’t do too well may have been many people’s sixth favourite!

Briekimchi
Guest
Briekimchi

Kazakhstan still for me.
Biggest grower is Belarus. Love it!

Col
Guest
Col

Ireland douze points.
Fun.

KESC
Guest
KESC

France, Georgia, Kazakhstan, Ukraine, Macedonia, Albania all deserve it. They are all winners imo.

Matthew
Guest
Matthew

I don’t know why people like Macedonia. Her vocals are well off and the song would really be a flop after France

Rick
Guest

Luis taste!

geresc99
Guest
geresc99

I hope Ukraine will will, I love this song