For months, speculation has been rife about who will represent Russia in Tel Aviv, with a number of names being tossed into the ring. More recently, rumours of a certain Eurovision 2016 bronze medallist have reached fever pitch. But finally the rumours can be turned to fact, with broadcaster Russia 1 confirming that Sergey Lazarev will be the country’s representative for Eurovision 2019.
An act that will need no introduction to Eurovision fans, this will be Sergey’s second appearance at the contest. In 2016 he topped the televote with his song “You Are The Only One”, ending up third on the podium overall. No doubt he’ll be aiming to go all the way and take home the trophy this time around.
In the announcement made on Eurovision.tv, the Russian star says that he is honoured to represent Russia for a second time, that he is thankful for the trust the broadcaster puts into him and he promises to represent Russia in the best possible way.
Sergey’s song will be revealed at a later date. However, we may already have an idea of who is going to be behind it. Greek songwriter Dimitris Kontopoulos posted to Instagram to celebrate the announcement of Sergey’s participation.
Dimitris let the photo talk for itself, keeping the caption simple, but humorous: “Sergeys’ back or Sergey’s back?”
Interestingly, Dimitris has tagged Philipp Kirkorov and Fokas Evagelinos in the photo. This suggests that Sergey’s Eurovision 2019 song and staging will be produced by the ‘Dream Team’.
The ‘Dream Team’ is a creative collective including Dimitris Kontopoulos, Russian Eurovision maestro Philipp Kirkorov, and Greek choreographer Fokas Evagelinos.
Both Kirkorov and Kontopoulos have a long history in the Eurovision scene, both together and separately. Multiple countries have had the honour of working with the team, including Ukraine’s Ani Lorak, Greece’s Sakis Rouvas and of course Sergey’s 2016 entry. Most recently Azerbaijan singer Aisel and Moldovan trio DoReDos worked their ‘Dream Team’ magic in Lisbon.
Fokas Evagelinos, however, is known for combining the inspirational musical ideas of the team with iconic staging moments, such as Farid Mammadov’s glass box, the Tolmachevy Sisters’ giant seesaw and the screen extravaganza at the centre of Sergey’s performance in Stockholm.
With such an experienced team possibly behind Sergey’s song once again, we can undoubtedly expect something big and bold. Thunder and lightning it’s getting exciting y’all!
Sergey will now become only the second Russian representative to make a return appearance at Eurovision (if you don’t count Julia Samoylova’s withdrawn 2017 entry).
Back in 2008, Dima Bilan participated with the song “Believe”, after originally placing second in 2006. Naturally Dima went on to win the entire contest. Sergey will be hoping he can replicate that success in Tel Aviv in May during his own comeback.
Further details about Sergey’s participation are set to be revealed on Saturday 9th February at 15:30 CET in the tv show Hi, Andrey! on Russia 1.
Are you excited to see Sergey Lazarev back at Eurovision? Do you think he’ll be able to do better than his third place finish in 2016? What are you hoping from his song? Let us know all your thoughts in the comments below!