Albania at Eurovision 2010 to 2019

It might only be June 2019, but when it comes to Eurovision the decade has already ended. What a glorious ten years it’s been! And Albania has been there for every single one of them.

With a 50% qualification rate, it’s safe to say that the country has had its fair share of highs and lows. But which of its entries did best and which did worst? Wonder no more as we’ve compiled a definitive ranking of Albania’s Eurovision entries in the 2010s.

For the purposes of this ranking, we’re going off the percentage of maximum possible points which each entry received at Eurovision.

For example, a finalist in 2019 could only receive a maximum of 960 points i.e. 24 points from each of the other 40 countries voting. If an act finished with 200 points, they would have received 20.83% of the points available to them.

This is not to be confused with the percentage of all votes cast.

 

10. Eneda Tarifa “Fairytale” (2016)

Result: 16th in semi-final with 45 points — 9.38% of maximum possible points

Eneda Terifa won the 30-song Festivali i Këngës 54 with the dramatic ballad “Përrallë”. But by the time the contest rolled around, the song had been switched into the English-language “Fairytale”. Alas, Eneda’s golden statuette aesthetic failed to stand out in a semi that included iconic performances from Ukraine’s Jamala and Australia’s Dami Im. The entry missed the final, with only Denmark’s Lighthouse X and Switzerland’s Rykka finishing lower.

9. Hersi “One Night’s Anger” (2014)

Result: 15th in semi-final with 22 points — 10.19% of maximum possible points

Festivali i Këngës 52 was a relatively slimmed down affair with just 16 competing entries. From this, Hersi Matmuja emerged victorious with “Zemërimi i një nate”. For the first time since 2011, Albania revamped the entry into English. The end product — “One Night’s Anger” — differed significantly from the original, sparking many fan complaints. In Copenhagen, the entry finished second-to-last in its semi, just ahead of Moldova’s Cristina Scarlat.

8. Adrian Lulgjuraj & Bledar Sejko “Identitet” (2013)

Result: 15th in semi-final with 31 points — 13.60% of maximum possible points

Hersi also competed in FiK one year previously, finishing third ahead of 2009’s Kejsi Tola in fourth and behind 2004’s Anjeza Shahini in second. However, the victors were rockers Adrian Lulgjuraj & Bledar Sejko — the first and, to date, only duo to represent Albania at Eurovision. Despite boasting a guitar that shot pyro, “Identitet” came 15th in its semi. This was the only entirely Albanian-language song which failed to qualify this decade.

7. Lindita “World” (2017)

Result: 14th in semi-final with 76 points — 15.83% of maximum possible points

She won FiK with “Botë” but, like so many before her, Lindita Halimi also switched to English for Eurovision. “World” gave the former American Idol contestant ample opportunity to showboat — she held one note for close to 20 seconds. But the steampunk staging and the futuristic bridal outfit were not enough to take the entry to the final. This would be the last time Albania sent an English-language song in the 2010s.

6.  Aurela Gaçe “Feel The Passion” (2011)

Result: 14th in semi-final with 47 points — 19.58% of maximum possible points

Unlike most of her fellow FiK winners, Aurela Gaçe didn’t completely abandon her native tongue when she translated “Kënga ime” to English. “Feel The Passion” kept a few lines in Albanian. Sadly, Europe didn’t latch onto the bilingual rock number, leaving it to linger at 14th in its semi.

5. Elhaida Dani “I’m Alive” (2015)

Result: 17th in the grand final with 34 points — 7.26% of maximum possible points

The hype was real in late 2014 when it transpired that the Voice of Italy winner Elhaida Dani was to compete in FiK. And sure enough, she went and won the festival with “Diell”. However, the winning song never made it to Eurovision. After a dispute between the songwriter and the broadcaster, a new track was sourced for Elhaida — “I’m Alive”. The local buzz didn’t quite transfer to the international audience and Elhaida placed 17th in Vienna. But, “I’m Alive” would have finished eighth in the final had it been down to televoters.

4. Jonida Maliqi “Ktheju tokës” (2019)

Result: 17th in the grand final with 90 points — 9.38% of maximum possible points

Jonida Maliqi had entered FiK on multiple occasions from the 1990s onwards, including five times since the festival became Albania’s national selection — 2005, 2007, 2008, 2009 and 2010. And after multiple near misses, Jonida finally got the opportunity to represent her country in 2019. “Ktheju tokës” dealt with the topic of Albanian emigration and called out to the country’s diaspora across the world. Jonida was rewarded for her perseverance with a place in the final, ensuring Albania ended the decade on a high.

3. Juliana Pasha “It’s All About You” (2010)

Result: 16th in the grand final with 62 points — 13.60% of maximum possible points

The country welcomed the new decade with a bang too. Fresh off two consecutive grand final outings in 2008 and 2009, Juliana Pasha kept Albania’s qualification streak going in 2010. Of course, “It’s All About You” was originally in Albanian when it won FiK as “Nuk mundem pa ty”. Interestingly, no other translated FiK winners made the grand final in the 2010s.

2. Eugent Bushpepa “Mall” (2018)

Result: 11th in the grand final with 184 points — 18.25% of maximum possible points

For just the second time in the decade, Albania opted to send a male act in 2018. And the break from the norm proved to be a canny move. Eugent Bushpepa secured the nation its best result for years. “Mall” just missed out on the top ten in the grand final, although it came seventh with the juries.

1. Rona Nishliu “Suus” (2012)

Result: 5th in the grand final with 146 points — 29.67% of maximum possible points

Rona Nishliu is the undisputed Albanian queen of Eurovision. “Suus” is the only one of the country’s entries to achieve a podium finish in a semi-final — coming second behind Russia’s Buranovskiye Babushki. The entry continued to scale dizzy heights in the grand final, ultimately reaching fifth place — Albania’s best ever result.

Do you agree with the list? What are your rankings? Which is your favourite Albanian entry of the 2010s? Let us know in the comments.

Read more Best of the 2010s content.

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Lourdes
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Lourdes

For me, Eugent with ‘Mall’ is one of my favorite Eurovision entries ever. Him qualifying to the final is also one of my happiest Eurovision moments ever.

Anita
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Anita

I was a big fan of Eugent Bushpepa and “Mall” last year. The long version touches me even more.

ALEX
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ALEX

I loved “The Image of You” from 2004. How is that not on the list?

Alison
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Alison

Read the article title.

Roelof Meesters
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Roelof Meesters

So is this series gonna be continued or not XD

Davve
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Davve

Albania, the land of the SCREAMING singers…. not much good music there

Lisa
Guest
Lisa

Albanian entries sounds like 1980s Soundtracks and I love it !

Kris
Guest
Kris

I like the ones numbered 2-5 on the list !
Screaming woman with weird hair , not that one.

You are Salt
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You are Salt

If they decided to send Përallë it would have qualified

Dani
Guest
Dani

Probably not, but it is better by miles.

TheDr Mistery
Guest
TheDr Mistery

Some of those entries are almost interchangable – big voices but flat staging and uninspiring English lyrics and melody. No wonder FIK is usually won by great singers – it works with orchestra after all – but winning songs are more or less misses with few notable exceptions. My biggest regret was in 2013 when Kejsi Tola placed only fourth but performed my favorite song of the entire ESC season with “Sjemi me atje”. 10. 2016 – Fairytale Not Alexander Rybak’s one, unfortunately. Obviously Bond-ish but it didn’t really work in English. When it came to “And that’s why I… Read more »

Katariina
Guest
Katariina

Sad how “Fairytale” is their worst placed entry in the decade even though it would’ve been one of the best songs they’ve ever sent if they kept the FiK version.

escfinland
Guest
escfinland

Thank you Wiwibloggs so much for launching this series! I really needed this for my post Eurovision depression.

Stella
Guest
Stella

i freaking love Mall

PP77
Guest
PP77

My TOP 5 from 2010-2019
1.2010
2.2012
3.2019
4.2015
5.2018

Minerva
Guest
Minerva

For me, the best is Ktheju Tokes. I like everything about it and Albanian language sounds great in that song. Also, Jonida’s powerful voice and presence suited the song so well.

Sandrine
Guest
Sandrine

Rona Nishhliu’s performance is the best for Albania and I totally agree.

esc26
Guest
esc26

My top 3 would be Elhaida, Juliana and Eugent. I’m Alive was my favorite in 2015 based on the studio version. I also love the studio version of It’s All About You and the live version of Mall. Ktheju tokes would be my 4th, though I don’t think it’s significantly different than the other “ballads sung by screaming women” aka 2016 and 2017. I despise Suus with my whole heart, it’s one of those artworks that I simply don’t understand.

Nikki
Guest
Nikki

Eugent, Rona and Elhaida are my Top 3 Albanian entries. I became an Eurovision Nerd the same year they debuted and I must recognise I’be always been quite attached to them. I always tend to like their songs and FiK is my second favourite NF just after San Remo.
And I do like they seem to have found their niche and a relatively successful formula in the contest (power ballads with a great vocalist)

Bran
Guest
Bran

Albania = big voices, forgettable songs, and a little man overrated. Until my dying day I will not understand why people like that Bon Jovi, I mean Eugent.

Kaiser
Guest
Kaiser

Well Bon Jovi is one of the best musical bands ever, right? So that is actually a compliment for Eugent. Thanks for trolling yourself, deluded hater. :*

escterrace
Guest
escterrace

i feel bad admitting it but i agree so much with your comment

acp
Guest
acp

I remember in 2016 I listened Eneda’s “Fairytale” before “Perralle” because I always listen Albania’s entries after they are revamped. I think I was one of the 0.01% that enjoyed the revamped version more although I did understand the critics. My favourites are 2010, 2012, 2014, 2015, 2017and 2019. I tend to like Albania’s entries after the contest is finished just like this year with Jonida, I don’t why. I hope they continue their qualification streak next year!

Kaiser
Guest
Kaiser

For me the best Albanian entries this decade are
1. Ktheju tokes
2. I’m Alive
3. Mall
4. It’s All about you
5. Suus

5 masterpieces of its own.

ESCFan2009
Guest
ESCFan2009

My favorite Albanian entry is Juliana Pasha’s 2010 one! Simply an amazing song and a dynamic performance. Masterpiece! 😀

Africavision
Guest
Africavision

For me, Albania’s best Eurovision song, by far, is “World” by Lindita… A power ballad of note! 2017 was such a stellar year for Albania, as I also feel that “don’t touch my tree – mos ma prekni pemen” by Ana Kodra is their best Junior Eurovision song ever. Those two songs are in my top 64 best Eurovision and Junior Eurovision songs list up till 2018. “Ktheju tokës” by Jonida Maliqi also has a shot of making my all-time favorite list, but I am still listening to the ESC2019 songs.

Tibor
Guest
Tibor

I roughly agree with Europe on Albania in Eurovision: Everybody knows how much I love “Mall” (it still gives me tingles and I can’t believe he still hasn’t published his album, yet), and “Suus” is just an excellent composition (although that high note in head voice, oh boy, that was really, really not hit in the final). These two songs are still the clear stand-outs for me. I’d put “I’m alive” higher, though, the song is a bit folksy, but in a good way. Her live vocals weren’t the best, but it doesn’t bother me as much now as it… Read more »

alleng
Guest
alleng

Albania is a very cool country at Eurovision. They rarely send something outstanding, but also they rarely send really bad entries.
Suus is by far their best song, but I am not surprised it annoys many people. For me, it could have been top 3 in 2012 with ease.

TRENT
Guest
TRENT

Eugent Bushpepa “Mall” (2018) had all my votes – best song of 2018! And then to end up with this Netta-stuff! Oh, dear! All time low!

My ruv
Guest
My ruv

Both are good in their own ways.

Dani
Guest
Dani

Eugent is the best for me.
Could definitely be be in the top 10, if it was for my choice.
I just wish they sticked to the FIK version that was more powerful to me, I keep listening to it.

Marcelo
Guest
Marcelo

“Mall” is a masterpiece. That’s all I have to say, I remember listening to the all Albanian version for weeks when it was the only song that had come out for 2018. Truely magical and for me, definitely underrated. Albania was really underrated in 2018, both in ESC and in JESC (Efi Gjika’s “Barbie” was a bop!). After “Mall”, I would say the only other two Albanian entries that do it for me will be “I’m Alive” and “Ktheju tökes”, very decent entries and showings for Albania. I don’t mind for the rest that much and Rona Nishliu didn’t deserve… Read more »

Tanil
Guest
Tanil

And that’s why I love you… AH AHHH

Tom
Guest
Tom

From fairytale to nightmare literaly

Ariso Light
Guest
Ariso Light

My favourite Albanian entry of the decade and even all time is “All about you”. <3

Lisianthus
Guest
Lisianthus

Juliana Pasha deserved a lot more points. Everything about that song and performance was great: Juliana’s voice, the amazing backing vocalists, the melody, the violin solo.

Loin dici
Guest

My favorite country when we’re talking about bringing quality music and quality vocals. Also underrated for most of the time.

KuhKatz
Guest
KuhKatz

A country, that often has questionable revamps that can take the soul out of a song, Eneda Tarifas Fairytale for example.

My favourite entry of Albania the last decade was one of the two male contestants, Eugent Bushpepa. Mall is a great song and he is the perfect fit for it.

Unfortunately, I still cant understand how Rona Nishliu finished that high. Too much screaming….

Loin dici
Guest

With that amount of screaming, it absolutely is memorable.

Sinmarie
Guest
Sinmarie

Aurela deserved more. Her performance was FIRE, literally!

Nicola
Guest
Nicola

My personal Top 10 out of these songs:
1. I’m Alive (one of my faves of 2015)
2. Mall
3. World
4. One night’s anger
5. It’s all about you
6. Suus
7. Ktheju tokës
8. Feel the passion
9. Fairytale
10. Identitet

blondboybc
Guest
blondboybc

One of my favourite countries overall in the ESC…have been very impressed with Eugent, Jonida and Elhaida! Let’s hope they can bring us more amazing singers and music in the coming decade!

Kredential
Guest
Kredential

The song could be butchered with an English revamp, the staging may not be very impactful but Albania ALWAYS brings outstanding vocalists. 2014 and 2016 are examples of why revamps typically don’t work in Albania, but 2010 still remains a great song.

pooky1001
Guest
pooky1001

I will forever be in love with the vocal ability of Eugent, that guy can sing.

Polegend Godgarina
Guest

justice for i’m alive, it was dead last in the jury vote

pooky1001
Guest
pooky1001

Her live vocals were really bad though but the song was good.

TheDrMistery
Guest
TheDrMistery

No, Albania was ahead of Poland (4 points to 2).

Anna
Guest
Anna

My top 3:
1. Eugent
2. Rona
3. Jonida

Katitam
Guest
Katitam

My Top 3:
1) Rona
2) Jonida
3) Lindita

Albania is pure art, always. They deserve to win soon. And Rona is the queen of this beautiful mess, if you ask me: Suus is one of the most incredible songs on ESC history.

Bella
Guest
Bella

“Rona Nishliu is the undisputed Albanian queen of Eurovision”… Is she though? That song and her pitchy screaming are a torture to listen to.

KESC
Guest
KESC

Apparently not, since she placed 8th in the televotes.

Bella
Guest
Bella

Yeah, cause as everyone knows, placing high in the televote means quality. Right? 😉

KESC
Guest
KESC

Not always, but in that case. C’mon Suus was a masterpiece.

Azaad
Guest
Azaad

The ranking isn’t opinion based, but rather determined by placings. As Albania’s only ever top 5 result, of course Suus would have to finish first on this list.

Bella
Guest
Bella

Makes sense.

Good for her that she placed high, but I’m sorry this song has always been my pet peeve. I thought Elhaida Dani (at least the studio version), Eugent Bushpepa or even Jonida Maliqi brought something a lot more polished and interesting.

Gorilla716
Guest
Gorilla716

I’m Alive would have come top 10 at Eurovision if Elhaida hadn’t screwed up her vocals.

KESC
Guest
KESC

Gosh, I love “It’s All about you”. When I was 10, I always had the chorus in my mind and was singing it everyday. 😀 I would love to see Juliana Pasha back in the contest. And her backing vocalists were one of the best in the whole Eurovision history. I also adore Suus, Mall, Ktheju Tokës and I’m Alive. The studio version of I’m Alive was one the best tracks in 2015. I really like the fact that Albania didn’t translate their songs for the past 2 years and guess what happened? They qualified in both cases. Generally, they… Read more »

BadWoolfGirl
Guest
BadWoolfGirl

I spent new year’s eve at a drag club and one of the queens lipsynched to “it’s all about you.” I was not expecting a Eurovision song at the show, considering the club was in Portland, OR.

ESCFan2009
Guest
ESCFan2009

Finally, we have sth in common! 😉 “It’s All About You” is simply a masterpiece <3

KESC
Guest
KESC

We also have in common that we live in Germany. 😀

Edouard
Guest
Edouard

Right, Albania is no doubt one of my least favourite ESC countries, and I think there’s a clear explanation to why: the performers there don’t sing, they scream. Every year at Eurovision, they provide us with yet another vocalist who does nothing but wail into a microphone for three minutes, which just isn’t enjoyable to listen to. Deny it as you wish, but out of this list, this statement holds true for 9 of them. Only exception: Juliana Pasha who started the decade off with a bang – a proper pop-rock track with a great and memorable hook and a… Read more »

Conor K
Guest
Conor K

The Wiwi gods have blessed us with an amazing article!!! Please letvthis be a series 🙂

Nikki
Guest
Nikki

Well, it seems to me it’s going to. I mean, it’s last year of the decade and they’ve started with the first country by alphabetical order.

BadWoolfGirl
Guest
BadWoolfGirl

This is so cool. Will there be more articles like this for the other countries? It’s great to have an overview of Eurovision in the 2010s country by country.

Azaad
Guest
Azaad

Hopefully! This was a good overview

TheDrMistery
Guest
TheDrMistery

Albania is first alphabetically so it’s possible.

Robyn Gallagher
Editor

It is indeed a series! We’re going all the way to the United Kingdom!

Preuss
Guest
Preuss

I’d love you to make videos where you review each entry of each country this decade 😀

Roelof Meesters
Guest
Roelof Meesters

They should keep sending entries in Albanian- 2009, 2012, 2018 and 2019 were all masterpieces. Also credit to Albania for making it out of both semi’s of death even if their chances were slim. 2008 and 2009 were both incredible, but 2010, 2012, 2015, 2018 and 2019 were all great and I’m glad that every time that Albania deserved to qualify they did so and everytime they didn’t deserve it they didn’t qualify.

Tibor
Guest
Tibor

This is a keen observation and I have to agree: If Albania deserved to qualify, they qualified and vice versa – not true for every coutry.

what
Guest
what

“Jonida was rewarded for her perseverance with a place in the final, ensuring Albania ended the decade on a high.”

The decade is not ending this year…

why
Guest
why

This decade began on 1 January 2010, it will end on 31 December 2019. There are no more Eurovisions between now and then.

Ziv
Guest
Ziv

Ironically, Albania will have selected their next entry by 31 December 2019.

what
Guest
what

This decade began on 1 January 2011, it will end on 31 December 2020. The point is that there is a difference between a decade and let’s say 2010s, which actually began on 1 January 2010.

Robyn Gallagher
Editor

There are a few different definitions of decade and one of them is a period of 10 years. We’re choosing to look at the 10-year period from 2010 to 2019, popularly known as “the ’10s”.

We acknowledge that the Gregorian calendar begins with the year one and our thoughts go out to those who celebrated the new millennium, alone, on 1 January 2001.

what
Guest
what

Ok, thank you for explaining the point, maybe I was trying to be a bit too much of a purist

NickC
Guest
NickC

Albania is a compete hit, or complete miss with me. Its all about you and Mall were amazing while Identitet , and unfortunely Suus were just not my cup of tea.