While Romania might not be enjoying much luck at Eurovision, the Eurovision-inspired singing festival Cerbul de Aur (Golden Stag) is going from strength to strength. After its successful 2018 revival, the contest is back for 2019. The 2019 lineup is full of names familiar to Eurovision fans.

Recent Eurovision alums Anna Odobescu (Moldova) and Tamara Gachechiladze (Georgia) are in the list of competing artists. Neither of them made it to the Eurovision grand final, so the Golden Stag may be their chance to shine.

Alongside them will be national final stars Alfie Arcuri (fifth in Australia’s 2019 national final), Monika Marija (runner-up in Lithuania’s 2019 national final), Sara de Blue (the Austrian singer who was the runner-up in San Marino’s 2018 national final) and Syuzanna Melqonyan (third in Armenia’s 2017 national final).

The list of the 12 competing artists is rounded out by other singers from around Europe, all vying for the Golden Stag.

Golden Stag 2019 – competing artists

  • Alfie Arcuri (Australia, national final 2019)
  • Anna Odobescu (Moldova, ESC 2019)
  • Cynthia Verazie (Cyprus)
  • Eliza G (Italy)
  • Florin Raduta (Romania)
  • Monika Marija (Lithuania, national final 2019)
  • Ralfs Eilands (Latvia)
  • Renate (Romania)
  • Sara de Blue (Austria, San Marino national final 2018)
  • Syuzanna Melqonyan (Armenia, national final 2017)
  • Tamara (Georgia, ESC 2017)
  • Veronica Liberati (Italy)

The competing acts will perform a song of their own choice and will also interpret a Romanian song from a list of 25 modern classics. Among the list of Romanian songs is Voltaj’s 2015 Eurovision entry “De la capăt”, as well as tracks from Romanian stars such as Feli, Dan Bittman and M I H A I.

It’s also expected that the festival will feature performances from international stars. While the 2019 guest line-up has not been confirmed, last year’s Golden Stag included performances from  Nicole Scherzinger, James Blunt and Eleni Foureira.

The return of the Golden Stag

The festival was born 50 years ago, in 1968. Loosely inspired by Eurovision  — which Romania was not a part of until 1994 — the Golden Stag quickly became the most important music competition in Eastern Europe. It also attracted young talents from the West, most notably Julio Iglesias. Ever since its inception, the festival has been taken place in the Transylvanian city of Brasov, which also hosted the Selectia Nationala final in 2014.

The Golden Stag has been running from 1968 to 1971, then from 1992 to 1997, from 2001 to 2005 and from 2008 to 2009. The festival was revived again last year, where Albanian singer Inis Neziri took the top prize.

Unlike Eurovision, which is a song contest, the Golden Stag festival is a singing contest and there is no televote. However, the festival has always been wildly popular among Romanians, primarily because of its pomp that aims to emulate Italy’s Sanremo.

This year, a jury will choose a winner who will go home with the coveted Golden Stag trophy. Other prizes will also be awarded, to the total amount of 55,000 euro.

The 2019 Golden Stag festival will take place between 22 August – 24 August, in Brasovs Sfatului Square.

Will you be following Romania’s Golden Stag festival? Are you excited about the line-up? Let us know in the comments!

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Kovalska
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Kovalska

In Poland on Wednesday14th August there will be a well-known polish song festival in Sopot, and Eurovision stars: Duncan Laurence, Luca Hanni, Frans and Lake Malawi will be performing in the concert called “Top of the top” 🙂

INAMOO
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INAMOO

Underrated and talented singers. Tamara and Anna deserves more and this festival is a good opportunity for them.

Una
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Una

The Golden Stag is inspired rather from the San Remo festival or FiK, not Eurovision. It is an international festival, yes. But there are different sections of the festival, which makes it more like San Remo. Also, there is just one jury.

HAPPY to see Sara de Blue in the line-up. I still listen to Twilight to this day and I am overjoyed when the song comes on my playlist.

And BRING ON those foreign artists singing in Romanian. Literally the best part of the festival.

KYLLITO
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KYLLITO

De La Capat….one of my favorites from 2015 especially when you know the story behind it.

Veta
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Veta

Romanian music is the best in the world. I’m glad they hold this festival and it has so much connections with Eurovision so they can demonstrate this fact to ESC fans also, if Romanian appearances on ESC itself may not convince people much in this. This is a real proof one country’s music can be much more than what they send at Eurovision.

www
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www

It’s like an ESC post-party.

Meckie
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Meckie

Ralfs Eilands was also in Eurovision. Hahaha… Wiwibloggs, you forgot already 2013!

Joe
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Joe

I’ve been PeRetty happy not thinking about that song.

Lolz
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Lolz

It’s in my TOP10 from that year. Robbed

Alex
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Alex

They should invite Mahmood or Duncan to perform there.

Ugnius
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Ugnius

Ralfs Eilands is also Eurovision alum – his group PeR represented Latvia at Eurovision 2013

Alex
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Alex

You’re right!