After an endless auditions process, the 60 participants of The Next Star for Eurovision 2020 have been reduced to just 20. And last Sunday we finally found out who the last five of the final 20 are. Here’s a summary of the nerve-wracking Episode 19.

Nathan Quatorze

Half-French polyglot Nathan Quatorze was the first to perform. Expectations were high after his first audition convinced juror Keren Peles that he will reach the grand final. No problems here. Quatorze sang “Can’t Take My Eyes Off You” and won the judges’ hearts all over again. So he’s now booked his spot in the final 20.

Linoy Akala

Linoy Akala, the bootcamp qualifier who had the lowest audition score (41%), was up next. Since only two wildcards have made it to the final 20 so far, the hosts hyped Akala up and for good reason. She performed a touching low-tempo rendition of”You’re the One That I Want” that reminded host Rotem Sela of Netta’s cover of “A-Ba-Ni-Bi”. After long discussions, she received votes from all the judges and qualified directly to the final 20.

Yossi Asher

Yossi Asher qualified as a wildcard after the judges were rather quick to judge his abilities following a weak start. He sang Dudu Tasa’s “BaSof Mitraglim LaKol” and the judges agreed that he had improved a lot. He received votes from all judges bar Shiri Maimon, and qualified for Second Chance.

Ron Peretz

Ron Peretz, who the judges described as futuristic, was asked to perform in Hebrew during the bootcamp. She sang “Af Ekhad” by Karolina, who was present at the performance. Karolina herself didn’t approve and the judges agreed that while Peretz is talented, it’s just not enough. No votes meant no place in the Top 20.

Lihi Toledano

Lihi Toledano, daughter of Avi Toledano and one of the clear front-runners to win the selection, was next. She sang “Je Suis Malade” by Serge Lama, in Hebrew and French. While Levy and Peles didn’t vote for her, she earned enough support to make Second Chance.

Shiran Abayu

35-year-old heavy metal singer Shiran Abayu sang “Poison” by Alice Cooper. Once again, she showed off that powerful and gritty voice and won the judges over. Because two judges chose not to vote for nor against, Abayu went to Second Chance. After Abayu’s performance clip ended, we also saw a short bit from Nathanel Sherf’s performance of Adele’s “Hello”. Sherf was eliminated, as the performance failed to impress the judges.

Eden Zohar Sivan

The half-Ethiopian, half-Polish Eden Zohar got a staggering score of 92% on her first audition. This time she sang Stevie Wonder’s “I Wish” and the votes quickly piled up. But as Assaf Amdursky voted against, it was only enough for Second Chance.

Loai Ali

Loai Ali was the next bootcamp participant to perform. Two of his friends were murdered by a terrorist at the Temple Mount earlier in 2019, and he dedicated his performance to them. He sang “Ke’ev Shel Lokhamim” (Soldiers’ Pain) by Idan Amedi and moved the jurors. They all voted for him except for Assaf Amdursky, so he qualified to the Second Chance round.

Oneg Israel

Oneg Israel, the skilful singer with an unusual name, was up last. She sang “Ayeka” by Shuli Rand, a moving low-tempo ballad. Israel nailed a few difficult high notes with some beautiful and clear vocals. Amdursky said he wants her in the grand final, which is really unusual of him. Static and Keren Peles voted against her while the rest were on board, which was enough to take Israel to Second Chance.

Second Chance / final decisions

The judges announced Lihi Toledano, who Israeli media had marked as a major contender, as the first eliminee. Then Yossi Asher was sent home. And finally some good news: Oneg Israel heard the news that she is in. Loai Ali, Shiran Abayu and Eden Zohar Sivan remained. Loai Ali and Eden Zohar Sivan completed the final 20, while Shiran Abayu was eliminated.

On Saturday, the duel round will begin, and the 20 participating artists will start dropping like flies. Who are your favourites so far? Who do you think can go all the way? Let us know in the comments below!

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Sam
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Sam

Just for the record, there were 8 eliminations from the 4 bootcamp episodes which were left out in the editing room for various reasons (time restraints, disqualifications behind the scenes, lack of transparency etc.). 5 of these eliminations were uploaded on the show’s website and once again contestants achieving an 80% mark found themselves being eliminated for no apparent reason other than incompatibility with the format or to the blend of performers the judges and the production had in mind. Those 5 auditions can be seen here: https://www.mako.co.il/tv-the-next-star/season7-articles/Article-8efe0f714425f61026.htm?sCh=743354916246e610&pId=25483675 There were 3 other prominent contestants whose eliminations were deliberately subdued and… Read more »

Eric
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Eric

As usual in these shows the singers with unique sounds get eliminated

Azaad
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Azaad

Which is interesting for Israel in particular because they won with a very unique sounding artist

Tajikistan
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Tajikistan

I feel like Adamursky would vote against Dami Im, Adele and Tamara Todevska – seriously I don’t think I’ve seen that man approve of anything. He’d be a good commentator on here

Jessey
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Jessey

When will they get there song is there gonna be 10 artist with 10 song and 1 winner are there gonne be 5 artist and 5 song or 1 artist with a few songs where we can choose from?

Maya G
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Maya G

They’re saying that whoever wins the show will have a small national final where he\she would sing 3 or 4 songs, out of which one will be selected to represent Israel.
However, I have a feeling that in the end they might cancel the national final thing and select a song internally, like they’ve been doing since 2015 – which is fine by me, because I think that one-artist national finals are usually rigged, and therefore are a waste of time and energy.

Joe
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Joe

I feel like they’re going to stick with it since fans who were initially fine with it were soured to the idea after Kobi’s song inevitably sunk like a stone.

gilpgilp
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gilpgilp

Lihi got screwed. She 100% deserved to move on. Keren Peles has no clue.

Sam
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Sam

Itay Levi also thought her style was too old-fashioned and burdensome and Shiri Maimon said she couldn’t resist her pretty face, charm and theatrical presentation , but that’s more a curse than a blessing if you think about it because it’s a weak explanation for giving her a blue note. Keren Peles made it all about herself in a rather selfish and irritating manner which is why most of the anger is targeted towards her, but if you hear between the lines, you can tell the overwhelming impression from all the judges was that it was “too over the top”.… Read more »

Azaad
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Azaad

That’s sweet! About the coupling, that is.