At Eesti Laul 2020, he surged to victory with “What Love Is”, a ballad that explored one of the world’s most timeless questions.

And now, with his spot in the Eesti Laul 2021 semi-finals guaranteed, Uku Suviste is hard at work penning an entry he hopes will finally get him to Eurovision in 2021.

On Tuesday, the Greek creative director Ilias Kokotos shared Instagram footage of the Estonian star collaborating (via Zoom) with noted Greek composer and Eurovision maestro Dimitris Kontopoulos.

The story also tagged Dimitris’s collaborators Sharon Vaughn (“Waterline” and “Release Me”) and Philipp Kirkorov (“Scream” and “You Are The Only One”), and vocal coach Victoria Chalkiti, who will work with Uku and Moldova’s Natalia Gordienko.

 

Uku Suviste at Eesti Laul 2021

As you’ll recall, producers behind Eesti Laul 2021 have given Uku an automatic spot in the semi-finals this year. That’s down to him winning in 2020, but missing out on Eurovision because of the coronavirus pandemic.

Over the summer, Uku spoke about how having a guaranteed place in Eesti Laul 2021 has changed his songwriting style. He said that not having to pass the preliminary selection round means his song won’t have to grab the attention of the selection panel. That could pave the way for more experimentation and a potentially slower build.

The show will keep the same format as in recent years. There will be two semi-finals held on 18 and 20 February. In each semi-final, the 24 competing acts will battle for the 12 places in the grand final on 6 March 2022.

Entries for Eesti Laul 2021 opened on 1 September and close on 6 November. Each performer or group can submit up to five songs. And foreign creatives are welcome — just so long as they partner with at least one resident Estonian songwriter or performer.

Entrants are expected to submit not just their song but also ideas for the staging. The broadcaster wants artists to share “their vision of the possible stage show with the central idea, possible props and colour schemes.”

It’s expected that Uku will partner with Greek stage director Fokas Evangelinos if he makes it to Eurovision.

As Uku narrows down his selection, what genre are you hoping for? Are there any elements of “What Love Is” that you hope to see him carry over? Let us know down below!

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Christophe Lienard
Christophe Lienard
1 month ago

He really bulged out at Eesti Laul.

Kosey
Kosey
1 month ago

Something along the lines of Natalia’s Prison would be a step in the right direction. I just hope it won’t be as tame as last year’s version.

ESCFan2009
ESCFan2009
1 month ago

But only with a sea of candles on stage! 😉
I liked “What Love Is” though 😀

Whisker
Whisker
1 month ago

The truth is, his entry was one of the entries I remembered from watching all the entries pre EL 2020, and I watched all entries. That’s good. And I will be mostly interested in his proposal out of all proposals in EL 2021. #thepressureison #goodluckuku

Alex
Alex
1 month ago

Ik this is unpopular opinion among fans but I liked his 2020 song much better than his 2019. Melody wise was more appealing and pleasant.
I guess seeing the team, they will go again safe with a classical sing along ballad. Fans will probably not like it but there’s an audience for it with locals.
It will depend on the song anyway, but Estonians lately clearly love and vote for sing along song. Both in Eesti laul and Eurovision.

VlaD
VlaD
1 month ago

He will win again Eesti Laul

maladroite
maladroite
1 month ago
Reply to  VlaD

It would be nice for him!

JDS
JDS
1 month ago

What a good photo of Uku you’re chosen!

Una
Una
1 month ago
Reply to  JDS

He looks so shy 🙂 Still handsome.

Jake
Jake
1 month ago

I mean, he deserves to go, but I’m not happy with this, it will be the same sh*t as always.

Briekimchi
Briekimchi
1 month ago

Can’t be optimistic about the songwriting team considering the 2020 output. It’s a shame as I think Uku could probably come up with something much better if he just wrote it himself.

EmilyG
EmilyG
1 month ago
Reply to  Briekimchi

well he has admitted that he has been submitting to= Eesti Laul his own songs for a decade and the best result he ever got was 2nd. So I think the fact that in 2020 he won Eesti Laul and had a huge hit in Estonia is already a big success for him.

Last edited 1 month ago by EmilyG
James
James
1 month ago

“I can never imagine the power….”

Mita
Mita
1 month ago

good luck! he deserves to represent Estonia in 2021.

wap
wap
1 month ago

that means more chance for elina to win 😉

ESCFanGA
ESCFanGA
1 month ago

Although I didn’t like What Love Is, I hope Uku finally gets his chance to represent Estonia at Eurovision 2021. Hopefully his song will be far better.

VlaD
VlaD
1 month ago

“What love is” was one of the most underestimated songs in 2020.
It was the favorite song of my mother and I think it would have done very well with ex Soviet’s and older people.

cats and dogs eurovision
cats and dogs eurovision
1 month ago

„What Love Is“ was so bad, I can’t believe such big names were behind it.. hopefully this time it’s better 🙂

Last edited 1 month ago by cats and dogs eurovision
Donkey
Donkey
1 month ago

I’m almost certain Uku is gonna win after last year. But I don’t mind since he deserves to be in eurovision, but his song gonna be real bland…

Joey
Joey
1 month ago

I guess he learnt nothing from rankings, etc… He was one of the least favourites with almost everyone and now he’s working with them again? I’m hoping that it will be a good song, but I’m hoping not too much either…

maladroite
maladroite
1 month ago
Reply to  Joey

It’s just the fandom. Honestly I wouldn’t put much stock into what the fandom thought

Lebanese esc fan
Lebanese esc fan
1 month ago

“What Love Is” was my least favorite entry this year, but I am still cautiously optimistic about Uku as I did love his 2019 nf song. Hopefully, he can come up with something to make Estonia proud should he be selected.

Last edited 1 month ago by Lebanese esc fan
Esc addict
Esc addict
1 month ago

Kontopoulos, Kirkorov, Milanov, Alex P, G son, L. Barker, Medalie, Sacha JB, we heard always the same names in the esc world……. We need novelties.

Ashton
Ashton
1 month ago

there goes my hope for an interesting, original song

Mita
Mita
1 month ago
Reply to  Ashton

since when a song should be “original”?

Ashton
Ashton
1 month ago
Reply to  Mita

Is that even a question????? Since the beginning of music, Mita. All songs should be original. How are you even confused about this

EmilyG
EmilyG
1 month ago
Reply to  Ashton

I am with @Mita on this. There is nothing original in pop music and there is no problem with this. Which was the originality of “Arcade”, “Toy”, “Fuego” ?ordinary pop songs and there was nothing wrong with that.

Ashton
Ashton
1 month ago
Reply to  EmilyG

They are all original songs with original beats, lyrics, and voices. I don’t understand how you can think they aren’t original but sure whatever