In recent weeks, rumours have been circulating, suggesting that Cyprus’ Eurovision 2018 star Eleni Foureira could be making an encore performance at Eurovision 2021. But sadly it appears this won’t be happening. The Albanian Greek popstress has turned down the opportunity to represent Cyprus in Rotterdam next year.
The journalist Giannis Poulopoulos broke the news today on the Greek morning television show Eftychite. He revealed that a source at Panik Records — Eleni’s record label — confirmed the “Fuego” singer would not be competing at Eurovision 2021.
The source says Eleni would eventually like to return to Eurovision, but only when things are better in regards to the coronavirus and a regular Eurovision show can be held.
Wiwibloggs’ source in Cyprus tells us the decision did not come down to a lack of will or lack of songs — both were there. It was solely due to concerns related to Covid-19 and the way that this would impact this year’s contest.
Our source goes on to say that the Cypriot team respects and completely understands the decision. The source adds that Eleni’s relationship with the team in Cyprus is not just professional. It is built on genuine love and respect among the two parties and the invitation is always open.
Last week the EBU released the four scenarios it would use for holding Eurovision 2021 under possible pandemic restrictions. Two of the scenarios involve a Eurovision with a reduced, socially distant audience, while one scenario has no live audience.
Given how Eleni’s 2018 entry “Fuego” energised the heaving crowd at Lisbon’s Altice Arena, it’s easy to see that a similar type of song would not have the same impact with a smaller audience or no audience.
If not Eleni Foureira, then who?
There’s no shortage of speculation around other artists who are in the running to represent Cyprus at Eurovision 2021.
Greece’s Eurovision 2008 star Kalomira recently confirmed that Cyprus was a possibility for 2021.
Also said to be under consideration by Cyprus is Ilias Kozas, the lead singer of the Greek rock band Koza Mostra. They previously represented Greece at Eurovision 2013 with the crowd favourite “Alcohol Is Free”.
With Greece having already invited back Eurovision 2020 act Stefania to be their supergirl in Rotterdam, Greek music stars are turning to Cyprus as their best chance to make it to Eurovision in 2021.
So far, interested artists include The Voice Australia‘s Despina Savva, Greek X Factor star Ian Stratis, Kazakh-Greek X Factor star Eirini Papadopoulou, Australia Decides act Leea Nanos, Cyprus’ Eurovision 2012 star Ivi Adamou, reality stars Konnie Metaxa & Tasos Xiarcho, pop-rock group Melisses, pop icon Vangelis Kakouriotis and singer/model/actress Katerina Stikoudi.
But now with Eleni Foureira apparently out of the running for Rotterdam, broadcaster CyBC may be reconsidering its options.
What do you think? Are you sad that Eleni Foureira won’t be in Rotterdam? Who else should Cyprus sent to Eurovision 2021? Tell us your thoughts below!