The Masked Singer is proving to be the hit television show format of the Covid era. Four former Eurovision stars have recently been unmasked on their local versions of the international celebrity singing franchise. 3JS singer Jan Dulles won the Dutch version, while Justs, Elina Born, Izhar Cohen and Vicky Leandros were masked acts in Latvia, Estonia, Israel and Germany, respectively.

The popular South Korean singing show format — in which celebrities perform in elaborate costumes that conceal their identity — now has versions in dozens of countries around the world. And the format has proved to be a perfect place for former Eurovision stars to do what they do best.

Jan Dulles wins The Masked Singer Netherlands as Neptune

In 2011, Jan Dulles was the frontman of the Dutch group 3JS, who sadly placed last in their Eurovision semi-final. But almost a decade on, victory is his as the winner of the second Dutch series of The Masked Singer.

Jan competed as Neptunus, god of the ocean. Week after week, he showed off his strengths as a vocalist, tackling songs by artists such as the Jonas Brothers and OneRepublic. The Masked Singer audience liked what they heard, voting him their champion.

The Masked Singer proved to be a massive ratings success for broadcaster RTL. Almost four million people tuned in to watch the grand final — making it the most viewed RTL show since the final of Idols in 2003.

Justs revealed as the Sparrow on The Masked Singer Latvia

Latvia’s Eurovision 2016 star Justs has been revealed as Zvirbulis — the Sparrow. For the past few weeks, he’s been one of the strongest performers on Balss Maskā, Latvia’s version of the popular celebrity singing show.

But this week, just one week short of the grand final, he was sadly eliminated from the show.

For his last performance, he tackled “Riņķa deja” originally by the Latvian rapper Rolands Če. It showed off a different side to Justs, proving that he can rap and deliver some swagger — even dressed as a sparrow.

Latvia’s Eurovision 2021 star Samanta Tīna was on show’s judging panel, but even she wasn’t even to correctly guess that Justs was behind the sparrow.

The Masked Singer Latvia wraps up next week, with the Demon and the Doll competing for the top spot. And there could be a further Eurovision connection — Samanta Tīna is convinced that Aminata Savadogo is underneath the Doll costume!

Elina Born unmasked as the Lynx on The Masked Singer Estonia

At Estonia’s 2017 national final, she asked “Are you in or out?” But now it’s clear that “Goodbye to Yesterday” singer Elina Born was the one in the Lynx costume but sadly she’s now out of the competition.

Elina has been competing as Ilves — the Lynx on Maskis laulja. In the most recent episode, she gave an impressive performance of Whitney Houston’s “I Will Always Love You” — but it wasn’t enough to keep her in the competition.

The competition continues, with the Arctic Wolf, the Dragon, the Phoenix, the Toadstool and the Zebra competing to be the second Estonian Masked Singer champion.

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Izhar Cohen was behind the Bull on the Masked Singer Israel

In 1978, he gave Israel its first Eurovision win with “A-Ba-Ni-Bi”. Now the legendary singer Izhar Cohen unmasked as the Bull on the Israeli version of The Masked Singer.

He lasted five weeks on הזמר במסכה — The Singer in Mask. Izhar performed as שור — the Bull. While his big Eurovision moment happened in the 1970s, Izhar performed contemporary pop songs on the show. Over the weeks the Bull sang “Stay with Me” by Sam Smith, “Black BMW” by Israeli group Ethnix, and “Stitches” by Shawn Mendes.

Sadly, the Bull is out of the competition, but the Stork, the Dragon, the Rooster, the Dragonfly, the Yael, the Falafel are still competing to see who will be Israel’s first masked champion.

Vicky Leandros unmasked as the Cat on The Masked Singer Germany

Another Eurovision winner has also been unmasked. Vicky Leandros is the Greek-German singer who won Eurovision 1972 for Luxembourg. But now she got in touch with her feline side, performing as Katze — the Cat — on the German version of The Masked Singer.

Over the weeks she performed songs from Adele, Queen and Lionel Richie, but was eliminated this week. The Alien, the Anubis, the Meerkats, the Hippo and the Skeleton remain in the competition.

Due to tighter restrictions against the Covid-19 pandemic, the German edition now takes place without a studio audience. The audience space is now filled with cardboard cut-outs of viewers.

What do you think? Which Eurovision singers would you like to hear on The Masked Singer? Should there be an all-Eurovision special series of the contest? Tell us your thoughts below!

Read more Masked Singer news here

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Chris
Chris
15 days ago

Last year in Germany Max Mutzke (Germany 2004) won the first edition.

Andy
Andy
15 days ago

I’m from Latvia. Just wanted to say that Samanta Tina did recognise that Justs was under the Sparrow mask. Justs was her guessing for last few weeks, she was 100% sure about that. 🙂

PuppetOnAString
15 days ago

The Dutch version also had Willeke Alberti, she got eliminated in week 1

Tom
Tom
15 days ago

Getter Jaani was the Jonnipunni (Doll) On The Estonian one last year!

Joe
Joe
15 days ago

Once the other Nordic series kick into high gear (Denmark, Norway, and Sweden), you KNOW there’s going to be a ton of Eurovision/NF contestants. I can practically smell it. I’m guessing they aren’t going to do one in Iceland because everyone knows each other. I basically made that joke about if they tried doing it in San Marino already, but it’s mutually applicable: Announcer: OK, panelists, get ready for our first singer: The Puffin! The Puffin: “Núna ertu hjá mér, Nína…” Panelist: I got it! It’s Gisli from the pub! Announcer: Are you SURE? Panelist: Yeah, he does it at… Read more »

Joe
Joe
15 days ago

So, as far as I can find, not counting national finalists, here’s a breakdown of every Eurovision contestant we can confirm has competed on a version of The Masked Singer: Australia – Isaiah (2017), Kate Miller-Heidke (2019) Austria – Simone Steltzer (1990), Nadine Beiler (2011), Lukas Plöchl (2012, with Trackshittaz) Belgium – Sandra Kim (1986) Bulgaria – Poli Genova (2011, 2016), Zhana Bergendorff (2018, with Equinox) Estonia – Getter Jaani (2011), Elina Born (2015) France – Natasha St-Pier (2001) Germany – Vicky Leandros (Luxembourg 1967 and 1972), Max (2004) Israel – Izhar Cohen (1978, 1985) Italy – Al Bano (1976… Read more »

Briekimchi
Briekimchi
15 days ago

Thanks for the roundup, Robin!
I hadn’t been watching the Latvian one so this was good to know. Can’t believe Samanta Tina didn’t recognise the voice of someone she once conceded a national final to!

Joe
Joe
15 days ago
Reply to  Briekimchi

On the other hand, seeing as she wrote “Still Breathing” with Aminata (and it appears they may collaborate again for 2021), I feel like she’d probably have a solid idea if it was her.

milky
milky
15 days ago

The Phoenix is also rumoured to be Elina Nechayeva in the Estonian Masked Singer

Joe
Joe
15 days ago
Reply to  milky

I get the feeling if it’s her people would figure it out very quickly, like with Kate Miller-Heidke.

milky
milky
15 days ago
Reply to  Joe

Most people have already figured it out lol (even tho she’s singing in a non-operatic way) but it’s mainly because of the clues and body

Joe
Joe
15 days ago
Reply to  milky

She’s a very expressive performer, and like Kate, even when she isn’t singing operatically, it isn’t hard to tell.

Leo
Leo
15 days ago

I think Orna Datz was Popcorn on Masked singer in Israel (so Izhar Cohen wasn’t the only ESC Star there) and covered Fuego in one week. This popcorn was a standard tub, so unlike the US version.

Joe
Joe
15 days ago

You mean to tell me the Riga Beaver isn’t one of the costumes on the Latvian Masked Singer? What a waste.

Hans P
Hans P
15 days ago

Two weeks ago, Sandra Kim won the Flemish version of The Masked Singer.

Joe
Joe
15 days ago
Reply to  Hans P

They posted an article about it. How many Eurovision vets have won now? Off the top of my head, there’s Jan Dulles, Sandra Kim, Nadine Beiller, Max, and Rita Guerra.

Jonas
Jonas
15 days ago
Reply to  Joe

That reminds me…in response to a post you made ages ago, sorry…Johnny Logan is another winner I’ve just found on YouTube singing Euphoria.

Joe
Joe
15 days ago
Reply to  Jonas

Ah, thanks! Gotta look that up. I’m sure it’s great. I love his covers. (In a nice bit of turnabout-is-fair-play, there’ve been a couple of times when he and Umberto Tozzi have covered “Gente di mare” together. No word on whether or not he and Wind have ever collaborated.)

Joe
Joe
15 days ago
Reply to  Joe

Bit of digging showed there was a whole show of Irish winners covering other winners. Besides the cover of “Euphoria” you mentioned, there’s also Niamh Kavanagh covering “Puppet on a String,” Linda Martin covering “Apres toi,” and Paul Harrington and Charlie McGettigan covering “Fly on the Wings of Love” (which I believe is one of a handful of times winners performed each other’s songs, since I know the Olsen Brothers covered “Rock ‘n’ Roll Kids”).

Joe
Joe
15 days ago
Reply to  Joe

And what do you know: turns out Linda Martin also covered “Euphoria”!

Jonas
Jonas
15 days ago
Reply to  Joe

I think Nicole might be the only one to properly record it, though…in German, on her album 12 Punkte. The Olsens are there too, of course.

Jonas
Jonas
15 days ago
Reply to  Joe

Hm, what could suit Eimear Quinn? Hard Rock Hallelujah? I’d buy a ticket to that.

Joe
Joe
15 days ago
Reply to  Jonas

I could see her being surprisingly good with Everyway That I Can.

Iván el Conquistador
Iván el Conquistador
15 days ago

Meanwhile, either Pastora Soler or Ruth Lorenzo are rumored to be Peacock on Masked SInger Spain.

xelx
xelx
14 days ago

After her second appearance, it’s clear she’s Pastora.