Junior Eurovision 2020 preview

After weeks of build-up and days of sneak previews, the final of the Junior Eurovision Song Contest 2020 is upon us. On 29 November at 17:00 CET, 12 countries will vie for the mini glass microphone in Warsaw, Poland. Although, due to the ongoing global pandemic, most performances were recorded remotely and all of them were filmed weeks ago.

But only one will slay hard enough to snatch the crown. As organisers put the last few touches in place before the show, we thought we’d take a moment to walk you through what’s about to go down. Consider this our pre-recorded commentary.

So grab your popcorn and fizzy pop — and let’s do this!

Junior Eurovision 2020: Final Preview

🇩🇪 Germany: Susan — “Stronger With You”

Ever since producer-led running orders arrived at Eurovision, show openers have tended to be bold and brash. But that’s not the case with Germany’s “Stronger With You”, an anthemic ballad about overcoming adversity. Of course, Susan is kicking off events thanks to chance — she was drawn the slot during the Junior Eurovision 2020 opening ceremony.

Reflecting the themes of her song, Susan’s staging turns from darkness to bright. As the number reaches its climax, her LED is flooded with warm shades of red and orange. Some cleverly designed silhouettes give the illusion of a crowd of dancers dancing in a forest.

Memorable lyrics (translated): “You see the pictures, and it makes you speechless; Say, do you also feel fury and despair?”

Read entry profile and lyrics

🇰🇿 Kazakhstan: Karakat Bashanova — “Forever”

The steady pace continues with Kazakhstan’s “Forever”. However, the entry has more than enough drama to make up for the low BPM. The emotional number is dedicated to Karakat’s father who died at war. “I will always keep the memory of my father,” she says.

For the performance, Karakat wears a showstopping projection dress, reminiscent of Eurovision divas such as Estonia’s Elina Nechayeva or Moldova’s Aliona Moon. But unlike her adult counterparts, the young singer also dons a pair of angel wings as she strives to reach a solitary night star.

Memorable lyrics (translated): “And fly away, my pain will stay forever, I lie when I say your hand is forever”

Read entry profile and lyrics

🇳🇱 The Netherlands: Unity — “Best Friends”

The energy picks up for song number three — “Best Friends”. Since 2016, the Dutch have enjoyed top ten finishes every year bar one. And the secret to their success has been kid-friendly pop. Often sung by a boy or girl group.

The formula remains in place for 2021 with Unity — that’s Naomi, Maud, Jayda and Demi. While only three performed in the Netherlands’ national final, due to Demi testing positive for COVID, all four will be on stage this evening. They’ve retained their Junior Songfestival staging with each girl owning a brightly coloured door that matches their individual outfit. The sparkling LED further conveys the positive message of their number.

Memorable lyrics (translated): “Where ever we live, We share the same moon, always united”

Read entry profile and lyrics

 

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🇷🇸 Serbia: Petar Aničić — “Heartbeat”

Serbia’s Petar is our first boy of the evening and is one of only two male performers in this year’s competition. He sings of a common dilemma for lads his age — does the girl he likes like him back?

Dressed in a dapper orange and white suit, Petar sings in front of a striking backdrop. A ball of what appears to be molten metal dominates the LED, constantly changing shape amid a swell of firey orange embers.

Memorable lyrics (translated): “the Earth stops spinning in a beat, time stands still, clocks stop ticking, too”

Read entry profile and lyrics

🇧🇾 Belarus: Arina Pehtereva — “Aliens”

Don’t be fooled by the title. Belarus’ number isn’t a jaunty little pop tune about cute extra-terrestrials. In fact, it’s not about space creatures at all, but rather the feeling of being an outsider. The dark power ballad showcases Arina’s massive vocals as she sings about being cut off from others due to the pandemic.

Wearing an oversized raincoat, the budding pop star stands before a dark LED. As she hits her high note, the earth explodes, filling the entire screen with light.

Memorable lyrics (translated): “The sky is crying, but we are blind aliens”

Read entry profile and lyrics

🇵🇱 Poland: Ala Tracz — “I’ll Be Standing”

Ala Tracz bears a heavy weight of expectation on her small shoulders. For, of course, her two predecessors as Polish representative have both won the contest. Whether she wins or not, Ala already has a hit on her hands — the official music video already has over 5 million views on YouTube.

The song itself is a departure from the cool teen-pop of Roxie Wegiel and Viki Gabor. It’s a peppier effort, skewing towards a slightly younger fan base. She’s the first act of the evening to have actual dancers on stage. Although, thanks to the LED, you’d swear she was joined by countless more.

Memorable lyrics: “Oh-woah-oh, oh-woah-oh, oh-woah-oh-oh”

Read entry profile and lyrics

🇬🇪 Georgia: Sandra Gadelia — “You Are Not Alone”

“You Are Not Alone” was the last of the 2020 entries to be released, coming just over two weeks before the contest. But it was worth the wait. Dealing with themes of isolation and loneliness, the dramatic, experimental ballad spectacularly shows off young Sandra’s vocals.

And the staging is just as gripping. Sandra wears an eyecatching floral outfit, while surrounded by a number of PPE-wearing woodland-nymph-like dancers. In the LED background, a meadow’s worth of flowers blows around amidst a massive whirlwind.

Memorable lyrics (translated): “On this earth, Close to the sun, Is your home”.

Read entry profile and lyrics

🇲🇹 Malta: Chanel Monseigneur — “Chasing Sunsets”

It may be a small island, but Malta is one of the big guns when it comes to Junior Eurovision. Since its 2013 comeback, it’s come top ten almost every time and won twice. Chanel will hope to keep this tradition going with her sweet song about following your dreams.

The staging is dominated by a mostly black and white cartoon, which tells the tale of a girl and her red balloon.

Memorable lyrics: “Red and orange will blend, As the day comes to an end”.

Read entry profile and lyrics

🇷🇺 Russia: Sofia Feskova — “My New Day”

While Poland brought a little Disney-channel style pop to the stage, Russia takes its inspiration from the studio’s animated cinematic output. You could imagine any number of downtrodden princesses singing this enchanting number about making each day special.

On stage, Sofia wears a pretty gown in Cinderella blue and fireworks sparkle behind her.

Memorable lyrics (translated): “Where in the night, dreams are coloured bright, To the clouds so soft and subtle, One step ahead – go!”

Read entry profile and lyrics

🇪🇸 Spain: Soleá — “Palante”

After coming close to victory upon its 2019 return, Spain is once again in it to win it. “Palante” is probably the most contemporary entry of the 12. Many have compared it to the urban flamenco pop of the Spanish superstar Rosalía.

She might be small. But on stage Soleá is a force to be reckoned with. Dressed in a pale blue outfit with fringed sleeves and hints of gold, she leads a dance troupe of much older boys and girls. They’re wearing all black, including black face masks.

Memorable lyrics (translated): “Shake off all the bad, Shake it all away”

Read entry profile and lyrics

🇺🇦 Ukraine: Oleksandr Balabanov “Vidkryvai (Open Up)”

For the penultimate act, we get our second male performer of the evening — Ukraine’s Oleksandr. His mid-tempo effort “Vidkryvai (Open Up)” comes with high concept lyrics. In between its message of pushing on and not giving up, the song references Jason and the Argonauts from Greek mythology and their quest for the elusive golden fleece.

Throughout the performance, Oleksandr holds an orb of light, supported by futuristic LED.

Memorable lyrics: “But you are the argonaut who has found his fleece!”

Read entry profile and lyrics

🇫🇷 France: Valentina — “J’imagine”

As with Germany at the start, France’s place in the running order was also drawn during the opening ceremony. But even though it was down to chance, producers couldn’t have wished for a better closer. Valentina sticks firmly to the formula that’s secured France two top-five finishes since its 2018 return — catchy pop with that unique “je ne sais quoi”.

Valentina is a vivacious performer with a smile that shines through the screen. Her staging is just as bright as her personality. Her candy-filled dreamscape is reminiscent of Katy Perry’s “California Gurls” video, albeit a toned-down kid-friendly version… that comes with a dancing Eiffel Tower.

Memorable lyrics: “Na-na-na, na-na-na, Na-na-na, na-na-na, Na-na-na, na-na-na, Na-na-na, na-na”.

Read our entry profile and lyrics

Who should win? Who will win? Let us know in the comments.

Follow all of our Junior Eurovision 2020 news.

15 Comments
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sam
sam
10 months ago

kazakhstan is the one to watch tonight, mark my words

ESCFan2009
ESCFan2009
10 months ago

I just clicked on the link to the French lyrics and recognized while listening that you forgot the 2nd verse ^^ The whole song is really magical ^^

Una
Una
10 months ago

My favourite lyrics:

Belarus
“Look, it’s getting brighter!”

France
“The ‘believe no more’ the ‘don’t believe’ it’s not for me.”

Georgia
“All my feelings grown, wanna show it all.”

Germany
“You see the future and you know you’ll make it.”

Una
Una
10 months ago
Reply to  Una

Kazakhstan
“Your singing bird is flying above.”

Malta
“Red and orange will blend as the day comes to an end.”

Poland
“I’ve got a heart full of dreams and they will never go away.”

Russia
“One step ahead – go! Touch the skies.”

Una
Una
10 months ago
Reply to  Una

Serbia
“The wind is left without sound. I can only hear a heartbeat.”

Spain
“Put on a good face, everything will pass.”

The Netherlands
“At every distance let us sing let us shine.”

Ukraine
“This is the right moment, this is the right time.”

fasttortoise
fasttortoise
10 months ago

yeahhhhhh if you’re going to joke about lyrical content in kids songs, maybe don’t pick two of the most popular entries, one of which has great, relatable lyrics? either this is a serious guide or a comedy, don’t try and straddle the two; this is the internet, it’s easy to offend people

fasttortoise
fasttortoise
10 months ago

yeah, i see your point, just saying that you shouldn’t be surprised that people are getting offended when you haven’t treated all songs equally.

Esc addict
Esc addict
10 months ago

Memorable lyrics for France: na na na na na na!?
Really Padraig? Or it’s only inappropriate irony from you about a kid song?
Not nice, on the contrary of what you seem to think this song has many and beautiful lyrics.

FanESC
FanESC
10 months ago
Reply to  Esc addict

“tout commence par un j’imagine” would have been more appropriate.

bartosz
bartosz
10 months ago
Reply to  Esc addict

The same case is with Poland..

Esc addict
Esc addict
10 months ago
Reply to  bartosz

True….. ok he has decided to make fun of children’s songs…..he may have slept badly….in any case not really nice but anyway

Tajikistan
Tajikistan
10 months ago

“Since its 2013 comeback, it’s come top ten every time“ – not true, Malta came last last year

Mikey
Mikey
10 months ago

?????? but all the songs are excelent!!!!