It’s day five of Eurovision 2021 rehearsals and it’s time for most of the semi-final one acts to return to the stage for their second rehearsals. Lithuania, Slovenia and Russia are first up. What’s changed since their first run-throughs? Let’s see…

Second rehearsals at Eurovision 2021: Lithuania, Slovenia and Russia

Lithuania’s The Roop “Discoteque” — Eurovision 2021 second rehearsal

Padraig: After two years away, we couldn’t ask for a better opener to Eurovision 2021. Even though we’re still at rehearsals, The Roop and their dancers exude an infectiously positive energy. This second rehearsal was pretty much the same as Saturday’s. Everything was a bit tighter, the performers a little more confident. They’re still in yellow, they have the checkerboard LED and split-screen effects. Unlike Poland, Vaidotas creates a moment when he grabs the camera for a selfie — he’s inviting us into the fun rather than giving us motion sickness.

 

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Slovenia’s Ana Soklič “Amen” — Eurovision 2021 second rehearsal

Oliver: No huge changes for Slovenia, but a couple of subtle improvements here and there. Despite looking a little unsure of her initial movements, Ana kept her heels on the whole time! Also, the “sing it!” diva moment was missing from the first run. Instead, she strutted up the runway and let the gospel choir do their thing without any divine intervention. Unfortunately, it returned for the second run. This segment certainly needs something to maintain the momentum, but this encouragement seems forced. Perhaps getting the (eventual) audience to clap along would work better.

 

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Padraig: The biggest issue during Ana’s first rehearsal was walking the catwalk. Then, the train of her cloak was inclined to get caught in her heels and almost tripped her. At one point she even lost her heels. No such problems today. Ana now tackles the runway with a fierce determination, carefully clutching her outfit to avoid any unfortunate faux pas. Otherwise, everything is like before. Ana’s vocals are, of course, flawless.

 

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Russia’s Manizha “Russian Woman” — Eurovision 2021 second rehearsal

Oliver: Our first new outfit of the day. The Russian icon’s jumpsuit and huge traditional dress remain, but now she’s wearing a golden head scarf. Her backing vocalists are wearing all gold, complimenting the red colours of the backdrop very nicely. Manizha ends her performance exclaiming “we are ready for change, because we are the change.” It’s a very powerful moment and perfectly captures the zeitgeist, summarising Manizha’s drive and determination to achieve equality. Russia is climbing the scoreboard with this.

 

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Padraig: The only real changes are costume related – Manizha’s jumpsuit, and the backing singers in somewhat shapeless gold lamé. Once again, the performance was on point. But really, the beauty of second rehearsals is the opportunity to zone in on aspects you might have missed the first time around. For me, that’s the LED selfie wall. It has some very noticeable queer elements. Amongst the cis women, we see a drag queen with a giant pink wig. We also see a trans person, who shows off their bandages from having had top surgery. This would be pushing boundaries in most competing countries. That it’s coming from Russia is revolutionary. More power to Manizha!

 

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Follow all of our Lithuania Eurovision 2021 news.

Photos: EBU / ANDRES PUTTING / THOMAS HANSES

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Silverhand
Silverhand
30 days ago

I like Lithuania, On Fire was better song, but they still have their style and charm. Manizha is so charizmatic girl! I like the staging, it is shown how a woman frees herself from traditions, leaves her role of a motionless doll that sits on a samovar (teapot),and fights for what she really wants to get. I’m not sure that this song is my cup of tea musically, but it is my favorite message along with Italian. And I want to say that as a person who was born in the former USSR and grew up in this culture, this… Read more »

Sabrina
Sabrina
1 month ago

Lithuania: Looking sharp and the colors are really popping up. Now just go there and have the time of your lives, guys!

Slovenia: I’m afraid it’s not a staging that will get them televote support. But if this is Ana holding back, imagine when she gives it all.

Russia: The more I see of it, the more I feel this is an iconic performance. Perfectly translated message.

Jamie
Jamie
1 month ago

I still cannot tell if you’re trolling or not

Candy
Candy
1 month ago

Lithuania looks even better today than at the first rehearsal. They are surely gonna qualify and a top 10 spot in the final is sure too I’d say When I heard the song for the first time I liked it a lot but now thinking about the people that’ll hear this for the first time on Tuesday I’m worried. The “death” spot and being after Lithuania and before Russia makes qualifying impossible for Slovenia. Wow. I love Manizha. I love her energy. I even loved the backing vocalists today. The outfits are so good. Huge message behind the song and… Read more »

Last edited 1 month ago by Candy
Julie
Julie
1 month ago

Lithuania looks sharp and professional! Love them!

Sot
Sot
1 month ago

1. Lithuania (it looks awesome!)
2. Russia (deservedly 1st actually but I love the Roop)
3. Slovenia (her voice… the staging… everything!)

I can’t believe how all three have serious chances of qualifying (even Slovenia with that staging)

Nati
Nati
1 month ago
Reply to  Sot

Same numb 1 🙂

Martin
Martin
1 month ago
Reply to  Sot

I hope Slovenia will qualify.

Ffs
Ffs
1 month ago

Russia & Lithuania are areal threat and they both deserve to be in the Top 5

Lola
Lola
1 month ago

Lithuania: I really enjoy this entry on stage! Love their dance moves and they definately are in my top 10 this year!
Slovenia: The one who impressed me the most, I wouldn’t mind seeing her qualify, but I still think that would be a stretch. But for what it’s worth, she’s my biggest grower of the year!
Russia: Always loved this one and now even more!! I so hope that on Monday and Tuesday the jury and televoters will see the quality, uniqueness and specialty of this song. In my personal top 10!

Last edited 1 month ago by Lola
mich
mich
1 month ago

Malta sends a pro-feminist song: This is so outdated and copy of Netta!
Russia sends a pro-feminist song: This is a unique masterpiece!

Jo.
Jo.
1 month ago
Reply to  mich

Malta’s entry isn’t a copy of Netta, whoever’s saying that is just a hater or a troll.

mich
mich
1 month ago
Reply to  Jo.

I agree. Unfortunately Malta is a country people love to hate, judging by the amount of haters on blogs and comment threads. Some countries on the other hand, can do no wrong in some people’s eyes. I personally hate Russia’s entry because the song was, is and always will be crap.

Last edited 1 month ago by mich
Jo.
Jo.
1 month ago
Reply to  mich

She was 1st with the bookies for a long time, this happens every year, see Lazarev, Gabbani, Netta, Duncan, etc… After the contest, the hate will move towards the winner…

Sot
Sot
1 month ago
Reply to  mich

You said it yourself: Manizha’s song is unique and risky, while Malta just decided to copy-paste everything

mich
mich
1 month ago
Reply to  Sot

Russia is also the only song, (together with Denmark) from this year’s playlist that I skip all the time because it just is musically barren, dissonant and does not make sense. It’s literally grotesque in all ways and I simply can’t get it and never will. I all i know is that as per usual, if a country like Albania, Malta, North Macedonia, Croatia would have sent this same exact song, people would be laughing at it.

Name*
Name*
1 month ago
Reply to  mich

Both Russia and Denmark are in my top 2 and I listen to them 24/7. Your taste is inexistent and your opinion is invalid. Now clear the area please.

Ratik
Ratik
1 month ago
Reply to  mich

there’s a big difference between a feminist song with “I’m not your baby/ I don’t need your money” and a feminist song with historical and cultural references, from a country where patriarchy is a issue

mich
mich
1 month ago
Reply to  Ratik

Patriarchy is an issue EVERYWHERE especially in a small catholic Mediterranean island where women are taught to stay at home and cook and clean for their husband. How do you expect an 18 year old girl to speak if approached by a guy in a bar? – those lyrics are both age and culturally appropriate.

Dawid
Dawid
1 month ago
Reply to  mich

Malta is anti-men, Russia is pro-women

That’s huge difference. You shouldn’t bring others down to support someone.

Chris
Chris
1 month ago

Love Lithuania every time even more! By fay this is their best entry and hopefully their best result.

Kosey
Kosey
1 month ago

The ROOP look really sharp, I can see this going down a storm.

Ana looks really familiar but she has quality.

Manizha looks like she has a great show going on.

EProduc
EProduc
1 month ago

In a sea full of pink and boring platform-stagings the colorful and playful staging of Lithuania and Russia stand out a lot. I’m loving the cultural and ethnic dress and LED-visuals from Manizha so much. I wish other countries would give us something like this instead of just boring lights and LED-stripes like Moldova’s staging…

Yeah yeah fire
Yeah yeah fire
1 month ago

I think the camera work and LED was better in NF for Russia…or I just haate the long shots, and #beyourself kinda quotes… like I wanna see them dancing and wanna see their faces. The song is awesome and empowering enough without those cheesy quotes.
I hope everyone else loves it tho cuz Shes in my top 5 and she’s lovely

EProduc
EProduc
1 month ago
Reply to  Yeah yeah fire

I agree 100%. I want to see more of Manizha’s powerful and quirky facial expressions and hand gestures.

Samo
Samo
1 month ago
Reply to  Yeah yeah fire

Hear hear. Those slogans on the background aren’t a good choice, looks tacky. But hopefully there won’t be too much focus on them – we only saw a short clip after all.

I really wish her to do well, she’s such a great artist.

Paul
Paul
1 month ago

It’s interesting there’s not the same level of hate for a “female empowerment” song from Russia like there is Malta…

Darren
1 month ago
Reply to  Paul

It has more meaning for Russia than it does for Malta.
Feels more genuine.

Una
Una
1 month ago
Reply to  Darren

Exactly what you said, Darren!! Russia feels more genuine/authentic/true and is much more cleverly presented. I listened to the meet and greet and I have much more appreciation for Manizha than I had before because she said she’s an independent artist (no label). And that her backings are artists in their own right. Which to me is a huge point since I see Eurovision as a platform for local artists, backings and dancers included. Seeing the authenticity and the shared humanity and artistry among the artists of Russia 2021 brings me immense joy. Russia is doing a great job this… Read more »

Darren
1 month ago
Reply to  Una

Exactly!
Manizha comes from a country where women’s rights (or lack of) is actually an issue. Manizha is also a long time ambassador for social justice in a country where it is quite difficult to speak out about social injustice.

Manizha has been involved in this for a long time, not just since February, when a Melfest reject was tweaked to appear as such.
Malta this year is in fact, the polar opposite to Russia

Una
Una
1 month ago
Reply to  Darren

Yes!! She does actually come from two countries where women’s rights are in peril. Her country of birth (which she had to leave with her family) and her home country (that she represents in Eurovision). And she represents all women of Russia (and in my view also former SsoovvieET because of their shared experience across generations??)
And she also wanted to include women from all backgrounds and those are represented through imagery in the fabric of the big doll. I am seriously impressed.

Kim
Kim
1 month ago
Reply to  Una

I agree with Una. With past Russian entries you expect them to have towed the Kremlin line. This year, it feels more edgy and risky, it has a feel of Pussy Riot about it. Out of principle Russian entries seem to leave a bad taste in a month (but that’s not a discussion for here and now), but this year I have warmed to the Russian entry.

Una
Una
1 month ago
Reply to  Kim

I don’t know about the Kremlin line. I think that historically there’s been little “traditional” representation in the former SovviieT countries’ entries. It looks like they all want to fit in in the mainstream European pop space in the broadestest sense of the word with few and notable exceptions.
My overall faves are actually Georgia and Ukraine – the bravest in the music style they bring. And Ukraine are definitely the most confident in their talent.

Dolly
Dolly
1 month ago
Reply to  Darren

I am very surprised the Russian government allowed it.

Darren
1 month ago
Reply to  Una

To put it simply:

Russia- Female Empowerment- let’s praise all these strong hardworking underlooked Russian Women

Malta – FeMaLe EmPurRmNt – Let’s touch some guys muscles, coz he’s showing skin, but just coz I am doesn’t mean you can touch me, but you can buy me a drink.

Last edited 1 month ago by Darren
Una
Una
1 month ago
Reply to  Darren

Russia is top clever and the whole package is *another level* in terms of music, lyrics, imagery, colours, attitude, charisma, local involvement, men’s positive involvement, humanity and humour and strength and “inclusiveness” across generations, and cultures and languages and ways of living.

I find Malta that basic and cliché and offensive towards men and women alike that I don’t have much more to comment on that number.

Briekimchi
Briekimchi
1 month ago
Reply to  Paul

Russia has a better song?

Esc1234
Esc1234
1 month ago
Reply to  Paul

Because the one is genuine and the other calculated. I ll let you guess which

Una
Una
1 month ago
Reply to  Esc1234

I think both are calculated – all Eurovision songs are calculated to a lesser or *larger* extent – but Russia is clever and authentic/genuine and speaks from the heart, not from a textbook. It needs no talking points. Or other things I shall not express now.

Darren
1 month ago
Reply to  Una

That’s true, every ESC song is calculated but it’s how you do it that makes it genuine. Russia is in Russian because she is speaking to the country on the world stage, and in an independent platform that she may not have access to at home. Malta seems to think “female empowerment” needs to come at the expense of men, hence the guy in her video. Russia is explaining how a strong woman can be strong on her own, while Malta wants to be female empowerment, men are still playing a big part in that. Destiny is the opposite of… Read more »

Una
Una
1 month ago
Reply to  Darren

I agree with everything you said. And also, a marvelous thing is that two of Manizha’s artists backing her are men. Men standing there with their hands up while praising the Russian women (I think that’s what they do as I don’t know Russian). That would be a great message, if intended to convey the message of men supporting women. There are good men in Russia too. I am sure of that.

Last edited 1 month ago by Una
Paul
Paul
1 month ago
Reply to  Esc1234

So it’s the inauthenticity that’s the issue rather than female empowerment that’s the issue – if only people could articulate themselves better

Rosy B
Rosy B
1 month ago
Reply to  Paul

Because Russia’s song is REALLY about “empowerment” , but unfortunately Je me casse feels like they desperately wanted to find something that “sells a message” and came up with “empowerment.” I think this is what some of our friends here are saying.

gurki loko
gurki loko
1 month ago

That last but one photo of Ana

Ashton Schier
Ashton Schier
1 month ago

is anyone else genuinely worried for Manizha’s safety once she gets back to russia……I truly appreciate the steps she is taking to represent a more inclusive and better version of her country but I am worried for her considering her views and the immense backlash against her and her song…..

Amy
Amy
1 month ago
Reply to  Ashton Schier

No worries. She will be fine. You guys dont understand one thing. Russia wanted Manizha to go to Eurovision. They created fake competition on 8 of March which happens to be a woman’s day. It was clear before the day Manizha is going to go. Russia took very thoughtful step. Because of the politics there is no way Russia can be supported this year, but Manizha is different choice with a clear message. She is likable in Russia as well. It is very very well thought by Russia to send her this year. Nothing to worry. This big hype over… Read more »

Una
Una
1 month ago
Reply to  Amy

What’s another Eurovision without controversy about Russia? I do see Russia 2022 as a posibility. And I don’t get people that think Manizha is in any danger of not going through.

I figure they will show a few key words on the screens so that people who know English will get her message. Let us sum up the numbers of people that speak either English or Russian and we will get to a huge number. Add her charisma and energy and the fab backings and the fab background and the fab choreo and we have a winner y’all!!

Jimmy Smit
Jimmy Smit
1 month ago
Reply to  Una

I think so too, Una! Manizha is a dark horse to win.

Una
Una
1 month ago
Reply to  Jimmy Smit

Jimmy 🙂

Kas
Kas
1 month ago
Reply to  Amy

Exactly !!!

Name*
Name*
1 month ago
Reply to  Amy

Oh yeah, classic marketing campaign with slogans like “I hope your plane to Rotterdam crashes and you die.”

Chris
Chris
1 month ago

So we don’t have exclusive rehearsal clips this year?

Leo
Leo
1 month ago
Reply to  Chris

I hope we do

Doris
Doris
1 month ago
Reply to  Chris

About 1 hour after the end of the rehearsal. Should be soon for Lithuania.

Chris
Chris
1 month ago
Reply to  Doris

we haven’t seen anything yet though…

Doris
Doris
1 month ago
Reply to  Chris

It’s up to the delegations after their post meeting, they choose the part they want. It can take sometimes more than 2 hours.

Doris
Doris
1 month ago
Reply to  Doris

Well lol Lithuania was out at this right moment.

Paul
Paul
1 month ago

Sounds like Manizha’s going to have to go into exile in June!

Una
Una
1 month ago

I’ve caught a bit of the live stream. Sending the tiger a lot of love. I’ll probably cry when I’ll watch the interview. Many thanks to the rooster too for the nice explanation. Love to both.

Rifki
Rifki
1 month ago

any reason why Malta is not joining the rest of semifinal 1?

gurki loko
gurki loko
1 month ago
Reply to  Rifki

She lost her shoe.

Clara
Clara
1 month ago
Reply to  Rifki

Hopefully too busy burning those outfits.

In reality I think it is just the way it was scheduled.

Doris
Doris
1 month ago
Reply to  Rifki

Rigged since the beginning to not be judged the D day among the direct SF1 competition.

Angelos
Angelos
1 month ago
Reply to  Doris

The last countries of the 1st semi final always have their 2nd rehearsal with the first countries of the 2nd one, check rehearsal schedules from previous contests