Armed with their insanely catchy song “Uno”, Russia’s Little Big were one of the biggest favourites to win Eurovision 2020 before the contest was cancelled. The band, which formed in Saint Petersburg, shocked many of their fans when they announced that they wouldn’t return to Eurovision in 2021.
Little Big frontman Ilya Prusikin explained the group’s reasoning behind their decision not to return to Eurovision in 2021 back in March.
During the national final, the group said, rather briefly, that they had taken the decision together with Russian public broadcaster Channel One. They added to that there are “many talented artists in Russia”.
The band said they did not want this year’s effort to be compared to the success of “Uno”. Also: They stressed that there is other talent in Russia that deserves a chance at #Eurovision.
— wiwibloggs (@wiwibloggs) March 8, 2021
Ilya Prusikin on why Little Big did not return to Eurovision
Now, in the latest episode of the video podcast Bez Dushi (Without Soul), Ilych elaborated on that statement. He said:
“Listen, we said already from the start in 2020 that we don’t want to. Not just not wanting to, but also thinking that a different artist should go, because [we are not the only ones in the world]. (…) We just didn’t want to be — I won’t say any names — like an artist that goes there four times.”
The show’s host Danila Poperechny suggested the name “Gazarev” to this hypothetical Russian returning act, to which Ilya agreed.
“But why? We have hundreds if not thousands of cool artists in Russia.”
Curiously, their decision seems to have come rather late. Ahead of Eurovision, Manizha told us via Zoom that Russia’s national final was hastily organised because Little Big had left their decision until quite late in the Eurovision season.
Next to that, Ilya revealed several small details about their planned Eurovision 2020 participation. At first, the group was really surprised they were chosen at all. Prusikin notes that “Uno” was never intended for Eurovision — the group wrote it for their album that is supposed to be released at the end of 2021.
When it came to representing Russia at the contest, “Uno” was not the only song on the table at Channel One. Ilya revealed that their August 2020 single “Tacos” was also under consideration. At first, the group hoped that Channel One would choose the food-inspired number as it would be more “idiotic”.
What do you think about Ilya’s explanation for Little Big not returning to Eurovision 2021? Do you agree with him? Let us know in the comments down below!