On Thursday 24 February, Russian troops invaded Ukraine. Tens of millions of people have been affected amid rocket fire and shelling across the country, including the capital city Kyiv. This has obviously affected the country’s Eurovision alums, who have been giving their followers insights into the horror and tragedy that is unfolding before the world’s eyes. Here are some of the latest developments.
Ukrainian Eurovision stars
Alekseev makes emotional appeal
Eurovision 2018 contestant Alekseev has made an emotional appeal to Russia, the country where he partially grew up. The “Forever” singer said:
“Three days ago, your country did not start a special freedom operation, she continued a massive war of occupation, which has already been going on for eight years. But now it’s geographic scale has changed to the whole of Ukraine, my favourite and native country. Bombings continue, today in Kyiv, a residential building was hit by a rocket. Nobody died thankfully, but there were many wounded. There are many such examples, a lot of people die. Not only in the military, but also peaceful citizens.”
“I’m a Russian person. I speak Russian, I have many relatives in Russia and have Russian roots. I have lived in Kyiv for 28 long years, my whole life. Nobody in Ukraine has ever made a problem of that. Never. For nothing. I can speak Russian on the radio, on television, on stage and in my daily life. And Russian people like me, there are many in Ukraine. I think you know. Not only in the Donbas, but over whole territory. In Odessa, and Kyiv and Kharkiv. And in the West: Ivano-Frankivsk, Lviv, Ternopil… Nobody is making an issue of that. You should know that.”
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Jamala shares that she is in danger
After fleeing the capital city Kyiv with her two children, Eurovision 2018 winner Jamala has shared that she cannot reveal her new location due to “safety for herself and her family”. Next to that, the “1944” singer is trying to arrange documents for her dog, who she currently would not be able to take into another country.
Verka Serduchka speaks out for the first time
Ukraine’s Eurovision 2007 silver medalist Verka Serduchka has spoken out for the first time. The “Dancing Lasha Tumbai” singer wrote on Instagram:
“Away, away, away! We stand and do not lose heart! Never to overcome this false invasion of our truth. Help the army, help the defence and each other!”
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Serhii Prytula volunteers at the front
Former Vidbir presenter Serhii Prytula, who hosted Ukraine’s Eurovision selection between 2017 and 2020, shared on his Instagram that he is volunteering with the military. From a military headquarters, he recorded a video message for his show business colleagues in Russia:
“You all arrived here, saying how much you love Ukraine. How you love Ukrainians. How you love the Ukrainian language. And you all earned good money here. Now it has occurred that your country is killing our citizens. Right now is the time to remove your tongues from [people’s] asses. Because if you only write on your Facebook and Instagram how you are “ashamed” and “in pain”, nothing changes from that.”
“Leave your “shame” and “pain” for yourself, we need your actions. Because without your actions, you are co-responsible. You will not only be responsible for the blood of Ukrainians, but also of your own Russian boys, who we are now killing. Go and block war bases, go on the street, take your following with you, people that follow you. You are public figures after all or the leaders of the public opinion. Or shut up.”
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Kalush Orchestra collect food, medicine and helmets
Ukraine’s Eurovision 2022 act Kalush Orchestra have been collecting important items for the defence of the Ukrainian army. These include food, medicine and helmets.
Earlier in the day, there was confusion on social media over a story on Oleh Psiuk’s Instagram account, in which he shared a video showing three soldiers. It is important to stress that these were NOT members of Kalush Orchestra, but three professional army soldiers.
Other Eurovision stars
Monika Liu makes a cover of John Lennon’s “Imagine”
Lithuania’s Eurovision 2022 singer covered John Lennon’s iconic peace anthem “Imagine”.
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Stefan performs at Tallinn anti-war rally
Eurovision 2022 singer Stefan performed at the Tallinn anti-war rally on Saturday, one of the biggest demonstrations in Estonia’s modern history. His song “Hope” suddenly received a new meaning as he sang lines like “No matter what they tried / Tearing up our lives / I know we would always rise”.
Citi Zēni perform at a rally for Ukraine in Riga
Latvian group Citi Zēni duetted with Dagamba on the song “Pērc, tērē” during a large anti-war demonstration in the country’s capital city. They are performing at 4:42:00 in the below video. Eurovision 2021 star Samanta Tīna was also present.
Thank you for translating Nikita’s statement, Wiwis. He’s my favorite artist from Ukraine and I have been suffering with every story he published… Just seeing the destruction, his face so full of anguish was very telling, but knowing what was he saying helps to see the whole picture. I truly thank you for translating.
Sending love and strength, Ukraine.
Our representative Krystian Ochman also made a statement in his latest show in Warsaw dedicating River for Ukraine and he had even a cotillion in blue and yellow. My sister told me that
I know this is serious news but noooo Monika not the Imagine cover this is NOT the time.
Bad memories of the celebrity sing-along cover of imagine two years ago?
Exactly that, but also very tired of when war and other bad things happen people in higher positions always try to do “Humanitarian acts” by covering when they’re usually the least affected by the tragedies.
Thankfully Monika isn’t like an out of touch rich person doing that so I take solace in that she can be a little more honest about it and in touch… But still hoping that we can stop covering this song.
This is breaking my heart. There are so many Ukrainian Eurovision favourites over the years, and all now in some sort of danger.
There’s been mentions of Russia having a ‘hit list’ of targets in Ukraine including politicians, activists, artists and members of the LGBT community. This is terrifying and I dread to think how many Ukrainian artists we know and love might be on that list. It sounds like from Jamala’s words that she believes she would be a target (and just because she sung a song about her family history). I hope this all ends soon. No one except Putin wants this war.
Thankfully, Jamala is confirmed to have crossed the Romanian border, but there are many more in danger. I hope beyond anything now that this senseless killing and invasion stops, and peace restores to Europe.
yes jamala is now safely in turkey, where her sister lives
remember when people thought jamala should have lost to that plastic russian pop song with horrible lyrics in 2016. “thunder and lightening it’s getting exciting” seriously? i hope she’s safe
Russia 2016 is one of the most overrated songs I remember but from what I remember bunch of people just didn’t like her song. Not that everyone wanted Russia to win. 2016 was really strong year. I loved Bulgaria for example
I always tried to tell you all it’s a cheese factory. Also the visuals didn’t make any sense and didn’t tell any story apart of being “cool”. And I know what I’m talking about because I worked on video mapping projects, the brief for that staging was “make cool mapping stuff, oh also add wings, Sergey loves wings”. This was such a crap that I really can’t believe that the public actually fell for it.
It affects Citi Zeni and Stefan A LOT because the Baltic states are tiny countries on the foot of Russia and Belarus. They could EASILY invade these countries if they wanted to and it would take them less time than Ukraine.These countries are currently trapped between the pro-Russian zone, isolating them off from the rest of the world. I predict this will be where they target next if there’s enough oposition, if not, Poland.
These “the Baltics will be next” comments are seriously getting pretty annoying. Russia attacks Ukraine because Ukrianians are NOW trying to detach from Russia and warm up relations with Europe. The Baltics have already been extremely pro-west/pro-EU straight after re-gaining their independence in the 90s. So you can’t compare these 2 situations. The Baltics and Ukraine are politically VERY different. Ukraine is way more significant to Putin than the Baltics.
Also, for NATO and EU members it’s quite offensive to hear someone claiming how “EASY” is to invade them. So you doubt NATO’s article 5?
That discussion lost any merit after 3rd day of the war when russia lost most of it’s military. But from all 3 countries, Lithuania is the biggest target as it’s sandwitched by fake belarus and both parts of russia.
TL;DR first comments have merits, but we feel perfectly safe (as much as it’s possible when one mole in a bunker is threatening with nuclear bomb)
Actually, the main reason for the war in Ukraine is because Putin cannot allow such a big country to be added to NATO [country which is its neighbor on the top of that]. There are at least 200-300 nuclear warheads in the NATO countries which are enough to destroy the biggest Russian countries – Moscow, Saint Petersburg. Actually, 3-4 nuclear bombs are more than enough. And these bombs are really close to the Russian border and Russian capital. This is what Putin cannot swallow. All these words about expanding Russia to the former USSR borders is crap he told to… Read more »
Thank you everyone who is supporting ceasefire and stopping the war!
Hope was my EL winner from the start, but in this context, it gives me full goosebumps. This should have referred to past events. History shouldn’t be repeating itself.
Stay safe, Jamala, Alexeev, Kalush Orchestra, and all the people of Ukraine and Europe!
End the war! Peace to Europe!
You don’t need any documents to bring your pet through Polish border. There’re bunch of vets that can examine and if necessary vaccinate them. Someone should tell that to Jamala
She might be hiding in a place where it is a long way to Poland. And anyway , some one in the comments said she was in romania
yeah she is
She crossed the Romanian border, but thx for the info, I got a couple of friends that might need it 🙂
Oh no problem. If you had some language issues or something just write here
One more thing. I’ve heard you can also transport horse from here. I’m case someone was crazy enough to get there on horse that is. That’s something you wouldn’t think about at first so if anyone needs this information, here it is
Just a little detail, though I know it’s trivial next to the content of this article. Jamala won the contest in 2016, not 2018
I am glad that so many people speak up! Praying for everyone who is in danger and hoping it will stop somehow. I am not really in the mood for music but I listened to Dancing Lasha Tumbai yesterday. Remember the controversy when some people claimed that Lasha Tumbai was meant to say “Russia Goodbye”. Perfect track to listen to now! And a bit of an off-topic but I was also listening to Give that wolf a banana – we all know that the meaning is vague and maybe it could be about the Covid vaccine but it also makes… Read more »
Ukraine 1st in the odds only because of the war. Awful song. The Lord have mercy and help these poor people
Awful song? Its my number one so far, even before the war.
Ukraine has consistently sent entries that have been popular. Ukraine has always made the final and secured a high televote. Kalush and Aline both had high odds because both entries were appealing. That was before the invasion happened last week. We are not talking about a country that has always floundered at the bottom. Even if Ukraine was to win and couldn’t host next year that wouldn’t be the first time this has happened. Even if the worst was to happen Ukraine will go down as one of the great Eurovision competitors with 2 victories and a further 5 top… Read more »
My God, when will this madman stop? He may blow up all us tomorrow.
Goodbye Piccadilly. Farewell Wiwibloggs. It’s a long long way to Torino, but my heart’s right there.
Thank you Poland Slovakia Romania for open hearts and help For mothers with children
Chatted with my Russian friend today. Says he got arrested for a protest, but he’s no longer in jail. Sent his family to Mytyschy, a village in Taiga, where it’s harder to find them. Gonna go to protest again. Prayers to every Russian who does the same.
Mytishchi is a 200k population suburb of Moscow. Like an hour from the city center.
I didn’t get arrested yesterday. But the situation inside Russia is getting worse vastly. Thank God the Internet is not shut down.
Prayers to Ukrainians
It’s the least the Russian can do now. Go and stop this, it’s YOUR army and YOUR government. Those soldiers are YOUR sons, brothers and friends. Don’t hide behind Putin, take responsibility for your country
A friend from Repino (in the outskirts of St Petersburg) has gone through the same after protesting in St Petersburg. Fortunately, she was set free but some of her peers are still in jail. No one is supporting the war and it’s likely P*tin’s popularity finally plummeted after this
I can’t believe all of this has happened.
The situation continues to escalate daily.
Genuinely fearful of this new security era in Europe.
The courage and bravery of Ukrainian people in these difficult and dangerous times, is really astounding.
What is still happening is so heartbreaking… All of my prayers go to the Ukrainian people. Stay strong!
Anyone wanting to join me in downloading «We Don’t Wanna Put In» with Stephane & 3G (disqualified entry from Georgia 2009), making it rise on the charts? (Spotify , iTunes, etc)?
is it on spotify? I´m gonna look for it!
I was thinking of that song, it’d be cool! 😀