Eurovision

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Armenia has been competing in Eurovision since 2006.

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Eurovision 2006

Andre was the Armenian entry, singing “Without Your Love,” placing 8th.

Eurovision 2007

Hayko was the Armenian entry, singing “Anytime You Need”, placing 8th.

Armenia received 12 points (maximum) from Turkey and Georgia.

Eurovision 2008

Sirusho was the Armenian entry, placing 4th.

Armenia took fourth place as a result of the voting of 43 counties, irrespective of the fact that it periodically appeared in the third place during the voting.

Sirusho's "Qele, Qele" song received the highest points: 12 points, from Belgium, France, Poland, Czech Rep., Holland, Greece, Russia and Georgia. This year 10 points were given by Cyprus, Spain and Turkey, 8 points by Israel, Bulgaria and San Marino. 7 points were given to Armenia by Belarus and the Ukraine, 6 points by Bosnia-Herzegovina, Germany, 5 points by Serbia and Slovenia, 4 points by Romania, 2 points by Moldova, Albania and Sweden and 1 point by Macedonia and Iceland.

Eurovision 2009

In 2009, Inga and Anush Arshakyans performed “Jan Jan” and came in 10th.

Eurovision 2010

Eva Rivas, with her song, “Apricot Stone,” made it to 7th place in 2010.

During the 2010 Armenia national final to select the Armenian contestant in February, the artists were voted on by the public through a televised 15-minute SMS voting system. Emmy and rapper Mihran performed a duet and lost to the Russian-Armenian Eva Rivas. Emmy, and her mother, Nadezhda Sargsyan, went public with accusations of foul play, even threatening to take the matter to court.

During a press conference, Sargsyan claimed that Harutyunyan, had reassured her that Emmy and Mihran would “definitely” represent Armenia at Eurovision.

Eurovision 2011

Disappointing Performance Leaves Armenia Behind at Eurovision By: Nanore Barsoumian

As Armenia stayed behind, ten qualifiers made it to the Eurovision Song Contest’s (ESC) final, which will take place on May 14 in Düsseldorf, Germany.

Arguably, the loss was foreseeable. Emmy, or Emma Bejanyan, the Armenian pop starlet delivered a disappointing—an understatement—performance during the first semi-final which took place on May 10.

Although Armenia stayed behind—as did its neighbor, Turkey—Greece, Hungary, Switzerland, Russia, Finland, Georgia, Lithuania, Azerbaijan, Serbia, and Iceland made it to the final.

The second semi-final will take place on May 12, where another 19 countries will compete to make it to the top ten for a chance to win first place at the Grand Final.

Eurovision is known to many as a kitschy affair, featuring performers in glitzy clothes, spewing catchy nonsensical chorus verses—like Emmy’s “Boom-boom chaka-chaka”—or whiny ballads. However, once in a while a gem slips through. On the other hand, the subtle political undertones, or surrounding indignations and attacks, can be fascinating at times.

A matter of patriotism

While some countries view Eurovision as a chance to display their cultural heritage, many relinquish that for the sake of “competitiveness,” and display performances stripped of national characteristics.

The Huffington Post, in a May 11 article, singled out Azerbaijan to highlight the staggering amount of money the country invests in the ESC—$2 million in 2010, which included hiring Beyonce’s choreographer to aid Safura, their last year’s contestant.

“Under the influence of alcohol, you might mispronounce Azerbaijan as aspiration. You wouldn’t be far off the mark. A fiery patriotism makes doing well at the Eurovision Song Contest a matter of national importance, and that occasionally leaves competitors scratching their heads,” wrote Will Adams.

Following the 2009 Eurovision Song Contest, Azerbaijani authorities launched a campaign tracking and interrogating dozens of individuals who had voted for Armenia’s Inga and Anush Arshakyan sisters and their song “Jan Jan.” Forty-three individuals had reportedly voted for the song. (The European Broadcasting Union (EBU) found that the Azerbaijani broadcaster, Ictimai Televiziya, had distorted the TV signal when the Armenian contestants were up, blurring the telephone number.) According to the Azeri Press Agency (APA), EBU fined the TV station €2700, and gave them a warning.

This year, Azerbaijan’s “Ell & Nikki,” or Eldar Qasimov and Nigar Jamal, secured a spot at the final with their song “Running Scared.” Many believe the duo has a chance to make it to the top three.

Emmy has proven to be an unfortunate choice for Armenia. Her supporting Greek dancers, however, roused emotions in Azerbaijan, where according to reports, the media was quick to declare that Armenia “stole” Azerbaijan’s national dance, Kochari.

A controversial pick

In Dec. 2010, the president of the Council of Public Television and Radio Company of Armenia, Alexan Harutyunyan announced the council’s decision to send Emmy to Eurovision, without a public vote.

Although Emmy was preselected, her song was voted on by the public.

The move towards an internal selection of competitors is not a new concept. Back in 2008, Sirusho, after being internally selected, made it to fourth place in the ESC—the best result yet for Armenia.

During the 2010 national final in February, the artists were voted on by the public through a televised 15-minute SMS voting system. Emmy and rapper Mihran performed a duet and lost to the Russian-Armenian Eva Rivas. Emmy, and her mother, Nadezhda Sargsyan, went public with accusations of foul play, even threatening to take the matter to court.

During a press conference, Sargsyan claimed that Harutyunyan, had reassured her that Emmy and Mihran would “definitely” represent Armenia at Eurovision.

Armenia debuted in the ESC in 2006 with Andre’s song “Without Your Love,” which came in 8th place. In 2007, Hayko represented Armenia with his song “Anytime You Need” and came in 8th. In 2008, Sirusho’s “Qele, Qele” came in 4th. In 2009, Inga and Anush Arshakyans performed “Jan Jan” and came in 10th. Eva Rivas, with her song, “Apricot Stone,” made it to 7th place in 2010. Emmy’s performance on May 10 marked the first time Armenia failed to make it through the semi-finals.

Eurovision 2012

Due to Azerbaijan's win of the number 1 spot at the 2011 Eurovision, they were the hosts of the 2012 Eurovision Song Contest. Questions were raised about Azerbaijan's willingness to guarantee the safety of an Armenian entry, as well as allow Armenian fans to enter Azerbaijan, since Azerbaijan has a strict policy against allowing ethnic Armenians regardless of citizenship from visiting Azerbaijan. Azerbaijan has promised to comply with both demands of Eurovision. After Azerbaijan's president Ilham Aliyev made a statement that every Armenian in the world is an enemy of Azerbaijan a couple of months before the contest, Armenia decided not to participate at all.

Armenian selection process for 2012

EuroVision: Internal Selection For Armenia

EuroVision.TV http://www.eurovision.tv/page/news?id=45233&_t=internal_selection_for_armenia Jan 30 2012

Armenia in Eurovision 2012. Source: ARMTV 30

Yerevan, Armenia - The Armenian representative for the 2012 Eurovision Song Contest in Baku will be determined internally, as Gohar Gasparyan, representative of the public broadcaster ARMTV and head of the Armenian delegation, confirmed recently. The result of the internal selection will be announced close to the official deadline, no later than March 18th. The decision who will represent the Caucasian country in neighbouring Azerbaijan will be taken by a expert jury, consisting of musicians, producers and TV professionals of The Public Television and Radio Council of the Republic of Armenia.


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Armenia To Boycott Eurovision In Baku Due To 'Enemy' Statement

By RFE/RL's Armenian Service Last updated (GMT/UTC): 07.03.2012 18:32 YEREVAN -- Citing an "anti-Armenian" statement made by Azerbaijani President Ilham Aliyev, Armenia has officially announced its decision not to participate in Europe's most popular song contest, which will be held in Baku in May.

Armenian Public Television, which selects the country's participants for the annual Eurovision Song Contest, attributed the boycott to Aliyev's March 1 remark that "the Armenians of the world" are his nation's main enemy.

"Although the Azerbaijani authorities promised security guarantees for all participating countries, Azerbaijan's president 'made an exception' for one of those countries several days ago, declaring that Azerbaijan's No. 1 enemy is the Armenians scattered around the world," the state-run broadcaster said in a statement.

"We can conclude that the president of a Eurovision host country is officially stating that all Armenians, including those who would be included in the Eurovision delegation, are the enemies of Azerbaijan. Therefore, it would make no sense to send our participant to a country where they would be received as an enemy.

"We are convinced that the atmosphere created by this and other anti-Armenian statements and actions cannot ensure equal conditions for all singers participating in Eurovision," the statement said.

The European Broadcasting Union (EBU), the organizer of the annual contest watched by tens of millions of TV viewers, was quick to express disappointment over the decision.

​​"We are truly disappointed by the broadcaster's decision to withdraw from this year's Eurovision Song Contest," the contest's executive supervisor, Jon Ola Sand, said in a statement posted on the EBU's website.

"Despite the efforts of the EBU and the host broadcaster to ensure a smooth participation for the Armenian delegation in this year's contest, circumstances beyond our control led to this unfortunate decision," he said.

Azerbaijan won the right to stage the 2012 edition of Eurovision in Baku thanks to the victory of an Azerbaijani duo in last year's contest held in Duesseldorf, Germany. Armenian Public Television has since made its participation in the Baku show conditional on firm security guarantees by the Azerbaijani government.

Some of Armenia's leading pop singers and composers spoke out against Armenia's participation late last month. One of them, Artur Grigorian, director of the State Music Theater in Yerevan, welcomed the boycott, citing the unresolved conflict over the breakaway Azerbaijani region of Nagorno-Karabakh.

"We can't go to a country that currently holds [several] Armenian soldiers as prisoners," Grigorian told RFE/RL's Armenian Service. "I'm saying this as a citizen, not as a composer or artist. I just don't want to see an Armenian singer sing on that soil."

Eurovision 2015

Armenia's entry was by Geneology, composed of Armenians from various continents, and one from Armenia. The song was titled "Don't Deny". The video is available online: https://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=VVVvgD0-Mu0

Armenia Releases Eurovision 2015 Entry ‘Don’t Deny’

By Weekly Staff on March 12, 2015

VIENNA, Austria (A.W.) – Armenia’s Eurovision 2015 song entry, “Don’t Deny,” was released earlier today. Diasporan artists from five continents and one artist from Yerevan will represent Armenia in the 2015 Eurovision Song Contest that will take place in Vienna this May. The song has enraged some in neighboring Azerbaijan, which claims the lyrics contain a political message.

Along with the release of the song and its music video, Inga Arshakian of Armenia was unveiled as the final performer of the group Genealogy. Arshakian joins Stephanie Topalian, Essaï Altounian, Vahe Tilbian, Mary-Jean O’Doherty Vasmatzian, and Tamar Kaprelian, who hail from Europe, Asia, America, Africa, and Australia—and are all of Armenian origin. According to the official website of the Eurovision Song Contest (Eurovision.tv), this is the first time a country participates with performers from different parts of the world.

The music for “Don’t Deny,” was written by award-winning Armenian musician and composer Armen Martirosyan, who also composed Armenia’s entry into the 2010 Eurovision Song Contest, “Apricot Stone.” The lyrics to the song were penned by Inna Mkrtchyan; and the music video was directed by renowned Armenian director, Aren Bayadyan.

Since the name of the song—“Don’t Deny”—was made public, there has been speculation that the title might refer to denial of the Armenian Genocide, the Centennial of which is being commemorated this year.

France’s entry has also been accused of referring to the Armenian Genocide. The song is entitled, “N’oubliez Pas” (“Don’t Forget”). According to Eurovision.tv, it was first performed at a concert in November 2014, at a World War I commemoration event, and “the singer emphasizes that the song refers not only to this very special event in history, but to any kind of conflict.”

Although there has been no explicit mention of the Armenian Genocide from the organizers, Azeri media outlets have accused both Armenia and France of politicizing the music event.

The Eurovision Song Contest 2015 will take place in Vienna from May 19-23.




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