Best of the Bunch: Romania

Romania first debuted at Eurovision in 1994, and incredibly, the nation has managed to appear in every single final for each year they have participated in since their debut. The nation hasn’t participated every year since their debut however, missing out on 1995, 1997, 1999, 2001 and most recently in 2016, where the nation was disqualified due to non-payment of debts to the EBU. Today we’ll be discussing 10 years of entries, beginning with 2006, and moving through to 2015. After we recap all the entries, we want YOU to help us pick the Best of the Bunch for Romania!

First up is a bit of a fan favourite! Mihai Trăistariu was chosen through a national final to represent Romania at Eurovision in 2006 with the song Tornerò, which showed off his impressive vocal range. Mihai didn’t need to qualify to the final, as Romania had finished in the Top 11 in the previous year, but in the final, Romania finished in a very respectable 4th place with 172 points.

The following year continued the national final tradition, and the winner of the national competition was Todomondo with a truly international song, Liubi, Liubi, I Love You. With a Top 10 finish in 2006, Romania once again had automatically qualified to the final, but it didn’t stop Todomondo from finishing in a respectable place, 13th to be exact, with a total of 84 points.

In 2008, Nico and Vlad were the lucky duo to represent the nation with the song Pe-o Margine de lume. The song featured lyrics in Romania and Italian, and the combination seemed to work well at Eurovision. The duo qualified to the final at 7th place, and finished in 20th in the final with a total of 45 points.

The next year, Romania sent Elena with a party anthem called The Balkan Girls. Although it was an upbeat entry, especially compared to the entry of the previous year, it didn’t entirely capture the voters’ hearts, although, it did still qualify to the final in 9th place. In the final, it finished in 19th place with 40 points.

The following year, one of the most iconic Romanian entries took to the Eurovision stage. I’m of course talking about Paula and Ovi, who in 2010 performed the song Playing With Fire. It quickly became a favourite of the competition, and it qualified quite easily in 4th position, and in the final, they improved their position, finishing in 3rd place with 162 points. This was their best result since 2005, where Romania also finished 3rd.

In 2011, Hotel FM were chosen to represent the nation with the song Change. Once again, Romania qualified to the final in 4th place, but unlike Paula and Ovi, their 4th place wasn’t replicated in the final, after finishing in 17th place with a total of 77 points.

The next act to represent Romania was Mandinga, a Latin-pop inspired group who presented their song Zaleilah, which was performed in Spanish and English. The song qualified in at 3rd position, however like the song in the previous year, the high qualification position didn’t translate to a Top 10 position, finishing just outside at 12th place with 71 points.

In 2013, Romania sent arguably one of the most memorable entries in Cezar with the song It’s My Life. The song was a mixture of pop and opera, which is a hit and miss genre at Eurovision. Cezar managed to pull it off though, qualifying to the final in 5th position. In the final, he reached 13th place with a total of 65 points.

2014 saw the return of some Romanian fan favourites – Paula and Ovi! The duo returned with a song called Miracle, and in true Paula style, the notes were belted out! The song actually qualified in 2nd place, higher than Playing With Fire back in 2010, however the final result didn’t reach the heights of their previous entry. Overall, they finished in 12th place with 72 points.

We finish our journey in 2015, where the rock band Voltaj was chosen to represent Romania. The song was called De la capăt (All Over Again), and it was the first time since 2008 where Romanian language was featured in the song. The song qualified in 5th place, and then in the final finished in 15th place with 35 points.

And there we have it, our journey through a handful of years of Romania’s participation in Eurovision, and now it’s your turn to pick your Best of the Bunch!