In the lead up to this year’s edition of Junior Eurovision, we are looking back on the previous editions of the contest to rediscover the songs we love! Our Top 5 will likely be different to yours, but that’s part of the joy! We encourage you to join the discussion by sharing your Top 5 too!
For this Top 5, we are heading to Romania, the hosts of the 2006 edition of Junior Eurovision. A total of 15 participants performed their entries on the Junior Eurovision stage, including no less than three debuting nations. We saw Portugal, Serbia (independently) and Ukraine all compete for the first time, and Cyprus returned after a break, however there were a handful of nations that withdrew from the contest including Denmark, Latvia, Norway, United Kingdom and Serbia and Montenegro. Which nations will make it into our Top 5? Keep reading to find out!
5. Učimo strane jezike – Neustrašivi Učitelji Stranih Jezika (Serbia)
Where do I even start with this song? I questioned whether to even feature this song in the Top 5 but to be fair, this did actually finish 5th in the results. This is definitely a unique entry from Serbia on their independent debut, but Junior Eurovision really is the place to take risks. This isn’t just a Junior Eurovision entry, this is an educational tutorial promoting language learning but packaged in a fun and catchy song. First we learn the numbers in a range of languages, then we learn to greet one another in different languages. Who knew it could be this fun? This definitely captures the spirit of Junior Eurovision, and I suspect we won’t see an entry like this in the contest anytime soon.
4. Goed – Kimberly (The Netherlands)
If this isn’t an underrated entry, I don’t know what is! This is a fantastic jazz style track that was seriously overlooked. This song had instant appeal for me from the first listen, first because of the style of the song and the melody, but also for Kimberly’s performance. The song begins in a very understated way, but gets into a bit of a groove once it reaches the chorus. The melody of the chorus is catchy and easy to follow along with even if you don’t know the words. This would have appealed more to the older audiences as it is more of a mature entry, and perhaps that’s why it didn’t finish as high as what I think it should, but overall this is a strong entry from the Netherlands.
3. Noviy den – Andrey Kunets (Belarus)
Belarus are once again serving up the bops of Junior Eurovision. There’s a good reason why this song finished in 2nd place overall in the contest, and that’s because it’s so dang catchy. This is another example of big vocals coming from a small package, but not only are his vocals strong, they are also quite unique in tone. It might not be to everyone’s taste, but at least the song is super catchy, especially the chorus which has the power to get everyone up and dancing. Extra points to Andrey for knowing how to work the audience and the camera, he truly is a natural performer.
2. Een tocht door het donker – Thor! (Belgium)
Previous to the live performance, this was apparently one of the favourites to win. I say apparently since I hadn’t hopped on the Eurovision train as of yet, but if it was a favourite, I can see why. In the end, this finished in 7th place which feels quite underwhelming for the unique song that it is, but compared to some of the bigger voices, I can see how it only reached that position. This has such a different tone and melody to many if not most Junior Eurovision entries, and perhaps the right word to describe the sound of the song is gloomy or mysterious but they kept it casual on stage with Thor sporting a Superman hoodie. I like that the staging looks like a campfire singalong, and the awkwardness on stage actually is quite charming to watch. He isn’t the most natural performer, at least in this specific performance, but I can’t help but really enjoy this.
- Povestea mea – New Star Music (Romania)
Romania are serving up the goods once again with this absolute gem. Having watched this edition of the contest more recently, I’ve realised how similar this is to my other Junior Eurovision favourite, Ali Baba which was the Moldovan entry in 2010, in fact it’s not just similar, it’s disturbingly alike. Maybe that’s why I like both, but there’s something about this kitsch beat and melody that makes it a joy to listen to, at least for me. This is another Junior Eurovision entry that really captures the fun nature of the contest, especially in terms of the staging which would have really caught the attention of the younger viewers purely because of the popular characters on stage. Beyond that, this is incredibly well performed from the vocals to the choreography which is quite intense, yet their vocals aren’t affected by the amount of choreography they had.
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