Belarus is one of the most consistent Junior Eurovision participants, having featured in every edition of the contest since its inception in 2003. They have also had a lot of success at the contest, winning twice, and finishing in the Top 10 more often than not. This year it will be up to Liza Misnikova with her song Pepelny (Ashen) to continue the nation’s success at Junior Eurovision!
Song + Vocals
Coming off one of my favourites, if not my favourite Belarusian Junior Eurovision entry, it was going to be a hard task for Belarus to live up to that standard. I am definitely more in favour of an upbeat entry, and it seemed that Belarus had delivered that again this year. Pepelny is energetic, certainly upbeat and contemporary. The chorus is catchy, and the staging potential is huge. On paper, this is a song I should like, however unfortunately I just can’t seem to get on board.
My main, and potentially only gripe with this song is the vocals. I find her tone of voice too piercing, and that’s something that I haven’t managed to get used to even though I’ve heard the song multiple times now. It’s down to preference, but for me I think it’s a shame because I like every other aspect of the song. It has a catchy melody, and I have found myself singing the chorus repetitively, but when actually listening to the song, I just don’t enjoy the vocals.
The revamped version has a good balance of English and Belarusian lyrics, and the production is good. The song is one of the most contemporary of this year’s line-up, and I think Belarus is showing that they are up with the times, especially considering last year’s stage performance (which was one of the best Junior Eurovision stage performances, in my view), and then the music video for Pepelny.
Act + Performance
Vocals aside, Liza is a very confident performer, and she really captures that youthful energy that will appeal to a lot of the teen viewers. Where I think this entry will really excel is the stage performance. We are expecting a lot of choreography, and judging by the music video and national final performance, the costumes will be a big part of the performance. I am looking forward to seeing the whole production of the stage show, even if I’m not necessarily looking forward to the song itself.
I think this has the potential to do well based on the fact that it’s a contemporary, upbeat and energetic song. I think the stage show will certainly be a spectacle, and although I don’t see it appealing to everyone, it still has huge potential to reach Top 10.
If you support Belarus at Junior Eurovision this year, vote in our Poll here.