Second Time At Eurovision: Blessing or Curse?

In the recent years, it seemed to be a trend for the Eurovision artists to try their luck in the competition for the second time. Some of them successfully represented their countries twice, getting a higher place, but in the most of the cases, the rest of them were not as successful as we expected and failed to get a higher position as their previous ones, to qualify for the final or even represent their country.

But why do these artists want to represent their country one more time? Only two answers came in my mind and these are:

  1. Because Eurovision Song Contest is actually a ‘virus’. You can’t get rid of it because is too powerful and you can’t stay away from it, as much as you would. You want as many times as possible to represent your country. A good example is M I H A I – he represented Romania 11 years ago, with “Tornero”, but he desperately wants to bring the first Romanian victory. He won’t surrender – he has just competed in Selectia Nationala for his eight time. Yep, he’s got the virus.
  2. For a majestic comeback. Eurovision seems to be an important launch pad in the European musical sphere. Some artists try their luck the second time in this contest for the fact that they may not be as successful as they were once upon a time… And for them, the easiest way to conquer once again the European hearts is to come back on the Euro stage.

Now I’ll show you some happy and sad cases. Let’s have a look at the happy ones:

  1. Dima Bilan – Russia 2006 and 2008

The Russian winner represents probably the happiest case. He represented Russia in 2006 with “Never Let You Go” and got the “silver”. Two years later, he built a dream team with Evgeni Plushenko, the world’s best skater, and the violinist Edvin Marton and surpassed himself, taking the contest to Moscow with 272 points with the meaningful ballad “Believe”. The story is not over yet: in 2012 he tried to represent Russia the third time, with the song “Back to her future”, featuring Yulia Volkova (ex – Tatu, Russia 2003). Unfortunately, he lost the ticket to Baku in front of Buranovskie Babushki.


Dima Bilan – „Never Let You Go” (Eurovision Song Contest 2006, Athens)


Dima Bilan singing „Believe”after winning the trophy in Belgrade, 2008

  1. Poli Genova – Bulgaria 2011 and 2016

“Bulgaria does not qualify all the time, but when it does, it makes sure that gets a high place”. That’s the meme that comes to my mind when I think of the Bulgarian success from last year and Poli. After she failed to qualify for the Grand Final, in Dusseldorf with the song “Na Inat”, Genova decided to make a comeback 5 years later and show Europeans that she can do it! So she did! She got the 4th place, the best Bulgarian rank at ESC with her pop song “If Love Was A Crime”.


Poli Genova – „Na Inat” (Eurovision Song Contest, Düsseldorf 2011)


Poli Genova – „If Love Was A Crime” (Eurovision Song Contest, Stockholm 2016)

  1. Donny Montell – Lithuania 2012 and 2016

After he sung to us in Azerbaijan that “Love Is Blind” and got the 14th place in the Final, Donny decided to surprise us again with his presence. We are totally sure that he had “been waiting for this night”, because the night of 14th of May 2016 brought him a place in top 10.


Donny Montell – „Love Is Blind” (Eurovision Song Contest, Baku 2012)

Sweden Eurovision Song Competition

Donny Montell – „I’ve Been Waiting For This Night” (Eurovision Song Contest, Stockholm 2016)

  1. Željko Joksimović – Serbia 2004, 2012

He is Željko Joksimović, as known as “the lord of ballads” and the host of Eurovision Song Contest. He managed to represent successfully his country twice: first in 2004 with “Lane Moje”, when he placed second after Ruslana’s “Wild Dances” and then, 8 years later, in Baku, when he finished on the third place with „Nije Ljubav Stvar” He got the second, the third…. maybe when he comes back, he gets the first place? 🙂


Željko Joksimović – „Lanje Moje” (Eurovision Song Contest, Istanbul 2004)


Željko Joksimović – „Nije Ljubav Stvar” (Eurovision Song Contest, Baku 2012)

  1. Valentina Monetta – 2012, 2013, 2014

To be honest, I really miss Valentina representing San Marino. She proved us that she does not give up until she reaches the final. She is maybe one of the most ambitious artists I’ve ever seen. Firstly, she represented San Marino in Baku with “The Social Network Song”, but unfortunately she occupied just the 14th place in the semi. A year later, in Malmö , she was just one step closer to qualification – San Marino got the 11th place in the final with “Crisalide”. But wait, there is more: Valentina came back to represent her country for the third time in a row with “Maybe”. And guess what: SHE QUALIFIED! And got 24th place in the final!


Valentina Monetta – „The Social Network Song” (Eurovision Song Contest, Baku 2012)


Valentina Monetta – Crisalide (Eurovision Song Contest, Malmö 2013)


Valentina Monetta – „Maybe” (Eurovision Song Contest, Copenhagen 2014)

 In every single thing, there is a happy side and a sad side. Let’s see together the unhappy cases from Eurovision.

  1. Kaliopi – FYR Macedonia 2012 and 2016

The “Dona” of FYR Macedonia firstly enchanted us with the rock song “Crno i Belo”, which was placed thirteenth with 71 points. But when she got back last year, the impact was not the same…. “Dona”,  a simple but a little boring ballad. Unfortunately, she failed to qualify for the Grand Final in Stockholm.


Kaliopi – „Crno i Belo” (Eurovision Song Contest, Baku 2012)


Kaliopi – „Dona” (Eurovision Song Contest, Stockholm 2016)

  1. Gréta Salóme– Iceland 2012 and 2016

We will “never forget” how we ‘met’ Gréta Salóme first time: representing Iceland in Baku, along Jónsi with the unforgettable song “Never Forget”. If you ask me, this is probably the most underrated song I’ve ever listened to. Such a beautiful song, but such a low place it got. Only 20th ?! Four years later, Gréta comes back with a good song and a wonderful show. Everybody was 100% sure that Gréta qualifies and gets maybe a higher result than 2012 one. But it was not like that. “Hear them calling” represents one of the biggest Eurovision crimes: it did not qualify for the final, being placed only the 14th in the semifinal. How could you, Europe?


Gréta Salóme and Jónsi – „Never Forget”(Eurovision Song Contest, Baku 2012)


Gréta Salóme – „Hear Them Calling” (Eurovision Song Contest, Stockholm 2016)

  1. Elitsa Todorova and Stoyan Yankulov – Bulgaria 2007 and 2013

The duo delighted Europe with an impressive and very artistic performance in Helsinki. “Water” was one of the most original songs ever heard in Eurovision Song Contest at that time. It was no surprise that it got the highest place that Bulgaria had ever got until last year – 5th place. In 2013, Elitsa and Stoyan decided to represent Bulgaria again with the Bulgarian folk song “Samo Shampioni”. Unfortunately, they did not manage to bring Bulgaria another top 5 place… and stayed in the semi.


Elitsa Todorova and Stoyan Yankulov – „Water” (Eurovision Song Contest, Helsinki 2007)


Elitsa Todorova and Stoyan Yankulov – „Samo Shampioni” (Eurovision Song Contest, Malmö 2013)

  1. Loreen – Sweden 2012

“Queen Loreen” is the main reason why I did start to work on this article. After the Melodifestivalen drama that took place last Saturday, a series of questions have invaded my head. Like:  How on Earth did not “Statements” qualify for the MF final? How can a queen of Eurovision go from all to nothing? And why did Loreen decide to come back to Melodifestivalen? Did her “Euphoria” come to an end?


Loreen – „Euphoria” (Eurovision Song Contest, Baku 2012)


Loreen – „Statements” (Melodifestivalen, 2017)

In conclusion, if you don’t come back with a spectacular song and a fantastic show, you’d better stay home. Eurovision proved us that only if you’re 100% sure of how good you are you can make a majestic comeback. You can be even Loreen, one of the most successful and appreciated winners ever: if your song is not as good as your previous one, you’re lost.

Georgiana Eftodi contributed to this article


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