Cyprus has selected who they will send to Junior Eurovision! The lucky singer is 13 year old Sophia Patsalides from Nicosia (born December 16th, 2000). The song will be called "I pio omorfi mera" which means "The most beautiful day", and was written by her with help from Alexandros Panayi (Cyprus 1995, 2000 Eurovision and backing singer for the winning Eurovision entry in 2005) and Stavros Stavrou (who has written many succesful hits in Cyprus including kid's musicals). The song will be sung mainly in Greek but with English parts. Charis Savvas will work on her choreography (so perhaps not a ballad if there is choreography?).
Sophia has been singing already in Cyprus and she attends The English School in Nicosia.
You can find her Youtube channel here (https://www.youtube.com/user/apoel1997rock).
We have some great news for you all today! Another country will debut in Junior Eurovision this year - welcome, Montenegro!
Their national broadcaster Radioi Televizija Crne Gore will enter, hoping to do what they have not yet done in Eurovision, take home the crown. Montenegro has entered JESC once before in 2005 with Filip's football inspired entry, however he represented "Serbia and Montenegro", so this will be the first time an independant Montenegro enters.
“I’d like to welcome Montenegro to the Junior Eurovision family,” says Executive Supervisor Vladislav Yakovlev. “They qualified to the Eurovision Song Contest final for the first time this year, and I hope they will also enjoy the experience of participating in Junior Eurovision as well.” We don't yet have details on how they will select their song, but that will come soon.
So far we have 11 countries confirmed for 2014 which is enough to host the contest, but we hope for more. 8/12 participants from JESC 2014 have confirmed, we're still waiting on Azerbaijan, Macedonia, Moldova and San Marino to enter).
So the entrants so far are: Armenia, Belarus, Georgia, Malta, The Netherlands, Russia, Sweden, Ukraine, Cyprus, Italy, Montenegro.
We're very excited to welcome a Balkan nation to JESC and await their entry eagerly! Now the question is - can we get 15 entries for JESC?
Since Junior Eurovision 2013, Dutch entrants Roseanne and Mylene have been busy! Still popular in their home country, they have had a 128 page book published about their JESC adventue. It is written by Gonneke Huizing and costs 12.90 euros (you can order it here: http://www.bol.com/nl/p/double-me-double-you/9200000025535171/).
You can watch an interview (in Dutch) with them, Femke from 2012 and Ralf Mackenbach where they talk about their summer holidays - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wdPW0pBrrsI#t=34
Finally, they released a new song "Me and My Selfie", very similar to Double Me, you can listen here: https://play.spotify.com/album/4O80pN2ngriirqo3AsAV4X
The Netherlands: The group themesong has been released, it is called 'Connected'.
Ukraine: You can listen to all the national final songs here - http://1tv.com.ua/uk/eurovision/2014/junior/national_candidate
Tickets: Tickets for the 2014 Junior Eurovision Song Contest will be out for sale in August. The tickets will be available online via a third party website, likely the same as what is used for Eurovision. The arena where JESC will take place will have a capacity of 4500 with 800 standing spots.
Volunteer: If you want to volunteer at JESC 2014 and you are aged 18 or over, look here http://www.junioreurovision.tv/page/blog?id=pbs_calls_for_volunteers - Interestingly they want Macedonian language, so hopefully this means Macedonia is in.
This week we had some sad news that Greece will not actually take part in Junior Eurovision 2014. Today however, we received some very exciting news to put a smile back on our faces - Italy will enter JESC for the very first time! We've had songs in Junior Eurovision in Italian before - Switzerland in 2004 with 'Birichino' and San Marino last year with 'O-o-O Sole Intorno a Me' (actually sung by an Italian singer, Michele!), but this year will be the first year we actually have Italy in the contest.
Italy’s participation will be managed by RAI Gulp, one of the children’s channels of national broadcaster RAI. “It’s wonderful to be able to welcome RAI Gulp to the Junior Eurovision family” said Vladislav Yakovlev, Executive Supervisor of the competition. “Italy and Malta have a special musical friendship – with both Gaia and Federica having taken part in ‘Ti lascio una canzone’, and Gaia also having been in in San Remo Junior – so it seems only natural that Italy should choose to make its Junior Eurovision debut in Malta this November”.
With Cyprus joining and now Italy, San Marino's participation is looking good. Southern Europe is really helping our numbers this year, now all we need is Spain and Portugal to announce they'll be in too. We can perhaps hope for a Macedonian and Spanish participation as both languages are requested on the volunteer application page for jESC 2014, possibly indicating negotiations are happening with these countries. For now we have 10 countries in, with negotiations still continuing by the EBU.
As for what we can expect from Italy - well while a national final would be nice, it seems much more likely they will internally choose their singer from one of their well known talent shows such as San Remo Junior.