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Tel Aviv confirmed to host Eurovision Song Contest 2019 – Israel’s Netta Barzilai won this year and the event traditionally moves to the winner’s country

Tel Aviv confirmed to host Eurovision Song Contest  2019 – Israel’s Netta Barzilai won this year and the event traditionally moves to the winner’s country

OHMYGOSSIP — The Eurovision Song Contest will be hosted by Tel Aviv in 2019. Israel’s Netta Barzilai won this year and the event traditionally moves to the winner’s country. The Israeli government had talked about moving the show to Jerusalem to avoid backlash over America recognising the latter city as its capital, Ynetnews.com mediates.

However, a Eurovision spokesperson said they decided on Tel Aviv in the end for its “creative and compelling bid”. Mayor Ron Huldai commented: “Eurovision is a perfect fit for our city, which has been internationally acclaimed for its vibrant energy, creative spirit, its lively cultural scene and its celebration of freedom. We are looking forward to host a joyful and nonstop event in the spirit of Tel Aviv.”

The semi finals for the contest will kick off in May, with the grand final set for May 18. The 25-year-old singer triumphed at the Altice Arena in Lisbon, Portugal, earlier this year, with her catchy track ‘Toy’ raking in an impressive 529 points from the viewer vote and the jury vote combined.

Speaking after finding out she had won, Netta said: “I’m so happy. Thank you so much for choosing different. Thank you so much for accepting differences between us. Thank you for celebrating diversity. Thank you. I love my country. Next time in Jerusalem!”

It was a close race between the countries, with Cyprus’ Eleni Foureira, Austria’s Cesár Sampson and Sweden’s Benjamin Ingrosso all topping the leaderboard at one point or another during the score reveal.

This year’s final – which was broadcast by BBC One in the UK – was a difficult time for British entry SuRie, whose performance of her track ‘Storm’ was interrupted by a protestor. Dr ACactivism snatched SuRie’s microphone out of her hand in the middle of the performance before being wrestled off the stage.

However, despite the mishap, the 29-year-old singer wowed with her performance, impressing the 20,000 that had packed into the arena. SuRie was offered to sing again by the team behind the contest but declined the offer. Other performances of note during the show included former winner Alexander Rybak returning for ‘Norway’ to perform his song ‘That’s How You Write A Song’ whilst Australia’s Jessica Mauboy impressed Eurovision fans with ‘We Got Love’.

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Netta Barzilai (Hebrew: נטע ברזילי‬; born 22 January 1993), sometimes known by the mononym Netta, is an Israeli singer, recording artist and looping artist who won the fifth season of HaKokhav HaBa. This earned her the right to represent her country in the 2018 Eurovision Song Contest. On 12 May 2018, she won the contest, held in Lisbon, Portugal, with her song “Toy”, marking Israel’s fourth win in the Eurovision Song Contest (after 1978, 1979, and 1998).

Netta Barzilai was born on 22 January 1993 in Hod HaSharon, Israel. As a child, Barzilai lived in Nigeria for four years, where her father worked on a project for Solel Boneh.

Barzilai attended Hadarim High School in Hod HaSharon and was a counselor at an Israeli youth movement HaNoar HaOved VeHaLomed. Prior to her mandatory enlistment in the Israeli Defense Forces, she spent a Service Year volunteering in the paramilitary Nahal. She completed her military service in the Israeli Navy Band. Afterwards, she studied electronic music at the Rimon School of Jazz and Contemporary Music.

In September 2017, Barzilai auditioned for season five of HaKokhav HaBa, Israel’s national selection for the Eurovision Song Contest, with “Rude Boy” by Rihanna. After receiving 82% of the votes, she advanced to the second stage of the competition in which she sang “Hey Mama” by David Guetta. In February 2018, she performed “Wannabe” by the Spice Girls, and although she lost a duel to Ricky Ben Ari, she proceeded to the next stage after being selected by the judges.

The last song Barzilai performed in the competition was a mashup of “Gangnam Style” by Psy and “Tik Tok” by Kesha. After receiving 210 points from the judges and audience, Barzilai won first place and the right to represent Israel at the Eurovision.

On 8 May, 2018, Barzilai participated in the first semi-final of the Eurovision Song Contest, winning the semi-final with 283 points and qualifying for the final on 12 May. In the final, she placed first with televoters and third with international juries, amassing 529 points in total and winning the competition.


Featured image: Netta Barzilai (Instagram/@nettabarzi)
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Tags assigned to this article:
EurovisionMayor Ron HuldaiNetta BarzilaiTel Aviv

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