Read back: Maruv stormed to victory in Ukraine

Tonight (Saturday 23rd February), Ukraine will be selecting their entry via their national final. The act that replaced Tayanna, Maruv, is in the grand final of Vidbir, as are the fan favourites, Kazka. Who will win the Ukrainian ticket to go to Tel Aviv?

The Grand final of Vidbir starts at 19:00 Kyiv time (17:00 GMT/18:00 CET). You can view the show here on youtube as an international viewer, or here as a Ukrainian viewer. All comments will be in CET, and the most recent comments will appear at the top.


21:30 CET: Televote results are as follows:

1 point goes to… Yuko

2 points goes to… Anna Maria

3 points goes to… Brunettes Shoot Blondes

4 points goes to… Freedom Jazz! At this point the crowd go wild knowing that Maruv has won and no one can catch her

5 points go to… Kazka

6 points go to… Maruv. The reaction in the studio is wild as she performs her song for a second time. Congratulations to Maruv, who was an excellent replacement for Tayanna

21:10 CET: Verification from PWC

The head of the voting verification company comes out and tells us that we have a valid result and that over 167,500 people voted tonight.

21:05 CET: Here come the jury results

1 point goes to…Anna Maria! The boos are huge

2 points goes to… Brunettes Shoot Blondes

3 Points goes to… KAZKA! The boos again

4 Points go to… Yuko

5 points go to Maruv

6 points go to… FREEDOM JAZZ

20:57 CET: Welcome to Kyiv Bilal Hassini

Bilal Hassini, the French representative is performing as the interval act in the Ukrainian final this evening. His staging is colourful yet plain in the sense that there is no dancers, there is only him singing on his own. His vocals do need a bit of work still on route to the Eurovision now, this song needs some oomph behind it to make it stand out, at the moment, it is rather plain. However, the lyrics make it powerful. He also said that he loves Ruslana, who first won Eurovision for Ukraine in 2004, and the host turned around and said ‘yes, that is our queen’ in a joking sort of way

20:22 CET : All performances finished

That is a wrap in Ukraine. Soon, we will find out who will be representing the 2 time winners in Tel Aviv. My personal view is that, judging by the reactions given by the audiences tonight, that it will be a 2 horse race between Maurv and Kazka.

20:15 CET: Anna Maria – My Road

The performance begins with excellent harmonies. The staging is quite plain, and the spotlight changes when each singer starts to sing. They are wearing a pink see through blouse with a black cat suit underneath. The harmonies are the best bit of this performance, and each singer on their own is excellent too. This performance would need no work, but the staging would if they were to win. This is a pop song.

19:58 CET: Kazka – Apart

Much approved vocal start from Oleksandra. She is giving this her all. The audience are clapping and singing and giving it their all too. Her vocals still need a bit of work however. All of the members of Kazka are in black, and the floor is smoky, which is the same as their semi final performance, baring in mind they just scraped through, they are much improved. The instrument players are also much improved from the semi final performance. Overall, this is much improved, and I think this will be a 2 horse race between Kazka and Maurv.

19:29 CET: Brunettes Shoot Blondes – Houston

A very country sounding song with elements of pop. Not something I would expect from Brunettes Shoot Blondes. Harmonies have improved from the Semi final, and they have been working on their showmanship from their previous entries into the Ukrainian national selection. They are dressed very casually which sets the seen very well of a Texan farm. I like this band a lot, and one day, I hope they represent Eurovision. They are both playing the same piano which shows they are able to work as a team, and they have a few other piano and guitar players which shows they are able to work with additional elements on stage and not just on a backing track. They also get a great reception, as they are a returning entry from previous years.

19:09 CET: Maurv – Siren Song

A very sexy performance from Maurv, who is dressed up in very high stiletto heels and an outfit that makes her look sexy, the whole staging looks very sexy as well. The sound of the song is very well put together with the big band elements. The composition of this song, and Maurv’s voice is excellent. She is a very worthy replacement for Tayanna. The reaction in the theatre speaks volumes, she has the best reaction so far. I have a feeling though that the look may not be appropriate post watershed at Eurovision.

18:52 CET: Yuko – Galyna Guliala

Performance gives off a street and urban vibe. Rap done by the female, but rap never goes down well in Eurovision. They are wearing street and urban costumes to go with the vibe of the song, and the physical presentation of the female and the male in the group goes with the whole package of an urban/street look. They are making use of the stage space very well. The animations don’t really add anything to the performance but is a cute touch all the same. the vocals of the male and female work really well, so I believe if this were to go to Eurovision, they would keep up Ukraine’s 100% qualifying record.

18:22 CET : Freedom Jazz – Cupidon

Freedom Jazz scored perfect points and were the highest qualifers for the final tonight. Their song is pop with Jazz elements, hint the group name ‘Freedom Jazz’ a novelty performance with the group starting off in a dangling plane prop. Harmonies work really well. They have a 1950s look to the group, which looks great here, but it may not transfer on to a stage like Eurovision in Tel Aviv. Weaker performance than their semi final I think, there is stiff competition, and they will be fighting hard to retain their perfect points. Still managed to get great feedback from the judges despite a weaker performance than the semi final.

18:00 CET: Introduction to programme

The host of the programme is chatting to the 2016 Eurovision song contest winner, Jamala, about what it takes to win the national final, and the difficulties that the network and the country is currently facing.

17:55 CET: Welcome to the Live Blog!

Welcome to the ESCDaily liveblog of the Ukrainian National Final. The following acts will be battling it out to represent Ukraine in Tel Aviv:

  1. Freedom Jazz – Cupidon
  2. Yuko – Galyna Guliala
  3. Maruv – Siren Song
  4. Brunettes Shoot Blondes – Houston
  5. Kazka – Apart
  6. Anna Maria – My Road

Freedom Jazz qualified top for the grand final with a perfect score of 16 points, closely followed by Maruv with 14 points, so it is anyone’s game.