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25 things you need to know about the 25 Grand Finalists

11 May 2024 at 20:06 CEST
Lithuania's Silvester Belt walking the Turquoise Carpet at Malmö Live Alma Bengtsson / EBU
The Eurovision 2024 Grand Final is on the horizon, but there’s still time to find out more about this year’s artists.
The artists of the Grand Final preparing backstage at Malmö Arena ahead of rehearsals for the 68th Eurovision Song Contest Alma Bengtsson / EBU

Whether you’ve had this year’s Eurovision songs on replay or you’re tuning into the Grand Final with no idea what to expect, there’s always room for (ooh ah) a little bit more Eurovision. Here’s a glimpse into this year’s acts, from lucky socks to denim shorts, and everything in between.

🇸🇪 Sweden | Marcus & Martinus – Unforgettable

What do Marcus & Martinus do when they’re not being Eurovision superstars? For starters they play football in Norway’s third division, so whenever they get some free time, you might find them on the pitch. 

And since they’ve been at Eurovision, they’ve discovered a new hobby — painting with Finland’s Windows95man. We like to think that’s been carried out on everyone’s favourite retro computer drawing program.

🇺🇦 Ukraine | alyona alyona & Jerry Heil - Teresa & Maria

It took alyona alyona & Jerry Heil a very long time to get to Malmö, but we’re so glad they made it.

They say: “When we arrived, we met the guys from Australia, and they were like, ‘How are you girls? We spent 30 hours on the road!’ And we were like, ‘Hey we are from Ukraine - same here!’ Because there's no such thing now as taking a flight from Ukraine - you have to take the train to some city in Poland. Then you go by bus to another city in Poland. Then you take a flight to Copenhagen and from there to Malmö. And we're there 28 hours or so. It was crazy, but we are here!”

🇩🇪 Germany | ISAAK - Always On The Run

You might only see the final performances at home, but before Eurovision artists go on stage, they all have different ways of preparing. ISAAK says:

“For me, it's important in the moment right before entering the stage to stay as calm as possible. Like to breathe in very, very deeply, and to find a way to keep my heartbeat as low as possible before you go!”

ISAAK performing Always On The Run for Germany at the First Semi-Final at Malmö Arena Corinne Cumming / EBU

🇱🇺 Luxembourg | TALI – Fighter

Fighter is a bit different from a lot of TALI’s other music. So, will she record more songs that match this style? She says: “So far, nothing has been written in the vibe of Fighter in my next album. But would be cool to keep the same vibe, because I love singing it, and I love singing this type of music on stage. So yeah, stay tuned!”

🇮🇱 Israel | Eden Golan – Hurricane

Eden has an intense workout routine. She says: “I've been a rhythmic gymnast since I was three years old - I started doing gymnastics, and that accompanied me till the age of 10. I also did ballet for two, three years so it's kind of in my blood. I stretch nearly every day at home, and I do workouts at home to keep everything toned and nice. And dancing! Dancing is a great workout.”

🇱🇹 Lithuania | Silvester Belt – Luktelk

In 2010, Silvester made a bid for representing Lithuania at the Junior Eurovision Song Contest, by competing in their pre-selection competition, Vaikų Eurovizijos Nacionalinė Atranka, with the song Pi-Pa-Po. It involved an upbeat pop tune, pyjama-clad dancers carrying pillows with Silvester’s face on them, and a light up dancefloor.

He says: “I kind of deleted all the memories from that period of my life, but since our national broadcast uploaded the video again (thank you very much) I could watch it again - for the rest of my life.”

🇪🇸 Spain | Nebulossa – ZORRA

If Nebulossa could collaborate with any other Eurovision artist this year, they’d choose Marcus & Martinus from Sweden. They say they’d name the song Unforgettable Zorras, adding: “We’re an unforgettable couple!”

Marcus & Martinus, what do you reckon?

Nebulossa performing ZORRA for Spain at the Second Semi-Final at Malmö Arena Sarah Louise Bennett / EBU

🇪🇪 Estonia | 5MIINUST x Puuluup - (nendest) narkootikumidest ei tea me (küll) midagi

If you want to choose another song from 5MIINUST or Puuluup’s back catalogue to listen to, they suggest: “Our new album! These are totally fresh songs! I would suggest you go through our whole catalogue. You'd find some really obscure things in it. It’s probably interesting to see how we have developed, and evolved throughout the years. 

For Puuluup, if you want to go through the stuff, we recommend Kasekesed.”

🇮🇪 Ireland | Bambie Thug - Doomsday Blue

Bambie says that life is their biggest inspiration in their music. They say: “I can't write about things that I haven't experienced. Life, and fashion? I love anything fantastical, anything by Tim Burton, anything whimsical, anything ethereal, anything like cyber, witch, goth, anime, little creatures. I love fashion and love music.”

The artists of the First Semi-Final preparing backstage at Malmö Arena ahead of rehearsals for the 68th Eurovision Song Contest Alma Bengtsson / EBU

🇱🇻 Latvia | Dons – Hollow

Dons has brought his lucky socks to Malmö, and they seem to be working so far. He says that every time he steps out on stage, they seem to give him good luck. And he assures us that while they’re old, he does wash them.

🇬🇷 Greece | Marina Satti – ZARI

In Marina’s music video for ZARI, she was dancing amongst complete strangers. She adds: “We were scared the song was going to get leaked, so I had my headphones in and people must have just seen this crazy girl and thought, what was going on?!”

🇬🇧 United Kingdom | Olly Alexander – Dizzy

Olly is not only a pop superstar, but he’s also an acclaimed actor. He says his favourite role was playing Ritchie in It’s A Sin. He says: “It was the role of a lifetime. It was just such a privilege to play him and to be a part of that show, I really had the best time.”

🇳🇴 Norway | Gåte – Ulveham

When they’re not rehearsing or performing, Gåte say their hobbies include skiing, chess, fitness and yoga. It sounds like a weekend with this band would be very wholesome, and we’d like to sign up please.

🇮🇹 Italy | Angelina Mango - La noia

Dropping subtle hints that she wants the Eurovision crown, Angelina has a throne in her performance. She says: I wanted to take on stage something that represents my song in a coherent way. I think the throne is beautiful because it’s something very real, but at the same time it’s something human because there are the thorns, and the nature. Something without a mask.”

🇷🇸 Serbia | TEYA DORA – RAMONDA

TEYA’s song RAMONDA is about the lilac-coloured ramonda plant. So, what exactly are her favourite flowers? She says: 

“Right now, I do like lilacs. Lilacs, yellow lilacs, especially because I had a dog that was named Lilac, actually Lala in Serbian! So, I love them, too. But RAMONDA, of course, right now, gives me strength. So, it is my favourite flower.”

🇫🇮 Finland | Windows95man - No Rules! 

The big question on everyone’s mind – where did Windows95man get those denim shorts? He explains the story behind the outfit:

“It was a huge fashion thing, especially for ladies in the summer of 2010 in Helsinki, Finland. And then I was thinking like, I'm always inspired by sexy looks. So, I first had longer pants. But then my friend Evan was thinking that they're too long. You need to see the white pockets! And then we were at a party, and he just took the scissors and started to cut them.”

🇵🇹 Portugal | iolanda – Grito

When she was very young iolanda wanted to work in an aquarium after visiting one. But by the age of 11 she was thinking more about singing, and now she’s representing Portugal at the Eurovision Song Contest. We’re sure iolanda would be excellent at looking after sea creatures, but the world of music is grateful she changed direction.

🇦🇲 Armenia | LADANIVA – Jako

Louis isn’t sure just how many instruments he can play but he thinks it’s around 20. Jaklin says it’s certainly more than that, and that he can “play everything.” This, we have to test. Bring out the bassoon!

Artists backstage at Malmö Arena after the Second Semi-Final of the Eurovision Song Contest 2024
Alma Bengtsson / EBU

🇨🇾 Cyprus | Silia Kapsis – Liar

If Silia had to swap songs with someone else in the Contest she’d pick Slimane. She says: “I am also a ballad freak. I love France's song, so I think I would definitely take that song and maybe do it in Greek instead of French. But he's incredible. And I love ballads, and I sing ballads — I sing Whitney Houston, she's my favourite. So, I think I'd take that for sure!”

🇨🇭 Switzerland | Nemo - The Code

Nemo says that if they were stuck on a desert island with three other Eurovision 2024 artists they would choose Bambie Thug, Silvester Belt and Olly Alexander. They say: “Chances of survival - zero! No, it depends how the island is. I don’t think I would be very good at surviving on a deserted island. I think Bambie Thug would get us through a lot. But I think we'd have a great time for the time that we had left.”

🇸🇮 Slovenia | Raiven – Veronika

Ever wondered where Raiven’s stage name came from? Wonder no more! She explains: “I grew up in a family of falconers - my mum, my dad and my brother breed falcons so I grew up with birds. So, I've always been very connected with birds of prey. I also own a macaw but I've always wanted to own a raven. So, it's kind of an homage to my love of Scandinavian, orchestral, metal music that has a lot of symbolism of ravens.”

🇭🇷 Croatia | Baby Lasagna - Rim Tim Tagi Dim

We all know Baby Lasagna is a big fan of cats, if you couldn’t tell from the neon dancing feline graphics or the lyrics, “Meow cat, please meow back.” But what about dogs? Do they get a place in Baby Lasagna’s heart?

“Oh, I mean, dogs are also amazing, but I'm afraid of dogs. Like genuinely, every dog that comes in. If it was a chihuahua right now, I'd be probably scared of it until I meet the dog, and then afterwards, we're good friends. So, I love dogs. They're just kind of scary!”

🇬🇪 Georgia | Nutsa Buzaladze – Firefighter

Nutsa says it was never in the plan to have a music video, so they had to act quickly. She explains: “I had this huge idea and this huge motivation, I want to dance in the water, I want to dance in the fire. And when I was saying these ideas to the Georgian team, they were saying I was a bit crazy! I had this music video in my imagination, and then it turned out like I imagined.”

The artists of the Grand Final preparing backstage at Malmö Arena ahead of rehearsals for the 68th Eurovision Song Contest Alma Bengtsson / EBU

🇫🇷 France | Slimane - Mon Amour

In Slimane’s Eurovision performance, he takes a step back from the microphone and sings acapella. He explains where this idea came from:

“This idea came from my friend and artistic director. We were chilling at home and thinking about the performance and he told me something: we just need your voice, pure, and nothing else. We were thinking about it, and that night we had an appointment at a piano bar I love in Paris and I decided to try it. There was a little audience, and everybody was like, you know, like time just stopped. So, then I said to Zach, I think you had an amazing idea.”

🇦🇹 Austria | Kaleen - We Will Rave

If Kaleen had to be stuck on a desert island with another contestant from Eurovision 2024, she says she’d choose Finland’s Windows95man, because she loves watching all of his videos. 

She adds: “It just makes you laugh and that’s what you need when you’re stuck on an island somewhere. Also Dons and Marcus & Martinus!”

You can listen to all 37 songs of Eurovision 2024 via your favourite streaming service or watch the music videos on our YouTube channel.

The Eurovision Song Contest will take place in Malmö, Sweden on Tuesday 7 May (First Semi-Final), Thursday 9 May (Second Semi-Final) and Saturday 11 May (Grand Final) 2024.

Don't forget to download our app (for iOSAndroid), sign up to the official Eurovision Song Contest newsletter, and subscribe to the official podcast!