With his song, 'Take Me As I Am', Tornike Kipiani was chosen to represent Georgia in 2020. In light of the unfortunate cancellation of the 65th Eurovision Song Contest, we wish to highlight the impressive acts that were set to appear. This is 'In the spotlight', our feature honouring the artists that would have made up this year's edition of the world's largest live music event.
The winner of the popular TV format, Georgia Idol, again determined the country's participant for the Eurovision Song Contest in 2020. The show's final episode was broadcast live on New Year’s Eve after a heavy 10-week season.
Tornike Kipiani was selected by the Georgian audience via online vote and televote. He received 33.82% of the votes, narrowly securing the number 1 position ahead of Barbara Samkharadze with 31.18%, Tamar Kakalashvil with 18.38% and Mariam Gogiberidze with 16.62%. Tornike’s music video for his Eurovision entry, Take Me As I Am, directed by Temo Kvirkveliawas, later premiered on the public broadcaster, GPB.
Who is Tornike?
Tornike, or otherwise known as Kipo, is a 32-year-old professional architect, father of 3 and musician. At 19, he started his own band, later becoming the vocalist after his bandmates were unable to fill the vacant spot. He then went on to win the first season of X Factor Georgia in 2014, where he was mentored by the future 2019 Cyprus delegate, Tamta.
Tornike previously attempted to represent Georgia in Eurovision back in 2017 with the industrial techno song, You Are My Sunshine. That year it was Tamara Gachechiladze’s turn to represent their country.
READ MORE: Tornikes participant profile
The Georgian Eurovision song, Take Me As I Am, was written by Tornike and was arranged alongside Alkeo Berdzenishvili. Tornike keeps a low profile on social media but still garners over 30,000 followers on his Facebook page, which he regularly updates with his Eurovision journey.
Georgia in the Eurovision Song Contest
Georgia had a successful start to its Eurovision Song Contest journey. It qualified for the Grand Final every year since its debut in 2007 up until 2012. Representatives Sofia Nizharadze (2010) and Eldrine (2011) finished in 9th position for Georgia - its highest placing to date. Over the years, the country has tried national finals and internal selections to select their Eurovision entries. Despite not yet winning the Eurovision Song Contest, Georgia has impressively won the Junior Eurovision Song Contest on 3 occasions and hosted it in the capital of Tbilisi in 2017.
READ MORE: Georgia's country page
Oto Nemsadze went to Tel Aviv to represent Georgia in the Eurovision Song Contest 2019 with the song, Keep On Going. He participated in the First Semi-Final and finished in 14th place with 62 votes.