After a few months of specualtion in Israel, it was announced back in January by the national broadcaster IBA that Noa and Mira Awad would represent their country in the 2009 Eurovision Song Contest.
Noa, (real name Achinoam Nini) is Israel's leading international concert and recording artist. She was born in Tel Aviv in 1969, but lived in New York City from the age of two. She returned to Israel alone at age 17 and studied music at the Rimon School where she met her long term writing partner Gil Dor. Noa has frequently collaborated with Arab and Palestinian artists from around the World in the past, and has also performed with leading artists such as Sting and Stevie Wonder.
Mira Awad is a Palestinian/Israeli singer, songwriter and actress. She was born in 1975 and lives now in Tel Aviv. Mira also attended the Rimon School of Jazz and Contemporary Music. In 2002 she worked with Noa on her album Now. She is in the final stages of recording her debut album. Mira Awad will be the first ever Arab/Israeli singer to represent Israel in Europe's favourite TV show.
Four songs will compete in tonight's Kdam Eurovision programme and the format will be in the same tradition of the last years, where Noa & Mira Awad perform four songs to the public. All songs will be performed using a combination of three languages, these being Hebrew, Arabic and English.This year 60% from the votes will come from a specialised committee, and 40% from SMS and Internet. The chairperson of the professional committee will be Yoav Ginai, writer of the 1998 Eurovision Song Contest winner Diva and who also happens to be broadcaster IBA TV's Channel 1 Head of Entertainment.
The competing songs are as follows :- (English titles in brackets)
Kol Shniya - (Second Chance)
Na'amin Bachalom - (Faith in The Light)
Bo'i Lirkod Iti - (Will You Dance With Me)
Einaiych - (There Must Be Another Way)
Israel finished in ninth place last in last years contest with Boaz Mauda and his song The Fire In Your Eyes. Israel will participate in the First Semi-Final of this years Eurovision Song Contest on Tuesday May 12th in Moscow.