Joci Pápai has won the Hungarian national selection for the Eurovision Song Contest, A Dal 2017, with the song Origo and will thus represent Hungary in Kyiv. The sixth edition of the competition saw 30 acts battle for a ticket to Ukraine in May. The winning song was decided by a combination of jury and public votes.
He was both the jury's and the viewers' favourite.
Joci Pápai, is 35 years old and comes from Tata in Hungary. His first public grand debut was in 2005 when he took part of the show Megasztár. He was eliminated in the consolation rounds but was determined to continue in music. His first bigger success was with the song Ne nézz így rám in 2006 and after that he had several hits, both solo and with the rapper Majka.
A Dal 2017 consisted of three heats, two semi-finals and a grand final. Read more about the Hungarian selection in our live story feature. The following acts competed in tonight's grand final:
- Gigi Radics - See It Through
- Joci Pápai - Origo
- Gina Kanizsa - Fall Like Rain
- Soulwave - Kalandor
- Zävodi + Olivér Berkes - #háttérzaj
- Leander Kills - Élet
- Gabi Tóth - Hosszú idők
- Kállay Saunders Band - 17
Eight acts performed tonight, including András Kállay-Saunders who competed in A Dal for the fifth time. In 2014 he won with the song Running and ended up on a fifth place in Eurovision Song Contest in Copenhagen. Last year and this year he competed in the Hungarian selection with his band.
Begi Lotfi (Behnam Lotfi) was competing this year together with Gabi Tóth and Freddie Shuman. But in 2012 he was part of the band Compact Disco that won the first edition of A Dal and went to the Eurovision Song Contest in Baku where they ended on 24th place in the final.
20 year old singer Gigi Radics has already competed in A Dal three times now. Her first year was in 2013 when she came on third place behind András Kállay-Saunders and the winner ByeAlex.
Other returning performers in this year's final were Gabi Tóth, Leander Köteles (now in the band Leander Kills) and Olivér Berkes.
Each member of the jury awarded points to their top four songs which were then combined with the results of the public vote. Members of the jury were:
- Adrienn Zsédenyi Zséda (award-winning singer)
- Miklós Both (award-winning composer/guitarist/singer)
- Károly Frenreisz (founder of the legendary LGT and Skorpió, a legend of Hungarian rock music)
- Ferenc Molnár Caramel (award-winning singer)
The jury was the same as in previous weeks, and three of them even sat in the panel last year. Caramel was the only newcomer in this year's jury, but he competed in the first edition of A Dal in 2012 with the song Vízió placing second.
Hungary made its debut in the Eurovision Song Contest in 1994, achieving a 4th place, which remains the best placing for the country to date. Hungary has qualified for the Grand Final every year since 2011. Last year, Freddie finished 19th with Pioneer in Stockholm.