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Moldova to give Europe SunStroke in May!

25 February 2017 at 21:51 CET
SunStroke Project have won the Moldovan national selection for the Eurovision Song Contest, O melodie pentru Europa, with the song Hey, Mamma! and will represent the country in the 2017 Eurovision Song contest in Kyiv.

Sunstroke Project were chosen by a 50/50 combination of jury and public votes after a close race with act number seven, Ethno Republic & Surorile Osoianu and Diana Brescan who finished third. The band were jubilant as they took to the stage for their winning reprise. It is the second time that the group will represent Moldova in the Eurovision Song Contest. Whilst SunStroke Project finished second with the jury, they topped the public vote and will take to the stage in Kyiv in May.

The top three:

  1. SunStroke Project - Hey Mamma!
  2. Ethno Republic & Surorile Osoianu - Discover Moldova
  3. Diana Brescan - Breath

The participants of the final of O melodie pentru Europa 2017:

  1. SunStroke Project - Hey Mamma!
  2. Samir Loghin - Glow 
  3. Valeria Pașa - Freedom 
  4. Aurel Chirtoacă - Dor de mamă 
  5. Diana Brescan - Breath
  6. Marks & Stefanet - Join Us in the Rain
  7. Ethno Republic & Surorile Osoianu - Discover Moldova
  8. Vozniuc feat. Vio Grecu - Don't Lie

Lidia Isac, who represented Moldova in the 2016 Eurovision Song Contest with the song Falling Stars, performed a mini concert during the interval. 

The semi-final of the national selection saw 14 acts compete for eight places in the final. In the semi-finals four acts were selected by the jury of music professionals and four were chosen through televoting. You can read the full participant list in our live story feature.

Gallery: Hello Moldova: The finalists of O Melodie Pentru Europa 2017

The return of SunStroke Project

SunStroke Project is a trio composed of Sergei Yalovitsky (vocals), Anton Ragoza (violinist and composer) and Sergey Stepanov (saxophonist). The group have participated in the Moldovan national selection several times over the years. In 2010 they won the selection and represented Moldova in the Eurovision Song Contest in Oslo with the song Run Away along side vocalist Olia Tira.

Following their appearance at the Eurovision Song Contest, Sergey Stepanov's saxophone solo went viral on Youtube. The video, which features his performance on a loop, notched up over 30 million views and spawned several copycat videos and parodies, which have also attracted millions of views.

Moldova in the Eurovision Song Contest

Moldova first entered the Eurovision Song Contest in 2005 when the contest last took place in Ukraine. Popular band Zdob şi Zdub represented Moldova in Kyiv with Boonika Bate Toba, starting a string of qualifications for the country. Between 2005 and 2013, Moldova only once failed to qualify for the Grand Final.  

Since 2013 the country has failed to qualify from the Semi-Finals although in 2015 Eduard Romanyuta narrowly missed out when he finished 11th. Zdob şi Zdub's sixth place in 2005 remains Moldova's most successful result in the Eurovision Song Contest to date.