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Second Semi-Final: The winners speak!

23 May 2008 at 02:14 CEST

The winners press conference took the same format as that of the First Semi-Final on Tuesday. The winners made the journey back from the Beogradska Arena to the press conference hall. Upon arrival photographers were allowed two minutes for quick photographs. The conference then began and each country was allowed to answer two questions.

The first country to be welcomed was Ukraine. Ani Lorak was asked by a Swedish journalist about the comparison between the Swedish and Ukrainian entries. Ani said "We have very different songs, maybe we have a passion for silver costumes. Charlotte is a fantastic singer, I wish her all the best, but I just want to focus on my show." Ani thanked everyone involved in her team for their excellent work on the project. She also said that the winner of the Eurovision Song Contest would be from the Second Semi-Final. Ukraine was drawn 18th in the final. 

Next came Croatia. Kraljevi Ulice and 75 cents were asked how the Croatian team were accepted in Belgrade, to which they said they felt very welcome and were satisfied with their stay so far. When asked of their expectations for qualification to the Final, the band replied "We are Kings of the street, we are representing a different kind of art in music. We are in the Final, European people must have been impressed with our show". Croatia was drawn 9th in the final. 

The third country to answer questions was Albania. Olta Boka was asked if her dream came true, she said "My heart is beating so fast now, it's a big thing for me to be in the final, and I am so so happy, and I will do my best again in the final, despite certain sections of the crowd booing." Albania was drawn 3rd in the final. 

Next it was the turn of Iceland. Euroband were asked about speculation that Iceland could win the Eurovision Song Contest, to which they said "If Eurovision Song Contest was a little baby, Reykjavik would take very good care of it!" The band also said they were pleasantly surprised to qualify for the Final.  Iceland was drawn 11th in the final. 

The fifth entrant to speak was Georgia.  Diana Gurtskaya was asked what gives her the strength to perform and make her dreams come true. Diana replied "Thank you Europe. God gives me power and the feedback from my audience also helps a lot. I am very happy."  Georgia was drawn 17th in the final. 

Next up came Denmark. Simon Mathew gave a message to his fans "Thank you very much, it was the greatest experience of my life, I gave all of my energy in the three minutes on stage!" He was also asked if he was going to celebrate All Night Long! "Simon said "Yes I am, and people who bet money on me to qualify will become very rich!" Denmark was drawn 16th in the final. 

Number seven in line was Sweden. Charlotte Perrelli opened by saying "We are so glad, there has been a lot of pressure. We are really happy to be here and we will do our best in the final." Sweden was drawn 15th in the final, the same position Charlotte won from in Jerusalem. 

Next it was the turn of Latvia to speak. Pirates of The Sea were asked if they had ever been on a real pirate ship. Roberto said "We came by boat from Latvia, through Europe, now our boat arrived in Serbia and has sailed it's way to the final!"  Latvia was drawn 14th in the final. 

The penultimate country to answer questions was Turkey. Mor ve Ötesi were asked about controversy in Turkey about entering a rock song in the Turkish language, and what was their reaction now they had qualified They said "We have been performing together for 13 years now, and it has always been our goal to record an original sound in our home language. Our personal feeling is that if you love a song, the feeling is more important than the lyrics."  The group went on to add that it is a good feeling to be in the Final, as the Turkish delegation have been used to it in the past years. The group also sent their best regards to the contestants who did not qualify this evening. Turkey was drawn 12th in the final. 

Finally it was the turn of Portugal. Vânia Fernandes was beaming with delight at her qualification. When asked if Portugal was ready to stage next years Eurovision Song Contest, the composer Carlos said "We need a cardiologist right now as the suspense tonight was torture! But yes I think we can host it!" Vania then went on to add "I am very happy to be here, I feel we sang tonight with the whole of Portugal, we will give the best of our best in the final, thank you to the rest of Europe for believing in us." Portugal was drawn 13th in the final.