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Winners' Press Conference, First Semi-Final

11 May 2011 at 05:50 CEST

The Winners' Press Conference took place at 11:30 PM following the First Semi-Final event. 10 of the 19 countries competing in the First Semi-Final were selected as finalists to compete in the Grand Final on Saturday. The winners are listed as follows, together with the order they will be appearing in the Grand Final.


Serbia 24th

Lithuania   4th

Greece   9th

Azerbaijan 19th

Georgia 25th

Switzerland 13th

Hungary   5th

Finland   1st

Russia  10th

Iceland  21st

Nina, representing Serbia with her song Caroban, was congratulated on delivering a magical performance. She replied: “Thank you. Of course I performed this magic because I had the  people supporting me and I thank them for that. It was an amazing feeling - we were excited and a bit scared. We were the first to be announced. It was great!" Nina looked quite happy when she chose No. 24 as her start position. It was the same number with which Russia won in 2008.

Evelina Sasenko, representing Lithuania with her song C`est Ma Vie, was asked what she had to say to everyone who didn't expect her to reach the Grand Final. Her response: “The only thing I can tell them is this is what you got!” Her first impulse upon hearing herself announced as a finalist was “to jump high to the sky. I still can't believe what happened. Perhaps in an hour I will realize where I am and what I am doing.”

Loucas Yiorkas and Stereo Mike, representing Greece with their song Watch My Dance, were the next to take journalists' questions. Loucas said: “First l'd like to congratulate all the countries that qualified. You know that our song is a song that passes through the soul. I gave all of my soul and at the end I was empty for about half an hour. The message of my song is that the power in my soul can burn away the fears and no matter how many times we fall down, we can get up to survive. So I gave my soul.”

Eldar Gasimov and Nigar Jamal, representing Azerbaijan with their song Running Scared, each made a separate statement. Eldar: “All countries in the Semi-Final were very strong and we were honoured to compete with them and we will miss them, but our friendship starts right now.” And Nigar: “My daughters were watching me from London and they came to support me and it was so important not to fail because I am dedicated to my kids.”

Sophio Toroshelidze, who sang One More Day for Georgia with her band Eldrine, said:

“We all hoped that we would be in the final. I think that it is a great achievement for us. Our main goal - we just enjoyed being on stage, that's all. We didn't think about the Final or the Semi-Final, but of course this a shock and the greatest feeling for us. I just want to thank all the people who listened and enjoyed our music.”

Anna Rossinelli, representing Switzerland with her song In Love For A While, was asked how she felt before going on stage: “I was very nervous, as I always am. It's great that I'm going to the Final. Thank you so much for voting for me.”

Kati Wolf, singing What About My Dream for Hungary: “When I ran on stage I heard a magic voice from the audience and I'd like to thank them because they are the reason I am here. It's an amazing feeling for a singer. I think I'm dreaming now.”

Paradise Oskar sang Da Da Dam for Finland and said: “What I want to say to people is that I'm very grateful that people voted for me to be in the Final. I'm also very grateful so many other very good ones were chosen. I think Europe's heart is in the right place because there were so many votes for good music. I feel great, of course. It's a great honour and great to be here so young. So far this hasn't been a competition for me. It's just been a great honour and great place to perform my music and get people to listen to the music that I write. And I don't think it's going to be a competition from now on either. It's going to be just me singing and having fun. Of course winning is a great honour too, but it's so far ahead I can't thing of it yet.”

Alexej Vorobjov, representing Russia with his song Get You, was asked what he would do the next morning following his victory: “I will sleep the next morning. I just want to thank everybody. Everybody should have a dream and hope and all my life being here at the Eurovision Song Contest was my dream. I also want to say that there a lot of very good artists who are not here with us right now and I want to hear your applause for them.”

Finally, Iceland's Sjonni's Friends (Coming Home) were the last to be announced as finalists: “It was a very strange feeling - there were so many talented artists tonight and so many countries that could have been in the final. We were just cheering life and enjoying ourselves so we just threw ourselves on top of each other. We hoped that our song would touch the hearts of people because the message in our song is so important to just tell people that life can be really short and we have to live life today and not wait to do the things we want to do until tomorrow because we don't know how much time we'll have with our loved ones.”

The first ten start positions were chosen this evening. 10 spots are remaining. They will be picked after the Second Semi-Final in two days.