There is a special interest in Belgium about the Eurovision Song Contest this year as it was exactly 25 years ago when the country won Europe's favourite TV-show with Sandra Kim's J'aime La Vie.
Sandra Kim was also in the jury picking the Belgian entry in a joint vote with the viewers this year. Other members of the jury are Viktor Lazlo (hosted the Eurovision Song Contest in 1987), Jean-Pierre Hautier (Eurovision Song Contest commentator) and Charles Gardier (artistic director of Francofolies de Spa).
Just before the voting ended tonight, Sandra Kim also performed, showing how a real Eurovision Song Contest winner conquers the stage!
However, tonight the contest was between 14 mostly upcoming Belgian stars and in the end that's what the professional jury and viewers decided:
- Witloof Bay - With Love Baby - 24 points (12 from the jury, 12 from televote)
- Sarina - Rien En Apparence - 18 points (10 from the jury, 8 from televote)
- .fen - Yes I Know - 15 points (8 from the jury, 7 from televote)
- Alexandre Deschamps - Elle Merveille - 11 points (1 from the jury, 10 from televote)
- Steve Linden - C'est La Musique - 10 points (5 from the jury, 5 from televote)
- Nelza - Be My Friend - 7 points (7 from the jury, 0 from televote)
- Clac et Les Portes - Claquer Les Portes - 7 points (6 from the jury, 1 from televote)
- The Blazing - Our Way - 6 points (0 from the jury, 6 from televote)
- Kaptain Oats - Reset - 5 points (3 from the jury, 2 from televote)
- Chloé - Just One Chance - 4 points (0 from the jury, 4 from televote)
- Gautier Reyz - Addiction - 4 points (4 from the jury, 0 from televote)
- J Cool - Dans Ma Chanson - 3 points (0 from the jury, 3 from televote)
- Syla K. - Simple Love - 2 points (2 from the jury, 0 from televote)
- Thayss N' Bau - Somewhere With You - 0 points
The pre-show favourites were Gautier Reyz who finished third in the eight edition of the French Star Academy in 2008.
The second one was Chloé who was the runner-up of the Junior Eurosong, the Belgian national selection for the Junior Eurovision Song Contest in the same year. Besides them, the blind singer Sarina Cohn, who is just 16 years old, was one of the frontrunners in the contest too, according to local polls.
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How it all begun...
In the autumn of 2010 a web-based competition was held by AKA Music, a company that promotes artists and puts them in contact with producers. The competition stated that any act who managed to raise €20,000 would qualify to take part in the next phase of the national selection.
As a result, 30 acts qualified to this stage, showing a huge interest in the Eurovision Song Contest but it triggered a semi-final as well. It was broadcast as a three-hour show on the radio station VivaCité, with live performances from all 30 contestants.
In the end, it came down to 14 participants who were still in the running to become Belgium's next Eurovision Song Contest participant. Out of those, the viewers and the jury picked their favourite and that artist will now carry the Belgian flag in Düsseldorf.
Belgium enjoyed considerable success in the 2010 Eurovision Song Contest in Oslo. Tom Dice performed Me And My Guitar and finished sixth in the Final with 143 points. He won the first Semi-Final, held four nights before.