Photo: Ukrinform TV

Ukraine Wins EuroVision 2022 Song Contest

On Saturday (5.14),) Ukraine’s Kalush Orchestra and their song “Stefania” were named winners of the 2022 Eurovision Song Contest 

Heading into this weekend’s Eurovision finals in Turin, Italy, the heavily favored Ukrainian folk-rap group stood victorious among the 25 countries still in competition.

With Ukraine previously winning the annual song contest in 2004 and 2016, ahead of the Eurovision Song Contest 2022, Kalush Orchestra frontman Oleh Psiuk spoke to the Times U.K. about competing in the famed singing competition amid a Russian invasion raging in their homeland.

“We needed to leave Ukraine to promote our country and I feel I am being useful — then we will go back right away,” Psiuk stated, noting that Kalush Orchestra’s concerts both pre- and post-Eurovision raise money for Ukraine relief efforts.

Prior to leaving his homeland, Psiuk started a volunteer organization to support Ukrainians driven homeless by the invasion find shelter, transportation and medicine. And, aniother member of Kalush Orchestra, dancer Slavik Hnatenko, missed the Eurovision performance after enlisting in the Kyiv territorial defense force.

The group won the Eurovision Song Contest on the strength of their song “Stefania,” which was also inspired by the invasion. “When the war started it began to acquire new meanings as lots of people perceived the mother in the song to be Ukraine, or became emotional thinking about their mothers,” Psiuk said. “That is why I hope this song will be loved by Europeans now as well.”

While 25 countries competed in the Eurovision finals, Russia was barred from this year’s competition as a result of the invasion. “I think Russia not taking part in Eurovision is a very nice gesture from Europe. Maybe there are some Russians who don’t understand what is happening because of the information war. This way they will know something is wrong.” added Psiuk.

While U.K. singer/TikTok sensation Sam Ryder led the competition following the countries’ vote, the Brit and his song “Spaceman” finished second in the competition after the public vote pushed the Ukrainian group into the winners’ circle.

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Author: Al Denté

Photo: Ukrinform TV