After a very tense week in North Macedonia with regards to their participation in the 2021 Eurovision Song Contest, the Board of Directors of MRT have made their decision – MRT will compete in this year’s Contest, and Vasil Garvanliev remains as the entrant. He will thus sing “Here I Stand” in Rotterdam this coming May.
A big scandal hit MRT after the release of Vasil’s Eurovision entry “Here I Stand”, at first due to the video clip showing a triptych resembling the colors of the Bulgarian flag. The video was taken down, and re-edited in order not to contain the beforementioned triptych. Once this was cleared, the public found out that Vasil has dual citizenship (Bulgarian, and Macedonian), something that is legal and accepted in North Macedonia. Due to the political situation between the two countries, Vasil’s second nationality unfortunately became an issue as well, and right-wing parties and members of the public requested his dismissal and North Macedonia’s withdrawal from the Contest.
MRT ran an internal investigation and discussions, where eventually the only correct decision was made – North Macedonia will not withdraw, it will remain in this year’s Contest, together with its selected entry – “Here I Stand”, which will be performed by Vasil Garvanliev.
This would not be the first time that Vasil is representing his home country, North Macedonia, in the Eurovision Song Contest. He was a backing singer for Tamara Todevska in 2019, when the song “Proud” won the jury vote in the Grand Final, and achieved North Macedonia’s best ever result in the Eurovision history – 7th place. Give a listen to his 2021 entry “Here I Stand” right here: