Rita Ora to join Ukranian Eurovision Stars for Semi Final Interval Acts

Ukrainian broadcaster Suspilne and British broadcaster BBC just dropped some huge news! Ukrainian artists Julia Sanina (Eurovision 2023 co-host), Maria Yaremchuk (Eurovision 2014), OTOY, Alyosha (Eurovision 2010) and Zlata Dziunka (JESC 2022) will perform in the Interval Acts at Eurovision 2023 in Liverpool! And that’s not all! British performers Rita Ora and Rebecca Ferguson will join them!

Teams from Suspilne and BBC are working together to develop the staging and concepts of the Interval Acts.

Herman Nenov is Ukraine’s creative director for Eurovision 2023 and had this to say:

In all three shows – in the Eurovision semi-finals and final – we announced the maximum number of Ukrainian artists that can be shown […] I am very grateful to the BBC team for everything we have done together. I’ll be honest: this is probably the most comfortable collaboration in my career. I have never met such understanding and respect for the ideas of each team member! My main task was to create a multifaceted, very honest and true portrait of today’s actual Ukraine for Eurovision viewers! And together in collaboration with the BBC, we managed to do it!

While Kate Phillips, BBC’s Director of Unscripted, simply adds:

There won’t be a moment to miss during these very entertaining and very tense Semi-Finals.

Semi Final 1

Julia Sanina is set to open Eurovision 2023. She is the frontwoman of the band The Hardkiss, and she’ll sing a piece of their song Mayak (Маяк). In English, the song means ‘Lighthouse’, and her performance is meant to symbolize the “unification through music” of Ukraine and the United Kingdom.

After Käärijä closes the competitive portion of Semi Final 1, Rita Ora will take the stage to open the Interval Act. She plans to perform a medley of her biggest hits and also début her new song Praising You to the potential audience of 160 million viewers worldwide.

Alyosha, who represented Ukraine with Sweet People at Eurovision 2010 in Olso, will tell the story of her personal journey from the stage of this year’s Song Contest through the performance of the song Ordinary World by the iconic British rock band Duran Duran, in a new arrangement. She had this to say about her upcoming Eurovision participation:

“For me, the Eurovision Song Contest is a platform about music, which is filled with a range of socio-cultural moods. Someone sings about love, someone about peace, someone about tolerance […] And music is a language that unites different peoples of the world to talk about important things.”

She’ll be joined on stage by Liverpudlian singer Rebecca Ferguson to tell the story of hope, courage and support of the people of Ukraine from all over the world. The performance is called “Welcome To Our Home”.

Semi Final 2

On 11th May, the Second Semi Final will include the performance “Music Unites Generations”. It has to do with the connection between different generations of Ukrainians and the iconic musical heritage of Ukraine. Maria Yaremchuk, who represented Ukraine at Eurovision in 2014 with Tick-Tock, is expected to take part and will begin her performance with a medley of the most famous Ukrainian musical works in a modern arrangement. Maria spoke about her inclusion in Eurovision 2023:

“In 2014 when I represented Ukraine at Eurovision, it was the year when the war with Russia began. Today, this war has affected every Ukrainian family and now it affects the whole world. Ukraine is now defending truly sacred things: the right to exist, the right to choose, identity, language, culture. To appear on the Eurovision stage for a Ukrainian now is to manifest a culture that they [Russia] want to destroy. However, Ukrainian culture was before us and will be after. It goes back centuries. The genetic code of the nation is contained in the way we create, sing, and in our poetry. Today, it is especially poignant and honorable to bring Ukrainian culture to the world and be its representative.”

“Music Unites Generations” will conclude with a joint performance of Maria with rapper OTOY and Ukraine’s 14-year-old representative at Junior Eurovision 2022 in Yerevan, Zlata Dzyunka . Together, the performers want to show that for many generations of Ukrainians, music is a light that overcomes darkness.

In another creative performance entitled “Be Who You Want To Be” three drag performers will present a program of extravagant pop performances together with a group of eclectic dancers on stage to emphasize that Eurovision is a place open to everyone, regardless of who you are. The, as of now, unnamed performers represent a wide range of fans who, regardless of age, nationality or background, look forward to Eurovision every year.

What do you think of the plans for the Interval Acts? Can this top what we saw last year in Turin? Let us know in the comments below or on our socials @escbubble!

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