The second round of Ranina, Georgia’s method of selection for Junior Eurovision, concluded this evening with the second five of the ten hopefuls performing songs with young Georgian pianist and composer Beka Gochiashvili.

Gochiashvili, a 28-year-old jazz pianist who has studied and performed abroad, even earning accolades from surprising figures such as former US Secretary of State Condoleeza Rice, led five Ranina kids in song, with all five contestants having successfully worked on the critiques in performance and vocal technique they had received in the first round.

Sandro Ashotia kicked off the evening with a perfect 120 points. Anastasia Iremadze followed up with a perfect 120 herself.

Andria Mishvelidze, the only performer to score a perfect 120 in the first round, added to that with another perfect 120 to lead the pack heading into Round 3.

Ia Lachelle nailed a perfect 120 with her interpretation of a jazz ballad, and Sandro Gurgenadze’s performance made sure he got a perfect 120.

That means every performer this round received a perfect 120, with Gigashvili and Gochiashvili having brought out the best from this talented group.

Heading into next week’s third round, here are the scores so far:

  • Andria Mishvelidze: 120 + 120 = 240
  • Anastasia Iremadze: 119 + 120 = 239
  • Sandro Ashotia: 118 + 120 = 238
  • Sandro Gurgenadze: 118 + 120 = 238
  • Ia Lachelle: 117 + 120 = 237
  • Andria Putkaradze: 117 + 120 = 237
  • Barbara Morgoshia: 116 + 120 = 236
  • Mate Martiashvili: 114 + 120 = 234
  • Marta Nozadze: 114 + 120 = 234
  • Giorgi Shashiashvili: 113 + 120 = 233

This round’s judging panel included Ranina regulars Dato Evgenidze and Nato Metonidze, with Giorgi Gigashvili the guest judge. Gigashvili, born in Tbilisi in 2000 and a renowned piano player who studied in Berlin, swapped the pianist’s chair for the judge’s one this week with Gochiashvili.

Each contestant can potentially earn up to 120 points per round. There’s 10 points available for each judge across the four judging categories of vocals, performance, artistry and collaboration.

The five contestants with the highest scores after four tours (usually spread over eight weeks) progress to the Semi-Finals, where the top three progress to the Grand Final.

Hosted by David Aladashvili, with Ranina 2022 finalist Vache Ghviniashvili as co-host and green room interviewer, this is the seventh time that Ranina will be used to select Georgia’s representative at Junior Eurovision. The song is usually released close to the European Broadcasting Union deadline, with the songwriter selected internally (more often than not, it’s serial JESC winning songwriter Giga Kukhianidze, who was seated in the audience tonight).

The best performance by Georgia in the Ranina era is Mariam Bigvava, who came in 3rd at Junior Eurovision 2022 with “I Believe,” one year after Niko Kajaia’s 4th place with “Let’s count the Smiles.”

Last year, 1TV mixed up the formula slightly by pairing Season 6 winner Anastasia Vasadze with Season 5 finalists Nikoloz Kharati and Oto Bazerashvlili on “Over the Sky.” Georgia came in 14th, equaling their lowest ever placement of Giorgi Rotiashvili’s “We Need Love” from 2019.

Overall, Georgia has the joint most wins with France among Junior Eurovision nations with three victories (all Kukhianidze compositions) in 2008, 2011, and 2016.

Tune in to Ranina next Saturday, April 20, 2024, for the first half of the third round on 1TV Georgia.

Do #YOU think Georgia should persist with “Ranina” as its method of selection for Junior Eurovision? Which one of these ten hopefuls do #YOU think has what it takes to win a fourth JESC crown for Georgia? Let us know in the comments, in our forum, or in our social media.

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