Two singers missed tonight’s Eesti Laul due to health concerns, but it was one artist’s on stage stunt that had the audience really talking.

Tonight’s semi-final was full of outside the box staging ideas. Andrei Zevakin and Grete began their performance of “Mis nüüd saab” backstage. Through a bit of camera trickery, Stig Rästa simulated floating in zero gravity. And, most impactfully, Elina Nechayeva was suspended in the air during the climax of her performance of “Remedy”, ending with a swift, hard drop to the ground that some viewers thought may have been unintentional or, at least, rougher than expected. Judge for yourself:

Two of tonight’s semi-finalists were unable to perform live due to illness, with Elysa and Merilin Mälk‘s music videos being shown instead. Eurovision 2015 artist Elina Born, a member of this year’s jury, was also absent due to health concerns, calling in by video from another location.

In all, ten artists performed their songs at tonight’s semi-final, and, after all was said and done, five songs qualified for the final on Saturday, February 12. The first four qualifiers were determined by a mix of jury and public voting. They were:

  • Ott Lepland, “Aovalguses”
  • Andrei Zevakin feat. Grete Paia,”Mis nüüd saab
  • Elysa, “Fire”
  • Stig Rästa, “Interstellar”

The last finalist was determined by a second round, with the decision 100% in the hands of the public. Ultimately, the final song chosen was … Elina Nechayeva, “Remedy”.

On Tuesday, Team ESC United finished our preview coverage of all twenty Eesti Laul semi-finalists, scoring each song to determine which five songs we would advance from each semi and which song we collectively would crown the winner. Let’s see how we did tonight:

Our Qualifiers

Merilin MälkLittle Girl”

Elina Nechayeva– “Remedy”

Andrei Zevakin feat. Grete Paia– “Mis nüüd saab”

Elysa– “Fire”

Stig Rästa– “Interstellar”

Actual Qualifiers

Ott Lepland-“Aovalguses”

Elina Nechayeva– “Remedy”

Andrei Zevakin feat. Grete Paia– “Mis nüüd saab”

Elysa– “Fire”

Stig Rästa– “Interstellar”

Seems that, with one big exception, we were in sync with the Estonian public and Eesti Laul jury, going 4-for-5 in matching qualifiers. Ott Lepland qualified over OUR selection, Merilin Mälk, who just so happened to be our team’s collective favorite of the whole contest! Yikes!

Close behind Merilin in our ranking was Stefan with “Hope”. He and nine other potential Eurovision acts will be performing at the second semi-final on Saturday. Will we have better luck with our second place act, or is being loved by Team ESCUnited a curse? Only time will tell.

Which performance tonight did #YOU like best? And do #YOU think was Elina’s drop was intentional? Was that supposed to happen? Seriously, I’m asking. And what does Merilin Mälk have to do for you people before she gets the respect she deserves?! Sound off in the comments below, in our forum, on social media @ESCUnited, or on our official Discord

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