Congratulations to Maléna and Armenia!
Tonight, at the Junior Eurovision final in Paris, 14-year-old Maléna was crowned the winner for her performance of “Qami Qami”.
The talented youngster was overcome with emotion after winning, soldiering through her winner’s reprise in tears. At the end of the performance, she tearfully addressed the audience.
“Sorry, I can’t stop crying!”
The voting sequence this year was dramatic. Jury points were spread wide, with no country receiving more than three 12 point scores. After the jury weighed in, Enzo‘s performance of “Tic Tac” for France was leading the vote, with Armenia and Sara James‘ “Somebody” for Poland close behind.
Armenia came out on top with the public vote, receiving 109 points. Poland was close behind with 102 points. 3rd place in the online voting was a pleasant surprise, with Portugal’s Simão Oliveira receiving 92 points for his traditional fado ballad “O Rapaz”.
Poland ultimately placed 2nd, with France receiving 67 points from the public and placing 3rd. Georgia’s Niko Kajaia finished in 4th place with the song “Let’s Count the Smiles”, and Sona Azizova‘s rendition of “One of Those Days” ended up in 5th place for Azerbaijan.
This is a moment two years in the making. Fans may remember that Maléna was scheduled to compete at Junior Eurovision 2020 with the song “Why” before Armenia withdrew from that year’s contest. In her winner’s press conference, Maléna reflected on her complicated Junior Eurovision journey.
“Everything happens for a reason.”
She also expressed interest in co-hosting next year’s contest in Armenia. When pressed about competing at adult Eurovision in the future, however, she was undecided.
Tonight’s show was hosted by presenters Élodie Gossuin and Olivier Minne, with 2019 5th place finisher and Internet phenomenon Carla conducting green room interviews. One highlight of the green room segments was Albania’s Anna Gjebrea leading a “Happy Birthday” sing-a-long for her backing dancer Emiliano.
During the show’s interval act, attendees and at-home viewers were treated to a performance of “Voila” by Barbara Pravi, Eurovision 2021 2nd place finisher and songwriter of last year’s winning Junior Eurovision entry “J’imagine”. Valentina performed a special Christmas-themed winner’s reprise of “J’imagine” earlier in the show.