The opinions expressed in this article are of members of our forum, and do not necessarily represent the views of ESC United as a whole or its writing staff.

Where’s the best place to be on a national final night? Sat cosy in front of your TV with some snacks and possibly drinks? Well, of course, but where else?

Social media? Maybe. But the correct answer is of course our forum, where Eurovision fans from across the world serve the hottest takes and pass their critiques on the spectacle unfolding before them.

Throughout the national final season, we will be showcasing the best reactions from our forum, from each national final. Want to be a part of the conversation and join thousands of Eurovision fans discussing the contest? Head over to our forum for all of the best action, and make sure to register a free account to join the conversation!

Here’s how the first night of FiK 59 unfolded, according to our forum members…

Enxhi Nasufi – Njësoj

“Enxhi opening the show. This feels like Eurovision already.” – Loindici

“A great opening entry. Very en vogue, kinda trend-chasing on Dua Lipa/80’s but her vocals kinda lack power” – Mainshow

“Njesoj wasn’t that great, I thought. Fun take on kpop sure, but I had forgotten all about it by the time Era Sirk came on.” – BorisBubbles

Franc Koruni – E morën botën

“I actually kind of like this. The kind of DnB thing that just kicked in is a nice touch. Kind of reminds me of a somewhat less exciting “Vetmi” from a couple years back.” – lavieenrose

“The second one was the definition of mess! [in a good way]” – randajad

Gigliola Haveriku – E lire

“Wowowow love Gigliola’s outfit!” – BarefootBoogaloo

“Gigliola Haveriku was in my top 3, but she wasn’t as good as I hoped.” – mauve

“Gigliola looked amazing, like the best pair of velvet curtains you have ever seen” – hunty73

Orgesa Zaimi – Valixhja e kujtimeve

“This is nice but not up to the standards of Hije and Ngrije Zerin for me. But still, she’s got some pipes!” – EscUKFan

“Finally somone I can root for. Go Orgesa!” – HayashiM

“Classy song, classy vocals, classy performance. Very good.” – Zonne147

Erik Lloshi – Jo

“Toxic male singing against abortion now…. #cancelled” – NikolaiMoller

“Omg. I didn’t know what he was singing about! Erik’s song is against abortion? Damn, it’s outrageous he’s even allowed to compete in this. What the hell… I’m shocked.” – Mainshow

Viktor Tahiraj – Nënë

“Will Viktor qualify? Probably not, but nice performance anyway.” – BarefootBoogaloo

“I actually really enjoyed this song before the old-fashioned sounding guitars kicked in.” – Mainshow

“Daddy Viktor with the kind of dated song I like and he delivered it so well.” – Zonne147

Agim Poshka – Vendi im

“Didn´t really have this one on my list before tonight, but really enjoing “Vendi im” now.” – CPV4931

“VENDIIII!!! He’s singing about our lord and saviour!” – randajad

Kastro Zizo – Vallja e jetës

“Hello budget Shqiponja e Lire! I love all the parts except those where he sings.” – EscTurkey

“I feel bad for him to perform an unplugged version tomorrow.” – Mainshow

“Hot bearded man wearing dress whilst screaming things for three minutes for the win please. That was intense.” – RainyWoods

Wendi Mancaku – Si ajo

“Wendi gave us sparkle in her outfit and voice, along with a choreographed story.” – BarefootBoogaloo


Gjergj Kaçinari – Më jep jetë

“Nice of Albania’s answer to Rufus Wainwright to show. Somehow “Albania’s answer to Rufus Wainwright” isn’t QUITE the sum of its parts.” – lavieenrose

“cute guy. meh song.” – NikolaiMoller

Era Rusi – Zjarri im

“OMGGGG what a hit to join from!” – AshleyWright

“WINNER” – anaraqueen

“Eleni Foureira will have to look after another career after this performance.” – EscTurkey

Devis Xherahu – Peng

“SERENADE US, DEVIS!” – BarefootBoogaloo

“He gave me tears, his performance was so touching.” – Morocco2021

Stefan Marena – Meteor

“Oh Meteor, Years and Years could never!” – randajad

“I was surprised that it was not bad.” – Morocco2021

Rosela Gjylbegu – Vashëzo

“Rosela. Kween! Slay me!” – Mainshow

“I like the contrast between the boppy orchestrations and her inability to move in that gown.” – lavieenrose

“Vashezo sounded like oldschool dangdut and I love it!” – Loindici

Sardi Strugaj – Kam me t’ba me kajt

“It’s like someone took Ktheju tokës and made a remix so extreme you don’t know it’s the same song.” – randajad

“Sardi Strugaj, I also like the vocals, interpretation and outfit… Xhesika, Anxhela and Sardi Strugaj I see as the most promising for ESC stage…” – Mrm

Xhesika Polo – Më mbron

“Oh my gosh, here we go. Hold me someone.” – RainyWoods

“That was super lovely, and peak FIK. I can easily see the jury going for that.” – JChan

“Xhesika’s vocals were absolutely brilliant!! I would make some changes in the song though, which is already beautiful. I think this may be a dark horse!!” – Zonne147

Florent Abrashi – Vajzë

“Always give props for having sign language interpreters!” – BarefootBoogaloo

“I love the idea of including an interpreter with the performance but I worry that the effectiveness might be diminished by constantly cutting away from him.” – Jchan

Fatos Shabani – Ty

“I’m probably in a small minority here but I really like this one, and he has lovely eyebrows too.” – RainyWoods

“I freaking love his tie! Wearing Slytherin colours!” – Mainshow

Anxhela Peristeri – Karma

“Anxhela Peristeri Time!” – Loindici

“Anxhela. Come through. OMG the first notes already slayed” – Mainshow

“not this winning 5 seconds in” – anaraqueen

Evi Reçi – Tjerr

“Evi’s song gives me Rachel Steven’s Sweet Dreams My LA Ex vibes at the beginning.” – RainyWoods

“Inspired by Roxen with that corset!” – AshleyWright

Inis Neziri – Pendesë

“Game over probably. The producers gave Inis the best camera work, the best lighting, the best angles, the best fades. They want her I think.” – hunty73

“It’s ok but quite run of the mill, just makes me long for Era! – EscUKFan

“Say what you will guys, Inis was my fave pre-show and the performance only confirmed that. Go Inis! Not to say there aren’t other great things on offer. I like the overall quality a lot more than I did the last year.” – HayashiM

Klint Çollaku – Do t’ja dal

“KLINT! (maybe not so casual next time?)” – BarefootBoogaloo

“This one now is quite a grower. He’s great live and it’s very classic FiK.” – RainyWoods

Festina Mejzini – Kush je ti dashuri

“I like Festina better live than the studio version. FiK is fantastic as always!” – mauve

“Okay she was just amazing, the atmosphere of the song and the voice omg, she took me to another world.” – Morocco2021

Kamela Islamaj – Kujtimet s’kanë formë

“Good surprise, nice voice!” – Morocco2021

“None of the songs during the first night screamed “wow this is amazing!” The one I liked the most was Kamela Islamaj. That woman can sing so elegantly.” – r3gg13

“Kamela was the worst for not dressing up like an exotic peacock. Girl. You have standards to live up to.” – BorisBubbles

Mirud – Nëse vdes

“Well alright, I guess he has a bullfight at 2AM” – BarefootBoogaloo

“Wow. That costume was a choice.” – Jchan

“I never thought he would be THAT bad – vocally!” – Sammy

“Omg what is Mirud wearing? I love him for taking a risk, though. That’s a very bold move!” – Mainshow

Do #YOU agree with any of the thoughts here? What did #YOU think of the first night of Albania’s selection? Share your thoughts with us on our forum HERE or join the discussion below and on social media!

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