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Eurovision semi-final one camps it up

In Baku, we have just watched the Eurovision first semi-final where 18 acts took to the stage
The Russian artists Buranovskiye Babushki at the Eurovision Song Contest.
Photo by Thomas Hanses (EBU).

The first Eurovision semi-final in Baku, Azerbaijan has seen 18 acts take to the stage but only 10 of them are through to Saturday's grand final.

For the other eight countries, their Eurovision dream is already over.

Gay Star News was in the live audience and we can report the show was full of the usual Eurovision camp and costumes. It's easy to see why the pan-European song contest attracts LGBT fans around the world.

Here are our top four acts of the night:

  • Albania: Despite her distracting hair which coiled around her neck, the power and emotion of Rona Nishliu’s vocals left us with goosebumps. Every time she belted out Qaj (Albanian for cry), the whole arena was enraptured by her voice.
  • Russia: Buranovskiye Babushki, a sextet of Russian grannies, beat off famous names in the Russian pre-selection final and with one look at them it is easy to see why! They are just simply adorable and you would love to take one home with you. Wearing traditional costumes they appear on stage singing a folk song and baking cakes but this soon erupts into an amazingly catchy dance number. We may well be having a party for everybody in Russia next year.
  • Ireland: Representing Ireland for a second year running, Jedward are back with another uptempo pop song, Waterline. This year the hair may not be as spiky but they still have the same enthusiasm on stage as they leap around an on-stage fountain finally letting themselves get soaking wet at the end causing many a heart flutter amongst the audience!
  • Cyprus: Ivi Adamou has one of this year’s best gay disco stompers, La La Love, which brings boundless energy to the stage in her performance. We love this song and were lucky enough to have a quick chat with Adamou before the show. When asked about it's gay appeal, Ivi answered: 'I feel it’s because of the energy of the songs, you feel it! If you like the song then dance and shake it. I La la love you guys!'

The 10 countries to make it through to the Grand Final were:

  • Iceland
  • Greece
  • Albania
  • Romania
  • Cyprus
  • Denmark
  • Russia
  • Hungary
  • Moldova
  • Ireland

The second semi-final is on Thursday (23 May) and the Grand Final on Saturday (25 May). Let us know who you want to win!

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