The Estonian national final, which is called “Eesti Laul” is one of the coolest pre-decisions in Europe. There is so much creativity and unspoiled music which is really worth to discover. Compared to other countries with more inhabitants it’s great to see this huge enthusiasm, music creativity and courage for a country with a population of 1.4 million only. There were three live shows, two Semi-Finals and one Grand Final with ten competitors. The quality was very high and the competition very tough as every year. The results of jury votes and televotes declared a duet Koit Tomme & Laura as the winning entry. Two Estonian gems, who have already represented Estonia in the ESC were chosen to bring Estonia back to shine in Kiev.
Laura Põldvere was born in Tallinn in 1988. She has already represented Estonia back in 2005 in Kiev – by coincidence – with the song “Let’s Get Loud” and the girl group Suntribe. The happy dance song did not make it into the Final. But Laura did not give up and started a solo career. She released three albums and had several attempts in the Eesti Laul. Laura is also head of the Estonian Jazz Union and can be found in jazz, free improvisation and techno.
Koit Tomme was born in Tallinn as well, but some years before Laura in 1979. He started to play the piano in the age of seven. Koit attended the George Ots music school in the field of jazz, piano and pop. In 1995 he founded his first band Code One. Three years later Koit had the chance to represent his country at the Eurovision Song Contest in Birmingham 1998. His entry “Mere Lapsed” (Children Of The Sea) made a wonderful 12th place. In the meantime Koit has released five albums and he is mainly focussed on singing in musicals like Les Miserables or Miss Saigon.
The song “Verona” is a tribute to the tragic drama of Shakespeare Romeo & Julia, which refers to the city of Verona, Italy. The famous composer Sven Lõhmus, who has composed several Estonian entries, is also in charge of this year’s entry and he got inspired on a journey to Italy. The song is a very melodic power ballad with a great climax, very catchy as well. Compared to the other entries from the Estonian national final, this entry appears a bit conservative. There are not many song like this in this year’s ESC, so it will definitely get attention. It’s also interesting to see that both singers, who never worked together are two of the most played radio artists in Estonia.
Finals: 14 (5 since 2004)
Top 10: 9
Chances for Top 10: 36 %
Chances for Final: 38 %
Estonia had its debut in the year of 1994. In the year before there has been an international pre-selection, which was held in Ljubljana, Slovenia to choose the songs for three open spots for the ESC in Millstreet 1993. The Estonian entry “Muretut meelt ja südametuld” sung by Janika, could not achieve one of the higher placings, with the effect that there was no Estonian debut in that year, but one year later with Silvi Vrai and “Nagu Merelaine”, who made a disappointing 24th place.
Nevertheless the Estonians really became Eurovision enthusiasts over the years, this year in Kiev it will be the 24th time for Estonia in the ESC. Unfortunately, Jüri Pootsmann did not make in the final with “Play”, this entry came last in the Semi Final. But there have been many good and memorable songs with good placings, and mostly Estonian entries can qualify for the Grand Final, statistically the chance for a place in the final is at 38%. Estonia reached the Grand Final 14 times and even reached a Top10 position 9 times!
In 2001 the big dream came true: Tanel Padar and Dave Benton could win the ESC; this was the first time that Estonia could achieve a victory and the also the first time of an Eastern European country at that time. The victory of Davel and Tanel was a big surprise for the most of the viewers, the bets place Estonia in the middle field. At the end the soul dance number “Everybody” has been shining and convincing the most. The year after the Estonian broadcaster ETV has organized a wonderful event in the capital of Tallinn. The Estonian national final is called “Eesti Laul” and has brought many contemporary and experimental music into the spotlight. In this event all music genres can be found, and some of them make it to Europe thanks to the ESC.