We’re still in the Balkans and it’s someone who will be very familiar to Eurovision fans – Kaliopi! She’s back again after her success in taking Macedonia to the final in 2012. It’s a big Balkan ballad, the only real one in this year’s contest. It’s also only one of 3 songs to be fully sung with no English in it at all. Will that help take Kaliopi to the grand final once again?

This has come quite far down the list, but I think that does this song and Kaliopi a disservice. She can bring a Balkan ballad to life for non-Balkan people like no-one else and there’s no doubting she’s a confident and engaging live performer. She’s such great fun – she came to the London Preview Party in 2012 and was out on the dancefloor boogieing away with me and my friends to the early hours after all the acts had performed.She’s back there (tonight) and is still a party girl by all accounts. Hopefully will get to shimmy on the dancefloor with her again :).

Chances of qualification? Well, she’s the only Macedonian entry to have qualified for the final since 2007 (in 2012) so she’s got pedigree and she’s got the stage presence and is a big star in the Balkans. She’s also in the second semi-final (the weaker one) so she could do it again potentially.

Live at Eurovision in Concert at Amsterdam

FYR Macedonia at the Eurovision Song Contest:FYR Macedonia Eurovision flag

First entered: 1998

Appearances (excluding this year): 16

Best result: 12th in 2006

Last year’s result: 15th in semi-final (did not qualify)