Staying in the east and in the ex-Soviet bloc, we come to Moldova, a country that has provided two fun (and successful) entries in the last two years. No such fun this year though, with a Eurovision staple of a traditional solo female ballad.
Moldova selected once again via a national final, and Anna Obodescu triumphed with “Stay”. It’s a wholly conventional and classic Eurovision ballad, complete with key change of course. Unsurprisingly it does come across as dated, especially in comparison to the songs we now hear in Eurovision but it’s not a bad thing to still have these somewhat more retro entries in the mix. I do have much bigger concerns over the live vocal though – these songs need great live vocals to do well and so far I haven’t seen convincing evidence of that.
What is also really missing for Moldova this year is the resource, personnel, know how and (probably) money that goes to the Russian entry. Russia withdrew in 2017 and barely made an effort with their own entry last year, but some of the personnel that normally supported Russian entries went to Moldova in 2017 and 2018 and the results certainly came. This year though, all that has gone back to the Russian entry and I suspect it will show.
Moldova does it best when they go fun or quirky or both. I don’t think conventional really works for them, especially when it comes to qualification. Their natural voting ally Romania (a voting partnership as reliable as Greece and Cyprus) is in their semi but aside from that I think this will struggle to pick up points – and they have been given a running order place (third) that is one of the worst in terms of qualification chances. So while I am often a fan of Moldovan entries, don’t expect this to “Stay” around long.
Official music video:
National final performance:
My preview video:
Moldova in the Eurovision Song Contest
First entered: 2005
Appearances (excluding this year): 14
Best result: 3rd in 2017
Last year’s result: 10th