Romania had for several years held a national final, but in 2020 went with an internal selection. Roxen was the artist chosen but a selection show was retained for the song – Roxen performed 5 songs with the public voting on their favourite. As with so many other 2020 artists, Roxen was reselected but this time, “Amnesia” was presented as the internally selected song. To be honest, it may as well have been internally selected last year as well as Roxen so clearly wanted one particular song to be her entry!
Roxen is only 21 but is already quite well established as a music artist in Romania, and has been compared to (in appearance at least) to both Billie Eilish and Dua Lipa. Her song last year “Alcohol You” was what might be described as a dark ballad, though very modern sounding (not a ballad in the more old-fashioned Eurovision sense). The lyrics covered themes of despair and sadness, though finding inner peace. “Amnesia” also falls into that dark ballad category, though it is bit of a faster tempo than last year. It also covers melancholic emotions and self-reflection. All in all, I think it is the most modern sounding song of 2021.
Until 2018, Romania had a very solid qualification record, but then failed to qualify for the final for the first time, and again failed to qualify in 2019 (and had their worst result ever). Whether or not “Amnesia” will qualify may well depend on whether the Romanian diaspora get behind it (and judging from high this places in the Eurovision scoreboard app it looks like it will do) as well as having some impressive or memorable staging. The quality of the song and her vocal and performance will undoubtedly get deserved jury points, but I think it’s just a question of getting enough televotes to allow it to qualify from a ferociously competitive semi-final.
Romania in the Eurovision Song Contest
First entered: 1994
Appearances (excluding 2020 and this year): 20
Best result: 3rd in 2005 and 2010
2019’s result: 13th in semi-final (did not qualify)