Belarus and Belarusian Television and Radio Company (BTRC) announced their participation in the Eurovision Song Contest 2009 on 29 September 2008 by releasing the rules of their national selection – « Eurofest 2009 ». The song did not progress from the first semi-final of the competition.
The country’s quest to select their sixth entry at the Eurovision Song Contest began in a selection process, the first stage involving a professional jury which selected 15 songs to be performed at the semi-final of Eurofest 2009, which was then narrowed down to 5 by the jury for the final, which was decided by televoting.
Submission of songs to BTRC was held from 5 October to 20 November 2008. BTRC received a total of 126 entries for Eurofest 2009. Live auditions were held by BTRC to select the 15 artists that would compete in the semi-final on 15 December 2008. The names of the successful artists were released on 5 December.
The semi-final of Eurofest 2009 was held on 15 December 2008. A professional jury selected five artists to qualify for the final in January. The finalists had an opportunity to change their selected songs before performing in the final again.
|1||Alexei Krechet||Joy and Freedom||English||V. Ruzov, A. Shenets|
|2||Petr Elfimov||Eyes That Never Lie||English||P. Elfimov, V. Prokhozhy|
|3||Cola feat. Lidiya Zablotskaya||Гудок
|Dial Tone||Russian||Gridin, V. Shevchenko|
|4||SingeRin||Don’t Think About It||English||K. Dudich|
|5||Dakota (Дакота)||Цябе забываю
|I’m forgetting you||Belarusian||Dakota, G. Lobodenko|
|6||The Champions||Shake It, Europe||English||Nils, O. Orakposim|
|7||Alex Patlis Band||Кто сказал
|Who said||Russian||Alex Patlis|
|8||Litesound feat. Dakota||Carry On||English||V. Karyakin|
|9||Dominica||This Is My Day||English||S. Sukhomlin, A. Kostugov|
|10||Dyada Vanya||Наша Belarussia
|Our Belarussia||Russian||I. Vabishchevich|
|11||Veter V Golove||Or Or And||English||A. Zakharik, G. Galushko|
|12||Anna Blagova & Yuriy Vaschuk||Behind||English||Y. Vashchuk, A. Zhilina|
|13||Gunesh||Fantastic Girl||English||Gunesh, M. Khaitbayeva|
|14||Victoria Belova||Don’t Give Up From Love||English||A. Klimka, V. Belova|
|15||Venera||Big Game||English||A. Nabeyev|
The five qualifiers from the semi-final competed again in a national final on 19 January, a show held at the Sports Palace in Minsk, and presented by singers Anastasija Tihanovich and Dmitry Koldun, with Koldun being the 2007 Belorussian entry, coming sixth. The interval act consisted of the 2008 Belorussian and Ukrainian entries, Ruslan Alehno and Ani Lorak. The host, Koldun, also performed. The winner was decided by televoting, and the running order for the songs was not held until the night of the contest.
The contest was won by Petr Elfimov, with his rock song « Eyes That Never Lie« . He received a landslide number of votes, receiving 11475 votes in total, over 4000 more than runner-up Gunesh. The group « Veter v Golove » were the only act to have changed their song from the semi-final stage.
|1||Gunesh||« Fantastic Girl »||English||Gunesh, M. Khaitbayeva||7 949||2|
|2||Petr Elfimov||« Eyes That Never Lie«||English||P. Elfimov, V. Prokhozhy||11 475||1|
|3||Litesound feat. Dakota||« Carry On »||English||V. Karyakin||4 385||3|
|4||Dominica||« This Is My Day »||English||S. Sukhomlin, A. Kostugov||1 225||5|
|5||Veter V Golove||Шпацыруем
|Walking||Belarusian||A. Zakharik, G. Galushko||2 804||4|
After being selected as the Belarusian entry, Elfimov promoted his entry in a number of countries before Eurovision, making guest appearances at both the Greek and Ukrainian national finals on 18 February and 8 March respectively.
A new version of « Eyes That Never Lie » was made after winning the Belarusian national final, which was produced by Tero Kinnunen at the Finnvox Studios in Helsinki, both known for their associations with symphonic metal band Nightwish. Belarus competed in the first semi final where they failed to qualify, finishing 13th of 18 participants, scoring 25 points.
Points awarded to Belarus
|12 points||10 points||8 points||7 points||6 points|
|5 points||4 points||3 points||2 points||1 point|
Points Awarded by Belarus
- « Eurofest 2009 rules published ». Eurovision-Belarus. 2008-09-29. Archived from the original on 15 September 2008. Retrieved 2008-09-29.
- Floras, Stella (2008-09-29). « Belarus: Welcome to the Eurofest project! ». ESCToday. Archived from the original on 1 October 2008. Retrieved 2008-09-29.
- Bakker, Sietse (2008-12-05). « Belarus: BTRC announces 15 hopefuls ». Eurovision.tv. Archived from the original on 7 December 2008. Retrieved 2008-12-05.
- « Belarus: BTRC announces the 15 participants ». Oikotimes. 2008-12-05. Archived from the original on 7 December 2008. Retrieved 2008-12-05.
- Klier, Marcus (2008-12-15). « Tonight: Semi final in Belarus ». ESCToday. Archived from the original on 15 December 2008. Retrieved 2008-12-15.
- Bayliss, Marc Calleja (2008-12-15). « Belarus: BTRC airs the semifinal for Moscow selection tonight ». Oikotimes. Archived from the original on 22 January 2009. Retrieved 2008-12-15.
- Klier, Marcus (2008-12-15). « Live: semi final in Belarus (Transcript) ». ESCToday. Archived from the original on 17 December 2008. Retrieved 2008-12-15.
- Klier, Marcus (2009-01-14). « Belarus: national final on 19th January ». ESCToday. Archived from the original on 18 January 2009. Retrieved 2009-01-14.
- Calleja Bayliss, Marc (2009-01-14). « Belarus: « Eurofest 2009″ to take place on January 19 ». Oikotimes. Archived from the original on 22 January 2009. Retrieved 2009-01-14.
- Floras, Stella (2009-01-15). « Belarus: More Eurofest final details ». ESCToday. Archived from the original on 18 January 2009. Retrieved 2009-01-15.
- Klier, Marcus (2009-01-19). « Belarus: Petr Elfimov to Eurovision ». ESCToday. Archived from the original on 20 January 2009. Retrieved 2009-01-19.
- Fisher, Luke (2009-01-19). « Belarus: Petr Elfimov to Moscow! ». Oikotimes. Archived from the original on 22 January 2009. Retrieved 2009-01-19.
- Siim, Jarmo (2009-01-19). « Belarus decided: Petr Elfimov to Moscow! ». Eurovision.tv. Archived from the original on 20 January 2009. Retrieved 2009-01-19.
- Klier, Marcus (2009-02-18). « National final in Greece ». ESCToday. Archived from the original on 19 February 2009. Retrieved 2009-02-18.
- Fantis, Giorgos (2009-02-18). « Live from Athens, the Greek national final ». Oikotimes. Archived from the original on 21 February 2009. Retrieved 2009-02-18.
- Klier, Marcus (2009-03-08). « National final in Ukraine ». ESCToday. Archived from the original on 9 March 2009. Retrieved 2009-03-08.
- Backfish, Emma (2009-02-09). « Petr Elfimov records new version of song in Finland ». Oikotimes. Archived from the original on 14 February 2009. Retrieved 2009-02-09.
- Floras, Stella (2009-02-23). « Belarus: New version of Eurovision entry ». ESCToday. Archived from the original on 25 February 2009. Retrieved 2009-02-23.
- Eurovision Song Contest 2008
(Note: Entries scored out are when Belarus did not compete)