Junior Eurovision: France wins song contest as UK comes fifth
France has won this year’s Junior Eurovision Song Contest, which was held in Yerevan, Armenia.
Thirteen year old Lissandro won with 203 points for his song Oh Maman! beating hosts Armenia in second place, Georgia third, and Ireland fourth.
The United Kingdom came fifth overall with 146 points – although it did win the public vote.
The UK’s entrant, Freya Skye, performed live after suffering with vocal issues during rehearsals.
Accepting his award an excited Lissandro said: “I’m so happy, thank you everyone. Vive La France”.
This year marks the 20th anniversary of the contest, with 16 countries competing, and is the first time the contest was broadcast on the BBC, with Lauren Layfield and HRVY commentating.
It’s also the first time in more than 15 years that the UK has taken part in the junior version, where entrants have to be aged between nine and 14.
The result is determined by a 50/50 vote, with half of the votes deriving from online voting, and the other half from professional juries – which are based on the final dress rehearsal.
Serbia’s act did not perform live due to “medical reasons”, with viewers seeing a rehearsal performance instead.
The voting system is slightly different from the adult edition, as viewers were able to vote for their own country.
Junior Eurovision apologised for issues with the online voting element that prevented some viewers from picking their favourite during Sunday’s show.
Rosa Linn, the Armenian entrant at this year’s “senior” Eurovision competition in Turin, performed her hit Snap before the results. Her song went viral around the world after May’s contest, and charted around the globe.
Freya was chosen because of her “genuine star quality”, the BBC said when she was selected.
The team behind her song, titled Lose My Head, has previously worked with the likes of Ava Max, Pharrell Williams and Megan Thee Stallion. The lyrics talk about friendships, moving on and leaving the past behind.
The UK previously participated in the competition between 2003 and 2005 with the support of ITV, while broadcaster S4C decided to go it alone for Wales in 2018 and 2019.
The BBC is also preparing to host the 2023 Eurovision Song Contest, which will take place in Liverpool next May on behalf of Ukraine.
Last month organisers announced several changes to the voting after anomalies occurred in the 2022 contest.