Another year, another winner of HaKokhav HaBa L’Eurovizion, the Israeli national selection show for Eurovision, which translates into “The Next Star For Eurovision” and is the original show in the Rising Star franchise which has been shopped all around the world. This year, Kobi Marimi has won, following in the footsteps of Eurovision 2018 champion, Netta.
With a total of four finalists, it really was anyone’s game, but Kobi Marimi came out on top. Prior to the competition he has won an acting award from Israel’s Musical Theatre Festival for most promising actor. He has been involved in a variety of stage productions. Now, he’ll be off to Tel Aviv, which is, apparently, the city he already lives in, to represent his country on home turf in May 2019.
He won by a landslide, a clear winner in the jury vote and the televote. Coming in second was Ketreyah, whilst Shefita came third, and Maya Bouskilla came in fourth place.
He auditioned on the show with Beyoncé’s “Sweet Dreams”, and he continued to impress all the way up until the final, where he sang Bon Jovi’s “Always” and The Beatles “Let It Be”, but it certainly wasn’t an easy ride for him. This is because he was actually eliminated during Heat 4 which took place before the Semi-Finals, luckily there was a wildcard round which saw him return to the competition in a duel-like fashion.
The big question we all have is, “What will he sing?”. The song is set to be revealed in the coming weeks as they choose from the submissions they have received, the deadline to submit songs is the 17 February 2019, so there’s still a few more days to go. We expect the track to be released in early-March.
Could Israel defend their title and host Eurovision a second time in a row? Or will another country snatch the crown? Announced acts so far are Srbuk for Armenia, Tamta for Cyprus, Jonida Maliqi for Albania, Eliot for Belgium, Miki for Spain, Serhat for San Marino, Duncan Laurence for The Netherlands, Tamara Todevska for North Macedonia, Michela Pace for Malta, Bilal Hassani for France, Lake Malawi for the Czech Republic, PÆNDA for Austria, Darude feat. Sebastian Rejman for Finland. Michael Rice for the United Kingdom, Sergey Lazarev for Russia, Mahmood for Italy, Kate Miller-Heidke for Australia, and D-Moll for Montenegro. The other countries are expected to reveal their acts in the forthcoming months.
The 2019 Eurovision Song Contest will be hosted at the Expo Tel Aviv in Israel after Netta won last year with the song “Toy”. The two Semi-Finals will take place on 14 May and 16 May with the Grand Final taking place on 18 May. A total of 42 countries will compete in the contest.