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Eurovision 2009: Semi-Finals draw on January 30th

The News Review:

– Eurovision 2009: Semi-Finals draw on January 30th
– Andrew Lloyd Webber on Eurovision and the Phantom sequel
– Cyprus: Alex Panayi believes the juries will listen!
– Andrew Lloyd Webber’s kitsch crusade to save Eurovision

Eurovision 2009: Semi-Finals draw on January 30th Netherlands 
Then out of these six pots we will know which countries will participate in the first semi-final and the second semi-final respectively. Also a further draw will take place to determine which of the semi-finals the Big 4 (Spain France Germany and the United Kingdom) and the host country Russia must broadcast and will have voting rights in. The Big 4 and the host country have already qualified for the Grand Final of the Eurovision Song Contest 2009. However currently we wont know the breakdown of the pots or country splits until the EBU announces the list of participants which was due to be published in early December last. The delay might be likely to prevent more countries following San Marino and Latvia withdrawing. At this point Lithuania has still not confirmed its participation after comments suggested they may pull out for financial reasons. Stay with esctoday.
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Andrew Lloyd Webber on Eurovision and the Phantom sequel
Times nline UK 
”Glenn Close? “Glenn has absolutely wanted to play it Meryl [Streep] haswanted to play it and none of us can get past this wall. I don’t think theyget the idea of a musical at all. ”This Saturday he will return to our screens as the judge on Eurovision: YourCountry Needs You. It will be his fourth BBC prime-time series. (In thefirst three shows Lloyd Webber talent-scouted for plum roles in West Endmusicals. ) He will also ultimately compose the winner’s song to beperformed in the finals in Moscow. He has already conceded that it’s highlyunlikely he can reverse Britain’s recent woeful record in the competitionsaying: “I’d be staggered if we won – we’re not going to.

Cyprus: Alex Panayi believes the juries will listen! Netherlands 
He will be performing his own composition There is love on 7th February hoping to represent his homeland and celebrate the 20th anniversary of his first participation on Eurovision stage in Moscow. We met with Alex at the set of the Greek edition of the X Factor where he is currently working with the groups and he spoke to us about his song his views on the voting system Cyprus’ chances in the Eurovision Song Contest and Sakis Rouvas among other things. Alex Panayi has already taken part in the Eurovision Song Contest as a backing singer and performer on five occasions has managed a respectable top ten placing for Cyprus in 1995 with Sti fotia and was a backing singer for Helena Paparizou when she won the contest ten years later. This year he returns to the Eurovision race in the Cypriot final with There is love a simple straightforward touching ballad he wrote and penned himself. Alex's song is about love but not a lovers' song "It really speaks to the heart" he tells us "and that I think is its strongest point". The song is actually a big thank you he feels he has to say before it is too late as his mother is in the final stages of Alzheimer's. Regardless of the outcome of the Cypriot final on 7th February There is love will be released on a CD and all incomes will go to a charity which supports Alzheimer's victims.

Andrew Lloyd Webber’s kitsch crusade to save Eurovision United Kingdom 
“I love it” beams the composer. “Everyone I know has Eurovision parties – I’ve held one myself and Richard Curtis’s are legendary! We all turn up in silly costumes and hats. ” So Lloyd Webber would seem the ideal choice to front Your Country Needs You a new BBC1 series starting on Saturday for which he has selected six unknown acts from which the public will choose by phone vote who will represent the UK at next year’s Eurovision. He has also composed the song the winner will perform at the contest.

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