This year the Junior Eurovision Song Contest celebrates its 20th edition, and despite a few troubled years with rumors of cancellation of the music festival – due to its low interest among European countries and its low audience levels between 2009 and 2013 –, the contest returns for another year with the consolidated format. Next December, the Junior Eurovision will be held in Yerevan, the capital of Armenia, after the victory in the last edition of the young Armenian Maléna and her song “Qami Qami”.
North Macedonia, one of the 16 founding countries of the Junior Eurovision festival, returns for another edition, being one of the first countries to officially announce its representative for the contest.
On June 29, through an internal election, the Macedonian television MRT confirmed the duo of young singers, Lara and Irina, as the next representatives of the country at the children’s festival. Later, on November 2, it was announced that the young Macedonian singer Jovan will walk with Lara and Irina on stage in Yerevan.
The Macedonian trio will defend the song “My life ahead of me”, with which they will try to achieve victory for North Macedonia in the junior contest.
About “My life ahead of me”
Featuring powerful instrumentation and a fast-paced beat, the track is composed by Darko Dimitrov, an author highly acclaimed for revitalizing the mainstream Yugoslav pop music scene, which also influenced the surrounding Balkan countries, and has received international recognition for working with many popular foreign artists.
On the Eurovision level, Dimitrov has been an enormously prolific composer on the festival scene in recent years, being responsible for more than a dozen songs like “Ninanajna” by Elena Risteska, which finished 12th in Athens 2006, or the jury-acclaimed Tamara Todevska‘s “Proud”, which was seventh in Tel Aviv 2019. In recent editions, he has co-written and produced songs for the Montenegrin Vladana and her “Breathe” or the Serbian trio Hurricane with their “Loco Loco”. Simon Trpčeski, Lara’s father, also signs the composition together with Jovan (her uncle) and the singer of the North Macedonian youth duo.
Meet Lara, Irina, and Jovan the North Macedonian representatives
Lara – whose full name is Lara Trpcheska – is a young North Macedonian singer from Skopje. From an early age (5 years old) she was already passionate about the world of music. She performed in “Zlatno Slavejče”, the most popular children’s music competition in North Macedonia, which has boosted the musical career of many young artists. Currently, she is a student at the “Pianoforte” School of Music.
Irina – Irina Davidovska is her full name – is also a young North Macedonian singer, studying at “OOU Partenija Zografski”, where she started singing in a choir. While studying here, she had the opportunity to perform with the Macedonian Philharmonic Orchestra.
Both Lara and Irina met in 2018 while participating in music festivals. Such was the friendship created between the two, that they formed this duo.
Jovan – Jovan Jakimovski –, is a young North Macedonian dancer and singer, whose musical style is hip-hop. Through his performances, he transmits all his energy, creativity, and skill into dance and music. As proof of this, he has been a winner in numerous regional and international hip-hop contests; being the champion of modern dance in 2018 and 2019. He also obtained second place in the Hip Hop World Cup, first place in Modern Duo held in Sarajevo, and three gold medals in the “Dance off” contest, among other awards. In addition to being a dancer, he is especially good at Mathematics, participating in competitions in this subject where he won gold medals in 2017 and 2018.
North Macedonia at Junior Eurovision
North Macedonia is one of the 16 founding countries of the children’s contest – along with Belgium, Belarus, Cyprus, Croatia, Denmark, Spain, Greece, Latvia, Malta, Norway, the Netherlands, Poland, United Kingdom, Romania, and Sweden. This first edition of the festival was held in 2003, in the Danish city of Copenhagen.
North Macedonia debuted under the name of the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia, and continued to compete under that name until 2018, as in 2019 Greece and Macedonia itself accepted the definitive use of the name “Republic of North Macedonia” – a conflict that held by Greece and Macedonia since 1991 –.
The country debuted with the young women Marija and Viktorija and the song “Ti ne me poznavaš”. At the end of the night, they finished in 12th position, with only 19 points.
Since then, North Macedonia has failed to win in any of the 19 editions held so far. It has even withdrawn up to 3 times: in 2012 – claiming not to agree with the voting system –, in 2014 – due to the poor result obtained in the last edition –, and in 2020 – due to the COVID-19 pandemic –.
Their best results are two 5th places in 2007 and 2008 – in the 2007 edition in Rotterdam, represented by the Macedonian duo formed by Dimitar Stojmenovski & Rosica Kulakova and their song “Ding ding dong”; and in the 2008 edition in Limassol by the young Macedonian singer Bobi Andonov and his song “Prati mi SMS”.
However, they have finished in the last position up to 4 times: in 2006 in Bucharest – with the singer Zana Aliu and her song “Vljubena” –, in 2011 in Yerevan – which they attended with Dorijan Dlaka and his song “Zhimi ovoj frak” –, in 2013 in Kyiv – with the young Barbara Popović and the song “Ohrid i muzika” –, and in 2015 held in Sofia – with the duo formed by the singers Ivana Petkovska & Magdalena Aleksovska, and their song “Pletenka” –.
In the last edition, the young Macedonian group Dajte Muzika performed the song “Green Forces”, placing the country in 9th position with 114 points.