Eurovision Song Contest 2005 Semi-Final
The 2005 Eurovision Song Conest Semi-Final took part in Ukraine's capital Kyiv. It was the first big event after the country's so-called Orange Revolution, which took place only months before the Eurovision Song Contest.
Heading for Kyiv
After the success of the 2004 Semi-Final and Final in Istanbul, with over seven millions telephone and SMS votes cast, it was decided that this new system for the Eurovision Song Contest would stay the same. The so called 'Big Four' (Germany, the United Kingdom, France and Spain) would compete automatically in the Final just alongside the top ten countries from the 2004 contest.
2005 would see the arrival of two new countries: Bulgaria and Moldova. Hungary returned to the contest for the first time since 1998. Lebanon was on the initial list of participants but pulled out when it emerged that they could not meet the necessary requirements to take part.
The 2005 Semi-Final featured 25 songs altogether, of which only ten would proceed to the Final. There was surprise when favourites Glennis Grace, representing the Netherlands and Selma, runner-up from 1999, representing Iceland, both failed to qualify.
The singer for Belarus, Angelica Agurbash, embarked on a huge promotional campaign both in Kyiv and prior to the competition. She too failed to qualify for the final.