First Semi-Final concludes, we have ten finalists!
Tonight is the first live show of this years Eurovision Song Contest. 18 countries will fight it out for the 10 places available in Saturday's final. Eurovision.tv will report the qualifiers for you as soon as they are announced. Remember that you can watch the First Semi-Final LIVE right here on Eurovision.tv via our ESCTV player, streaming Europe's Favourite TV Show right to your computer.
We have our ten qualifiers, and these are as follows, in the order they were announced:-
Build up to the show
Thousands of fans arrived at the Baku Crystal Hall to watch the First Semi-Final of Europe's Favourite TV Show. The atmosphere built with everyone wondering which ten songs will qualify for Saturday's Final. Check out our gallery below to see some images of the fans arriving.
The 18 acts competing in the First Semi-Final of the 2012 Eurovision Song Contest in order of appearance are:
- Montenegro: Rambo Amadeus - Euro Neuro
- Iceland: Greta Salóme & Jónsi - Never Forget
- Greece: Eleftheria Eleftheriou - Aphrodisiac
- Latvia: Anmary - Beautiful Song
- Albania: Rona Nishliu - Suus
- Romania: Mandinga - Zaleilah
- Switzerland: Sinplus - Unbreakable
- Belgium: Iris - Would You
- Finland: Pernilla - När Jag Blundar
- Israel: Izabo - Time
- San Marino: Valentina Monetta - The Social Network Song (Oh Oh - Uh - Oh Oh)
- Cyprus: Ivi Adamou - La La Love
- Denmark: Soluna Samay - Should've Known Better
- Russia: Buranovskiye Babushki - Party For Everybody
- Hungary: Compact Disco - Sound Of Our Hearts
- Austria: Trackshittaz - Woki Mit Deim Popo
- Moldova: Pasha Parfeny - Lăutar
- Ireland: Jedward - Waterline
You can find more information about tonight's participants on our event page for the First Semi-Final.
The hosts of the show are Nargiz Birk-Petersen, Eldar Gasimov who won the Eurovision last year as part of Ell/Nikki and Leyla Alieva who are all eager to welcome the millions of viewers to Baku for tonight's show!
A tour around Azerbaijan
The postcards inbetween the performances portray Azerbaijan from many different perspectives.Prior to each song the lights on the Crystal Hall change to the colours of the flag of the country that follows.
After Albania's performance, Nargiz and Leyla explain to the viewers that the voting system will be 50/50 between professional jury and public televote. The viewers in countries which do not have a commercial break then were treated to some highlights from the official opening party.
After Russia's performance Nargiz interviewed San Marino's Valentina who said that she was very satisfied with the way things went tonight.
Europe start voting!
All of the contestants have now performed. The 18 countries will now televote, as well as viewers in Azerbaijan, Italy and Spain. The votes from the professional jury will then be combined with the televote which will then determine the 10 songs to qualify.
Nargiz then introduces a super postcard which again combines stunning footage shot on location across Azerbaijan. After the second recap of all of the performances, the interval act was provided by Natig Rhythm Group.
It featured a tambourine stone (Gaval Dash), the oldest musical instrument ever discovered in Azerbaijan, as well as several other traditional instruments including a tar, a kamancha (both string instruments), a balaban and a zurna (wind instruments). They performed a yally, which is a traditional Azerbaijani round dance, and young drummers were conveying messages through drum beats. Viewers were then shown a preview of the automatic finalists.