The 66th edition of the Eurovision Song Contest (ESC) has come to a close in the Italian city of Turin, with Ukraine taking the glass trophy home.
Performing their anthemic song ‘Stefania’, Kalush Orchestra earned an impressive 631 points: 192 from the professional juries and 439 from the public.
As put by Australia’s official Eurovision host, Joel Creasey, “the world has voted with their hearts”.
WATCH Kalush Orchestra perform their grand final winning song ‘Stefania’:
The Ukrainian group is made up of rapper Oleh Psiuk, multi-instrumentalist Ihor Didenchuk, dancer Vlad Kurochka, sopilka player Vitalii Duzhyk and vocalists Tymofii Muzychuk and Oleksandr Slobodianyk.
‘Stefania’, a modern rap and classic Ukrainian folk song, was written to honour Oleg’s mother, who first heard it in February when performed live at the Ukrainian National Final.
What was initially an “ode to mothers” has transformed into a song with nationalist sentiment amidst the conflict with Russia.
With lines like “I’ll always find my way home, even if all roads are destroyed”, the group told eurovision.tv earlier this month that performing in Turin has become their “duty”.
“We feel a big responsibility … We have a duty to be useful to our country at this moment.
“We really appreciate seeing people supporting Ukraine, and supporting us,” the group said.
Amongst the 25 grand-finalists who also performed this morning were Greece’s Amanda Georgiadis Tenfjord and Australia’s Sheldon Riley who placed 8th and 15th respectively.
Greece: 8th Place
WATCH Amanda Georgiadis Tenfjord perform ‘Die Together’ in the Eurovision 2022 grand final:
Amanda’s emotional ballad ‘Die Together’ earned her a place in the top 10 – placing 8th after receiving 158 points from the professional juries and 57 points from the public.
In the jury voting, Greece received 12 points from Netherlands, Norway, Bulgaria, Switzerland, Denmark and as tradition dictates – Cyprus.
In total command, Amanda did not allow the enormity of the song to escape her, delivering a stunning performance that showcased her vocal ability as well as the song’s emotive quality.
Whilst on social media there was a shared appreciation for Amanda’s vocals, Twitter users were more fascinated in Greece’s staging or, as described by Joel Creasey, “the graveyard of furniture”.
Australia: 15th Place
After receiving 123 points in the jury vote and an unexpected two points from the public vote, Sheldon Riley’s ‘Not The Same’ earned Australia a place in the top 20.
WATCH Sheldon perform ‘Not The Same’ in the Eurovision 2022 grand final:
Reducing Creasey’s co-host, Myf Warhurst, to tears, Sheldon delivered a highly emotional performance, varying his live performance slightly to elaborate the song’s big notes.
“Superb job”, Warhurst said, whilst Creasy praised, “what a performance. Vocally, perfection. Everything, perfection.”
Despite the praise, Twitter users were quick to poke fun at the obvious “geographical implications”.