The Kaunas born and bred singer Ieva Zasimauskaitė won the Lithuanian national selection for the Eurovision Song Contest late in the evening of March 11th, the Day of Restoration of Independence of our country.
The humble, always positive and extremely talented vocalist will perform the song about eternal love called 'When We're Old' (watch the official video below - of course, it was shot in Kaunas!) in Lisbon this May. This attempt has actually been the fifth for the Kaunasian; the 24-year old singer’s journey to Eurovision started in the junior version of the European-wide show.
The Lithuanian national selection for the Eurovision Song Contest was organised by broadcaster LRT and holds the record for longest national selection, having started in the first week of January. The final took place in the kaunastic Žalgirio Arena, the biggest and most up to date in the Baltics, home of BC Žalgiris Kaunas basketball team.
The national selection featured 50 acts who were narrowed down to a final six though weekly heats that included two quarter-finals, one online wildcard round, and two semi-finals.
Similar to heats before it, the winner of the final was determined through a combination of jury and public votes. Though the jury put Jurgis Brūzga and his song ‘4Love’ in the 12 point position ahead of Ieva Zasimauskaitė, public votes put Ieva far ahead of the competition with 20335 votes, followed by The Roop with their song ‘Yes, I Do’ with 16491 votes, and Monika Marija (song ‘The Truth’) with 13755. The overall results put Ieva Zasimauskaitė in first, Jurgis Brūzga in second, and The Roop in third place.
Lithuania joined the Eurovision Song Contest in 1994, scoring zero points with its first ever entry. Following Lithuania's debut in the Eurovision Song Contest in 1994, the country withdrew from the competition and returned only in 1999. That year, Aistė represented the country with the song ‘Strazdas’ which was sung in Samogitian, a dialect of the Lithuanian language.
Lithuania scored its best placing in 2006, sixth place, with ‘We Are The Winners’ performed by LT United. The country has only made it to the top ten in the Grand Final once since then, in 2016 with Donny Montell's ‘I've Been Waiting For This Night’. Fusedmarc represented Lithuania at the 2017 Eurovision Song Contest with the song ‘Rain of Revolution’, which finished 17th in Semi-Final in Kyiv.
Ieva Zasimauskaitė will perform ‘When We're Old’ for Lithuania in the first half of the First Semi-Final of the 2018 Eurovision Song Contest on Tuesday 8th May in Lisbon.