Eurovision's first semi-final winners announced

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Eurovision's first semi-final winners announced

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The winners of the first semi-final in this year’s Eurovision Song Contest celebrated getting through to the all important climax of the competition on May 26. Among them Russia’s surprise entry – a group of singing grannies called ‘Buranovskie Babushki’.

The first 18 countries had the chance to show their talents but eight did not make it.

The following ten countries will be joined by another ten after the second semi on May 24. The UK, France, Germany, Spain and Italy have automatic entry.

The first finalists are: Romania, Moldovo, Iceland, Hungary, Denmark, Greece, Russia, Albania, Cyprus and Ireland.

There have been a few problems in the run up to this year’s contest in Azerbaijan, ranging from criticism over the former soviet state’s human rights record, to cyber attacks on the official website.

However the organisers in Baku hope to put that all behind them and produce a programme worthy of Eurovision’s celebrated glitzy song fest.

Also read: Eurovision: the great voting conspiracy