Russia in the Eurovision Song Contest

Member station
National selection events
Participation summary
Appearances22 (21 finals)
First appearance1994
Best result1st: 2008
Worst result15th SF: 2018
External links
Channel One page
Russia-1 page
Russia's page at
Song contest current event.png For the most recent participation see
Russia in the Eurovision Song Contest 2019

Russia has participated in the Eurovision Song Contest 22 times since their debut in 1994. Russia won the 2008 contest with Dima Bilan performing the song "Believe". One of the most successful countries in the contest in the 21st century with a total of ten top five placements, Russia finished second with Alsou in 2000, Dima Bilan in 2006, Buranovskiye Babushki in 2012 and Polina Gagarina in 2015; third with t.A.T.u. in 2003, Serebro in 2007, Sergey Lazarev in 2016 and 2019, and fifth with Dina Garipova in 2013. In 2018, they failed to qualify for the final for the first time in their history.

Contest history[edit]

Their debut was in the 1994 contest after Russia became a member of the European Broadcasting Union (EBU). Russia came second at four contests; in 2000 with the song "Solo" performed by Alsou, in 2006 with Dima Bilan's song "Never Let You Go", in 2012 with the song "Party for Everybody" performed by Buranovskiye Babushki, and in 2015 with Polina Gagarina's song "A Million Voices". They also achieved four third-place finishes; in 2003 with t.A.T.u's song "Ne Ver', Ne Boysia", Serebro's in 2007 with their entry "Song #1", and in 2016 as well as 2019 with Sergey Lazarev's song "You Are the Only One" and "Scream" respectively.

In 1996, Russia's entry was Andrey Kosinsky with the song "Me is me", but on the eve of competition (for the second time in their history), he scored an insufficient number of points in a special qualifying round and therefore missed the final.

In 1998, because Russia did not participate in the contest (due to lower average scores in participating in previous competitions), Russia refused to broadcast the competition and the European Broadcasting Union in return forbade the country to participate the following year. According to unconfirmed information, Russia was required to submit Tatyana Ovsiyenko with the song "My Sun".

Russia won their first Eurovision Song Contest in 2008, when Dima Bilan, participating for the second time in the contest, won with the song "Believe", bringing the contest to Russia for 2009.

Russia was the most successful country in Eurovision in 2000-2009, with one win, two second places, and two third places. However, in 2010 they finished 11th, and in 2011 they were 16th, which was the worst place for Russia since 1995. Interest in the competition fell, but in 2012 Buranovskiye Babushki finished in second place, increasing Russia's interest in the show. Russia holds the record for the most top five finishes in the 21st century, with ten, with Sergey Lazarev holding the record of the highest score of any Russian contestant, who finished third in 2016 with 491 points.

In 2018, for the very first time, a Russian contestant failed to reach the final. Yulia Samoylova, who represented the country with the song "I Won't Break", failed to qualify to the Grand Final from the second semi-final.

In February 2019, Sergey Lazarev was once again confirmed as the Russian representative for Eurovision 2019 in Tel Aviv . Which makes Sergey the second return artist in Russian Eurovision participation history after Dima Bilan, who participated in 2006 and 2008 respectively. He represented his country with the song Scream, managed to bring Russia back to grand final for the first time since 2016 and achieved the 10th top 5 result by finishing third once again.


The contest has been broadcast irregularly on two different public state channels in Russia, both EBU members: for the 1994 and 1996 it was broadcast on Russia-1 of VGTRK, while in 1995, 1997 and from 1999 to 2007 the contest was broadcast on Channel One. Since 2008, there is an alternation on broadcast and selection, with Russia-1 on even years, and Channel One on odd ones. This however changed after not broadcasting 2017 contest, now Channel One does the broadcast and selection on even years, while Russia-1 on odd ones.


Table key
  1st place
  2nd place
  3rd place
  Last place
Year Artist Language Title Final Points Semi Points
1994 Youddiph Russian "Vechni stranik" (Вечный странник) 9 70 No semi-finals
1995 Philipp Kirkorov Russian "Kolybelnaya dlya vulkana" (Колыбельная для вулкана) 17 17
1996[a] Andrey Kosinsky Russian "Ya eto ya" (Я это я) Failed to qualify 26 14
1997 Alla Pugacheva Russian "Primadonna" (Примадонна) 15 33 No semi-finals
Did not participate between 1998 and 1999[b]
2000 Alsou English "Solo" 2 155 No semi-finals
2001 Mumiy Troll English "Lady Alpine Blue" 12 37
2002 Prime Minister English "Northern Girl" 10 55
2003 t.A.T.u. Russian "Ne ver', ne boisia" (Не верь, не бойся) 3 164
2004 Julia Savicheva English "Believe Me" 11 67 Top 11 Previous Year[c]
2005 Natalia Podolskaya English "Nobody Hurt No One" 15 57 Top 12 Previous Year[c]
2006 Dima Bilan English "Never Let You Go" 2 248 3 217
2007 Serebro English "Song #1" 3 207 Top 10 Previous Year[c]
2008 Dima Bilan English "Believe" 1 272 3 135
2009 Anastasia Prikhodko Russian, Ukrainian "Mamo" (Мамо) 11 91 Host country[c]
2010 Peter Nalitch and Friends English "Lost and Forgotten" 11 90 7 74
2011 Alexej Vorobjov English, Russian "Get You" 16 77 9 64
2012 Buranovskiye Babushki Udmurt, English "Party for Everybody" 2 259 1 152
2013 Dina Garipova English "What If" 5 174 2 156
2014 Tolmachevy Sisters English "Shine" 7 89 6 63
2015 Polina Gagarina English "A Million Voices" 2 303 1 182
2016 Sergey Lazarev English "You Are the Only One" 3 491 1 342
2017[d] Julia Samoylova English "Flame Is Burning" Withdrawn
2018 Julia Samoylova English "I Won't Break" Failed to qualify 15 65
2019 Sergey Lazarev English "Scream" 3 370 6 217

Voting history[edit]

As of 2019, Russia's voting history is as follows:

Act selection process[edit]

Year Selection process Channel
1994 National Final with 9 participants RTR
1995 Internal Selection ORT
1996 National Final with 14 participants RTR
1997 Internal Selection ORT
Did not participate between 1998 and 1999
2000 Internal Selection ORT
2003 Channel 1
2005 National Final with 29 participants
2006 Internal Selection
2008 National Final with 27 participants Russia 1
2009 National Final with 16 participants Channel 1
2010 National Final with 25 participants Russia 1
2011 Internal Selection Channel 1
2012 National Final with 25 participants Russia 1
2013 Internal Selection Channel 1
2014 Russia 1
2015 Channel 1
2016 Russia 1
2017 Channel 1
2019 Russia 1

Commentators and spokespersons[edit]

Year(s) Commentator Dual Commentator Spokesperson Channel
1994 Sergei Antipov No Dual Commentator Irina Klenskaya RTR
1995 Unknown Marina Danielyan ORT
1996 Vadim Dolgachyov Russia did not participate RTR
1997 Philipp Kirkorov Sergei Antipov Arina Sharapova ORT
1998 No Broadcast No Broadcast Russia did not participate No Broadcast
1999 Aleksej Zhuravlev Tatjana Godunova ORT
2000 Zhanna Agalakova
2001 Alexander Anatolievich Konstantin Mikhailov Larisa Verbickaya
2002 Yuriy Aksuta Elena Batinova Arina Sharapova
2003 Yana Churikova Channel 1
2006 Tatjana Godunova
2007 Elena Batinova
2008 Dmitry Guberniev Olga Shelest Oxana Fedorova Russia 1
2009 Yana Churikova Semi-finals — Aleksey Manuylov;
FinalPhilipp Kirkorov
Ingeborga Dapkunaite Channel 1
2010 Dmitry Guberniev Olga Shelest Oxana Fedorova Russia 1
2011 Yuriy Aksuta Yana Churikova Dima Bilan Channel 1
2012 Dmitry Guberniev Olga Shelest Oxana Fedorova Russia 1
2013 Yuriy Aksuta Yana Churikova Alsou Channel 1
2014 Dmitry Guberniev Olga Shelest Russia 1
2015 Yuriy Aksuta Yana Churikova Dmitry Shepelev Channel 1
2016 Dmitry Guberniev Ernest Matskyavichys Nyusha Russia 1
2017 No Broadcast No Broadcast Russia did not participate No Broadcast
2018 Yuriy Aksuta Yana Churikova Alsou Channel 1
2019 Dmitry Guberniev[1] Olga Shelest[2] Ivan Bessonov[3] Russia 1



Year Location Venue Presenters
2009 Moscow Olympic Indoor Arena Semi-finals: Natalia Vodianova and Andrey Malahov;
Final: Alsou and Ivan Urgant[5]

Other awards[edit]

Marcel Bezençon Awards[edit]

Press Award

Year Song Performer Final Result Points Host city
2016 "You Are the Only One" Sergey Lazarev 3rd 491 Stockholm


See also[edit]

Notes and references[edit]


  1. ^ In 1996, Russia failed to qualify from the audio only pre-qualification round. The official Eurovision site does not count 1996 in Russia's total list of appearances.
  2. ^ Russia was forced to sit out another year in 1999, as the EBU only allowed countries which had broadcast the previous year's contest to enter the next year's contest.
  3. ^ a b c d If a country had won the previous year, they did not have to compete in Semi Finals. In addition, from 2004 to 2007, the top 10 non-Big Four countries did not have to compete in the semi-finals the following year. For example, if Germany and France placed inside the top 10, the 11th and 12th spots were advanced to next year's grand final along with all countries in the top 10.
  4. ^ Russia withdrew from the 2017 contest, after Julia Samoylova was banned from entering the host country Ukraine. The official Eurovision site does not count 2017 in Russia's total list of appearances.


External links[edit]