Ireland participated in the Junior Eurovision Song Contest 2016 which took place on 20 November 2016, in Valletta, Malta. The Irish broadcaster TG4 was responsible for organising their entry for the contest through a national selection show entitled Junior Eurovision Éire. The national final took place on 6 November 2016, while the semi-finals took place between 9–30 October. This was Ireland's second appearance at the Junior Eurovision Song Contest.
|Junior Eurovision Song Contest 2016|
|Selected entrant||Zena Donnelly|
|Selected song||"Bríce ar Bhríce"|
|Selected songwriter(s)||Zena Donnelly|
|Final result||10th, 122 points|
|Ireland in the Junior Eurovision Song Contest|
On 6 November, Zena Donnelly was selected to represent Ireland with a song she composed herself, "Brice ar Bhrice" (Brick by Brick). She placed 10th with 122 points.
Prior to the 2016 Contest, Ireland had participated in the Junior Eurovision Song Contest once since its debut in 2015. TG4 previously attempted to participate at the Junior Eurovision Song Contest 2014, but required funding from the Broadcasting Authority of Ireland (BAI), which was rejected.
Before Junior EurovisionEdit
The Irish broadcaster announced on 5 April 2016, that they would be participating at Junior Eurovision for the second time in their history. The mechanism for selecting their entrant and song was through the national selection show Junior Eurovision Éire. The selection process took place every Sunday starting on 9 October, in which thirty-two participants competed, and culminated into a final which was held in 6 November 2016.
TG4 published details on the names of the professional jury who would determine the winner of the Junior Eurovision Éire 2016 and the representative for Ireland at the 2016 contest in November. They had all represented Ireland in the Eurovision Song Contest at least once in their careers.
|Artist||ESC Year(s)||Song(s)||Place (Semi-final)||Points (Semi-final)||Place (Final)||Points (Final)|
|Sandie Jones||1972||"Ceol an Ghrá"||No semi-finals||15||72|
|Linda Martin||1984||"Terminal 3"||2||137|
|Niamh Kavanagh||1993||"In Your Eyes"||1||187|
|2010||"It's for You"||9||67||23||25|
|Dustin the Turkey||2008||"Irelande Douze Pointe"||15||22||Failed to qualify|
The judging panel consisted of Fiachna Ó Braonáin and Paulien Scanlon, as well as a different guest judge each week.
Junior Eurovision ÉireEdit
|01||Hannah McNicholas Roche||"Titim as a Chéile"||Final Duel|
|03||Walter McCabe||"Las Do Sholas"||Final Duel|
|04||Bernadette Royo||"Bean si"||Eliminated|
|05||Molly McCarthy||"Imithe Leis An Ghaoth"||Eliminated|
|06||Amy Meehan||"Tapaigh An Deis"||Eliminated|
|07||Cathal Gavin||"Seo hé Mo Ghlór"||Eliminated|
|08||Jael Katebe-Wini||"An Ghrá i do Chroí"||Eliminated|
Hannah McNicholas Roche and Walter McCabe both advanced to the final duel stage and performed their songs for the second time. After their second performances, the jury members selected Walter McCabe as the winner of semi-final 1 and advances to the grand final on 6 November 2016.
|01||Zena Donnelly||"Bríce Ar Bhríce"||Final Duel|
|02||Taylor Hynes||"Níos Airde"||Eliminated|
|04||Natalie Hurley||"Mo chuid 'Superstars'"||Eliminated|
|05||Daniel Gallagher||"Táim Beo"||Final Duel|
|06||Leah Cunningham||"Saol Iontach"||Eliminated|
|07||Holly Sturton||"A Cheol, Is Tusa M’Anamchara"||Eliminated|
|08||Ciara Mullarkey||"An Ghealach"||Eliminated|
Zena Donnelly and Daniel Gallagher advanced to the final duel where they performed their songs a second time. After their second performances, Donnelly was selected by the jury to advance to the final.
|02||Rachel Haughney||"Na Réaltaí sa Spéir"||Final Duel|
|04||Rosalind Hayes||"Cé hIad na Laochra Anois?"||Eliminated|
|05||Éabha Ní Shúilleabháin||"Mo Laoch"||Eliminated|
|06||Cliona NicDhomnail||"Ag Seasamh Le Mo Réaltai"||Final Duel|
|07||Na Deirfiúracha Drumgoole||"Ceol an Easa"||Eliminated|
|08||Disha Suresh Kumar||"Níl Éinne Foirfe"||Eliminated|
Rachel Haughney and Cliona NicDhomnail advanced to the final duel where they performed their songs the second time. After their second performances, NicDhomnail was selected by the jury to advance to the final.
|01||Lasairfhíona de Brún||"Fan Liom"||Final Duel|
|02||Danny McGahey||"Marú na hOíche"||Eliminated|
|03||Eva Kavanagh||"Irrus Domnann"||Eliminated|
|04||Amy McGrath||"M'Aingeal"||Final Duel|
|05||Stephanie Byrne||"Go dti an Ghealach"||Eliminated|
|06||Lucy Hood||"Dathanna den Nadúr"||Eliminated|
|07||Ash & Jen||"Mo Chailíni"||Eliminated|
|08||Arabella Dolan||"Ag Seoladh Mo Ghrá Chugat"||Eliminated|
Lasairfhíona de Brún and Amy McGrath advanced to the final duel where they performed their songs a second time. After their second performances, McGrath was selected by the jury to advance to the final.
The grand final took place on 6 November 2016, in which Linda Martin was the guest judge. Two wildcard acts were entered into the final. They were Hannah McNicholas Roche who came second in week 1 and Lasairfhíona de Brún who came second in week 4.
|01||Zena Donnelly||"Brice ar Bhrice"||Final Duel|
|02||Walter McCabe||"Las Do Sholas"||Eliminated|
|03||Hannah McNicholas Roche||"Titim as a Chéile”||Eliminated|
|04||Cliona NicDhomnail||"Ag Seasamh Le Mo Réaltai"||Eliminated|
|05||Amy McGrath||"M'Aingeal"||Final Duel|
|06||Lasairfhíona de Brún||"Fan Liom"||Eliminated|
For the final, a sing-off was introduced between the top two contenders.
|01||Zena Donnelly||"Brice ar Bhrice"||Winner|
Artist and song informationEdit
|"Bríce ar Bhríce"|
|Junior Eurovision Song Contest 2016 entry|
|◄ "Réalta na mara|
(Star of the sea)" (2015)
|"Súile Glasa" (2017) ►|
|Born||28 August 2002|
Blackrock, Dublin, Ireland
Zena Donnelly (born 28 August 2002) is an Irish singer. She represented Ireland at the Junior Eurovision Song Contest 2016 in Valletta, Malta on 20 November 2016 with the song "Bríce ar Bhríce".
Zena has won RTÉ's nationwide TV talent competition Show Off or Get Off, performed for Music Inc., and played the lead role in Annie at the National Concert Hall. Zena was a special young guest at the Cheerios ChildLine Concert in the 3Arena alongside other artists including Olly Murs, Boyzone and McBusted. Zena also took part in Junior Eurovision Éire in 2015, coming second to Aimee Banks.
Branching out from music, Zena has started to be cast in films such as The Food Guide To Love, Céad Ghrá, Cuckoo, Dance Emergency and A Christmas Star, where she also sings, among others, the theme song, "We Can Shine".
Bríce ar BhríceEdit
"Bríce ar Bhríce" (English translation: "Brick by brick") is a song by Irish singer Zena Donnelly. It represented Ireland during the Junior Eurovision Song Contest 2016, placing tenth out of seventeen contestants.
At Junior EurovisionEdit
The final was broadcast in Ireland on TG4. However it was announced on 16 November 2016 by the broadcaster that the show would not be broadcast live but that the show would be broadcast 3 hours and 30 minutes after it aired in Malta.
Zena delivered a strong series of run-throughs of her mid-tempo song against a visually stunning backdrop of the night sky.
During the press conference for the Junior Eurovision Song Contest 2016, held in Stockholm, the Reference Group announced several changes to the voting format for the 2016 contest. Previously, points had been awarded based on a combination of 50% National juries and 50% televoting, with one more set of points also given out by a 'Kids' Jury'. However, this year, points were awarded based on a 50/50 combination of each country's Adult and Kids' Jury, to be announced by a spokesperson. For the first time since the inauguration of the contest the voting procedure did not include a public televote. Following these results, three expert jurors also announced their points from 1–8, 10, and 12. These professional jurors are: Christer Björkman, Mads Grimstad, and Jedward.
At the end of the voting, Ireland placed 10th with 122 points, receiving 65 points from the adult jury and 57 from the kids jury. Ireland received 2 sets of 12 points, from Italy and Malta.
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