Yuliya Samoylova (singer)

Yuliya Olegovna Samoylova (Russian: Ю́лия Оле́говна Само́йлова, IPA: [ˈjʉlʲɪjə ɐˈlʲeɡəvnə sɐˈmojləvə], born 7 April 1989), sometimes credited as Yulia Samoilova or Julia Samoylova, is a Russian singer-songwriter. In early 2017, she was selected to represent Russia in the 2017 edition of the Eurovision Song Contest with the song "Flame Is Burning", but was subsequently banned from the contest's host country, Ukraine, due to violating Ukrainian law by entering Crimea through Russia in 2015, shortly after the region was annexed by Russia.[1] In response to the ban, Russia ultimately withdrew from the contest. The following year, Samoylova was instead chosen to represent her country in the 2018 edition of the contest in Portugal. Performing "I Won't Break", she placed 15th out of 18 contestants in the second semi-final, failing to qualify for the grand final. "I Won't Break" was the first representation of Russia to not reach the final since the introduction of semi-finals in 2004.

Yuliya Samoylova
Yuliya Samoylova in May 2018
Yuliya Samoylova in May 2018
Background information
Birth nameYuliya Olegovna Samoylova
Also known as
  • Yulia Samoilova
  • Julia Samoylova
Born (1989-04-07) 7 April 1989 (age 31)
Ukhta, Komi ASSR, Russian SFSR, USSR
GenresPop, rock
  • Singer
  • Vocals
Years active2013–present

Early lifeEdit

Yuliya was born in Ukhta, Komi ASSR, Russian SFSR, USSR. As a child, Samoylova began losing function of her legs due to spinal muscular atrophy and has used a wheelchair since childhood.[2] The singer says that the manifestation of the hereditary disease could follow after an unsuccessful poliomyelitis vaccination (Channel One and TASS also take this view), but specialists deny such a connection.[citation needed] Samoylova started her career performing for oil workers at a restaurant in her hometown of Ukhta.[3] In 2008 she founded the band "TerraNova" which played heavy alternative music. TerraNova disintegrated in 2010. She studied psychology at the Modern Humanitarian Academy until 2010, when she left without having graduated.

Music careerEdit

2013–14: Faktor A and Winter ParalympicsEdit

In 2013, Samoylova was the runner-up of season three of Faktor A, the Russian version of The X Factor.[2] The following year, she also took part in the opening ceremony of the 2014 Winter Paralympics.[4]

2017–present: Eurovision Song ContestEdit

Samoylova was selected on 12 March 2017 to represent Russia in the Eurovision Song Contest 2017 held in the capital of Ukraine, Kiev, with the song "Flame Is Burning".[2] On 13 March, the Security Service of Ukraine announced that they might ban her from entering Ukraine due to her 2015 visit to Crimea – a region that was annexed by Russia in 2014.[5] According to Ukrainian law entering Crimea via Russia is illegal.[5] Samoylova has stated that she did perform in Crimea in 2015.[3] On 22 March, the Security Service of Ukraine banned Samoylova from entering Ukraine for three years for her violation of Ukrainian legislation[6]

State broadcaster Russia-1 announced on 13 April their withdrawal from the contest, which meant Samoylova would not participate in Eurovision 2017.[7][8][9] It had been previously announced that, if Samoylova was unable to take part in 2017, she would be selected to represent Russia in 2018.[10] Samoilova instead performed in Sevastopol, Crimea, on the day of the Eurovision semi-final.[which?][11]

On 29 January 2018, it was confirmed that she will return to represent Russia at the Eurovision Song Contest 2018 in Lisbon, Portugal.[12]

On 11 March, it was revealed that the song Yulia will sing at the Eurovision Song Contest 2018 will be "I Won't Break"[13]

On 10 May, she performed in the second Semi-Final of the contest, but failed to qualify for the Grand Final. She is the first Russian entry to fail to qualify since the introduction of televised qualifying rounds in 2004.



Title Year Album
"Flame Is Burning" 2017 Non-album singles
"Yad" (Poison)
"I Won't Break" 2018


  1. ^ "Ukraine bans Russia's entrant to Eurovision song contest". The Daily Telegraph. 22 March 2017.
  2. ^ a b c Adams, William Lee (12 March 2017). "RUSSIA'S YULIA SAMOILOVA BECOMES SECOND SINGER IN WHEELCHAIR TO COMPETE AT EUROVISION". wiwibloggs.com. Wiwibloggs.
    Eurovision in Ukraine: Controversy over Russian entry, BBC News (13 March 2017)
  3. ^ a b Russia strikes provocative note for Eurovision in Ukraine, The Guardian (13 March 2017)
  4. ^ Deakin, Samuel (12 March 2017). "Yulia Samoylova to Represent Russia at the Eurovision Song Contest 2017". eurovoix.com. Eurovoix.
  5. ^ a b Ukraine investigates Russia's newly chosen Eurovision candidate, Deutsche Welle (13 March 2017)
  6. ^ "Eurovision Samoilova: Ukraine bars Russian singer over Crimea visit". BBC. Retrieved 22 March 2017.
  7. ^ Granger, Anthony (13 April 2017). "Russia withdraws from the Eurovision Song Contest". eurovoix.com. Eurovoix. Retrieved 13 April 2017.
  8. ^ Первый канал не будет транслировать Евровидение-2017 [The first channel will not broadcast ESC 2017]. 1tv.ru (in Russian). Russia-1. 13 April 2017. Retrieved 13 April 2017.
  9. ^ "EBU: "Russia no longer able to take part in Eurovision 2017"". Eurovision Song Contest. 13 April 2017. Retrieved 13 April 2017.
  10. ^ Granger, Anthony. "Russia: Regardless Of Host Country, Yulia Will Compete At Eurovision 2018". Eurovoix. Retrieved 13 April 2017.
  11. ^ "Another Eurovision song contest, another diplomatic crisis". The Economist. 4 May 2017. Retrieved 5 May 2017.
  12. ^ Weaver, Jessica (29 January 2018). "Russia: Channel One confirms Julia Samoylova for Eurovision 2018". esctoday.com. Retrieved 29 January 2018.
  13. ^ https://eurovoix.com/2018/03/11/russia-i-wont-break-leaked-ahead-of-official-debut/

External linksEdit

Preceded by
Sergey Lazarev
with "You Are the Only One"
Russia in the Eurovision Song Contest
Succeeded by
Sergey Lazarev
with "Scream"