Music

Russian grannies rock Eurovision

Buranovskiye Babushki at the Eurovision 2012 song contest in Baku, Azerbaijan.   | Photo Credit: VYACHESLAV OSELEDKO

A group of Russia's 70-odd-year-old grannies turned a smash hit of this year's Eurovision Song Contest, finishing runners-up and beating 24 other contenders.

The six-member group Buranovskiye Babushki (Buranovo Grannies), all in their seventies, charmed television audiences worldwide with their ethno-pop tune “Party for Everybody” at the Eurovision finals held in Baku, Azerbaijan. The first place went to Loreen, a 28-year-old Swede of Moroccan-Berber descent, who performed “Euphoria”, a racy electronically-driven song with a trance beat.

The Buranovo Grannies, dressed in colourful homespun ethnic costumes and shoes made from lime tree bark, sang their dance-inspiring “Party for Everybody” in a mix of English and Udmurt, their native language.

The old ladies' band from the remote village of Buranovo in the Russian republic of Udmurtia, about 1,000 km east of Moscow, rose to fame when they switched from singing local folk songs to interpreting international hits, such as Let It Be, in Udmurt language. They have their own website, buranovskiebabushki.ru, and often go on singing tours in Russia and abroad.

Notwithstanding their popularity, the Buranovo Grannies still live the lives of village people, planting potatoes and rearing cattle. Local authorities are now planning to turn Buranovo into a tourist attraction.

The grannies said they would give their prize money for rebuilding a church in their native village that was destroyed in the Soviet era.

The Eurovision Song Contest, which has been running since 1956, is the most widely viewed annual non-sports television event in the world, drawing about 125 million people worldwide each year. The winner is picked by juries and television viewers across Europe.

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Printable version | Apr 17, 2021 5:24:05 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/features/friday-review/music/russian-grannies-rock-eurovision/article3462705.ece

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