Turkvizyon’16: Four Countries To Debut?

Reports this evening are stating that four countries will be debuting in this years Turkvizyon Song Contest in Turkey.

According to the Turkvizyon VK account Latvia, Sweden, Poland and the Netherlands will be debuting in this years Turkvizyon Song Contest in Turkey. These reports have not been confirmed by the organisers of the contest on the official Turkvizyon website, however we do understand that one of these countries has been in discussions to participate in this years Turkvizyon Song Contest.

The four countries would bring the number of European countries and regions participating in the Turkvizyon Song Contest up to 17 countries. They would join the following European nations and regions already competing:

  • Albania
  • Belarus
  • Bosnia & Herzegovina
  • Bulgaria
  • Crimea (Russian Federation)
  • Gagauzia (Moldova)
  • Germany
  • Kosovo
  • Macedonia
  • Northern Cyprus
  • Romania
  • Sandzak (Serbia)
  • Ukraine

The last European region to debut in the contest was Sandzak in 2015. Sandzak which is a part of Serbia was represented by Almedin Varosanin and the song “Trag”, he finished 15th in the final scoring 140 points.

What are the Turkic links of the four countries?

  • Latvia – Latvia does not appear to have a sizeable Turkic population, with “Other” ethnic groups making up 2.7% of the population, in total there are 1,800 ethnic Tatars living in Latvia.
  • The Netherlands – The country is home to a sizeable Turkish population totaling 397,471 according to the latest statistics from the Dutch Government.
  • Poland – There are between 2,000 and 2,500 Turks living in Poland as well as 1,916 Lipka Tatars.
  • Sweden – In excess of 100,000 Turks live in Sweden, with large populations of Serbs, Albanian and Bosnians also living in the country.

Source: VK

The Turkvizyon Song Contest was first held in 2013 in the Turkish city of Eskisehir. The contest which is open to Turkic nations and regions such as Turkey, Kazakhstan and Yakutia. The contest follows a similar format to the Eurovision Song Contest, with songs limited to being 4 minutes long. To date Azerbaijan, Kazakhstan and Kyrgyzstan have won the contest.
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