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Russian National Contest 2004
Logo of Channel One Russia    In 2004 Channel One Russia (previously known as ORTV) was responsible for National Selection of Russian Eurovision Entry.
   Receiving of musical material was held by Channel One Russia (C1R) musical department in the period from 1st till 25th of February.
   C1R gave official rules of Internal Selection 04:
   - only songs (lyrics & music), which were not commercially released before 1st of October 2003, may participate;
   - the song should be not longer than 3 mins;
   - the song could be performed maximum by 6 artists, which were already 16 years old in 2003.
   The song should be recorded and sent on cassete or on cd to C1R Musical Department. Address: 127000, Moscow, Akademika Koroleva str, Channel One Russia, Eurovision 2004.
   In National Contest everybody can take part, famous or not. But Channel One Russia emphasizes, that Russian selection is a chance for young and talented artists.
   All questions by phone +7-095-2179237 and e-mail music@1tv.ru.
   
On 29th of February 2004 web-conference Yuri Aksyuta was held. As a chief of C1R Musical Department Yuri Aksyuta answered several questions about Eurovision in Russia:

   Q: What is your first criteria in selection of russian representative for Eurovision Song Contest 2004? Whom would you prefer personally?
   A: First of all, it's a unique song and the singer's individuality. In my opinion, the aim is not to just participate, but to win.
   Q: When will the Russian Eurovision singer be announced?
   A: The result of russian selection will be annouced in the very nearest future - first week of March.
   Q: What are the reasons, that Channel 1 Russia does not cover preparation for the eurovision song contest?
   A: I'm not sure if preparations will have big interest and success with C1R tv-viewers.
   Q: When will Channel 1 Russia conduct Open (not internal) National Final for ESC as majority of European broadcasters do?
   A: It's a pity, that you can't rely on professionalism of C1R selection commettee. Next year Open National Final may be held and we will see, if it would be more productive and interesting than work of jury.

   
9-11 March - The culmination - results of russian preselection 2004 are known:

Philip Kirkorov and Anastasia Stotskaya are upset with russian preselection results of Eurovision 2004    Towards late evening on Tuesday March 9 there were a lot of working people in the office of C1R general director Konstantin Ernst. Management of Russian Broadcaster had to make a decision whom our country will send to Eurovision 2004. Finally, it was decided, that russian representative in Istanbul will be Julia Savicheva.
   Chief of C1R Musical Department Yuri Aksyuta informed, that during preselection stage 2253 entries were received. The selection commission comprising Channel One Russia representatives, popular singers and composers, chose 31 songs to compete.
   Here are the list of several known participants of russian preselection 2004 and their song for ESC 2004:

   - Julia Savicheva (producer Max Fadeev). Not finished variant of song without words was submitted (only as instumental version), vocal line was recorded using musical instruments;

   - Anastasia Stotskaya (producer Philip Kirkorov). Song "I ti skazhesh" (solo version). Kirkorov was upset with C1R decision and commented results of russian prelesection: "I hoped that Nastya (=Anastasia Stotskaya) would win, becase I think that our song "I ti skazhesh" deserved to be Russian Entry in Euovision 2004. But now it doesn't matter already. I will sing this beautiful composition together with Anastasia as a duet, and our citizens will listen to it and understand how good it is. But for me the aim was to make Russia win in ESC and to bring it to Moscow. And if Julia Savicheva manages to do it - our congratulations." Song "I ti skazhes" [duo version by Kirkorov & Stotskaya] is available as (mp3): on this page;

   - group "Smash!!" (producer Mikhail Topalov). Two english songs, written by british authors, were submitted: "This could lead to something" and "Would you cry to me". Mikhail Topalov was not upset very much. He just sympathized with Kirkorov in his "grief". Now group "Smash!!" is going on worldwide tour;

   - group "Reflex";

   - Dima Bilan (producer Yuri Aizenshpis);

   - Abraham Rousseau;

   - afro-russian person Jam (producer Igor Matvienko). Jam is participant of "Fabrika Zvyozd 1" (OT type show);

   - composer Vitaliy Okorokov (creator and chief of group "Kombinatsia", which was very popular in 90s);

   - new young star Zazhigalka;

   - male singer Kevin with song "You May";

   - female singer Mary X with song "Collision", which was written with support of group "Vostok";

   - group "Gorod V" from Vladivostok;

   Several newspapers blamed C1R for unfair selection (Max Fadeev was producer of reality show "Star Factory - 2" on Channel One Russia). But Yuri Aksyuta reported that after "full comprehensive analysis" expert comittee decided that new Max Fadeev's song is the winner because "it fits format of the contest and has potential to fight for top places in ESC". Song is in English, but lyrics are not finalized yet, and entry has no title either. In 2003 there were doubts that Tatu song is not fitting format for the contest, but this year C1R think, that Jilia Savicheva and her entry are absolutely top points. Aksyuta told that it is pure coincidence that protegee of Channel 1 Russia appeared to have all this qualities. .

The following sources were used: web-site of Channel One Russia 1tv.ru, russian press release EBU, article about russian preselection from paper 'Moskosvkiy komsomolets' 11.03.2004 

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