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In a Nutshell

The Junior Eurovision Song Contest debuted in November 2003 and was based on a Scandinavian song festival for children, the Melodi Grand Prix Nordic.

The first Contest was held in Copenhagen, Denmark, where 16 countries competed and audiences enjoyed interval performances from Sugababes and Busted. 

Croatia's Dino Jelušić won with his song Ti Si Moja Prva Ljubav (You Are My First Love), while Spain and the United Kingdom finished second and third respectively. 

The second Contest took place in Lillehammer, Norway, and from this point on broadcasters were given the opportunity to bid to host the following show. 

Over the years, 40 countries have competed in the Junior Eurovision and 14 countries have hosted the Contest. 

The most successful Junior Eurovision nation is Georgia, winning 3 editions of the Contest.

Junior Eurovision victories
Georgia (3)2008, 2011, 2016
Belarus (2)2005, 2007
Malta (2)2013, 2015
Russia (2)2006, 2017
Poland (2)2018, 2019
Armenia (2)2010, 2021

Winners of Junior Eurovision are often invited to make guest appearances at the Eurovision Song Contest, and some have even gone on to compete once they’re old enough. This includes Malta’s Destiny (Junior champion in 2015 and Eurovision participant in 2020 and 2021) and Russia’s Tolmachevy Sisters (Junior champions in 2006 and Eurovision participants in 2014).

The voting systems have changed over the years but the most recent Contest (Paris 2021) used a combination of international juries and online voting. In 2021, the acts received over 4.3 million votes.