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Winners' Press Conference with Mariam from Georgia

20 November 2016 at 20:31 CET
Who will follow in Mariam's footsteps and represent Georgia? Andres Putting (EBU)
Right after the live broadcast of the 2016 Junior Eurovision Song Contest a press conference took place with the winner of the competition, Mariam Mamadashvili from Georgia, where she confessed that "I've been watching this contest since I was six and I couldn't imagine that this would happen to me one day". Armenia's Anahit & Mary and Fiamma Boccia from Italy, who placed second and third respectively, were also awarded a trophy.

The winners' Press Conference started with the Awards Ceremony for the top three acts in this year's Junior Eurovision Song Contest: Georgia's Mariam, Armenia's Anahit & Mary and Italy's Fiamma. Expert panelists Jedward also congratulated the Top 3 artists.

Fiamma Boccia, from Italy, had some nice words for her mum, to whom she dedicates her song and this third place: "I love you very much, mum!"

Armenia's Anahit & Mary wanted to thank their backing troupe and everyone at the Junior Eurovision team of Armenia: "Thank you guys, it wouldn't have been possible without you".

Then Mariam Mamadashvili from Georgia talked about the Junior Eurovision Song Contest: "I've been watching this contest since I was 6 and I couldn't imagine that this would happen to me one day". It took some time for the news that she had won to sink in. "It took me a lot of time to realise, they told me to go up on stage and there the presenters asked me to sing my song again, and when I started is the moment when I realised I had won so I cried!". Mariam then sent a message in Georgian to everyone that accompanied her through this journey.

The floor was opened to questions from the press and Mariam was asked about her trophy and if she'll take it to school: "Maybe I'll take the trophy there... My mates will be really happy, I know that. I really miss all of them, I love them".

Did she dream of winning the contest? "I actually didn't think about that. I've been thinking about all those people I'm gonna meet here, the great experience it would be and, only for one minute I thought "what if...?" and that's it"! During the week Mariam turned 11 years-old: "This has been my best birthday present".

As the winner, what would Mariam like to tell the other kids in the contest? "That I love their songs, I love them all ...I really love you guys! You're my best friends!".

Mariam Mamadashvili thanked the writer of the song Mzeo (Sun), Giga Kukhianidze and the lyricist Maka Davitaia.

Jon Ola Sand, the EBU's Head of Live Events, said "This competition is an excellent way for public service broadcasters to support young artists, and help bring their talent to an international audience. It was amazing to see all this talent on stage. Mariam's performance was incredible - we look forward to seeing more of her in years to come". Sand continued: "We at the EBU are grateful for the work of PBS and all the delegations involved. This is true collaboration in Europe and I'm very proud of that", adding: "We will work hard over the next year to find a host and to make another great show in November next year".

John Bundy - CEO of PBS Malta: "This was an adventure that took 3 months to produce - we were sure it was going to be a success - when delegations, EBU and PBS work together we will all be winners. We are a small nation but we proved today we can do big things".