Lookout Europe! Belgium has chosen its Eurovision entry. Nuno Resende, born in Portugal, but resident in Belgium since 1985 is set to carry on the country's proud tradition of success in that unrivalled showcase of European pop talent which takes place this year in Kiev.
The French-language television station RTBF selected this year's Belgian finalists out of 170 candidates (it's the Dutch speakers turn next year). The public watched performances from 31-year-old Nuno and his rival candidate 17-year-old Tiffany Ciely. Nuno finished just ahead of Tiffany in Sunday's televoting with a typical Eurovision-style number.
Nuno and rival Tiffany
Nuno Guilherme de Figueiredo Resende was born on 25th June 1973 in Porto (Portugal) and moved to Belgium with his family when he was 12. Nuno is fluent in Portuguese, French and English, and he also speaks some Spanish, Dutch and Italian.
Nono Hoper started his career in 1997. Spotted by a Swedish producer, he went to Sweden to record an album of 13 songs in English. The album however was never released. The same year he participated in Pour la gloire, a talent contest on RTBF won by Mélanie Cohl. Nono, Nono Nono became the lead singer of the group La Teuf which recorded singles such as Envie de faire la teuf, "A cause du sexe" and "Te quiero, ti amo, I love you, je t'aime". In 2000 La Teuf finished 6th in the Belgian national final with the song "Soldat d'amour". Do you see a pattern here - or is it just me.
However, to make the big finale on 21 May, Nono still has to get through the semi-final stage two days before. But promoter Bert de Spinnekopke is confident "If James Fox can get through to the final, anybody's got a shot" he said.
Belgium's proud history of Eurovision success includes first place, in 1986, for Sandra Kim with "J'aime La Vie", second place for Jean Vallée in 1978 with "L'amour, ça fait chanter la vie" and, second place for the delightfully incomprehensible Urban Trad in 2003 with "Sanomi". And if that doesn't impress, there's always Plastic Bertrand's classic - singing for Luxemburg - Amour, Amour (which came in 21st in 1987).