Loreen from Sweden won with the song “Euphoria” in the annual competition of 42 countries, delighting viewers and the contest’s professional judges and dancing barefoot as she sang., reports Reuters.
Juries and television viewers from across Europe awarded Loreen a total of 372 points handing her an easy win.
After the winning performance the 28-year-old singer thanked all the people who supported her, says EnStarz.
“I have so many things to say to all of you who believed in me. Thanks for your support, from all of my heart,” Loreen said.
“I hope that Euphoria stays in the hearts of the people as long as possible”, she said.
“This is about all of us! Thank you so very much!” she told later at a news conference.
“Time has stopped,” Loreen said about her feelings after she was announced as winner.
Russia’s Buranovskiye Babushki won much public affection for their cute onstage performance, but their folksy dance ditty “Party for Everybody” couldn’t quite match Sweden’s more contemporary offering and ended up second on 259 points, writes The Huff Post.
Zeljko Joksimovic from Serbia, came in a distant third with his slow and stripped-down “Nije Ljubav Stvar.”
After the result was announced, hundreds of people gathered in central Stockholm, dancing in a fountain, honking horns and waving flags and playing the winning song.
“This is historical and magical! I think I’m going to die. This is the best thing that has happened to Sweden in 13 years!” said 20-year-old Tanja Tuuliainen, wearing a Swedish flag and drinking from a bottle of champagne with her girlfriends on the edge of a fountain in downtown Stockholm.
Eurovision is a Â 57-year-old pan-European competition viewed by some 125 million people worldwide.
The 2012 song contest was held in Azerbaijan, a little-known former Soviet republic. New Crystal Hall concert venue, a light-bathed arena on a point jutting out into the Caspian Sea, cost $134 million to build and was put up in the capital Baku in a speedy eight months.
But this year’s Eurovision was not only about songs as dozens of peaceful protesters have been arrested this month in Baku.
Activists say some buildings in the centre of the city were torn down to make way for the Eurovision arena and residents were forcibly evicted without proper compensation, according to Reuters.
Moreover, opposition groups have used the Eurovision spotlight, intended by Azerbaijan to promote the oil-rich country as a destination for tourism and business, to demand democratic reform and the resignation of the government.
Last week, the would-be winner Loreen met the activists. AzerbaijaniÂ authorities then accused her of making political statements that had no place at a musical event.
“Human rights are violated in Azerbaijan every day,” the opposition newspaper Azadliq quoted Loreen as saying after last week’s encounter. “One should not be silent about such things.”
What is more, after the competitive section of the show was over, Emin, the pop star son-in-law of Azerbaijan’s authoritarian President Ilham Aliyev, was winched down onto the stage to perform his own song.
Emin’s inclusion in the night’s entertainment roster raised eyebrows and refreshed claims of the rampant nepotism that is widely said to benefit members of Aliyev’s family.