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May 15, 2017

Joci Pápai takes 8th place in Eurovision final

Joci Pápai did Hungary proud during the Eurovision final on Saturday after picking up 8th place from a combination of public and participating country votes

Joci Pápai did Hungary proud during the Eurovision final on Saturday after picking up 8th place from a combination of public and participating country votes.

Portugal eventually won the competiton out of 42 participating countries in total, 26 of those made the grand final on Saturday. The annual song contest will be held in Portugal in 2018 after their win in Kiev, Ukraine over the weekend.

Hungary has a somewhat lacklustre past in the song contest, placing fourth in 1994 and fifth in 2014. Pápai's eighth place was the third top ten placing for Hungary who are yet to win the title.

Joci performed his song Origo, a hip hop influenced track which blends traditional Romani music with Hungarian. It was written by Pápai himself.

“I am so proud that, in the history of Eurovision, as a gypsy I managed to get to the final. It’s such an honor to be there. Today, I did not sing just for Hungarians, gypsies or minorities — this is for everyone who has ever felt oppressed. I left a piece of my heart here in Kiev,” Pápai said.

Joci comes from the Hungarian city of Tata and has been a celebrity in his home country since shooting to fame in 2005. The 35-year-old took part in Hungarian X Factor style show Megasztár but despite being knocked out in the early rounds, he still landed a record deal.

His first hit song was Ne nézz így rám in 2006, and after that he had successful records, both solo and with the rapper Majka.