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Lys Assia
Lys Assia

Known as "The Queen of Eurovision", Lys Assia is the first winner of the Eurovision Song Contest.


Rosa Mina Schärer, commonly known as Lys Assia, is a Swiss singer who won the first Eurovision Song Contest in 1956. When she was a young girl, she was a dancer. In 1940, however, she stood in for a female singer. People who heard her singing liked it, so she changed from dancing to singing.

In 1956 she was the winner of the very first Eurovision Song Contest, in which she sang for Switzerland. She had also been in the German national final of that year and returned to the contest again for Switzerland in 1957 and 1958. Schärer married Johann Heinrich Kunz on 11 January 1957 in Zürich. Kunz died just nine months later after battling a serious illness.

Lys Assia has performed for monarchs all around the world and is the matriarch of the Eurovision Royal Family herself, hence her sometimes being called "The Queen of Eurovision". She has entertained various audiences since the 1940s, and she’s also famous for her trademark black dress and a tiny dog called Cindy as well as her incredible charming aura. Over the past few years, she has been called up as a guest of honour and waved to about 200 million people on live television.

She is one of five artists today who has won in one year and finished second in another year (along with Gigliola Cinquetti, Linda Martin, Elisabeth Andreassen and Dima Bilan), and was the first to do so.

Lys Assia was given a tiara and throne at the Eurovision's Greatest Hits concert in relation to her title.

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Videos

Interview with Lys Assia (first Eurovision Song Contest winner)07:23

Interview with Lys Assia (first Eurovision Song Contest winner)

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