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Watch: X Factor star Saara Aalto's five attempts at Eurovision

Finnish diva Saara Aalto competes in the UK X Factor final on Saturday, but she has a long history of talent show participation. In her home country she's even reached the heats to represent Finland at Eurovision—but never quite made it through to the finals.

Saara Aalto
Saara Aalto Image: Syco / Thames / Dymond/ AOP

X Factor star Saara Aalto was first on television at the age of one—and she was a star even in her childhood, winning a song contest in the south-eastern town of Kotka in 1998, when she was eleven. After that she trained in music and singing, and sought greater stardom.

Since the turn of the millennium Aalto has appeared in numerous talent shows and song contests, and she's also entered the heats to represent Finland in Eurovision an impressive five times.

Her first attempt was in 2004 as part of the Heidi Kyrö ja Just group.

Saara Aalto's group attempts to reach the Eurovision finals in 2004. Video: Yle

Four years later she was a backing singer for Hanna Marsh on the track Broken Flower, which did not even get to the national finals. That year, Finland selected the rock band Teräsbetoni (whose name translates as 'reinforced concrete').

 

In 2009 Aalto tried again, this time as a backing singer for Riika. Her song, Meren, did not make it to the national finals.

Video: Yle
 

Next time round, in 2011, Aalto was the main attraction—not a backing singer. Her song was 'Blessed with Love', and ended up in second spot in the competition, beaten out by Paradise Oskar.

Video: Yle
 

Her final attempt came this year, when her song 'No Fear' came second to eventual winner Sandhja.

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