A quick round up of whats happening around Europe for the Eurovision selection process for those of ye that do not want to wade through dozens of articles. This weekend sees no more than 6 countries select their entrant Ireland, Iceland, Norway, Belgium, Malta and Finland. If you are reading this website then you don’t need me to let you know whats happening in Ireland currently
Israel: Lets Start with the big news of the week, Dana International is back, she will participate in KDAM 2011 – the Israeli selection process. The full line up is as following:
The national final will be held on March 8th at 21:30 local time (20:30 CET)
Italy: RAI have confirmed the their entrant will in fact be from San Raemo, think of a pre cursor to Eurovision for Italians, and not X-Factor as was popularly rumored.
Germany: Lena has done 2 semi-finals and 6 songs have been selected for the German Final – more on that later.
Greece: Earlier today ERT aired 1 minute clips of each of the songs
Croatia: The 3 composers for DORA 2011 are: Lea Dekleva, Ante Pecoti?, and Boris ?ur?evi?.
The Croatian final will take place on March 5th.
Turkey: Yüksek Sadakat, the band selected to represent Turkey this year have confirmed that they have recorded 3 songs and an announced will be made within days. It has been described as Uptempo and in English.
Sweden: Despite a better than average song list, Melodifestivalen is facing strong criticism at home for not being that good, a recent poll showed 87% of viewers fed up with it, this is reflected in the viewing figures for last weeks ratings of 320k people, the lowest for a MF heat since the new format started several years ago. We will have more on the next heat and a round up on last weeks performance including Nanne Gronwalls disastrous attempt to become a diva.
Iceland: See here
Belgium: So the final is this weekend on Saturday in Liege, Belgium. All those entries that paid enough money have made it through to the final – well they had enough clicks on their web entry – that equated to Euros – whichever song got to €20,000 got through, weird but ok.
Click here to listen to the final 14
We will have articles about Malta, Finland and Norway in the next few hours – hopefully
So Entertainment.ie have reported that Blue singer Anthony was caught hands free wizzing against an atm on Friday night.
Antony‘s feeling fairly Blue today (apologies), what with the Sunday papers (The Mirror) being awash with pictures of him, well, washing an ATM with his portable fire hose. And by that, I mean his penis.
Unfortunately (or fortunately, depending on what way you view the world) we don’t have the photos of him pissing against an ATM machine on Saturday night, but they’re quite impressive in a “look, no hands!” multitasking kind of way, as opposed to an ‘All Rise’ kind of way. Apologies.
Of seeing the photographs, Costa said: “I was so mortified when I saw the pictures. No one wants to be seen like that. I would never, ever want to upset or embarrass my family, or the band. I was on a night out, got a bit drunk and did something stupid (and against the law). It’s a mistake I’m not proud of and I am so, so sorry to anyone I have offended”.
The Mirror reports that George Iatrou, manager of the Post Office on William IV Street where the incident took place, said Costa should be dropped from Eurovision: “This is appalling. We clean the machines every day but what he has done is disgusting. We shouldn’t have to clean up after people behaving like this – it’s not a civilised way to behave.”
So, how exactly did he behave? Here’s a blow by blow (again, apologies) account of what happened: “The singer is pictured near Trafalgar Square, only 30 yards from a public toilet. The 29-year-old father of one relieves himself while deep in conversation on his mobile phone, leaving a pool of urine on the pavement. After finishing the call, he reaches into his back pocket for his wallet. He eventually re-fastens his trousers – with total indifference to other people needing to use the Post Office cash machine – after withdrawing a wad of notes. BBC bosses, who screen family favourite Eurovision to a Saturday evening audience of millions, have hailed Costa and Blue as the ‘perfect choice’ to represent the UK in this year’s contest.”
Tonight Albania becomes the first country to broadcast the new intro for the Eurovision Song Contest. It will be shown before the fist semi-final of Festivali i Kenges 2010 which takes place tonight on RTSH at 20:30CET.
The intro was designed by Sascha Verwiebe a German graphic designer who has previously worked for German ZDF, Danish TV2, Deutsche Bahn, Microsoft and others.
The EBU wish to raise the profile of the “heart” logo that they introduced in 2004. This year the use of the intro will be voluntary but from 2012 all National Finals must use this as their intro.
It has now been distributed to all participating member states to use with their national flag in the “heart” so expect to see it a lot in the run up to Düsseldorf!
Over on Eurovision.tv Svante Stockselius, Executive Supervisor of the Junior- and Eurovision Song Contests,has announced his resignation.
Svante has worked with the EBU since 2003.
Previously to working for the EBU he was Executive Producer of the 2000 Eurovision Song Contest in Sweden. He was also the main architect of the Melodifestivalen which is one of the most watched national selections.
Svante will be missed by fans and those involved with the Eurovision. We all loved the bit where he appears.
The Junior Eurovision Song Contest in Minsk will be his last outing Executive Supervisor.
Svante has been the main force behind the recent changes in the Eurovision and his ideas and commitment to the contest must be commended.
We at ESC Ireland wish Svante the best of luck in his future career and hope he has a happy retirement!
I found this thanks to Candlemansa. It is an amazing new song out of the States by Kaci Battaglia. You may remember her from her song Paradise back when she was 13 in 2001. Now she is all grown up and has entered number 1 in the US dance charts with Crazy Possessive, and it is simply amazing. Is it just me however or does she look like Agnes?
See it here by clicking on the link for SVT.se
Amongst others Carola, Roxette and even the guys from Abba wrote a song
Ok folks what’s been going on with our Eurovision stars?
Well two of its most famous ladies, who preformed the same year on a Eurovision stage (1988) and have shadowed each other consistently in terms of vocal abilities since, have very exciting times ahead.
Celine Dion and husband Rene are expecting twins. The singer who previously won the Eurovision is fourteen weeks pregnant but the path has not been easy with five failed in-vitro fertilisation attempts and a miscarriage last year. The 42 year old singer already has a nine year old son with 68 year old Rene. It was a love story never expected to last but despite the wide age gap it has triumphed. We wish the couple much happiness with their growing family.
Lara Fabian is due to wrap up her latest movie project, ‘Madamoiselle Zhivago’. The singer first hit the big screens in Cole Porters ‘De-Lovely’ and is now the lead role in a unique musical based on an album she is currently working on. Written by Russian composer and director Igor Krutoi, produced by Ukranian Alan Badoev, Madamoiselle Zhivago will contain 11 short stories all connected to each other taking place throughout time from the 19th century to a distant future all linked by ‘The Woman’ played by Lara. Some of the stories include a concert hall taken over by terrorist, a fascist concentration camp and an out their dreamland sequence. Filming is in the Ukraine, Egypt and France. Similar type movies with artists in the lead based on their albums are rare with ‘The Beatles’ and ‘Pink Floyd’ some examples but this sounds more along the lines of the 1992 Tilda Swinton movie ‘Orlando’. I wonder will she gender swap or have a lesbian affair. Neither, either, or, we wish Lara great success with this movie project and let’s hope it will get world recognition.
I found this wonderful article over at www.trueslant.com
American Idol and the Eurovision Song Contest both recently crowned their 2010 winners and it doesn’t take a genius or an astute cultural critic to figure out the continent has it all over us when it comes to putting on a proper pop spectacle. Sure, Germany’s Lena (think Ellen Page singing a club anthem in character as Regina Spektor) wasn’t exactly a win for the ages (that would be 2006’s Lordi if you’re wondering. I will brook no argument), but I’d still put my money on her over Lee DeWyze (Who? Exactly.) any day. In that spirit, I give you:
Three Reasons the Eurovision Song Contest Puts American Idol to Shame:
It embraces the snark potential
Now, perhaps the Albanian telecast is a staid and thoughtful affair, but if you have the pleasure of watching via the BBC (or the BBC via the internet), you’re treated to comedian Graham Norton’s good-naturedly biting commentary on all 25 acts. Norton mocks everything from the costumes of the performers to their hairstyles (there ain’t no mullet like a Eurovision mullet) to the sobriety of the audience of 120 million viewers. There’s no “Europe, what have you done?” admonishments a la Ryan Seacrest on American Idol’s results night. Yes, national dreams will be crushed, but that doesn’t mean we can’t still take the piss, does it?
There is cheese and then there’s Eurovision
17 year-olds in ballgowns and enough make-up for a cougar convention belting out power ballads. Overly hair-gelled, tight-panted men of ambiguous sexuality gyrating to dance hits performed entirely in Greek. An Angelina Jolie doppelganger singing a song called Apricot Stone while swanning around in front of what looks for all the world like a giant paper-mâché clitoris (hint: I think it was the stone in question). And wind machines, always with the wind machines. The excess of Eurovision makes the likes of Adam Lambert look like a Christian music ingenue singing the national anthem at a NASCAR race.
This is serious business
Sure the Brits like to pretend they’re above such gauche displays (doesn’t explain why they sent Andrew Lloyd Webber to accompany 2009’s entrant on piano) and my Serbian former coworkers tried to play it nonchalantly cool when their own Marija Serifovic claimed top honors in 2007, but there’s a lot of national pride invested in turning in a good showing at Eurovision. None of this “second is better than first because then you get more artistic freedom” bunk that fans of the American Idol also-ran always toss around. Nope, countries pull out all the stops. In addition to the creative mind behind CATSand Phantom of the Opera, 2009’s broadcast featured a burlesque routine from Dita Von Teese as part of the German entrant’s performance. In 2008, Russia’s Dima Bilan’s winning entry included a cameo from Olympic gold medal figure skater Evgeni Plushenko, who showed up to deliver a dramatic on-stage routine atop the world’s tiniest ice rink. And this year? Azerbaijan hired Beyonce’s Single Ladies choreographer to design their stage show (didn’t help, they finished outside the top five) and host country Norway spent so much on mounting the television production that their national broadcaster can’t afford to televise the Word Cup. There is an earnest competitiveness and level of unjaded investment in Eurovision that has long since worn off American Idol (if it was ever there in the first place).
So keep your Lee DeWyzes and your Kris Allens and your David Cooks. I’ll take that strange violin-playing hybrid of Justin Bieber and Michael Buble that is 2009 winner Alexander Rybak. As for 2010? Graham Norton and I agree; France totally got robbed.
P.S. Mr. Norway? Call me!
So the interest in next year’s contest in Germany is growing. According to Oikiotimes 14 countries have confirmed their entry for the Eurovision Song Contest 2011.
Andorra have confirmed that they will again be sitting out of the contest due to financial issues.
A number of countries have made noises about possible returning to the competition. Hungary could be represented by Duna TV after taking over the broadcast from Magyar Televízió.
Austria too is making noises about a possible return after a three year break as it is being hosted by their neighbour according to Der Standard (german)
Liechtenstein is also looking at making its debut next year as its national broadcaster 1FLTV is applying for EBU membership.
It will be interesting to see if Italy, Luxembourg, San Marino, Czech Republic and Montenegro return next year.