Saturday, May 10, 2014

It's Eurovision Day!!

Tonight's the night.....and we have, what I think, is the most open and competitive Eurovision final in years, which makes it even more exciting than usual.  (If that's possible!!)
Just as last year, the draw's been dumped in favour of a running order chosen by the host broadcaster, which big boss man Jon Ola Sand claims will make the "best possible running order".
  1. Ukraine
  2. Belarus
  3. Azerbaijan
  4. Iceland
  5. Norway
  6. Romania
  7. Armenia
  8. Montenegro
  9. Poland
  10. Greece
  11. Austria
  12. Germany
  13. Sweden
  14. France
  15. Russia
  16. Italy
  17. Slovenia
  18. Finland
  19. Spain
  20. Switzerland
  21. Hungary
  22. Malta
  23. Denmark
  24. The Netherlands
  25. San Marino
  26. United Kingdom
The fact remains though, that songs in the early half of the draw don't do as well as songs towards the end of the show. 
The UK's Molly (above) has been drawn to sing last, which has caused massive excitement in the fan community, although to temper the excitement it's worth remembering that Ireland's Ryan Dolan also sang last in 2013 and came....last.  I'm sure this won't happen to Molly though: after years of has-beens, never-beens and over 60s representing the UK, there is a genuine expectation that she's going to achieve our country's best result since at least Jade Ewen in 2009, and many are even predicting "Children of the Universe" as a possible winner.  Me?  I still feel that it's lacking that certain je ne sais quoi which we expect of a Eurovision winner, but in this year where there's no obvious favourite then anything is possible. 
I'm very happy with the outcome of both semi-finals.  When they called out Switzerland on Thursday night I thought I was going to spontaneously combust with excitement!!  Of course I don't need any excuse for a gratuitous picture of the lovely Sebastiano.....I mean, really, how good can one man look in a white shirt and black waistcoat??
All my favourites qualified to the final, my only disappointment being the failure of "Cake To Bake" to make it out of Semi-Final 1; I'm also sad for Portugal's Suzy whose song gave us my favourite Twitter hashtag of the whole ESC season - #WAWAWEWAWE.  I'll go into more detail in my semi-final reviews which I'm hoping to publish over the next few days. 
What the casual viewing public don't realise of course is that the jury final actually took place last night, which would explain if an artist receives a lot of votes despite a dodgy performance tonight or vice versa.  Although it has to be said that I don't expect any dodgy performances!  The artists competing in the contest have really raised their game this year.  Eurovision's "haters" in the media and the general public find the contest an easy target to knock, but they always overlook the quality of the often excellent vocal performances in the contest.  Fingers crossed that the contestants will all deliver tonight. 
There's a big change this year as we're being promised more transparency by the EBU, where the jury voting is concerned.  The jury members' names were published a couple of weeks ago, and after the contest we are promised a breakdown of their votes.  We'll see how that goes.  The juries include a number of former participants, and you can find the full list at this link: 
The UK jury is chaired by Carrie Grant (above) who has been a very familiar face on our TV screens over the last few years along with her husband David.  They are well-known vocal coaches best known to viewers for their work on Pop Idol and Fame Academy.  But more importantly, she is best known to Eurovision fans as a member of stool-sliding Sweet Dreams who represented the UK in 1983 with "I'm Never Giving Up". 
The voting order has also been published.  As usual, all countries who competed this year will vote regardless of whether or not they've made it to the final.  Here's the list of 2014's jury spokespersons who will be delivering the votes tonight, and there's a few familiar names in there including former contestants.  After all these years, Alcazar finally make it to Eurovision!  Not as contestants of course, but as Sweden's jury spokespersons tonight.   
Azerbaijan: Sabina Babayeva
Greece: Andrianna Maggania
Poland : Pauliana Chylewska
Albania: Andri Xhahu
San Marino: Michele Perniola
Denmark: Sofie Lassen-Kahlke
Montenegro: Tijana Miskovic
Romania: Sonia Argint Ionescu
Russia: Alsou
Netherlands: Tim Douwsma
Malta: Valentina Rossi
France: Elodie Suigo
United Kingdom: Scott Mills
Latvia: Ralfs Eilands
Armenia: Anna Avanesyan
Iceland: Benedikt Valsson
F.Y.R. Macedonia: Marko Mark
Sweden: Alcazar
Belarus: Alyona Lanskaya
Germany: Helene Fischer
Israel: Ofer Nachshon
Portugal: Joana Teles
Norway: Margrethe Røed
Estonia: Lauri Pihlap
Hungary: Éva Novodomszky
Moldova: Olivia Furtuna
Ireland: Nicky Byrne
Finland: Redrama
Lithuania: Ignas Krupavicius
Austria: Kati Bellowitsch
Spain: Carolina Casado
Belgium: Angelique Vlieghe
Italy: Linus
Ukraine: Zlata Ognevich
Switzerland: Kurt Aeschbacher
Georgia: Nodi Tatishvili and Sophie Gelovani
Slovenia: Ula Furlan
I'm still none the wiser about who's going to win, so I'm taking up my usual position on the fence and would say the winner will come from any one of the following countries: 
The Netherlands
United Kingdom
Have a wonderful Eurovision night everyone!!

1 comment:

Raquelita said...

We ended up watching the final in a really small and overcrowded gay bar with our Danish friend(s) and I was stuck in the corner so didn't see most of the voting.So you can imagine my joy and surprise when I stood up at one point and saw my beloved Nodi on screen :D

More Sebastiano please! (This is my particular favourite )