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Eurovision Insight Podcast: Eurovision Castaways with Ann Squires

Eurovision Insight Podcast: Eurovision Castaways with Ann Squires

ESC Armchair’s Ann Squires is next at the customs desk as Ellie Chalkley works through another collection of Eurovision songs and memories as see prepares to visit Île de Bezençon.

Eurovision Castaways with Ann Squires

Podcaster, educator and long time home-based contest appreciator Ann Squires of ESC Armchair and the Keep Dancing Podcast talks lost rave classics, the joy of niche linguistics, and keeping Georgia weird.

The momentum is building up around the latest season, so keep listening to the ESC Insight podcast to stay up to date with Eurovision, Junior Eurovision, and all the National Finals. You’ll find the show in iTunes, and a direct RSS feed is also available. We also have a regular email newsletter which you can sign up to here.

Categories: ESC Insight


Vlado Kalember and Srebrna Krila reunite on their new single “Je Li Ti Žao Zbog Nas”

Vlado Kalember and Srebrna Krila reunite on their new single “Je Li Ti Žao Zbog Nas”

Vlado Kalember and Srebrna Krila

Vlado Kalember and Srebrna Krila, who previously represented Yugoslavia in the Eurovision Song Contest, are back together as they this summer launched a new song. Last Friday, they also released the video for the song which recalls the memories of young days.

66-years-old Vlado Kalember took part at 1984 Eurovision Song Contest held in Luxembourg. Together with Izolda Barudžija he performed the song Ciao Amore, which finished 18th in the final.

Srebrna Krila (Silver Wings) participated at 1988 contest in Dublin. Their song Mangup came 6th. Throughout the 1980s and 1990s the band went through a series of different incarnations. When their founder, Mustafa Ismailovski Muc, died back in 2000, Srebrna Krila disappeared from the Croatian music scene.

Vlado Kalember and Srebrna Krila have always had a special connection as Vlado was the lead singer when the band was created in 1978. However, Vlado left the band 8 years later as he started his solo career.

Srebrna Krila and Vlado reunited in 2012, when they played a number of concerts in the former Yugoslav republics. Since then they have released two singles: Još Da Mi Te Jednom Ljubit (2017) and Opušteno (2018).

The new song Je Li Ti Žao Zbog Nas, which translates to Are You Sorry For Us, is a very emotional ballad – a look back on those days when we were young. With his recognizable, crispy voice Vlado is reflecting on the early days of childhood with sadness – like he wants to turn back time – as he describes it to the best period in his life.

Je Li Ti Žao Zbog Nas was written by Neno Ninčević, while Vlado Kalember composed the song. Ninčević has earlier been part of the Eurovision circuit as he co-wroted Croatian Eurovision entry Kada Zaspu Anđeli back in 2000.

In the link below, you can watch Vlado Kalember’s and Srebrna Krila’s latest video:

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Categories: Eurovisionary


Eurovision Insight News Podcast: Ahoy Rotterdam!

Eurovision Insight News Podcast: Ahoy Rotterdam!

The summer is over! The unofficial start of the Eurovision Song Contest 2020 year gets a nod from the EBU and the Dutch organisers with the announcement of the host city timed for the new season.

Eurovision Insight News Podcast: Ahoy Rotterdam!

As the Eurovision Song Contest says ‘Happy New Year”, lets round up the latest news, dates, thoughts, and our first National Final name for Rotterdam 2020. Ewan Spence and the ESC Insight team cover the latest news from the world of the Eurovision Song Contest.

As the season gets under way, stay up to date with all the Song Contest news by listening to the ESC Insight podcast. You’ll find the show in iTunes, Google Podcasts, and Spotify. A direct RSS feed is  available. We also have a regular email newsletter which you can sign up to here.

Categories: ESC Insight


Eurovision sand artist gets a golden buzzer on Britain’s Got Talent – Champions

Eurovision sand artist gets a golden buzzer on Britain’s Got Talent – Champions

Kseniya Simonova

This evening, Eurovision sand artist Kseniya Simonova has won the golden buzzer on Britain’s Got Talent – The Champions opening episode. Can she go on to win the entire series?

Kseniya Simonova who got fame among Eurovision fans for the amazing sand art for Mika Newton’s entry Angel participates in this year’s Britain’s Got Talent – The Champions. The series is a special addition where famous acts as well as winners from Got Talent series from all over the world compete against one another in the hope of being crowned the ultimate champion.

Kseniya won this week’s golden buzzer from judge Amanda Holden after a stunning performance dedicated to the children of the world fighting cancer and those who have lost their fight. Earning the golden buzzer means that she has guaranteed herself a place in the next stage of the competition without having to face the vote. The Ukrainian artist competed with a dancing dog, Indian dancers, Australian comedians as well as American Daredevils.

The artist from Southern Ukraine also received the golden buzzer on Australia’s Got Talent – The Champions and won the Ukrainian series

It wasn’t just the judges who were impressed, UK viewers immediately took to Twitter. Many of them admitting the performance brought them to tears.

Kseniya has been in Eurovision more than once. This year she provided art for Moldova’s entry Stay performed by Anna Odobescu.

Do you think Kseniya has what it takes to win the entire series? It will be interesting to follow. You can view her performance in the video below:

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Categories: Eurovisionary


Rotterdam to host the Eurovision Song Contest 2020

Rotterdam to host the Eurovision Song Contest 2020


Rotterdam has been selected as the host city of the 65th Eurovision Song Contest in May next year. The Netherlands have hosted the competition four times, but this will be the first time that the event has been hosted by Rotterdam.

When Duncan Laurence won the Eurovision Song Contest for the Netherlands earlier this year a total of nine cities put up their hands in the hope of hosting the contest for it’s 65th edition. One by one they pulled out starting with Leeuwarden who’s arena didn’t meet the height requirements set by the EBU. Then Amsterdam, The Hague and Breda bowed out of the race due to various issues such as venues being fully booked and the affordability of hosting.

In the end it was just Rotterdam and Maastricht left. Today, then followed the announcement that it will be Rotterdam who will host the 2020 Eurovision Song Contest.

Rotterdam has been one of the fan favourites in the race to host Eurovision due to it being easily accessible for travelling fans. Rotterdam has Europe’s largest port and is well connected by ferry to the United Kingdom and France. Travellers wishing to travel to Rotterdam from Amsterdam’s Schiphol airport can get there in around 20 minutes by train. The city is 23km (14.2 miles)  from The Hague and 61 km (37 miles)  from Utrecht.

As well as trains, Rotterdam boasts a variety of transport methods including a tram, metro and bus service as well as water buses.

Eurovision 2020 dates

Today, we also had the dates for next year’s contest revealed. The final will take place on the 16th of May 2020 with the first semi-final on the 12th of May and the second one on the 14th.

In the video below you can remind yourself of why we are heading to the Netherlands next year: Duncan Laurence and his song Arcade. The performance is from Eurovision in Concert in April 2019, a month before he went to Tel Aviv, Israel and won the Eurovision Song Contest:

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Categories: Eurovisionary


We’re All Off To Rotterdam… Host City Confirmed

We’re All Off To Rotterdam… Host City Confirmed

The 65th Eurovision Song Contest will be at the Ahoy in Rotterdam.

Rotterdam has been seen as the front-runner since the victory of Duncan Lawrence with ‘Arcade’ in Tel Aviv. The Dutch tourism industry has been looking to promote locations outside of the capital for some time now, and Eurovision’s overlap with the return of the Formula 1 Grand Prix Circus to the nearby Circuit Zandvoort, Eurovision in Amsterdam would have be crowded to say the least.

As the second largest city in The Netherlands, Rotterdam features one of the largest European ports, as well as direct access to three of the key rivers in Europe (the Rhine, the Meuse, and the Scheldt). The gateway to Europe will be bringing us the Eurovision Song Contest’s Grand Final on May 16th.

Eurovision Song Contest Trophy 2018 (Thomas Hanses/EBU)

Eurovision Song Contest Trophy (Thomas Hanses/EBU)

2020 will be the fifth time that the Eurovision Song Contest has been hosted by The Netherlands, although not all of the shows took place after a victory. Corry Brokken’s 1957 victory saw Hilversum hosting the following year; 1975’s Teach-In saw the 1976 Contest in The Hague, and of course Duncan Lawrence has brought the ‘Arcade’ to Rotterdam.

Amsterdam hosted in 1970 after the four-way tie in 1969 which involved Lenny Kuhr’s ‘De Troubadour’ tiring with the snags from Spain, the United Kingdom, and France. Spain had been the hosts in 1969, and the United Kingdom in 1968. That left France and The Netherlands to toss a coin to decide hosting duties.

Following Israel’s back to back victories in 1978 and 1979 decided that it could not budget the hosting of back to back Contest. Spain took second place in 1979 but passed on the duties, and reportedly the BBC – regarded in the twentieth century as the ‘backup broadcaster of choice’ declined.

Which is why we found ourselves back in The Hague in 1980, with the same set from 1976, a repeat of parts of the opening ceremony, and arguably one of the most ‘austerity Eurovisions’ of all time.

I wonder if the staging is still in storage?

Also announced were the dates for the Contest. These are the Tuesday May 12th and Thursday May 14th for the Semi Finals, and Saturday may 16th for the Grand Final.

That means we’re looking at roughly the same timetable  as the 2016, 17, and 18 Contests. With SVT having announced the Grand Final of Melodifestivalen as Saturday March 7th, expect the Heads of Delegation meeting and the deadline for all Eurovision entries to be submitted as Monday March 9th… and eight weeks until the acts begin rehearsing on stage.

Categories: ESC Insight

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