15
October
2018

Video: 10 songs to tell the Bulgarian Eurovision history

Bulgaria leaves the Eurovision Song Contest on the top. Though things haven’t always been easy, the country has given us some memorable performances and they will be missed in Tel Aviv next year. 

With Broadcaster BNT confirming the sad news about their withdrawal from the Eurovision Song Contest, we tell you the story about their participation. 10 songs which shows that Bulgaria hasn’t been afraid to try different styles – and that the country leaves on the top.

What is your favourite Bulgarian entry? Vote in the poll below:

Bulgaria withdraws from Eurovision. Which entry is your favourite?

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Categories: Eurovisionary

15
October
2018

Emmelie de Forest leaves Danish Strictly Come Dancing half way

Emmelie de Forest leaves Danish Strictly Come Dancing half way

Emmelie de Forest in Vild Med Dans

After six dances, Emmelie de Forest no longer had the TV viewers on her side. She leaves Strictly Come Dancing after an emotionel slowfox, which actually was her strongest performance in the show.

Emmelie de Forest won the Eurovision Song Contest in 2013 with the song Only Teardrops. She was asked to take part in “Vild Med Dans” (Crazy about Dancing), which is the Danish edition of the famous British TV format “Strictly Come Dancing” back then, but it didn’t fit into her busy schedule. She was however still interested, and with more time for it now, she said yes to the 15th edition, which started airing on Danish TV2 six weeks ago.

She has been paired with professional dancer Frederik Nonnemann. Each week, they danced a new dance. One pair has to leave the competition each week – and Emmelie de Forest made it half way into the show.

In the first episode, she and her partner Frederik danced a quickstep to the tune of George Michael’s I’m Never Gonna Dance Again. The four judges, Nikolaj Hübbe, Anne Laxholm, Britt Bendixen and Jens Werner were quite positive. They called it a good programme, they had put together and predicted that Emmelie can go far. After that first quickstep, Emmelie went through dances like Paso Doble, Wiener Vals, Samba, Cha Cha and finally Slowfox, which became the end for her.

Slowfox was Emmelie’s favourite dance so far, and she also did better than before. In the second round, after ending in bottom two, she let go of her nerves and it showed. The beautiful dance was however not enough to convince the TV viewers, who, let’s face her, have never been on Emmelie’s side in this programme. They have always scored her lower than the professionel judges, and after three times in the bottom two, she was voted out.

While saying goodbye to Emmelie de Forest as our Friday evening entertainment, let’s just make one thing clear, if you read online that Emmelie de Forest is 1,60 metre tall, you’ve read the same wrong information as her dancing partner Frederik Nonnemann! At their first meeting, he was surprised to realise that she is actually 1,67.

No Eurovision participant as winner

With Emmelie de Forest taking part in the Danish edition of Strictly Come Dancing, she follows the footsteps of several other Eurovision participants who test their dancing skills in this TV format. In Denmark, none of them however won.

Birthe Kjær (Denmark 1989) took part in the second edition. Simon Mathew reached the final and came second in the third edition in 2007, the year before he represented Denmark at the Eurovision Song Contest. Basim (Denmark 2014) was a part of season six, and triple Eurovision participant Kirsten Siggaard (Denmark 1984, 1985 and 1988) took part in season 13 in 2016.

To remind yourself of Emmelie’s Eurovision entry, watch in the video below clip from an acoustic version of Only Teardrops.

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Categories: Eurovisionary

12
October
2018

Men, step back – in Ukraine only women succeed in Eurovision

Men, step back – in Ukraine only women succeed in Eurovision

Ani Lorak, Ukraine

Slavic women have a certain charm, at least when it comes to women representing Ukraine in Eurovision. It seems the country only do well when they are represented by a woman, so after two years of disappointing results from men, should Ukraine select another woman to bring them Eurovision success?

Making their debut in 2003, Ukraine has one of the best result records at the Eurovision Song Contest. They have achieved two victories and have been in top 10 a total of 9 times. 8 out of these 9 times Ukraine were represented by women – with the only time a man scoring Ukraine a top 10 place was when he performed as a woman! In fact, Ukraine’s bottom 3 results were all done by men.

Ukraine first won the contest a year after it’s debut when Ruslana brought her Wild Dances to the Eurovision stage in Istanbul. Europe were enthralled by Ruslana, her energetic routine and leather costumes inspired by ethnic hutsul dress. It took just 12 years for Ukraine to win again with Jamala’s controversial song 1944 pipping Russia’s Sergei Lazarev and Australia’s Dami Im to the top spot. In between these wins Ukraine have finished in 2nd place with Ani Lorak and Verka Serduchka, 3rd place with Zlata Ognevich and several other top 10 places thanks to Alyosha, Tina Karol, Mika Newton and Mariya Yaremchuk.

Ukraine have had a difficult time at the contest the past two years. In 2017 when Kyiv hosted the contest following Jamala’s win the previous year, the eastern European country was represented by all male rock group O.Torvald whose song Time earned just 36 points in the grand final. This placed them at 24th out of 26th, Ukraine’s worst result to date. This year Melovin, despite faring well with the public televote, came in last position with the juries. This caused his position on the leader board to slide down to 17th place in the final. The third worst result in their history at the contest.

So what can Ukraine do to turn this around? Will Ukraine send a woman to Eurovision next year to bring success back to the nation? Only time will tell. In the video you, you can take a look at Melovin’s Under The Ladder – this time in a performance from this year’s Eurovision Song Contest:

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Categories: Eurovisionary

08
October
2018

Eurovision Insight Podcast: Eurovision Castaways with Peter Fenner

Eurovision Insight Podcast: Eurovision Castaways with Peter Fenner
http://archive.org/download/escinsight_20181007_582_castawaysS2E5/escinsight_20181007_582_castawaysS2E5.mp3

Pack your bags, grab your playlists, it’s time to return to Île de Bezençon, where it’s early May all year round, and Ellie Chalkley is on duty.

Eurovision Insight Podcast: Eurovision Castaways with Peter Fenner

Our next guest to the beautiful Île de Bezençon is Icelandic Eurovision commentary writer and all-round cultural attaché Peter Fenner. Will he get his eight chosen Eurovision songs past the strict customs procedure of Ellie Chalkley? And does the Icelandic language have a word for ‘camp’?

As we work through the first few months of the new season, 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

03
October
2018

Eurovision Insight News Podcast: Dates For Your 2019 Diary

Eurovision Insight News Podcast: Dates For Your 2019 Diary
http://archive.org/download/escinsight_20181001_news_581/escinsight_20181001_news_581.mp3

Switzerland is our second country to lock in some names for its National Final (after Sweden), more dates for National Final fans to add in their diaries, submissions are opening and closing across Europe and beyond… We may not have many songs yet but the 2019 season is definitely under way.

Eurovision Insight News Podcast: Dates For Your 2019 Diary

More entries! More songs! More results! Ewan Spence reports on the latest Song Contest action with ticket sales, artist selections, and National Final details in the latest Insight News podcast

As we work through the first few months of the new season, 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, and you can support us on Patreon.

Categories: ESC Insight

02
October
2018

Croatia prepares for Dora comeback

Croatia prepares for Dora comeback

Franka (Croatia 2018)

Croatia achieved its best Eurovision result when they selected their entry through “Dora”. Kazimir Bačić, Director General of broadcaster HRT is determined to bring back that format, which was used from 1993 to 2011. 

In an interview to the Croatian daily newspaper “Jutarnji” from yesterday, Bačić confirmed that Dora is returning to HRT’s (Hrvatska Radio Televizija) program schedule in 2019. He explained that the national broadcaster will focus on investing in the entertainment show next year as they this year were forced into programming cuts due to many big sporting events.

First time Dora was used to select Croatia’s entry was back in 1993 when the country also debuted in the Eurovision Song Contest. After 2011, Dora was cancelled and the main reason for this decision were allegedly Croatia’s poor results in the contest and decreasing public interest. Since then all Croatian entries were chosen internally. 

In the interview Bačić also reveled that Dora will be held in the coastal city of Opatija, which doesn’t come as a big surprise as the city previously hosted the show 14 times. Actually, HRT was planing to use Dora as the selection process already this year, but it didn’t happen. 

Dora may proved to be the perfect solution for Croatia as their best results in the Eurovision Song Contest were achieved by the songs selected through Dora. Croatia’s best results came in 1996 and 1999. Back in 1996 Maja Blagdan finished 4th in Oslo with the song SvetaLjubav. Doris Dragović also finished 4th in Jerusalem with the song MarijaMagdalena. 

Below you can watch Franka’s performance in Lisbon this year, which wasn’t enough to qualify Croatia for the grand final: 

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