Almost a replica of the Eesti Laul 2018. That’s what Elina Nechayeva will present in the Eurovision stage hoping to achieve the same result she did in her country’s national selection.
Estonia is competing in the first semi-final as song number 9. The country is represented by Elina Nechayeva and the song La Forza, which is written by Ksenia Kuchukova, Mihkel Mattisen, Timo Vendt and Elina herself.
1 First rehearsal
2 How Elina Nechayeva was selected
3 Estonia at the Eurovision Song Contest
After so much controversy whether Estonia would be able to finance the so desired dress, it did make its way to the Altice Arena stage and it does feature fantastic and eye-popping special effects.
Elina’s performance is quite similar to what she presented in the Eesti Laul 2018 performances and this even includes hand movements and camera angles which could steal a bit of excitment for the Eurovision stanbase as they’ve seen it and repeated the national selection performance. Surrounded by blue and red lights, the dress keeps on changing its roll of images while Elina continues to smile gracefully until the very end of the song.
Vocally speaking, there are slight differences from the national performance as Elina hasn’t yet found the perfect key for it, something she surely will pull off.
Nonetheless, the question remains: how would Estonia pull off their staging without the dress?
How Elina Nechayeva was selected
On the third of March, Estonia selected their Eurovision participant. Through two semi-finals, a total of ten entries had made it to the final of Eesti Laul 2018. In the final, three of the entries qualified for a super-final. Elina had in the first round won the 12 points from both jury and televoting. In the super-final, only the TV viewers decided.
With stunning 70% of the votes, Elina Nechayeva won a landslide victory with 2015 Eurovision participant Stig Rästa as runner up.
See alsoEstonia: Fan favorite Elina Nechayeva wins Eesti Laul 2018
Estonia at the Eurovision Song Contest
A pre-selection round in place before the contest in 1993 sorted the Estonian entry out, and as such the country had to wait until 1994 to get its debut. Silvi Vrait represented the country, but failed to reach the final. Whether or not it was due to the result, Estonia didn’t take part in 1995, but since 96′ they have been a steady Eurovision participant.
Since the introduction of semi-finals in 2004, Estonia has failed to reach the final a total of nine times. But before that, the country had already won once, in 2001 where Tanel Padar and Dave Benton made most of Europe clap and sing a long to Everybody.
In 2015, Elina Born & Stig Rästa finished 7th at the contest, but they were followed up by two entries that didn’t reach the final.
You win the Eurovision Song Contest by scoring more points than any other song in that year’s Contest. No points are ‘more special’ than any others, four ‘single points; from the jury are worth the same as a single ‘four points’ from a public televote. All you have to do is collect the most, the Glass Microphone is yours and your broadcaster gets an incredibly short deadline to put on three massive live shows in just under a year.
You could leave you final score up to chance, but the many investments in at the acts, staging, videos, and promo tours are for one simple goal. To score as many points as possible. If that’s more than every other song, you win.
Denmak 2013 Emmelie de Forest
How Many Points Do You Need?
There’s no hard and fast number to target for victory at the Song Contest. Each country awards 116 points, and no one song can score more than 24 of those points under the current system. Can it be as simple as “half the maximum available to you plus one” enough?
Surprisingly, the answer is almost a yes. If you can earn this many points you are going to be within touching distance of first place. Every winning entry in the current ’50/50’ era (which started in 2009) has passed this mark except for 2011; although it should be noted that the second placed song in the last six years have also snuck over this winning line.
Paths To Victory, Margin of Victory
As a working hypothesis, this is close enough for me. Lisbon 2018 has 43 entries, which means there are 42 countries with a douze from their jury and a douze from their televote up for grabs for each song in the Grand Final…. this year’s ‘finish line’ is 505 points.
Now we know what we need… how do we get there?
A Genuine Game Of Two Halfs
A key change happened in 2016… the televote and the jury vote were no longer combined to generate the final score. Instead the juries and the televote of each country produced their own list of points, from 12, 10, 8, right down to a single point. Under this system a jury can easily award no points to a song while the televote awards it 12 points – previously the methods used to combine the two electorates meant that a strong televote could be held back by the weak jury score and the song score no points at all… see the United Kingdom’s last place jury score negating the first place in the televote going to Poland in 2014.
Skipping forwards to 2018… The Eurovision Song Contest, like any good European international sport, is a game played out over two legs – one on the Friday night with the jury scoring methodology, and one on Saturday with the televote methodology.
The important thing to remember is that it doesn’t matter which leg you score your points in, they are worth the same – there is no ‘jury points score double in the event of a tie’ rule. If you can get 400 of your 505 points from the jury, that’s a good strategy. And if you are reliant on the public to lift your song on Saturday, that’s acceptable as well.
Choosing Your Strategy
This leads nicely into the definition of a Eurovision entry being a ‘jury song’ or a ‘televote song’. The former is a song which is likely to score more points on from five hand-picked jurors given specific criteria, the latter more suited to the all or nothing approach of the public. And this is where the different ranking methods of the two legs come into play.
Relying On The Jury
A jury song strategy needs to consider that the jurors are asked to rank every single song from most favourite to least favourite. Every song will be considered. The combination of the rankings from a very small electorate of just five jurors means that a big part of a jury song’s strategy is not just to gather high rankings from across the board, but to avoid low scores – because only five jurors are used, one low score can pull down the points haul from a jury. Thanks to the new changes announced by the EBU (which Ellie has explained in great depth) the single juror drag will no longer pull a song out of the points, but a jury song is about maximising the return on Friday.
The goal here is to be ranked consistently high by all five jurors. While a juror’s final score sheet simply orders the songs, the EBU ask that jurors look at a number of criteria:
The vocal capacity of the performer.
The performance on stage.
The composition and originaitly of the song.
Overall impression of the act.
Simply put, your song should stand out in these areas. Delegations will be able to ask your own jurors from previous years how they used these criteria in judging songs to give you a sense of how everything is weighed in the room. It’s a clinical approach to a song, but the goal is to score as many points as possible.
The danger is that these criteria are not hard and fast. There’s no instructions on the weighting that should be applied to each. At the end of the show, the jurors provide one single ordered list. If you are looking to gather eights, tens and twelves from as many juries as possible, you’re going to need to get in the top three of every juror in a country. Thanks to the new exponential weighting, that’s likely to put you in first or second place.
Forty juries scoring you an average of ten points each is 400 points, eighty percent of the way towards the finish line. Forty juries scoring an average of six points is 240 points, not even half way. It is critically important to keep your average rating over the five jurors as high as possible, and to try to not lose the support of even a single juror. If you are leaning heavily on the jury for the majority of your points, you still cannot afford to be divisive with your song.
All In With The Public
Going for the televote audience is a much simpler play, but one with greater risk. Once all the songs have been played, you want your song to be the one that will make people pick up the phone and vote for it. Yes, tele voters can cast more than one vote (in fact, up to twenty times in 2018) and some may split their votes, but you need your song to be so strong that it captures the maximum number of votes from every audience member with a phone.
Where the jury vote allows for more than one strong song to pick up momentum, a strategy based around a televote song cannot afford to be second best. It needs to be the only one in consideration at the end of the night. There are no specific criteria for voters at home, it’s just ‘be memorable’.
Arguably thats true of the Jury vote as well, but the assumption is that the jurors will look beyond the ‘hype’ and focus on more artistic and technical matters. For a televote focused song you need to clearly answer the question “why would someone vote for this song over every other song?”
The real trick is to find a song that is utterly enchanting to the juries and is a slam-dunk winner within the four categories (vocals, performance, composition, impression); a song that has the strong hook, visual staging, and memorable recap to win over the telelvote; and has the story and media presence to push the artist forward and into the minds of both jurors and public as ‘the one’ when the time comes to vote.
Balance all three and you’ll watch scoring records fall (see ‘Fairytale’ and ‘Amar Pelos Dois’).
But a win is a win. Get to 505 points in Lisbon, grab the trophy, and musical immortality is yours.
Maximising Your Vote On The Night
Although the Jury and Televote shows are different shows with subtly different strategies, there are three key moments that can be worked on to maximise voting potential no matter the strategy you chose. These are the song, the recap, and the build up.
The obvious moment is during the three minutes of the song. This is arguably the moment where the performer can maximise their impact, where the visuals can come into play, and where points can be most easily won or lost.
A delegation will focus on this three minutes, but the key is not just to be impressive in your three minutes – the key is to be memorable in this three minutes so that once all the songs have been played their song is the one that stands out. It’s no good having everyone at a Eurovision party turning to each other and going “that’s nice” if they don’t pick up the phone or the jury form when the time comes to cast their votes.
That’s where having a strong recap clip of ten seconds comes in. This is the second moment. The most memorable image, lyric, pyro or camera move as the last nudge in the recap to remind everyone that this is the one they liked and should vote for is needed on the night.
But the real investment comes from making sure everyone knows to vote for your song before Te Duem strikes up before the show. The key moments are the ones a delegation make for themselves.
The Media Winning Strategy
The very essence of the Eurovision Song Contest is that it is a popularity contest. If you stride on stage and literally everyone has decided you are the chosen one, then that momentum will be captured to ensure the victory.
This is the media strategy part of winning the Song Contest – having the audience look down the songs and say ‘that’s it, that’s who’s going to win’ at the flag ceremony. People love voting for the winning song, so if you are portrayed as the winning song, the votes will follow.
The achivement to unlock is to have the mainstream media tell everyone on Saturday morning that your song is the best, that your performer has the story, that your country is hungry and ready to win. And those stories and editorial choices are generally made by people who arrive in the Press Centre on Friday afternoon, look around, and ask “so who’s going to win?”
Who will they ask? The embedded reporters from other large media outlets… who ask the specialist media outlets… who watch the larger online media publications… who watch the smaller online publications. Essentially there is a hierarchy, as the opinions bubble up the strongest opinions survive to become reality.
That’s where the importance of preview concerts, song reviews, online polls, reaction videos, and other community content comes into play. These small social bites may not reach the millions that a printed tabloid may reach, but they start the conversation and shape the Contest that the tabloids will eventually react to. If you’ve ever wondered how influencer marketing helps you win the Song Contest, just follow this chain back up to the mainstream media, and the moments before the Contest when the public have heard “that Luxembourg is going to win this year”.
Just A Note About The Odds
The fast moving media sometimes needs a barometer to measure the mood. While it may not be accurate and is open to manipulation and misrepresentation, it’s hard to argue with the bookies as a source of a story.
This is why the interest in ‘the odds’ has captured the attention of the Eurovision community over the last few years. Leading the odds, and how the odds change during key moments of the season (such as the song reveal, first live performance, first rehearsal, semi-final performance) is seen as both an influencer-by-proxy and something reliable to hang a quote on in the mainstream press.
As the morning of the Grand Final approaches, the odds tend to settle down into something resembling the final score table. Of course those odds are influenced by the odds themselves – get yourself installed as the favourite early in the season and you can stay riding high in a visible spot for much of the season.
Some Practical Examples
The Jury Song – Denmark and France
Two songs stand out for me as songs that will not only take the lion’s share of their points from the jury, but have a chance of gaining just enough from the public.
The first is Denmark. The Viking inspired ‘Higher Ground’ from Rasmussen ticks all the boxes of a strong jury song. Rasmussen can sing the roof off the auditorium, the staging mix of blues and dark colours fits perfectly with the ‘upturned boat’ ethos of the Florian Weidler’s (CHECK SP) latest staging, and the overall impression is one of power and believing in yourself.
The second is the French entry. It has a feeling of power, emotion, and connection. It does address a modern political issue, but so far the delegation has navigated this with taste and decency. The caveat to ‘Mercy’ is the low score from the jurors in the French National Final, but the make-up and criteria of the jurors at Eurovision are different
The issue for France is that jurors will only hear the song in competition once, and they won’t have time to re-evaluate their thoughts between Semi Final and Grand Final preferences. That said, knowing the jurors are provided with lyric translations means the power of Madame Monsieur could cut through in the jury room far easier than with the public. 400 points from the jury and another 100 from the public? The former looks achievable and the later is slowly building momentum outside of the normal Eurovision media bubble.
Both of these songs will be easy picks to land in the top picks of a jury, and the new weighting lends them even more distance from many of the more mainstream straightforward pop numbers.
The Televote Song – Finland and Israel
Again two songs stand out as likely to gather televote support with strong visuals, memorable lyrics, and an obvious hook when the voting window opens.
Finland’s Saara Aalto is a proven vote getter both in National Finals and in Talent Shows (even though the top step has eluded her). With a Gaga-esque approach to staging and visuals, plus her experienced team built up from The X Factor in the UK, she is unlikely to hold back. That might mean the vocals get a touch ragged on the night, but the promise of something ‘never seen before at Eurovision’ lines up her recap moment.
Israel may well have the visual impact, but its advantage may lie in the audible difference. A highly proficient looping artist, Netta charmed the audiences throughout the Israeli selection and will be hoping to do the same. Her challenge may be to achieve a qualification from the Semi Final. Once that happens the delegation should be able to build a social media story and get the world’s press on her side for Saturday.
Both acts still need some love from the other side of the televote/jury balance and this is where Israel and Finland will benefit from the new weighting system. There’s every chance that one juror per country is going to struggle to connect with ‘Monsters’ or ’Toy’ and place the songs in the lower reaches of their rankings. Last year that would likely wipe out any points from the countries, now it’s possible for one or two points to still score from the four remaining jurors. Forty juries with two points each means eighty points, and 425 points needed from the televote. Just under ten per country.
The technicality of the looper may give Israel the edge in getting the final jury points needed.
Social Influence Inside The Bubble – Bulgaria
Anyone who has been watching the Eurovision community scene will know that Bulgaria has been riding high. It may not have revealed Equinox’s ‘Bones’ until mid March, but the country was installed at the top of the bookies odds from early December on the strength of the delegation’s handling of ‘If Love Was A Crime’ and ‘Beatiful Mess’. That momentum was sustained through the first quarter of the year.
The key point of the reveal of the song was a potential danger point, but it was navigated well, the opinion of those that loved the song were magnified, and Bulgaria remained in the top tier of songs that continue to be discussed as winners.
Can it maintain that momentum through the first week of rehearsals? If the second wave of press arriving in the days before the Semi Final turn up and Bulgaria is still being touted as a potential by the community, then the strategy will have delivered. All that will be left is for Equinox’s promise to be noted by the juries and acknowledged by the media and for that promise to be converted to points.
Social Influence Outside The Bubble – Norway
There’s not a huge amount of love for Alexander Rybak’s ‘That’s How You Write A Song’ inside the Eurovision community. Rather than looking back to the sophistication of the last two victors, Norway’s 2018 entry feels more like a sequel to ‘Love Love Peace Peace’ than a response to a call for ‘real music’ at the Contest (which of course leads to the question of what is real music… the reaction to ‘Verb a Noun’ clearly defines it as a song that has fireworks and feelings.
The key to Rybak’s path to victory lies within ‘Love Love Peace Peace’. Go back and watch the live version of Edward af Silen’s classic, and pay close attention to the audience reaction when Rybak steps out for his violin solo. That love and recognition, that is what will drive the voting public.
Throw in his huge fan base and their ability to drive traffic to any published article – that makes him a financially attractive topic to write about in the mainstream press. Which his fans will share around the internet, creating a virtuous cycle of news feeding in on itself. And with that much noise, the public will assume that the media has got it right, and vote accordingly.
The Balanced Song – The Netherlands
And then there’s The Netherlands. It doesn’t have the technicality to stand out and top the jury vote, but there’s enough for the jury to mark him highly on the four categories. High but not top scoring could give him six points per jury. There’s 250 points from Friday night.
Can there be an average of six points per country in the televote as well? With a unique sound and visual look he stands out, theres a visual connection in the recap, and he’ll attract a fanbase that will pick up the phone and vote twenty times. The tricky part will be can he maintain the televote average from the Eastern European countries who have less of an affinity with US culture.
But another 250 points from the televote? It’s do-able.
Ari Ólafsson surely is a good vocalist but that may not be enough to conquer people at home following his simplistic performance aiming for world peace and empty of special effects.
Iceland is competing in the first semi-final as start number 2. The country is represented by Ari Ólafsson and his song Our Choice, which is written Þórunn Erna Clausen.
1 First rehearsal
2 How Ari Ólafsson was selected
3 Iceland at the Eurovision Song Contest
It could easily be named the peace anthem of this year’s Eurovision Song Contest and Ari’s outfit surely follows the theme. The singer is dressed in a white suit featuring a few red details and his hair is – as usual – impeccable. Obviously, because it was the very first set of rehearsals, Ari still has a few work to do with the camera angles but his also peaceful smile allows room to ignore that detail… For now.
The performance is extremely simple without special effects, besides the lights towards the end of the performance. Before the song’s bridge, the Icelandic singer throws his microphone stand to the floor and is then joined by his five backvocalists in the center of the stage to finish the song.
Vocally speaking, Ari was quite competent and besides a few issues during the first rehearsal, specifically during the big note, he was just fine. Despite that, it is hard to say Iceland will have an easy road in front of them, especially coming after Azerbaijan’s big performance.
How Ari Ólafsson was selected
Since 2006, Iceland has used Söngvakeppnin as their method of selecting Eurovision entries. This year, the final took place on the 3rd of March in the capital Reykjavík. Prior to the final, two semi-finals had found the six entries that were to battle it out.
In the super-final up against Dagur Sigurðsson, Ari won with 53% to 47%. The song was performed in Icelandic under the title Heim, which translates to ‘home’, in the semi-final, but in English in the final.
See alsoAri Ólafsson wins Söngvakeppnin 2018 and will represent Iceland at Eurovision
Iceland at the Eurovision Song Contest
With 30 appearances, Iceland is still waiting for their first Eurovision victory. Since their debut in 1986, the country has however twice finished second. First time in 1999 where Selma won the hearts of many Eurovision fans with All Out Of Luck, and again ten years later when Yohanna represented the small island asking Is It True?.
In recent years however, things has not been good. Iceland has not been in top 10 since Yohanna’s second place from 2009. Best result in the years that followed was a 15th place to Pollapönk’s No Prejudice. From 2015 to 2017, the country even missed the final three years in a row.
Standing on a futuristic mountain Aisel starts semi final one. Her show is directed by the legendary stage director Fokas Evaggelinos and it is a strong opener.
Azerbaijan is competing in the first semi-final as start number one. The country is represented by Aisel and her song X My Heart, where X stands for cross. The song is written by Greek legend Dimitris Kontopoulos and Tim Bran, and lyrics by Swedish Sandra Bjurman.
1 First rehearsal
2 How Aisel was selected
3 Azerbaijan at the Eurovision Song Contest
Eurovision 2018 has now officially begun as Azerbaijan came on stage as the very first country to rehearse. And what an opener. The stage is with blue and sparkling light and Aisel is laying alone on stage. She wakes up and starts to sing. In the beginning she sits later in the chorus she starts running around between five white stage props that is some sort of futuristic mountains. Smoke is added to make clouds. She is wearing a white dress with plenty of fabric to feed the wind machine. In the second verse four backing singers/dancers appear and they all stand on one of the futuristic mountains. At the end sparkling animation and flash lights set in and raise the performance to a higher level. Aisel herself seems to be a strong singer and has no problems hitting the right notes.
The performance is directed by the legendary stage director Fokas Evaggelinos, who has created some of the most iconic performances in the Eurovision past – among them Sergey Lazarev’s “You are the only one” in 2016, Farid Mammadov with the song “Hold me” in 2013 and Ani Lorak in 2008. And of course the two winners Helena Paparizou in 2005 and Dima Bilan in 2008. And this show is definitely in the same league.
The message behind the performance is according to a press release form the Azerbaijani delegation to communicate that if each of us believes in himself, you could be led to a higher top. The question is, will the viewers at home cath this. We believe they will.
How Aisel was selected
Back in November, Azeri broadcaster Ictimai broke the news, that they had internally selected 28 year old Aisel (Aysel Mammadova) to represent them at the 2018 Eurovision Song Contest.
The song was released in the beginning of March with mixed feelings from the fans. Some were disappointed as they had expected more from Azerbaijan, while others praised it, and placed it in the top of their 2018 reviews.
See alsoX My Heart – Aisel releases Eurovision entry for Azerbaijan
Azerbaijan at the Eurovision Song Contest
10 years anniversary, and the country never missed a final yet. Azerbaijan is one of the most successful countries at the Eurovision Song Contest. Elnur & Samir were first on stage to show Europe what Azerbaijan could offer, and with an 8th place, they set the tone.
Six out of the 10 entries from Azerbaijan ended in top 10, and the country so far won once, in 2011 with Ell & Nikki’s Running Scared. In recent years, the country has however seen a few disappointing results. In 2014, Dilara Kazimova came in as 22nd. Last year, Skeletons performed by Dihaj ended as 14th. To date, they are however still the only country that never failed to qualify for the final.
My dearest children, the rehearsal videos, have been taken away from me. That’s how I feel on the day before Eurovision kicks off. As if that wasn’t enough reason to be grumpy, the bad weather and the long queues everywhere further add to a bad mood.
Way too often we have had to catch an early plane. That wasn’t the case this year for our Eurovision departure. We left in the afternoon, and had time to have a relaxing morning before heading for the airport. That went smooth – aside from that we still forgot something, which was important to me. First reason to be grumpy. Second one came as we realised that flying around dinner timer, and only 45 minutes in transit before next flight meant no proper dinner. And at 2 in the night, there wasn’t anything open near our rented apartment.
Obviously we arrived at a bad time. Not just food wise. Despite it being very late, well passed midnight, there were quite a lot of other flights that had just landed. Coming outside the airport, we were met with a loooong queue for taxis – several hundred people stood before us. First chock, but luckily it only took half an hour before we were first in line. Today however, the queues continued basically no matter what we did – like 25 minutes in queue just to get a table to get the famous Portuguese Pastel de Nata at Pastéis de Belém. They were worth it though. Surprisingly enough, we saw no queues at the accreditation centre. But tomorrow when the press centre opens we will see a new queue…
Lisbon is crowded, and the Eurovision Song Contest of course adds to it, though today it was mainly Asian and Dutch tourists everywhere. The Dutch so many that you even find signs written in Portuguese, English and… Dutch.
Arriving early so that we have an entire day for sightseeing before rehearsals and press conferences kicks off is good. In particular if you come from the cold Scandinavia, and head South fully equipped with plenty of sun protection. When Salvador won last year, didn’t we all look forward to a sunny holiday? Well, these first days in Lisbon are cloudy, cold and rainy! It shouldn’t be possible to long for a Scandinavian spring, but it is!
But bad weather and long queues are not what makes me the most grumpy: At a very late notice, EBU decided to change working conditions for the press. We are now only allowed to publish a maximum of two minutes of rehearsal videos – per day! As if that wasn’t enough, the rules are very unclear. Some read them as, after the final, we can publish all our content – as long as they aren’t full videos. In order words, we can still record it all, and then once it is all over, we can cut a few seconds of each song, and upload. Others however read them as it must not be more than two minutes recorded from the same day – also after the contest. Which one, if any, is correct, we don’t know yet.
These new working conditions come at a very late moment. Many of us media have planned our coverage a while ago. When you work with a team of volunteers, and limited accreditations, you simply need to prepare ahead. When you want to make such changes, you communicate them out in good time – and you make the rules clear so everyone understands them the same.
For me, it’s like a big personal attack. I care deeply about our videos. It’s my speciality – and I take big pride in us being able to produce great video content. Not only filmed and edited well, but also produced in extra high 4K quality and even real 3D videos, which we were the only media to deliver. It was our niche – and videos were my child. What do I have left now? I don’t know…. My biggest fear is that the unclear rules mean that we won’t be producing our good quality videos whereas others will publish videos of lesser production value – and get away with it.
People not able to go to the Eurovision Song Contest will look for the videos – and they will want to see them, no matter what. If bad quality videos is all they find, they will have to watch those. Don’t the artists deserve high quality videos to get a lot of views? And don’t they deserve the extra attention the videos add to the contest?
Us International Media face a yearly evaluation. In order to deliver a good Eurovision coverage, we need accreditations. To get those, our numbers are calculated and evaluated by the EBU. Rehearsal videos from the contest are popular – and if we lose those, it is hard not to imagine that our figures will be significantly worse. In particular because this was communicated very late – meaning it is difficult to change our plan for our 2018 coverage. We won’t have much time to plan something else, something which could turn out to be equally popular.
When we decided how to cover the 2018 edition, we selected the right people for it. We made sure that we gave our limited accredtiations to the right people. Well, it’s too late to chance this when the information comes the day before we start our work – and a long time after we had to decide who should be a part of our coverage here in Lisbon. Not everyone is equally good at everything and we can’t just easily assign people to other tasks assuming all goes well.
Anyway, rehearsals and press conferences are about to start soon. Hopefully my bad mood will go away. But for now, I will at least be grumpy for a few hours more.
But, from tomorrow we’ll give you the best coverage possible! Stay tuned.
This year’s Serbian representatives, Sanja Ilić and Balkanika, presented unexpectedly the English version of their song at a promotional event in Belgrade two days ago. Yesterday, they also released the video for “New Children” which is the title of the English version.
The English version of the Serbian entry has been arranged in the style of reggae. The message behind the song is that new and modern generations are able to change the world into a better and more beautiful place. In order to do so they just need our support so their knowledge and experiences can prevail.
The Serbian producer, songwriter and artist Luke Black has penned the English lyrics.
A group of six persons will perform the Serbian song Nova deca on the stage in Lisbon. They are three female vocalists (Danica Krstić, Nevena Paripović i Iva Banićević), one male vocalist (Mladen Lukić), a percussionist (Aleksandar Sale Radulović) and a flute player (Ljubomir Dimitrijević).
The Serbian team will wear the costumes which have been designed by Serbian fashion designer Nevena Ivanovic (Neodesign), while the choreography is Milan Gromilić’s work. Gorčin Stojanović, who created Marija Šerifović’s winning Eurovision performance in Helsinki back in 2007, will be responsible for the staging.
Sanja Ilić and Balkanika will perform third in the second semi-final on May 10th. In the video below you can listen to the English version of this year’s Serbian entry.