John Lundvik and Benjamin Ingrosso straight to the final in Melodifestivalen 2018’s first heat

John Lundvik and Benjamin Ingrosso straight to the final in Melodifestivalen 2018’s first heat

It was hard to predict the result in first heat of Melodifestivalen where the voters did what Christer Björkman wouldn’t do, reject Kamferdrops. At the end, four of tonight’s songs are still in the run to represent Sweden in Lisbon.

Two direct spots in the final of Melodifestivalen 2018 and two second chances. That’s what is on stake in each of the four preliminary heats. Tonight, the first one took place. It offered a good variety of songs, a mix of well known established names and those hoping for this to be their big break-through – and some songwriters who have tried it all before.

Straight to the final went John Lundvik and Benjamin Ingrosso.

Up for a second chance are Rainada and Sigrid Bernson.


  • 1 Kamferdrops faced disqualification
  • 2 The songs
  • 3 The show
  • 4 The result
  • 5 Impressive recent success

Kamferdrops faced disqualification

Today, the news hit that the song Solen Lever Kvar Hos Dig performed in tonight’s heat by Norwegian Kamferdrops actually broke the rules about it not having been performed or published before EBU’s September 2017 deadline. Swedish media wrote how the song, although performed by another artist, had been available at MySpace and YouTube for eight years, and on several occasions been performed at various events.

It’s a clear break of SVT’s rules, and should it win Melodifestivalen and be submitted to the Eurovision Song Contest, also of EBU’s rules. Christer Björkman first talked about that the song might be in a greyzone, if it was a third part like the record company who gave it to the other artist eight years ago, and that the songwriters and Kamferdrops were unaware of it, and as such didn’t intend to break the rules.

After looking into it, SVT came to the conclusion that the first singer was a demo singer and that he alone was responsible for spreading the song. As nor the current singer nor the songwriter took part in spreading the song, it will not be disqualified.

Anna Book was in 2016 disqualified as another artist had taken part with it, in another language, in the Moldovan selection two years prior. Without reaching the TV shows, the song was only available online.

In 2011, Anders Fernette was disqualified as the songwriter had previously made the song available on MySpace.

This time, Swedish broadcaster SVT, is extremely proud to have Kamferdrops taking part. Whether or not that played a part in the decision not to disqualify her, we can only speculate about. It seems quite obvious that Eurovision Song Contest’s Reference Group would have disqualified the song as they don’t bend the rules nearly as much as Christer does. Did the Swedes really dislike her performance that much, or did they perhaps also protest against Christer’s decision?

Anyway, let’s take a closer look at tonight’s first heat of Melodifestivalen 2018:

The songs

1. Sigrid BernsonPatrick Swayze (Andrej Kamnik, Josefin Glenmark, Peg Parnevik, Sigrid Bernson)

First up was Sigrid Bernson who was first joined by one male dancer, then eventually by four dancers on this up-tempo pop song; two male and two female. Sigrid is casually in short denim shorts, a short white top and a yellow jacket, the dancers are in black and yellow. If you are in doubt, she looks like your neighbour’s high school daughter. 

2. John LundvikMy Turn (Anna-Klara Folin, John Lundvik, Jonas Thander)

We continue with John Lundvik who sings a ballad how he ain’t gonna miss that it is his turn now. He is all alone on a dark stage, with rather discreet lightning. Dressed in a white suit, and a spotlight shining like a sun directly on him, he certainly can be seen though. He starts out at a piano, and gets up during the song. A curtain of pyrotechnics are added at the end of the song similar to what the likes of both Emmelie de Forest and Anja have used at the Eurovision Song Contest.

3. RenaidaAll The Feels (Laurell Barker, Jon Hällgren, Peter Barringer, Lukas Hällgren)

Partly alone on stage, and partly joined by six male dancers, this energetic song certainly is a contrast to John’s ballad. Ranaida is dressed in black and orange, which are also the two colours in her hair, while her dancers are all in orange. Orange is the new black, or what? Even her songwriters are dressed in orange.

4. Edward BlomLivet På En Pinne (Edward Blom, Thomas G:son, Stefan Brunzell, Kent Olsson)

And now to something completely different. Edward starts alone on stage, but is eventually joined by four dancers dressed up as grapevines, cheese, cake and a lobster! It is quirky, colourful and it leaves the viewers wondering whether to laugh or cry, but one thing is sure, it stands out – and it makes you realise that Edward doesn’t take everything too serious. Pictures of champagne and a sour cake is shown on screen while Edward himself dance around with a gigantic fork. At the end of the show, the dancers transformed to four tables with waitresses serving champagne.

5. Kikki DanielssonOsby Tennessee (Sulo Karlsson, Kikki Danielsson)

Previous Eurovision winner Kikki is back. Forget Norway’s La’ Det Swinge as now she takes you on a trip to the States on this country ballad. She is joined by a band of six, and a nice, comfortable atmosphere is set with Kikki is wearing a white “cowboy” jacket to further set the mood of the song. She starts out “alone”, with the band hidden, until she joins them and sit on a chair in front of them. At the end of the song she gets up again turning the back to the audience.

6. KamferdropsSolen Lever Kvar Hos Dig (Herbert Trus, Danne Attlerud, Martin Klaman, Krstoffer Tømmerbakke, Erik Smaaland, Kamferdrops)

Get ready for a pink show! She is wearing her colourful unicorn mask, which has become her signature thing. She starts out laying down on the stage, gets up and we see four pink trees. A non-epic saxophone player and a dancer joined her on stage. Later we see an illusionist show where her legs are separated from her torso, while the saxophone is on fire. Suddenly there are five of her at the end of the song, and she found herself among the audience! An LSD trip gone wrong?

7. Benjamin IngrossoDance You Off (Benjamin Ingrosso, MAG, Louis Schoorl, K Nita)

If you miss some disco, this is the entry for you. Benjamin is dressed in black trousers, and a black sparkling jacket.  Several times, it appears like he wants to take off the jacket, but for some reason it stays on during the entire show. Hang on, Michael Jackson just called, he wants his moves back. Several elements appear to be highly inspired by Don’t Stop ‘Til You Get Enough.

The show

Melodifestivalen’s first heat kicked off at 20:00 and lasted one and a half hour. Host of the show was David Lindgren. He has taken part three times in the competition so he knows what it is like to be one of the nervous participants waiting to find out if their song was good enough.

The show kicked off with a group of dancers in black and white sports clothes with the text Mello (slang for Melodifestivalen, EDT.) on it. After a while, the host comes out, surrounded by the dancers he sings the song One Together.

Fan Freddy was introduced in the beginning of the show. A fan dressed in a glitter jacket. We saw him later on in green room, and later he tried to take over the host role with his “Puss cam”. We’ll probably see him again in future episodes.

Ebbot was interval act interpreting the well known schlager song Sånt är Livet from 1961.

The result

In usual Melodifestivalen style two rounds of voting took place. After first round, two songs were eliminated as they finished 6th and 7th. After the second round, it was time to find the two direct spots to the final and the two who gets a second chance, and who ended up on the sad 5th place just outside the fun.

Straight to the finalJohn Lundvik
Straight to the finalBenjamin Ingrosso
To Second Chance roundRenaida
To Second Chance roundSigrid Bernson
5th placeEdward Blom
6th placeKamferdrops
7th placeKikki Danielsson

Impressive recent success

With a total of six victories, Sweden is moving in on record holding Ireland’s seven wins. With Sweden’s success in recent years, and Ireland’s lack there of, it seems just a matter of time before the two countries will be equal.

In the past four years, the country has not finished worst than a 5th place. That’s impressive, and it just gets better if you look aside Robin Stjernberg’s 14th position in 2013. The two years before that, the country came 1st and 3rd. Yep, pressure is on for whoever wins the 2018 Melodifestivalen final, which will be held on the 10th of March.

While waiting for their 2018 entry to be selected, let’s take a look at Robin Bengtsson’s I Can’t Go On from last year. This time you get it in a special Full Stage View where you can see how the backdrop, the colours, and the lights complimented the song.

Categories: Eurovisionary


Serbia: running order and date for Beovizija 2018 announced

Serbia: running order and date for Beovizija 2018 announced

Tijana Bogićević (Serbia 2017)

Yesterday RTS – Serbian National Public Broadcaster – held the running draw for Serbia’s national selection “Beovizija”. They also announced that the competition will take place on February 20th. As interval acts, several former representatives will perform.

The draw was held during RTS’ popular afternoon tv-show “Beogradska Hronika” with participation of Serbia’s 2008 Eurovision representative, Jelena Tomašević, and Serbian HoD Anja Rogljić.

Beovizija 2018 running order

1. SevdahBABY – Hajde da igramo sada
2. Rambo Amadeus i Beti Đorđević – Nema te
3. Maja Nikolić – Zemlja čuda
4. Srđan Marjanović i Emil – Bar da znam
5. Ivan Kurtić – Ni sunca ni meseca
6. Sanja Ilić i „Balkanika” – Nova deca
7. Koktel Balkan – Zato
8. Boris Režak – Vila
9. Lana i Aldo – Jača sam od svih
10. Dušan Svilar – Pod krošnjom bagrema
11. Igor Lazarević – Beži od mene
12. Saška Janković – Pesma za tebe
13. Lord – Samo nek se okreće
14. Danijel Pavlović – Ruža sudbine
15. BASS – Umoran
16. Osmi vazduh i drugari – Probudi se
17. Biber i DJ Niko Bravo – Jutros (Svatovi)

Anja Rogljić explained that several Serbian artists, who previously represented their country at Eurovision, will perform during the voting break. They will sing some of the biggest Eurovision hits accompanied by the live orchestra.

She added that the songs from this year’s national final will be revealed starting from February 6th on RTS morning TV-show. Rogljić also said that all 17 songs will be released on a YouTube channel, but she didn’t explained when and whether all the song will be released all together at once.

The winner will be chosen by a 50-50 mixture of televote and jury vote. The jury consists of five members.

Beovizija 2018 will take place on February 20th in the Sava Centar in Belgrade. The venue is traditionally the place where the Serbian national final use to be held and many Eurovision fans probably still remember that Sava Centar previously was used as the press centre for the Eurovision Song Contest 2008. This year’s competetion is the first edition of Beovizija to be held since 2009.

While waiting for their 2018 entry, let’s take a look at last year’s In Too Deep by Tijana Bogićević.

Categories: Eurovisionary


Did Greece reject the Cypriot Eurovision entry?

Did Greece reject the Cypriot Eurovision entry?

The Cypriot broadcaster consider it their strongest entry ever, while Greek media reports that their broadcaster turned down that exact same song. The case bring back memories to when Denmark did very well with an SVT rejected song, although that didn’t include the same drama we now see in Greece. 

The other day, Cyprus presented Eleni Foureira as their 2018 Eurovision participant. She is Greek, and quite a big name in Greece. Her song Fuego, is set to be released in February, but we know that it is written by Swedish born with Greek origin Alex Papaconstantinou, who has written Eurovision entries for both Greece, Cyprus and Azerbaijan in the past.

Did Alex first approach Greek broadcaster ERT with the song, that is now set to represent Cyprus, and did they turn him down? That’s what Greek media STAR TV claim in their Sti Folia Ton Kou Kou daytime show.

Aside from mentioning that things appear to be rather chaotic in relation to the upcoming Greek national final, reporter Giannis Poulopoulos mentioned that ERT turned down the song Fuego performed by Eleni Foureira, and written by Alex Papaconstantinou – the same song that Cyprus now has high expectations for.

Did ERT reject Eleni – with or without Fuego?

Cyprus made an early agreement with songwriter Alex Papaconstantinou, but did that agreement include Fuego? That’s a bit unclear at the moment. After he signed with CyBC, Greek broadcaster asked record labels to submit entries for a Greek national selection. Eleni Foureira’s name was mentioned to ERT, that she confirmed herself.

Eurovision is a painful story for me, all right … whoever represents us, I hope will get a great result … it really does not make sense because it’s all done for some reason! ERT might have a reason for not choosing me this year. Does not matter for me anymore.

Eleni Foureira to Macedonian TV

The question is now, why did the broadcaster turn her down, and did they also reject the song, which will now be the Cypriot entry? Cyprus first opted for a national selection, but later changed to an international selection. ERT says that Eleni’s label PANIK proposed an internal selection for Greece as well, and that they heard no song.

If the Greek broadcaster is right, Eleni was probably rejected because she only wanted to be internally selected for Eurovision, and not take part in any national final. Maybe she has bad memories of 2010 where she came second in the Greek national final? No matter where the truth is hidden, the parts are drifting further and further apart as they are now bashing each other in public, and the last chapter in the story clearly hasn’t been written yet.

SVT rejected Danish top entry

It wouldn’t be the first time a broadcaster reject entries, which then ends up representing another country instead. Do you remember the Danish entry from 2010 In A Moment Like This performed by Chanée og N’evergreen? It won the Danish national selection Melodi Grand Prix, and later finished 4th at the Eurovision Song Contest. At the same contest, Sweden was represented by Anna Bergendahl who failed to bring her country into the final of contest, for the first and only time.

The Danish entry In A Moment Like This, written by the three Swedes Eurovision veteran Thomas G:son, Henrik Sethsson and Erik Bernholm. While it was strong enough to win the Danish final, and finish 4th at the Eurovision Song Contest, it wasn’t strong enough to even take part in the Swedish national selection, Melodifestivalen. The Swedish broadcaster SVT simply rejected it.

While waiting for the Cypriot entry, whether it was rejected by ERT or not, let’s remind ourselves of the 2010 Danish entry and wonder why it wasn’t good enough for Melodifestivalen? Below you find a short video clip from an acoustic version performed at a Eurovision press conference.

Categories: Eurovisionary


Melodifestivalen 2018 kicks off – listen to the first songs

Melodifestivalen 2018 kicks off – listen to the first songs

On Saturday, many fans will tune in to SVT as Sweden kicks off its national final season. The Swedish broadcaster released today snippets of the songs competing in the first heat. Do they have a potential winner among them?

It is always a big thing when the first clips of songs are released in Sweden. Will Sweden conquer the national final season right from their beginning, or will we get a dull start, which will make some of us look elsewhere for the hidden gems?

On Saturday, the first heat of Melodifestivalen kicks off. Seven songs will compete for two direct spots to the final, and two who will get a second chance in an extra heat.

It will be a song about Patrick Swayze, which opens, and the heat also offers a return from former Eurovision winner Kikki Danielsson, and what about Benjamin Ingrosso, who represented Sweden at the Nordic Junior Eurovision in 2006, and came 5th in last year’s Swedish final. Is 2018 going to be his year? Or will it be Norwegian Kamferdrops, who will run away with the Swedish Eurovision ticket?

There is so much to look forward to on Saturday, and you can start preparing yourself by listening to the snippets released today.

Categories: Eurovisionary


Cyprus: Eleni Foureira to sing “Fuego” at Eurovision in Lisbon

Cyprus: Eleni Foureira to sing “Fuego” at Eurovision in Lisbon

Eleni Foureira said YES to the Cypriot Broadcaster (RIK) and will travel to Lisbon this May. Alex Papaconstantinou, the composer of the Cypriot entry this year, wanted a famous and experienced singer for his song. Eleni Foureira was asked as third option – and an agreement was made. 

After cancelling the whole procedure of the Cypriot National Final, RIK approached the 2005 Eurovision winner Helena Paparizou as well as Tamta. Both of them refused the honorable proposal, despite the fact that according to them, the song which Alex Papaconstantinou composed is a super dance hit. The third singer the broadcaster then approached was Eleni Foureira (Alex’s personal choice). She, with her company, PANIK Entertainment, agreed and are now ready to represent Cyprus in Lisbon.

This is not the first time Eleni Foureira shows desire for the Eurovision stage.  In 2010 she came close to represent Greece together with Manos Pyrovolakis and their song Noah’s Ark, but they ended second in the National Final.

In 2013, Eleni Foureira collaborated with Ruslana in the Greek National Final. They sang a new version of Wild Dances. Eleni, apart from a singer is a very good dancer too. Last year she was one of the judges in the Greek edition of So You Think You Can Dance, so we can probably expect some nice moves on the stage in Lisbon in May.

The Cypriot entry is titled Fuego and people of RIK consider it ‘the strongest song they have ever sent to the Eurovision Song Contest’. We will not get to hear until the beginning of March. First they want to film the video for the song.

Notable Swedish director Sacha Jean Baptiste will be the director of the Cypriot entry this year. Sacha has directed more than 10 songs in the contest the last three years. Her biggest success being last year’s Bulgarian entry Beautiful Mess, which ended up in the second place.

Cyprus at the Eurovision Song Contest

Cyprus has participated in the Eurovision Song Contest 34 times since making its debut in 1981. Since then they have missed the contest only in 1988, 2001 and 2014.The country’s best result is three fifth-place finishes, in 1982 with Anna Vissi, 1997 with Hara & Andreas Constantinou and 2004 with Lisa Andreas.

Since the introduction of semi-finals things have been a little tough for Cyprus who failed to reach the final four years in a row from 2006 to 2009, and again in 2011 and 2013.

After their return to the contest in 2015, they managed to reach the final three years in a row. Last year, Cyprus was represented by Hovig and his Gravity, which reached the final but finished 21st.

This will be the 4th time in the Eurovision’s history, that Cyprus will be represented by a Greek artist ( after 1986, 1989 and 2006). Will Eleni Foureira bring the first victory for Cyprus at the Eurovision Song Contest?

In the video below you can watch last year’s Cypriot entry in a special Full Stage View where you can study how the lights, the backdrop and the camera movements are being used to compliment the performance.

Categories: Eurovisionary


Points in Czech Republic national final – this is how convincing Mikolas Josef won

Points in Czech Republic national final – this is how convincing Mikolas Josef won

Was it a tough competition or a rather convincing victory for Mikolas Josef in the Czech national selection, Eurovision Song CZ? The split points awarded from jury as well as the public has been revealed, and can further be combined with Facebook polls.

When Czech Republic the other day announced that Mikolas Josef won the national selection, we knew he had won the international jury voting, and was the combined winner overall as well. The actual points, and the split voting has now been made public. Let’s take a look.


  • 1 International Jury Voting
  • 2 Online App Voting
  • 3 Final Result
  • 4 Polls on the official Facebook page

International Jury Voting

Each of the members of the jury gave 8 points to their favourite, then 6 to the second, and 4 to 1 to the rest. In total every juror gave out 24 points and the maximum that one song could receive was 80 points. From the total amount of points received a TOP 6 was put together with the same points (8, 6, 4, 3, 2 and 1). That made 50 % of the final result.

RankArtist – SongPoints received from the juryFinal points
1Mikolas Josef – Lie To Me688
2Debbi – High On Love546
3Pavel Callta – Never Forget344
4Doctor Victor – StandUP303
5Eva Burešová – Fly272
Eddie Stoilow – We Rule This World272

According to the official statement from the broadcaster, Mikolas Josef has received the top mark (8 points) from 7 out of 10 members of the international jury. The biggest surprise for the fans was the low score for Eva Burešová. Her entry Fly was expected to finish high at juries.

Online App Voting

Czech broadcaster decided to work together with the EBU on running the online voting, and also promoted the official Eurovision App. Through the app, the public had the chance to send only 1 vote per person. Everybody was able to cast the vote, but only the votes sent from the Czech Republic were counted in as the final result. In the end, close to 16,000 unique votes were received, which is not a bad number at all. Consider also that the public needed the app to send their votes for free.

Out of those 16,000 only the approximate number of the first two places were revealed. Mikolas Josef has received almost half of the votes sent through the app, around 7,000. The runner-up then received only half of the number of the votes for Mikolas, approximately 3,500.

RankArtist – SongNumber of votes receivedFinal points
1Mikolas Josef – Lie To Me7,000 (43,8 %)8
2Eva Burešová – Fly3,500 (21,9 %)6
3Pavel Callta – Never ForgetN/A4
4Debbi – High On LoveN/A3
5Eddie Stoilow – We Rule This WorldN/A2
6Doctor Victor – StandUPN/A1

The TOP 6 again received the same points as in the international jury voting. As well as in the jury voting, this public vote made up the second half of the final result. In the case of a tie, in the end, the public vote would be the one who decide.

See alsoIt's Ryan O'Shaughnessy for Ireland at Eurovision 2018

Final Result

Now combine those two tables, and we get the following result – and a quite convincing victory for Mikolas Josef.

RankArtist – SongInternational Jury VotingOnline App VotingTotal
1Mikolas Josef – Lie To Me8816
2Debbi – High On Love639
3Eva Burešová – Fly268
4Pavel Callta – Never Forget448
5Eddie Stoilow – We Rule This World224
6Doctor Victor – StandUP314

Eva and Pavel finished both with 8 points, but Eva was better at public voting. The same case is for Eddie Stoilow and Doctor Victor who both received 4 points, but Eddie Stoilow scored higher in the online app voting. From the table above, we can clearly see that Mikolas was a favourite, not only for the public but also for the international jury.

Talking about the rest of the participants, it is not as clear as in the case of Mikolas. The opinion of juries and public was the same only for Pavel and Eddie Stoilow. The rest divided the other positions and made up the final results. The biggest difference may be seen with Eva who was last in the international jury voting, but the public obviously loved her and put her in a second place. In the end, the combination of both was enough only for a third place.

Polls on the official Facebook page

Česká Televize also prepared three polls on their official Eurovision page on Facebook. In these polls, fans should choose the best voice out of the six finalists. The polls were divided into three duels – the boys, the girls and the groups.

The poll between Mikolas and Pavel had 524 users who voted. In the group poll between Eddie Stoilow and Doctor Victor voted less – 452 Facebook users. Poll No.3 between Eva and Debbi attracted the highest number of people – 636. The results from these numbers may be seen in the table below. (Note: The percentage in brackets is taken from each of those duel polls.)

RankArtist – SongNumber of votes received
1Eva Burešová – Fly496 votes (78 %)
2Eddie Stoilow – We Rule This World352 votes (78 %)
3Mikolas Josef – Lie To Me340 votes (65 %)
4Pavel Callta – Never Forget184 votes (35 %)
5Debbi – High On Love140 votes (22 %)
6Doctor Victor – StandUP100 votes (22 %)

This poll voting was clearly won by Eva Burešová, but we need to take into consideration that those results come from the duels. So it is obvious that the winners of those three polls took the first three places. But it shows that the quality of the voices is most equal in the boys’ category with Mikolas Josef and Pavel Callta.

Take a look at the video for Mikolas Josef’s Eurovision entry Lie To Me. He will represent the Czech Republic in Lisbon in the first half of the first semi-final on Tuesday the 8th of May.

Categories: Eurovisionary

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