The second Semi Final in France’s Eurovision pre-selection took place tonight, the final 9 songs where presented in front of a live studio audience, with 4 entries advancing to next weekend’s Live National Final.
After last week’s successful and well received show, we were treated to a new batch of songs by 9 more Eurovision hungry artists. The same as last week, we had the Francophone Jury including Amir Haddad (Eurovision 2016) giving constructive criticism and advice on what is needed/expected of the French representative at Eurovision. While also getting the input of an International jury with the Heads of delegation of Sweden, Italy and Belarus.
The show started with a recap of the qualifying songs from last week, in that recap Lisandro really stands out and has gotten stuck in my head.
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There was no hanging around as the show started with Lucie. Again all artists sang a cover song, including a past Eurovision winning song, 1965’s Poupée de cire, poupée de son. The postcards gave us a glimpse into the life of each artist; and the hard work they have put in to the production of their entries.
Last week 4 songs made it to the National final, and four more made it through to the final from tonight’s show. Below were the entries in tonight’s semi-final with qualifiers in bold:
Un jour j’ai rêvé
Rêve de gamin
Tu me manques
June The Girl
Madame Monsieur came first in tonight’s show, with the top four results’ as shown above. Is it a two-horse race between Madame Monsieur and Lisandro Cuxi? Or do you think it is an open field? Let us know who you want to win next week’s National Final. Stay with us as we reach the final Destination, Eurovision!
Tonight the first heat of the Hungarian national selection A Dal took place in Budapest. Ten songs were competing for six spots in the semi-finals. The qualifiers have been determined by a joint decision of the four-member jury and the televoters.
The final will take place on February 24
1 The songs
2 The show
3 The results
4 Hungary at the Eurovision Song Contest
01 Living Room – Kirakat élet: The band Living Room is performing a modern acoustic mid-tempo pop song. It’s a real earworm, should do well in the charts. The LED backdrop is very colourful for this show opener. The jury is quite happy about the performance.
02 Tamás Vastag – Ne hagyj reményt: Tamás was one of the superfinalists of A Dal 2013, but lost against ByeAlex in the final televoting round. His current entry Ne hagyj reményt is a nice mid-tempo pop song and Tamás is perfect vocally as usual. The lyrics of the song are appearing in the background but the jury thinks it’s not fitting to the song at all.
03 Noémo – Levegőt!: The band Noémo is next on stage with a calm and relaxing but still very modern underground ballad which they call a „levander pop song”. There are some vocal issues that need to be fixed according to the jury members.
04 Leander Kills – Nem szól harang: A very powerful and dramatic rock song with a strong message about the importance of patriotism. Leander – dressed like a priest – is bringing us excellent vocals again, like at his previous attempts in A Dal. The jury is very enthusiastic about the performance, also the televoters give high points to the band.
05 Zsolt Süle – Zöld a május: It’s Zsolt’s first appearance on the stage of A Dal. He is performing a very simple and old fashioned acoustic ballad. It would be excellent for a movie soundtrack too. Jury members like this very much, Judit and Misi both giving the highest possible 10 points for it.
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06 Gabi Knoll – Nobody To Die For: Gabi is performing a modern and mystical electro-pop entry. On the stage we see an LED disco ball, a plastic bull and a unique instrument Gabi is playing on. The jury is highlighting Gabi’s perfect vocals.
07 Fourtissimo feat. Markanera – Kisnyuszi a kalapban: The only electroswing song in the field this year is full of fun. Already the song title (’Little rabbit in the hat’ in English) makes us smile, so does the whole performance. However the jury is very unhappy about the band’s unprofessional dance routine.
08 Ceasefire X – Satellites: This song is a simple, emotional and catchy pop ballad. Bence, the singer is delivering us some great vocals. Also the background dancers did a great job according to the jury.
09 Viktor Király – Budapest Girl: It’s already Viktor’s third attempt at A Dal. This time he is performing a radio friendly modern pop ballad dedicated to the vibrating nightlife of Budapest and the beauty of Hungarian girls. It is getting the highest televoting scores of the night.
10 Patikadomb – Jó szelet!: Three-member boyband Patikadomb is one of the newcomers of this year’s A Dal. They perform a mid-tempo pop-rock song with a classic band staging and some spectacular camera tricks. The jury has some words about the lead singer’s vocal problems.
For the first time in A Dal’s history a former Eurovision participant, Freddie hosted the show alongside with Krisztina Rátonyi. The jury consisted of four members: Károly Frenreisz (rock musician), Judit Schell (actress), Misi Mező (singer) and Miklós Both (songwriter). In the first round each jury member awarded scores from 1 to 10 points to the songs. The televoters were the “fifth member of the jury”, the average score of their votes from 1 to 10 points have been added to the jury points. The five songs with the highest number of points in this round have directly qualified to the semi-finals, In the second round the remaining five acts were fighting for one last ticket in the semis, awarded by only the televoters. During the final televoting period an interval act has been performed by Hungarian rock legend János Kóbor and the band Balkan Fanatik.
Leander Kills – 44 points
Zsolt Süle – 44 points
Viktor Király – 43 points
Ceasefire X – 41 points
Gabi Knoll – 40 points
Noémo – 39 points
Tamás Vastag – 36 points
Living Room – 36 points
Fourtissimo feat. Markanera – 33 points
Patikadomb – 33 points
The Top 5 automatically qualified to the semi-finals. In the second televoting round Tamás Vastag has been saved by the viewers at home.
Hungary at the Eurovision Song Contest
Hungary debuted at Eurovision in 1994 in Dublin. Friderika Bayer’s 4th position from that year is still the country’s best ever result at the contest. After a longer period of withdrawals and returns, since 2011 Hungary is participating at Eurovision every year. In 2012 broadcaster MTVA has launched the new national selection format A Dal which has become quickly popular and also successful. Since their 2011 return, Hungary has qualified to the Grand Final every single time, that means a series of seven qualifications in a row, three times (2013, 2014 and 2017) they finished even in the Top 10 of the Grand Final. Last year Joci Pápai got the honour to fly the Hungarian flag in Kyiv. He finished in 8th position with 200 points in the Grand Final. You can watch his performance of Origo right below!
Former Montenegrin Eurovision participant Rambo Amadeus is up for a come back. That we just learned as Serbian Television (RTS) revealed the acts who will participate in Beovizija 2018, the show to choose their Eurovision Song Contest entrant for this year.
Beovizija 2018 will be a return to a national selection after years with an internal selection. The list of participants includes a former Eurovision participant and quite some former national finalists. This year’s edition will be held in the second half of February. The actual date will be announced later.
In total, broadcaster RTS had recieved 75 potential entries for the 2018 Eurovision Song Contest. They have been cut down to the list, which you find below.
The potential contestants for this year, have been confirmed by RTS as:
Ivan Kurtić – Neither Sun, Nor Moon (Ni sunca, ni meseca) Rambo Amadeus and Beti Đorđević – You’re Gone (Нема те) Boris Režak – Fairy (Vila) Danijel Pavlović – The Rose of Destiny (Ruža sudbine) Sanja Ilić and Balkanika – Our Children (Naša deca) Srđan Marijanović – If Only I knew (Bar da znam) Osmi Vazduh and Friends – Wake Up (Probudi se) Dušan Svilar – Under the Locust Tree (Pod krošnjom bagrema) Saška Janković – Song for You (Pesma za tebe) Biber and DJ Niko Bravo – This Morning(Wedding Guests) (Jutros (Svatovi)) Koktel Balkan – Because (Zato) BASS – Tired (Umoran) Lana and Aldo – The Strongest of All (Jača sam od svih) SevdahBABY – Let’s Dance Now (Hajde da igramo sada) Maja Nikolić – Wonderland (Zemlja čuda) Lord – Just Let It Turn (Samo nek se okreće) Igor Lazarević – Get Away From Me (Beži od mene)
RTS makes aware of that they have the right to change the artist and/or the song, should there be any issues with either of them.
Rambo Amadeus represented Montenegro in 2012 with Euro Neuro. Dušan Svilar participated in Beovizija (Beosong) in 2013 and came 2nd in the final. Boris Režak is from Bosnia and he participated in the Bosnian-Herzegovinian national selection in 2001 where he ended 5th. Maja Nikolić also has quite some national final experience as she participated in Beovizija four times before: 2003, 2006, 2007 and 2013.
Well known songwriters
Maja’s song for 2018 is written by Vladimir Graić, who wrote the Serbian 2007 winner, Molitva. Danijel Pavlović’s song is witten by Marina Tucaković. She has composed the lyrics of the Serbian entries for Eurovision Song Contest 2010 Ovo Je Balkan, 2012 Nije ljubav Stvar and also 2013 Ljubav Je Svuda.
Danijel’ song is produced by Marko Kon, who represented Serbia in 2009 with Cipela. Marko has also produced Igor Lazarević’s song this year.
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Serbia At The Eurovision Song Contest
Serbia has appeared as an independent nation at Eurovision, ten times. They won with their very first entry Molitva by Marija Šerifović.
Since then they have qualified to the final, six out of nine times. Their second best result came in 2012 with Nije ljubav stvar by Željko Joksimović, when they finished third.
Last year, having opened the second semifinal, Tijana Bogićević and In Too Deep, failed to reach the final. Enjoy her performance below.
10 songs with an overall higher quality than seen in recent years. That’s what the Danish broadcaster promised. At a glamorous press conference today, the Danish national finalists were presented. One of them will be given the chance of changing Denmark’s lack of success lately.
For fans, today’s press conference held at DR’s headquarter in Copenhagen, was quite glamorous. Several former participants were there to present this year’s acts – and to wish them good luck. The list included triple Eurovision participants Kirsten Siggaard and Søren Bundgaard (1984, 1985 and 1988), Gry Johansen (1983), and also Jørgen de Mylius and Keld and Hilda Heick.
Melodi Grand Prix 2018 participants
The acts will compete in the national final which will be held in Gigantium, Aalborg on the 10th of February 2018. Annette Heick and Johannes Nymark will once again host the show.
A few names, such as Ditte Marie and Swedish Albin Fredy have taken part before, but most interesting name is Sannie. She had a big international hit, under the name Whigfield, in the 90’s with the song Saturday Night.
Ditte Marie – Riot (Written by Lise Cabble, Theis Andersen and Chris Wahle)
Anna Ritsmar – Starlight (Written by Lise Cabble)
Rasmussen – Higher Ground (Written by Niclas Arn and Karl Eurén)
Sannie (AKA Whigfield) – Boys on Girls (Written by Sannie Carlson, Domenico Canu and James Reeves)
Sandra – Angels to My Battlefield (Written by Lars’ Chief 1′ Pedersen, Ronny Vidar Svendsen, Anne Judith Stokke Wik, Nermin Harambasic and Sandra Hilal)
Lasse Meling – Unfound (Written by Lasse Meling, Kim Nowak-Zorde and TheArrangement
CARLSEN – Standing Up for Love (Written by Thomas Thörnholm, Michael Clauss and Dave Rude
KARUI – Signals (Written by Annelie Karui Saemala, Jeanette Bonde, Daniel Fält and Jonas Halager )
Rikke Ganer-Tolsøe – Holder fast i ingenting (Written by Rune Braager, Clara Sofie Fabricius and Andrea Emilie Fredslund Nørgaard)
Albin Fredy – Music For The Road (Written by Rune Braager, John Garrison and O. Antonio)
The 10 songs will be released in full length on the 5th of February 2018.
Denmark at the Eurovision Song Contest
After a 12 year’s break, Denmark returned to the contest in 1978. Since the return, the country won twice making its total victories three. Since 1978, they scored a top 10 position a total of 16 times, but also failed to qualify for the final four times.
In recent years, fans have been rather disappointed though. Anti Social Media in 2015 followed by Lighthouse X in ’16 both didn’t manage to reach the final. In 2017, Anja Nissen did qualify for the final, but scoring only 77 points and a 20th position wasn’t quite enough to bring the hope back into the Danish eyes.
While waiting for the 2018 entry, let’s take a look at our video from Dansk Melodi Grand Prix 1978 – the national final which brought Denmark back to the Eurovision Song Contest.
Tonight Romania started their search to find their representative for the Eurovision Song Contest 2018. There will be five shows each featuring twelve songs. Three songs from each heat will advance to the final.
The final of the Selecția Națională 2018 for Romania will be held on February 25 in Sala Polivalentă in Bucharest. For now, heat one takes place in Teatrul Municipal in Focșani. The Tom Hartis song was withdrawn.
1 The Hosts
2 The Show
3 The Songs
4 The Judges
5 The Results
6 Romania In The Eurovision Song Contest
Our hosts for all six shows will be Diana Dumitrescu and Cezar Ouatu. Cezar, of course, is famous for his Romanian entry from 2013 It’s My Life, which placed 13th in Malmo, Sweden.
The green room host was Anca Medeleanu, who had a bit of fun with the contestants.
Televiziunea Română (TVR) is the Romanian television company responsible for all six shows. Tonight’s show was opened by Luminița Anghel, who came third for Romania in 2005 with the band Sistem and the song Let Me Try. She performed Hora din Moldova, the entry from Moldova from 2009 by Nelly Ciobanu. Nelly placed 14th that year.
After all the songs had been performed there was a long showing of Romanian adverts. There then followed a never-ending rock performance from the group Pasărea Rock.
Alex Florea – Nobody Told Me It Would Hurt
Back as a soloist after last years Yodel It duet, Alex proves he is more than a second-hand rapper. This powerful ballad is the type of stuff that was big in America in the eighties. Alex had a bit of a problem with the higher notes, but he has proven he is a mighty fine singer. The chorus is pretty memorable and nothing to be ashamed of.
Lina – A Love Worth Falling For
Lina’s song is a mid-paced pop song. Nothing exceptionally different but that doesn’t mean that it’s not a pleasant listen. The song has a nice musical backing, which if internally selected would make a fine entry. However, up against the other contestants, it may not stand out enough. Still a good one though.
CornEL – Take Me Away
The introduction to this song has a summery breeze feel. The song stomps along in a holiday resort type of manner. CornEl does his best and the chorus has pieces where you can sing along to. The music in the middle is made for the clubs. Needs a little polishing though.
Liviu Anghel – Rise Up
Black is the colour in Romania tonight. Another rock-based song from a four-piece band. At places, the vocals are a little like Work Your Magic by Koldun, or indeed Romania’s lost song Moment of Silence. This couldn’t be further away from Yodel It if it tried.
Hellen – From Underneath
This is old school fashioned Eurovision. The verse sounds a bit like Total Eclipse of The Heart, but the chorus has a big rousing vocal. Hellen stands and performs the song with no frills. This will please fans of big power ballads.
Alexia & Matei – Walking on Water
The song has a bit of a reggae beat but bursts out as it comes to the chorus. Alexia takes the main verses, but Matei lends support in an Alex Florea kind of way. Another powerhouse of a performance that with a few listens could become a favourite. Matei comes into his own in the last verse. Certainly a modern sound.
Johnny Bădulescu – Devoted
This is one of the best ballads in the competition. Another no-frills song, Johnny stands and sings the song, giving it the justice it deserves. If the judges just want a strong powerfully sung ballad, this song wins by miles.
Waleska – Renacer
The fastest song in tonight’s competition. This is a disco dance belter of a tune. Great for the clubs. Waleska doesn’t dance around as much as the song suggests. If the judges want upbeat then this is the one they will go with.
Echoes – Mirror
This song is more of a rock song. Echoes are a five-piece band. The song plods along quite merrily but doesn’t have anything to make it stand out. The chorus states that Echoes are ready to battle and is a good one for a rock concert. For Eurovision, we need to wait and see.
Elena Turcu – The Perfect Fall
The introduction to this song could be mistaken for a slowed down version of Kids In America by Kim Wilde. The electronic beat continues throughout the song. In places, Elena sounds a bit like Kim, while still having her own individuality. This is another modern sounding song with a rousing chorus.
Eduard Santha – Me som romales
The song begins in English. The steady beat during the verses turns into reggae. When Eduard has had enough of that the song takes a new turn and heads into craziness with an upbeat gipsy feel. In summary, there are about eight tunes in this song.
Liliana Ștefan who wrote the 1998 Romanian entry Eu cred by the late Mălina Olinescu.
Viorel Gavril a famous composer and conductor.
Ilinca Băcilă the Yodel It Romanian singer from last year.
Nicu Patoi who accompanied Mălina Olinescu on the guitar at the Eurovision 1998.
Marian Ionescu member of the band Direcția 5.
Alexia & Matei
Romania In The Eurovision Song Contest
This year will be the 20th appearance for Romania at a Eurovision Song Contest final. Romania’s first official entry was in 1994 with Dan Bittman and Dincolo de nori. The song finished in 21st place. Romania’s first top ten finish was in 2002 with the slow ballad Tell Me by Monica Anghel & Marcel Pavel. The song finished in 9th place.
The best placing so far for Romania is Let Me Try by Luminiţa Anghel & Sistem from 2005 and Paula Seling & Ovi with Playing With Fire in 2010. Both compositions finished in third place.
Since the introduction of semi-finals, Romania has qualified to the final every year, making them one of the most successful countries in this regard. The only achievement they have yet still to reach is actually winning the Eurovision Song Contest. Will this be their year?
With the announcement of the up-coming semi-final allocation draw, today the six pots were published. We take a look at the differences to last year as it isn’t just a matter of swapping the two host countries.
On the 29th of January, we’ll see who ends up in which semi-final – and also whether or not they will perform in the first and the second half. The semi-final countries will be drawn into the two semi-finals from a set of pots partly made up by previous voting pattern.
2018 compared to 2017
Compared to last year, there are any changes in the first pot. In pot two, we now find Ireland instead of Estonia, which has then been moved to pot six which includes its neighbours Lithuania and Latvia, but also Poland as well as the Netherlands and Belgium.
In pot three we find Russia and surrounding countries. Ukraine join this group as they aren’t hosting it this year. As Ukraine join, Israel is leaving the group. They are now placed in pot five with two other islands Australia and Malta, but also Austria, Czech Republic and San Marino.
As always, Greece and Cyprus are placed in the same pot. In this pot we also find Moldova, Romania, Bulgaria and Hungary just as last year.