Eurovision 2013

First Dress Rehearsal of Semi Final 1 – rolling update from the EurovisionIreland team so keep refreshing

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Tonight starting at 5pm local time in Malmo we will see the first full dress rehearsal of Semi Final 1. The EurovisionIreland team are all on hand to do a running update on our reactions to what we are seeing on the screens in the Press centre. So keep updating from 5pm-7pm where Garrett, Elaine and Andrew will cast their judgement over the show. Also the Jury Dress rehearsal is on tonight at 9pm, more on that later.

It has gone past 5pm and we are still waiting for the show to begin or the live feed is not with us in the Press Centre. We start with a Euphoria visit around Europe. Lots of butterflies we cross the bridge and head to the Malmo Arena. Schoolchildren are now singing Euphoria in the Arena. They are on a big catwalk above the audience. Loreen is now walking along the catwalk between the children. She takes over the singing. She then ends up in the audience pit. The host Petra appears from underneath the stage.  A lovely silvery dress but hair is a tad crazy. She is explaining the running order and the voting. So now we begin.

Austria (all the postcards are from the country and their artist)

Andrew’s view

Not a lot wrong with the first song, competent performance  but I feel it could easily be forgotten by the voters.

Garrett’s view

The best performance from Natalia and good to see that she is now varying her facial expressions to match the lyrics. Back in the running for a qualifier

Elaine’s view

Her best performance to date but I am not sure it is strong enough as a opener to qualify.

Estonia

Andrew’s view

This is lovely now , white dress lots of smoke otherwise simple and great. Estonia stands out now.

Garrett’s view

Birgit just knocked this average song out of the park with a great performance. She has just overtaken Austria for qualifying.

Elaine’s view

Beautiful performance. This makes Austria forgettable and I think this is qualifiying tomorrow night.

Slovenia

Andrew’s view

A nice bouncy song after two ballads, but the vocals are still a bit forced and shrill from Hannah, not sure of it’s chances yet.

Garrett’s view

First dance song of the night. Visually and dance wise this is great but there were a few pitch issues for some of the high notes. This may just miss out on qualifying

Elaine’s view

Good contrast to the first 2 ballads and this performance looks better than it has done but it is very shouty and screechy. I don’t think it will qualify. Hannah is lovely though.

Croatia

Andrew’s view

This has really come up in my estimations now, totally different to anything before , beautifully sung and a sure fire qualifier.

Garrett’s view

Classic, powerful and has me tingling down my back. Side step Il Divo there are new guys on the block. Straight to the final.

Elaine’s view

This 6 piece Croatian ballad is stunning. Spine tingling performance. In my opinion another qualifier.

Denmark

Andrew’s view

This is still looking and sounding great, a good rehearsal here and this is still a good bet for a high finish on Saturday.

Garrett’s view

Same as in previous performances but crimped hair in Emmile. Good vocals though she missed her camera angels at times. Very Disney but will sail into the final.

Elaine’s view

I love this song. I still feel the performance is a bit static considering how upbeat the song is and the drummers lack some oomph but should sail into the final.

Then we have a break in the show. Petra stands on the stage with large flip charts (while the stage is prepped for Russia behind her). A few funny jokes – the best being “Don’t complain about it being expensive – It is worse in Norway”

Russia

Andrew’s view

Simple, clichéd, lovely vocals and beautifully staged song from Russia, very strong contender now.

Garrett’s view

Dina’s performance is simple and elegant. As we advised the Russians to hide the backing vocalists until they are needed has been listened to. Still the 2 male singers have the small balls (handed to them by 2 production staff) but still just throw them into the audience. No need for this as it stands.

Elaine’s view

Just not my cup of tea but beautifully sing by Dina and should be in the final on Saturday night.

Ukraine

There was a new camera effect so as the giant stomps on the screen shakes to mimic his strong steps. Zlata then appeared to be doing sign language but it turns out she was stopping the track as she could not hear properly. t was restarted

Andrew’s view

After the false start this is a good rendition vocally. I still don’t like the giant effect at the start though, just too silly but it will still get through.

Garrett’s view

Losing impact for me. Change in dress from the stunning metallic dress to a fitted white one. Steps from Igor were not in time to the footsteps. All over complicated but still making the final but not a contender following that lack lustre performance. Gravity has taken control and brought this down to earth.

Elaine’s view

Good performance at the second time of trying. Zlata is back in her white dress and i much preferred the shiny metallic number. Still agreat song and I think a qualifier.

The Netherlands

Andrew’s view

This is just so beautiful. Excellent staging and vocals and totally deserves to qualify hopefully with ease.

Garrett’s view

Anouk is flying high like the “Birds” that she sings of. Powerful, atmospheric and stunning. She is making Ukraine looking extremely amateurish. Huge reaction in the hall.

Elaine’s view

Simply stunning both staging and vocals – qualifier – That is all

Montenegro

Andrew’s view

Only at Eurovision do we have spacemen from the Balkans, totally mental and out on a limb with all the rest but I love it, I want to see it in the Final.

Garrett’s view

Out of this world – this is looking and sounding fantastic. Eurovision needs this visual and modern song

Elaine’s view

This is full on, it’s fun and it is utterly bonkers. I think it is great but i don’t think it will have enough appeal for the wider audience. Think it will miss out on the final.

Lithuania

Andrew’s view

He still looks more than a little bit terrified and his vocals are a little bit off at times today. But it does pick up and is perfectly pleasant.

Garrett’s view

He still looks like a Rabbit caught in the headlights. A new visual effect where when he hits one of his big notes the camera blurs and looks like he is going through a “Stargate” wormhole – all unnecessary. Think this will miss out on the final

Elaine’s view

Can’t say much else than i have already said. A nice pop song but his facial expressions are just a bit bizarre. Can’t see it qualifying.

Belarus

Andrew’s view

Total glitzerama here, its way over the top and way too camp but it is Eurovision, Its a good performance but I don’t want it to go through, but fear that it will.

Garrett’s view

The kitchen sink and every piece of glitter in Belarus has been thrown at this somewhat dated euro pop performance. Not a huge favourite of mine but will make the final.

Elaine’s view

We now know where all the kitchen sinks go when people in Belrarus redo their bathrooms!!!!! It is just TOO much. Sparkly glittery and fun which is good for the Euroclub but on screen is way O.T.T – I don’t see it qualifying.

Moldova

Andrew’s view

This is just a wonderful performance from Moldova, loving the dress lighting up effects and the raising up of the singer at the end. Sure fire qualifier.

Garrett’s view

Following the contrived performance from Belarus Aliona from Moldova puts in a powerful and stunning performance of her song. Passionate and soaring to the final like her ever growing dress.

Elaine’s view

Aliona has her hair up although not as wacky as it was in the national final. I love the melody to this song. The staging is simple but dramatic at the same time. Great song and great performance. I hope this is qualifying for Saturday’s final.

Ireland

Andrew’s view

This is not the best that I have seen but is still getting a good reaction at the end. Its well staged but Ryan just needs to tighten up the vocals I think. Should hopefully qualify.

Garrett’s view

Best interaction from Ryan so far with the camera. He really sold the song as did the dancers and the backing singers. In the first verse of the song there were slight pitch problems with some of the higher notes. Just to keep note of that for tonights Jury final. Still sailing into the final

Elaine’s view

I have heard Ryan sing better than this. There were a couple of pitchy moments but the performance he gave was great. He looks like he is enjoying it and is much more confident which is very important. Still a qualifier easily 🙂

Another break now which should help Ireland, we are off to Australia with another comedy moment. They had fans showing their love of the contest from Abba to Jedward to Surfing and Sheep Shearing.

Cyprus

Andrew’s view

This is really working for me now, excellent simple and classy, good vocals and camera angle enhance the delights this has to offer the viewers. I sure hope this will get to the Final now.

Garrett’s view

Despina is simple and elegant and after a fast paced song from Ireland both songs stand out. She needs this to be perfect to make the final. There was one note slightly off key but I am getting the feeling Cyprus are going to the final.

Elaine’s view

Great performance today. When you see it comig so close after Ireland you notice what a contrast it is. The great draw actually now makes me rethink my qualification decision as I think this could go through. It probably also means I now have 11 qualifiers – do you think SVT will write this into their new rules for this year?

Belgium

Andrew’s view

This is a perfectly fine song reasonably well sung but the 2 female dancers are a total distraction, Nul points from me and non qualifier.

Garrett’s view

Roberto puts in a strong vocal performance but I found him a little cold at times on camera. The dancers are still highly off putting and will be the reason for this not making the final.

Elaine’s view

Aw Roberto is just lovely. Such a shame the dancers have no place being there. They are fine but just appear to be dancing to a different sing from Love Kills. I can’t see it getting through to the final.

Serbia

Andrew’s view

This is just all over the place, crazy costumes(Barbra Dex awaits), hen nights in Magaluf and ladies of the night in Amsterdam. Vocally not the best I have heard, I wouldn’t put it through but I fear that this will qualify.

Garrett’s view

The vocals are by far their weakest to date. Their costumes are the most inappropriate and unnecessary of the contest this year. The staging looks like a girls night out gone wrong. It should not qualify but will.

Elaine’s view

This song will be in the final but it really is like a horrible accident on the stage. This was the first time I felt the vocals were a bit ropey along with the terrible costumes. Still a good song.

AND IN SHOCK NEWS:

Our esteemed editor in chief was caught red handed, Dancing to Denmark without realising it – I think he is a secret fan 🙂

We then have a full recap of all the songs then head to the green room for a wee chat.

Then we have another film of the history which has Petra in a lot of the shots, very clever indeed.

Back to the green room then another shorter recap of all performances.

Interval Act. We have a dimly lit stage with a large abstract tree and contemporary dancers. Electro-Pop music with drummers playing drums with their hands and flying sand. and a shower of ping pong balls

next up is Linda Woodruff touring Sweden. Loreen has been changed to Loraine. She meets the Mayor of a small Northern Swedish town. Entering an Ice Hotel she does that “Dude Where’s My Car” routine and licks the ice and gets her tongue stuck to the ice and eats some “Reindeer Sh@t” – yes she said that!!! Then we see her being brought at break neck speed across the by a pack of huskies with the tag line “To Be Continued”

Then we get a preview of the Big 6 finalists and they are in the audience.

We then have the mock 10 qualifiers. For the record they were – and in no particular order

  1. Ukraine
  2. Slovenia
  3. Estonia
  4. Lithuania
  5. Croatia
  6. Austria
  7. Cyprus
  8. Denmark
  9. Ireland
  10. Serbia

We then get a recap of the 10 qualifiers for the Grand Final

7 replies »

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  2. I think Ireland might struggle to qualify The UK will probably bring it through. Always felt the song lacked something and I think the setting is awful! (It will probably win after that statement)

    Great to see Croatia and Estonia doing well two songs that I like not winners but both have quality singers.

    Thanks for the reports and hard work guys!!

  3. Based on your great comments about Belgium I bet 20euro on them to get into the final lol…dam it 🙂 no chance now

  4. Have seen a clip of those history bits with Petra they’re really funny and well done, am looking forward to them. Slightly concerned about Ryan’s vocals, it is quite a high song to sing, am keeping my fingers crossed he can nail it tonight and tomorrow night when it really matters.At least they seem to have the staging the way they want it. Thanks guys for the rolling blog. And indeed all the hard work so far.
    Some of my personal rankings have only moderately moved about since the rehearsals began but now narrowing them down to each semi final and which ten I think will qualify as opposed to those I’d want to qualify is changing by the minute. I think I will wait until tomorrow for my final decision on semi final 1. There are of course the usual suspects but there are 2 places which i think 4 or 5 could fill.

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