Eurovision 2013

First Dress Rehearsal of Semi Final 2 – rolling update from the EurovisionIreland team so keep refreshing

Gianluca from Malta - Eurovision Representative 2013

Gianluca from Malta – Eurovision Representative 2013
Photograph courtesy of Independent.com.mt

Tonight starting at 5pm local time in Malmo we will see the first full dress rehearsal of Semi Final 2. The Eurovision Ireland 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, Andrew and Stephen will cast their judgement over the show. Also the Jury Dress rehearsal is on tonight at 9pm, more on that later.

So we begin with the Te Deum anthem to dance, various dancers on podiums  in black and white.

We then move onto skateboarders bikes and free runners on a big sloping stage in time to the music.

The sloping stage turns into a laptop.

Then we move to our host Petra.

The arena is full of 8000 plus local schoolchildren, a nice touch by the hosts.

Latvia

Andrew’s view

This is totally transformed by having the audience there, what seemed like pointless camera shots now come alive, this is oozing party fun and though I don’t like the song much the kids loved it. Could qualify/borderline.

Garrett’s view

Groupa “Per” as I predicted have had their performance elevated to stadium level with the audience. Slick and sharp and great audience participation – this is my qualifier and will shock others. “Her We Go”

Elaine’s view

Latvia again sparkly, glittery and full of enthusiasm. A good upbeat opener but rap just does not do well at Eurovision by rule. I do not see this appealing to the masses although it looked much better with the large crowd inside the arena. Fun song but don’t see Latvia breaking their poor qualification run this year.

Stephen’s viewglitter overload anyone. Its big loud and colourful. They use the whole stage and even some of the crowd with some crowd surfing. For me its a bit cheap the lyrics are basic and I don’t really get it.

San Marino

Andrew’s view

Still looking good for San   Marino. Well received in the Arena and more so in the Press Room. This really deserves to give them their first time in the Grand Final.

Garrett’s view

Sounding great yet still looking very conceptual. An average reaction in the Audience but resounding success for the press centre. If this is to make the final then it needs Jury votes. Borderline for me to miss out!

Elaine’s view

Looked great today. Much better performance although I still question the presentation of the song. Might just sneak into the final and would be VERY popular with the fans.

Stephen’s view

Good performance but it rather looks like she gave birth to that ball on stage at the start. Is it a ballad is it dance song ? – who knows. But the 2nd half is way better then the first half and its a borderline qualifier for me. Received a great reaction here in the press centre.

FYR Macedonia

Andrew’s view

Lozano has taken his glasses off and looks dapper. Ezma is resplendent all in red and this sounds good too today. This could be the only Balkan country in the Final if it gets through, borderline chance though. Another great reaction in the Press Room which is the busiest I have seen it all week.

Garrett’s view

Best reaction of the night so far. Lozano takes off – just – his glasses and this is sounding like a qualifier. Esma is sensational and where the combination shouldn’t work it fits perfectly. Great contender for the final now

Elaine’s view

The only Balkan country left in the competition so qualification will be massive for them. Great performance and Lozano has removed his glasses. Esma gets a massive cheer every time. It could go either way – Could we have a final with no Balkan countries? It is possible

Stephen’s view

The competition has started for me with Macedonia in this semi. The male vocalist is great and commands the stage. The lady dressed in layers upon layers of red is good and holds her own performance. Its Balkan Eurovision by numbers really.

Azerbaijan

Andrew’s view

A wee twitch from Farid as he started. But this is looking really strong now, great vocals and great gimmick with the dancer in the box. A decent reaction in the room

and definite qualifier.

Garrett’s view

Farid and Azerbaijan have done it again and come up trumps with this well polished performance. Understandably he was nervous as his hand was trembling – but I would be too if I was singing 7 foot off the ground on a glass box to millions of people. Huge reaction from the hall and the press centre. Back to Baku anyone?

Elaine’s view

Simply stunning. I can say no more about this. With only 3 spots left in the first half draw, they have a 70/30% chance of a secong half draw and should NEVER be counted out – especially with no Turkey.

Stephen’s view

WOW, great performance very theatrical (more red fabric, there must have be a discount store somewhere). This is a great performance . Farid seems a bit nervous at the start, but as the performance goes on he excels. He looks and sounds great a definite qualifier.

Finland

Andrew’s view

This is poppy and fun and is standing out now in this running order. Well sung song and a lesbian kiss at the end, only at Eurovision, Qualifier.

Garrett’s view

Krista is not feeling her usual self as she has been ill – so we believe – but you would not know that from her performance. The most radio friendly song and fully packed performance of energy. Has to go through to the final

Elaine’s view

Krista did not appear to have her usual full on energy but still a great fun performance. Kids all over will think this is a great song and of course the same sex marriage campainers will go head over heels for “The Kiss”

Stephen’s view

Here we have one of the most current sounding songs in the competition. Imagine Kathy Perry. Its great fun big and loud. And who wouldn’t want to marry Finland.

Malta

Andrew’s view

Such a cute song and instantly catchy. Great vocals and lovely staging with the vocals on the backdrop. He walks along the catwalk again interacting with the audience as he goes. Finishes up on the bench with his gang. Should qualify.

Garrett’s view

No surprise that I love this song as it is so accessible on many levels. Gianluca worked the audience so well in the performance and was interacting like no other country so far where he was Hi Fiving the crowd. Charming and sing along. MUST QUALIFY

Elaine’s view

Endearing and delightful as always. Gianluca bends to take the hands of the people in the audience and it shows real awareness of audience inclusion and will look good on screens back home. This great little song should get through to the final and do well. My only fear would be if it got drawn next to a big stage show such as Denmark or even Ireland,

Stephen’s view

I love this. Its sweet & simple and very current. It has that Ed Sheeran appeal about it. The singer works the stage well and interacts well with his band. We’ll see how he does “Tomorrow” …. see what I did there hahahhaaaaa

Bulgaria

Andrew’s view

This is a good rehearsal from Bulgaria but ultimately is just a big noise, big drums and big wailing from the Balkans. The guy in the tribal headdress also plays bagpipes but nothing is saving this from its fate, non qualifier.

Garrett’s view

Energetic performance – but for me just a wall of unnecessary sound. This song offers nothing new to Eurovision for me. The bag-pipe player was dressed in black – with a black hood and white trainers – he looked like an extra from “Happy Feet”. Bulgaria are trying to live off their 2007 glory but this should be a brief appearance from them this year.

Elaine’s view

The energetic noisy song from Bulgaria. 100% for performance but for me about 35% for enjoyability. The crowd in the arena did not seem to be responding to the performance and that feeds back through the camera to the viewers at home. Unlikely qualifier for me

Stephen’s view

Its just Noise – enough said.

Iceland

Andrew’s view

This is such a lovely song and all the better for being in Icelandic. Beautifully simple and excellent vocals. Good camera angles and excellent lighting used in this too. Would love to see this qualify and hope it does.

Garrett’s view

Goosebump moment people. Atmospheric and understated. A true little gem that has been underrated. How much is a flight to Iceland these days? Enough said

Elaine’s view

The lovely Eythor singing his haunting balled Eg A Lif. He has been playing around with jacket combinations and black is by far my favourite choice but he is currently in beige/brown. His long held not is spine tingling. really want this in the final – I am singing along even though i speak no Icelandic!!! Great reception in press centre.

Stephen’s view

Ok as ballads go, this is a great ballad, and we know I love a ballad. The singer has lost the black suit for a grey one, I think he needs to go back to black. The backdrop is the same as the video and this works well. Great key change great lighting great song great performance. Goosebumps.

Greece

Andrew’s view

This is so going to do well for Greece in the Final, an easy qualifier, well staged and lots of energy here. Really instant and catchy and very Greek.

Garrett’s view

OPA – This is jumping into the final now! Ska music of the highest order. With no Balkans yet in the Grand Final this could be the big winner of votes in the Grand Final. Alcohol is free – but not hosting a a Grand Final in Athens

Elaine’s view

Great jumping dance song. Full of fun energy and a great hook. Can not see this missing out on the final and with little or no Baltic countries, watch the votes flood in for Greece. Alcohol is Free

Stephen’s view

What some would consider the “Joke act” of the competition, that’s for people to decide. But its certainly entertaining in the venue and how that reflects at home on peoples TVs remains to be seen. Picture My Big Fat Greek Wedding and that’s basically what were getting lots of Greek madness.

Israel

Andrew’s view

This is vocally stunning and a very classic Israeli ballad. She still looks very frumpy in her black dress/white trims. A few off notes near the end suggests it could be a challenge to give a completely faultless vocal tomorrow. Borderline qualifier.

Garrett’s view

Vocally not that strong with shrill and harsh moments and Moran has been better in the week. The dress is still the most memorable aspect of this performance for all the wrong reasons. Better luck next year Israel

Elaine’s view

Beautiful performance from Moran. There were a few shaky notes for me towards the end of the song though. She is passionate about this song and it comes acreoss on camera but it is not my cup of tea. This could go wither way and I just don’t no if it’s going through. I am edging towards yes at present.

Stephen’s view

I love this she’s a talented lady with a great vocal, (however she missed the high note in rehearsal). The song may be difficult to understand and might get “lost in translation” but her figure hugging outfit is sure to set some pulses rating throughout Europe.

Armenia

Andrew’s view

This just plods along and is a competent mid tempo rock song. However I do not see this as appealing to a broad enough spectrum of voters. I prefer it doesn’t qualify but fear it might due to neighbourly/diaspora voting.

Garrett’s view

This is the song that has improved over the course of the week. A real band performing a good old fashioned rock song. These guys know what they are doing and one thinks that they will not be on a Lonely Planet on Saturday as they will be in the Green Room with the other finalists.

Elaine’s view

A very underrated song in my opinion. Dorians perform this brilliantly and it looks good as they are a band that are relaxed performaing on stage. Barely a murmer of applause in the press centre but it went down well with the kids in the arena. I think it’s in

Stephen’s view

For me the song isn’t great. However its a simple rock group performance and staging with a good vocal. This could be a surprise qualifier for me. Tis worth a fiver as they say in the west country.

Hungary

Andrew’s view

I love this song and its vocally great, simply staged with just the 3 artists on stage who all compliment each other. I hope its charm and simplicity comes across and gets lots of votes, I want it to qualify but its probably borderline.

Garrett’s view

Charming and Kooky. This will either come last or be top 5 in this semi final as it is an acquired taste. I fear that it may miss out but would be a nice surprise.

Elaine’s view

Sweet little song but i just can’t see the performance making the viewers at home want to vote for it. Good performance but staying in the semi for me.

Stephen’s view

great performance here from Hungary. The back drop is the same as the video which works well. Its a great song and something different for the Eurovision stage. I hope this does well and I think it will qualify.

Norway

Andrew’s view

This is still looking great and is a strong contender for the final. A very confidant Mags on stage looking resplendent in her cream dress, this is so appealing to a modern contemporary audience , sure fire qualifier.

Garrett’s view

Funky and Delicious – this is how you wear a dress Moran. I want to dance to this on Saturday and without fail we will get to hear this song again. FAB

Elaine’s view

Great performance from Margaret. This is a sure fire qualifier for Saturday night’s final and it could well be up there competing in the top 5 with a good draw. The most contemporary song in the contest so may do well with juries.

Stephen’s view

Amazing. This is the most current song in the competition. Amazing staging Amazing vocal. It is just brilliant, and how its not the favourite I don’t know. The camera angle shots really work well with the song, and you get fully drawen into the performance. Definite qualifier with a top 5 finish.

A break here takes us to Lynda Woodruff part 2 who is reporting from Malmerr no Copenhagen no Malmerr, hilarious stuff.

Albania

Andrew’s view

Now this is more like it a proper rock song and is standing out all the more for it. Great vocals and good performance along with a modicum of pyro from the guitar(think Lordi) I can see this qualifying.

Garrett’s view

Albania gave 110% in this performance. I think they will be compared to Armenia and before I had Albania edging Armenia out – however I am not so certain. Borderline for me now.

Elaine’s view

Great rock song performed by a proper rock band. I like the ethnic style and think it is one of Albania’s strongest entries for a while. It has borderline qualification chances.

Stephen’s view

Noise & its not qualifying. And no amount of lighting and pyro techniques is going to help this song.

Georgia

Andrew’s view

A very clichéd Eurovision duet from Georgia but its sooo going to do well. Its sung amazingly well and ticks all the boxes for me as a huge threat for the win.

Garrett’s view

This is looking and sounding stunning. Vocals, Visuals and a good hair day make this a dead cert for the Final. Waterfall? This is a Niagra Fall of music and I am bathing in it!

Elaine’s view

I love this. The only ballad duet in the competition and far better than El and Nikki in 2011. After my visit to The Embassy yesterday I would be delighted to be heading to Georgia next year – I am standing in a waterfall right now.

Stephen’s view

Looking more like a serious contender, but is the song reflective of todays music scene and what the EBU would like to get from the contest, that’s for the Jury’s and the voting public to decide. But its a great performance and an even greater vocal from both singers. This will qualify and will challenge for the top spot.

Switzerland

Andrew’s view

A catchy tune from the Sally Army in Switzerland, their oldest member at 94 looks like has no clue where he is or why. But its vocally great only a little bit static in the performance. Another borderline for me.

Garrett’s view

Wooden like their back drop this performance leaves me stone cold. I cannot get excited by this performance at all. For me I cannot see this in the final.

Elaine’s view

Aw plucky little Switzerland. I love the studio version but there is little or no stage presence. I find it all a bit static but would certainly give the guitarist a few tips on movements 😉 – don’t think it will make it over the line.

Stephen’s view

This surprised me as it sounded great in the press centre. But the performance itself was a bit static. It is what it is I suppose – a non qualifier.

Romania

Andrew’s view

WOW this is just stunning now, Cezar still dresses as a vampire/Dracula figure all in black gets more than a giggle in the Press room. The vocals are still wacky and as expected but sound better today, there is lots going on with the dancer and the red sheet , the dancers are all gold and look naked at times. Great lighting and pyro effect toward the end also, overall great performance to finish the Semi and I can see this qualifying Amazzzzing!

Garrett’s view

CEZAR ROCKS!!!! His dancers are in gold lycra which makes them look like naked. It was visually tighter and stunning on camera. Eurovision must see Cezar in the final. All bow to his alter!

Elaine’s view

The presentation is far tidier and more dramatic!!! He hits all the right notes (and yes even in the right order) This is a definite grower but it will either stun or baffle the viewers watching it for the first time. I still think it will qualify but it comes under the “Mad as a box of frogs” category!!!

Stephen’s view

Theatrical showcasing at its best here in the Malmo Arena. Great performance here from Romania. This will divide the nation. But I loved it and its going to qualify I think and rightly so.

Agnes and Darin were our interval act.

A recap of the Big 6 who have already qualified for the final.

Then the results came in – they are just mock results but for the record they were

  • Azerbaijan
  • Iceland
  • San Marino
  • FYR Macedonia
  • Latvia
  • Albania
  • Armenia
  • Hungary
  • Malta
  • Bulgaria

Author – Eurovision Ireland

Source – Eurovision Ireland

2 replies »

  1. Thanks guys. Insightful running blog. Off to check the videos now to make my own mind up. 😉

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