Eurovision 2017 – Day 9 Jury Final Dress Rehearsal Semi Final 1 LIVE ROLLING BLOG – START 2100 CET- JUST REFRESH
Just when you thought you had seen the best of us, we are back and better than ever!! If you were thinking of going anywhere else for your fix of Eurovision rehearsal news, then SHAME ON YOU!!
You can follow our LIVE BLOG HERE – You know the drill by now. Just refresh the page for our live updates. We start at 2100CET. You will be taken care of by my good self Andrew . So if you want an honest opinion of how the rehearsals are going then tune in here. Some other members of the team could be chiming in from time to time.
The Running Order is as Follows
Good evening Europe and welcome to the LIVE blog of the Jury Dress Rehearsal of Semi Final 1. There is just under 30 minutes to show time and we are all going to be in for a treat tomorrow night in the Live show. Andrew Main here for you tonight as the only member of the team, others are off to the Irish party then the Israeli party. Of course tonight is only the second dress rehearsal for Semi Final 1 but is oh so important because all the juries watch and judge their marks on tonight’s performances. It has amazed me over the years coming here how so many country delegations did not seem to realise this. So now we have 15 minutes to go. I hope you have enjoyed the coverage provided by the team this year and remember we will be hear on the ground right up until the Grand Final on Saturday night.
The show begins. We have a typical Ukrainian cultural clip all about dressing in their various national costumes. This is followed on swiftly by the opening act for tonight. Local artist Monatak Spinning with a modern contemporary song with dancers on stage. A good song to start us off. Our 3 hosts are introduced onto the stage. They introduce the fans then talk about the slogan Celebrate Diversity. Then they discuss the voting sequence. and introduce the list of participants on tonight including the big 3 Spain, UK and Italy. So the show will now begin.
Robin is first up for Sweden and this is lifted directly from the Melodifestivalen Final. He starts behind the stage then comes on with his four backing dancer/singers. The travelators are centre stage. A slick performance and a great opener to the show. This is certainly going to prove popular with the voters and do not see any problem with getting to the Final on Saturday.
This is a terrific performance of a very Bondesque song which has really come through in my estimations this week to give Georgia a great chance of qualifying despite the betting saying otherwise. Tamara looks resplendent in a red dress and is vocally flawless. Well done Georgia.
Isaiah has shown more and more confidence and charm as the week has progressed. It is certainly not the best entry ever for Australia but at the same time its a decent performance and a decent ballad. Lots of walking around in his long coat. I am sure this will also qualify tomorrow night.
Another entry that is very underrated in the betting. Lindita is putting on a really strong emotional vocal performance tonight. The song is as strong as I have heard it all week. But will it make enough people sit up and take enough notice to vote for it? I am not so sure.
One of the early favourites on next. Belgium and Blanche have struggled all week in rehearsals as a result have plummeted in the betting. Now it is make or break time. Blanche still looks rather frightened to be up there. But she is not mumbling her vocal now it a bit more assured and much better than I have heard at any other time. Plus she is moving instead of standing completely still. She is trying to express herself for once. But sadly the vocal does get worse towards the end and I fear for one early favourite plunging out at the first hurdle.
Slavko is quite a performer as he is also an actor. This is right up the street of most typical gay Eurovision fans. It is an uptempo party track. The gimmick with his long pony tail is hilarious especially when he uses it as a prop swirling it round his head. It is camp and fun however that doesn’t mean it will sail into the final. Far from it as the vocals are not perfect but knows it might strike the right cord with the jury tonight.
We now have a quick break and the hosts tell us about the Eurovision App. Then we move to the green room and we say hello to Georgia and Australia as well as Sweden and Albania.
Norma John on next with another song that is highly thought of among many. It is a moody haunting ballad with a deep blue and black backdrop. Lenna has a great vocal that compliments the style of the song. Lots of heavy fog add to the atmosphere of the performance. I am sure it will qualify tomorrow night.
So it is going to be interesting how this comes over when we see the results later in the week. Many people do not get it but it is a modern contemporary track with a presentation that is a bit on the weird side. The guy with the horse defies explanation but forgetting all that it is a good song and performed well by Dihaj. Azerbaijan have a great record of qualification and I don’t think that will change.
Considering this is actually Salvador’s second rehearsal on this big stage the performance is all the more remarkable. A big favourite to finish well on Saturday it needs to qualify first. Standing on the satellite stage among the crowd is an inspired idea. The quirky delivery just adds to the charm of this. Absolutely beautiful !!
We have another break now.
Now Demy up next and she did not have such a good rehearsal this afternoon but this is much better tonight just when it needs to be. However she is not going for her high notes because perhaps she fears she may not reach them so a case of playing safe just to make sure they get through. This tactic could well work as the performance looks and sounds a lot better overall.
Kasia Mos has a fantastic vocal range and she is showing it off to her full potential with this performance. Truly stunning and this will enhance this average song into a vote winner. Poland certainly have a good chance of qualifying with this. This is strong and edgy and really good.
The boys from Sunstroke Project are back with 3 girls helping out on backing vocals. This is a fun song and catchy as hell. The Epic Sax guy is fun and the crazy dancing cool. The backing girls are dressed like brides and have a costume change mid song. I think this has a great chance to qualify.
Svala is way down in the betting with her song and I don’t know why. It is an edgy song with some rap overtones. She has been getting better and better all week and tonight is no exception. From a virtual no hoper Iceland have moved into contention and could steal a place in the Final from another more fancied song. I for one would not be surprised.
We have another break and we are back in the Green Room talking to Moldova and especially to Epic Sax Guy. Now we talk to Portugal and then onto Greece.
Marta is resplendent in a Gold Lame outfit with high boots and she starts the song sitting plonked on the stage on her own. She does manage to get up bless her and her vocals are certainly good. It is just a shame that the song is more than a tad boring to my ear. I am sure it will have some fans out there among the juries but I don’t think it will get enough to qualify.
One of my favourite countries on next. Now this was poor this afternoon vocally. So I sent word to my Cypriot friends and hoped they would sort it out as it is a good song written by a Eurovision winner. Well the news is it is 100% better now and vastly improves its chances to qualify. God this is getting tougher and tougher to call as so many songs now are in with a shout. But well done Hovig for bringing it back on course.
A malfunction, the track started and it was the Czech Republic backing track. So we are back with the host to explain.
Artsvik starts and sounds slightly off at first but no wonder poor dear. After the first verse she saves it and is back on track. This is a serious contender in the Final now. It sound brilliant and she is now looking confident and self assured. Love the dancing and movements and the pyros add a nice dimension to it all. A definite qualifier.
Omar is one of the best singers in the contest of this there is no doubt in my mind and I think he has taken this classic ballad to within an inch of the Final. It could well do it you know. It is a classy performance which tonight’s Jury members should love more than hate. So Slovenia well done for getting into the mix.
Now Triana Park have a great song which I love and I had this qualifying on the run through this afternoon. But the vocal is a bit all over the place tonight. It needs to have lots of energy in the right places and it does but it feels a bit disjointed tonight which is a shame because I loved this in the build up to Kiev.
Hosts have just announced that Greece had a technical issue so are to sing again right now.
Greece part deux
Sounding a lot better I think the technical issues were the mix between the lead and backing vocals. Demy is knocking socks off this second chance and should have firmly nailed Greece’s chances to the qualification mast.
Henrik our Swedish production guy is now on explaining that the Big 3 will perform now live but the show tomorrow that goes out live will be the VT recording of this performance.
Do IT for your lover. Well if you could you would wouldn’t you? This is actually sounding better than it did this afternoon but as Phil (from OnEurope) pointed out I have had beer. Seriously though I do not rate the chances of Spain that highly with this performance.
Lucie is doing us all proud with an overwhelming performance. This gets better and better each time we see her run through it. I think this could surprise a lot of people on Saturday night.
Italy are certainly not monkeying around this year. They are in it to win and by golly that is most likely what is going to happen. Short of slipping on a banana skin on Saturday night I can not see anything stopping this song from getting Italy their third win in Eurovision. I love the song and certainly ape this is what happens. Allez!!!!!
We now have a run through of all the songs for the voting. Its going to be hard for some countries as tonight we saw big improvements from a number of countries compared to the afternoon rehearsal namely Greece, Cyprus, Finland and Slovenia.
The hosts now introduce Jamala last years champion who brought Eurovision to Kyiv with her memorable win last year in Stockholm. Right that’s it for me hope you enjoyed the blog the show aint finished but I want to go get the Metro before it goes off. They are currently running through for the second time then it will be Verka and Jamala again before they announce the 10 qualifiers. It is going to be a rollercoaster of ride for everyone tomorrow night.
So there we have it folks hope you enjoyed. Tune in again at 21.00 CET tomorrow on Eurovision.tv or on your local channels to watch the first Semi Final live.
Author: John Stanton
Source: Eurovision Ireland
All Photos courtesy of Eurovision.tv
Photo: Thomas Hanses
Photo: Andres Putting