#FRA: Live blog of Destination Eurovision Part 2 from 2100 CET

FRA: Live blog of Destination Eurovision Part 2 from 2100 CET

France gets a step nearer selecting its entrant for the 2019 Eurovison Song Contest, with the second semi-final of Destination Eurovision. Four songs from tonight will go forward to the final next Saturday.

You know what happens. We’ll be blogging the action as it unfolds. All you need to do is hit Refresh for our latest thoughts. Will we have a potential winner?

A 50/50 combination of televoting and five international jurors will pick the lucky finalists.

You can follow the action which is broadcast on France 2 and TV5Monde. It’s on their websites HERE and HERE.

And here we go. Nine go in, four come out. We’re being told that France hasn’t won since 1977. And because of Netta, we’re in Tel Aviv in May.

And here she is…! And she’s looking very, well, erm… Netta.

The crowd loves her. Or maybe it’s the canary yellow dress that’s more a work of art.

Tonight’s contestants come onto stage and Netta tells them they’re giving the whole world the gift of music.

We get introduced to the panel. They don’t get to vote but will give opinions that could influence the televoters.

But what are the songs?

First on is Gabriella. Her cover is L’encre de tes yeux, a Francis Cabrel song.

Gabriella – On cherche encore (Never get enough)

Gabriella starts in English sat at a piano. It’s clearly a bilingual song that features lots of bright colours. And a large staircase too. She uses her violin and her ‘backing singers’ and ‘band’ are on a screen below her. Or are they? There’s a lot going on, and it’s not always to the benefit of the song. It might be just a tad too avant garde to progress.

The reviews from the panel seem to be fairly good. She’s a ‘total artist’, for a Canadian.

The Divaz (Amelia, Stacey and Sophia) are next, naturally performing the Aretha Franklin hit Respect.

The Divaz – La voix d’Aretha

Our popular bunnies are looking sultry and vivacious with their tribute song. They’re stood atop a sparkling stage and have a very polished act. The song has a chorus that is a tad repetitive but quite catchy. It starts well but it runs out of steam a little. But it could do something.

There’s more positive stuff about the performance from the panel.

Before the next song, a quick word with Christer Björkman, one of tonight’s guest jurors. He speaks French and gets a cheer.

Ugo is next, first performing a tribute to France Gall’s song Résiste.

Ugo – Ce qui me blesse

He co-wrote this song, so knows how to sing it. We hope. He’s gone for a dramatic backdrop and dry ice as opposed to a prop or two. It’s a little understated and has the demeanour of someone like Benjamin Ingrosso. He’s putting everything into it, including wailing during the middle eight. But it’s a tad repetitive again. And maybe he’s straying from giving it everything to struggling.

The panel are positive, but seemingly in a constructive way.

Our Georgian juror Natia is briefly interviewed next.

Tracy de Sá performs the Eminem song Lose yourself. A challenging song.

Tracy de Sá – Por aqui

We’re going edgy here. Tracy likes rap and this grabs you from the first notes. She hardly draws breath until she gets to the chorus. This will get your attention. It’s a grower, from when Tracy ambles onto the stage to the well choreographed dancers on stage with her. Is ‘whiskey cocktails rum, rum, rum’ a good hook or what? I like this. I shouldn’t but I do. Please let this qualify.

Lots of interesting feedback for Tracy’s little ditty.

Over to the Green Room to speak to The Divaz. And Gabriella.

Emmanuel is covering A-ha’s Take on me, accompanying himself at the piano.

Emmanuel Moire – La promesse

Emmanuel starts in a box with blue light. Then he moves into the light. It’s a song that’s demonstrating his full vocal range. This also has dry ice, and two dancers that we see sparingly. They pull him one way then the other. He’s tortured, but getting through it. This has a message, which you can get even if you can’t speak français. On that score, it should qualify.

The panel likes it too.

Next juror to be interviewed is the soberly-dressed Milokas Josef from the Czech Republic.

Noémie is next on. Her cover is Oasis’s Wonderwall.

Noémie – Ma petite famille

Ooh. We’re getting funky. Tartan-clad Noémie performs in front of screens flashing red and white. This ain’t bad and there’s lots of interaction with the camera. Her dancers do a good job of helping her along when she needs it. There could be a problem with the backing track, as it’s very faint. Still, the rest of the song seems to make up for it. Even if is there repetitive streak running through it.

The panel is kind to Noémie.

We get a quick chat with Zoë Straub from Austria. As we know, her French is fluent.

Seemone’s cover is Magnolias for ever, first made famous by Claude François.

Seemone – Tout les deux

A ballad. It has a slightly 1970s vibe about it – for a ballad. It’s simply staged with Seemone and a pianist. And lots of black and smoke. This song might be a bit too understated to get further, but it’s very well-written – for a ballad. She cries at the end, when it gets easily the biggest reaction from the crowd so far. Sounds like a good omen to me.

The panel really likes this song. Maybe the stand out song so far?

More Green Room chat, with Emmanuel Moire and Seemone talking.

Doutson sings Femme Libérée, originally a hit for Cookie Dingler. Yes, that’s right.

 Doutson – Sois un bon fils

He has his son on stage, to emphasis what the song is about. It’a a nice touch. His song is very contemporary with elements of rap and R&B. It hangs together very well and it’s very easy to listen to. There’s nothing offensive about this. Whether Mr Doutson would be allowed to have his young son on stage if he won would be another matter. A possible qualifier.

The panel like it.

Our final juror is Anushik from Armenia.

Finally, Philipelise sings J’veux du soleil, by Au P’tit Bonheur.

Philipelise – Madame la paix

This is a happy staging. A lake on the back drop, a fake pier and big flowers. Philipelise’s song has a folksy feel to it, which is quite refreshing. There’s an accordion and lots of Ruslana-ey ‘hey’s. I like it, and not just because it feels like I’ve been blogging for six hours. It could be a nice touch if this were to get through tonight. And she can hold a tune – more than some of the others tonight.

And who’s this? It’s only Jon-Ola Sand. I wonder what he’ll be singing. And with a few bons mots, he was gone.

The lines are open for the televoters. They won’t get long to register their favourites. But it’ll only cost them less than €1 to do so.

Recaps and things to celebrate what we like about Eurovision. A few winners, plenty of pyrotechnics, a bit of chatter. And Netta.

The panelists tell us their favourites. Gabriella, Emmanuel, Seemone, The Divaz seem to be getting the thumbs up from all three.

Voting closed, but here’s some singing for us. It’s panelist Vitaa.

It’s jury result time…

Austria – 12 points to Seemone

Georgia – 12 points to Seemone

Armenia – 12 points to Seemone

Czech Republic – 12 points to Seemone

Sweden – 12 points to Seemone

So after the jurors have voted…

Public vote time…

We have our final four finalists. Seemone, Emmanuel Moire, The Divaz and Doutson.

I hope you enjoyed this blog. And the show. We’ll be blogging the final one week from now. Thanks and goodnight!

Author: John Stanton

Source: Eurovision Ireland, France 2

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