Eurovision 2020

#SLOVENIA – LIVE BLOG of EMA 2020 FINAL #OpenUp at 20:00 CET


Dober večer Evrope in dobro jutro Avstralija! This is Ljubljana calling! Tonight is the final of EMA 2020 – meaning whoever triumphs tonight is off to Rotterdam as Slovenia’s representative for Eurovision 2020!

Sit back and relax, and let Eurovision Ireland’s own James Scanlan entertain and inform you. As always, let me what you’re thinking and give your opinions about tonight’s contestants and songs – I’ll shout out to you if you do!

Tonight’s show comes to us courtesy of Slovenian broadcaster RTVSLO live from Ljubljana, Slovenia’s postcard perfect capital. 12 songs are competing tonight and there will be 2 rounds of voting – first, a 3 member panel of jurors will give their votes and the Top 2 will progress to a second round. From here, the Slovene public will chose their winner.

You know the drill: Just refresh this page to get the comments and points of view!

You can watch the live show HERE from 20:00 CET.

Tonight’s 12 hopefuls (with some familiar faces thrown in!) will perform as follows:

  1. Simon Vadnjal – Nisi Sam
  2. Saška – Še Kar Lovim Tvoj Nasmeh
  3. Gaja Prestor – Verjamem Vase
  4. Ana Soklič – Voda
  5. INMATE – The Salt
  6. Manca Berlec – Večnost
  7. Tinkara Kovač – Forever
  8. Božidar Wolfand – Wolf – Maybe Someday
  9. Parvani Violet – Cupid
  10. Klara Jazbec – Stop The World
  11. Imset – Femme Fatale
  12. Lina Kuduzović – Man Like U



Prezgodaj si! Check back later for more Eurovision fun than you can shake a kremsnita at!

Nearly show time – so grab you snacks and get comfy, we’re about to go live in Ljubljana!

If you’re new to European geography, Slovenia is over there – next to Italy

And this is what the weather is doing there tomorrow morning:

Fun fact: Slovenia is shaped like a chicken

Here we go!

Do not adjust your sets – Duncan hasn’t changed, it’s a local Slovene artist (whose name disappeared from the screen too quickly for me to get – sorry!) singing the reason we’re going to Rotterdam in May – Arcade!

Oh… was that supposed to happen?! 0___0 Not sure if that lamp was supposed to smash into his head!

If that was staged, that was a funny gag – if it’s not (and they do seem a bit flustered!) I hope he’s OK!

Our slightly startled host

I’m OK!!

I now suspect that was staged… but that was a good one, had me fooled!

So despite his concussion, he’s explaining how tonight’s voting will work. And here’s the jury – and a bowl of chocolate the likes of which I have never seen!!

Was just about to say, are they going to start singing soon?

Simon Vadnjal – Nisi Sam

A bit of a moody staging to start, it’s all very dark and intense. But once the music picks up, it sounds quite powerful! Simon sings confidently and connects with the camera at every turn, which is a huge plus! It’s very contemporary, but also sounds ever so slightly gospel with the backing singers. I think that would make a fine Eurovision entry, well done Simon for kicking us tonight so expertly!

Saška – Še Kar Lovim Tvoj Nasmeh

Saška was one of the acts to qualify from EMA Freš a few weeks ago. I remember this song, it’s sounds a bit country and bears just a passing resemblance to Calon Yn Curo from JESC to my ear… she performs well, a little cheeky, a little sultry and it all comes together well. Another strong entry from Slovenia, and we’re only 2 songs in!

Gaja Prestor – Verjamem Vase

Gaja looks stunning in red negligee, but I wonder if it’s a case of a costume doing much of the heavy lifting in a performance. Though she sings well, it’s a bit repetitive for my tastes and she rarely connects with the camera – feels like she’s performing for herself, rather than an audience. Still, she gave a solid and very polished performance!

Ana Soklič – Voda

Oh wow… a very intimate and powerful show from Ana! Her voice has a gravelly quality which suits the song perfectly and she delivers an incredible vocal performance with ease. She’s staring down the camera (loveable, not desperate!) and makes it feel like she’s singing just for you… the combined effect is quite magical and I wouldn’t be surprised if we had our winner right here!

Our first ad-break here in Ljubljana – we’re not hanging about tonight, we’ve had 4 songs in 15 minutes!

Super Vikend U Lidlu! How exciting!!

And we’re back! And either we’ve got a metal track up next, or the host has been possessed…

INMATE – The Salt

Now I like this kind of music – even though some people scream it doesn’t belong at Eurovision! It’s got a great driving rock beat throughout and the band perform it well and are rocking Ljubljana! I think the biggest issue with sending rock/metal songs to Eurovision is that such bands perform to their live audience and not those watching at home – which is a problem at our beloved contest. But the audience loved it and so did I, awesome!

Manca Berlec – Večnost

Looking not unlike Pewee Herman in her pink tux, Manca sits back and sings a light little ditty that’s very pleasant and easy to listen to. It’s easy music at its most literal, but doesn’t pick up at any point or change tempo, which risks parts of the audience tuning out… a nice performance, but fear something like this would get lost in Rotterdam

Checking in on our jurors, who apparently haven’t touched that mountain of chocolates! They must have willpower of steel!!

Tinkara Kovač – Forever

A familiar face for Eurovision fans, even without the flute! Tinkara shows her Eurovision credentials flawlessly, she connects to the camera, emotes well with her voice and performs – while making it all look so so easy! It’s a strong ballad (in a vein similar to Norway’s entry this year, admittedly) but it’s the kind of song that would do well at the contest. The question is, while Slovenia send her again, or will they pass the baton to someone new? Either way, brava! Bravissima!

Božidar Wolfand – Wolf – Maybe Someday

Another familiar face to the contest, but as a backing vocalist for Yugoslavia (so quite a way back!). Maybe its the kilts, maybe it’s the panpipes underlying in the music, but this is the kind of song I would have expected to come out of Ireland in the late 1990s! It’s even got a solid chant of “na-na-na-na-na” and punching the air. As much as I like this as a stand alone piece, I suspect sending it to Rotterdam in 2020 might be a bad idea. Had it gone for Slovenia in the 1990s, I think it would have been a contender to win though!

More adverts – buy things you don’t need to save the economy!!

And we’re back – that was quick!

Parvani Violet – Cupid

Our second qualifier from EMA Freš, last time I saw Parvani sing I said she was a natural performer and came alive on stage. She leads the camera around through her band, telling the story of the song with cheeky smiles and flourishing brilliantly. This wouldn’t be a bad choice to send to Rotterdam either, musically it’s sweet and inoffensive, but Parvani sells it with gusto!

Klara Jazbec – Stop The World

Ah, a wind machine… we just don’t see those at Eurovision anymore! Klara sounds like an angel, her dark gown billowing around her as she clutches a light that floats away – it’s a bit like Arcade in that respect! It’s nothing ground breaking, it’s the kind of ballad we’ve all heard before – but I really enjoyed it and wouldn’t mind if this went to Eurovision!

When did that happen?!

Imset – Femme Fatale

I’m happy the majority of songs have been performed in Slovene tonight, it’s such a beautiful language! That being said, Femme Fatale does sound quite angry. It’s a bit indie, but punkish too… I’m not sure what to make of it if I’m honest… I like their energy and the beat, but don’t think it’s a point scorer for Eurovision

Only one song left! Time flies when you’re having fun!

Lina Kuduzović – Man Like U

This was the entry I was most curious about hearing tonight! Lina is an incredible young performer and I knew one day she’d have Eurovision in her sights after her success at JESC. Similar to Tinkara, Lina’s previous even experience shows in the way she stages her and performs. As a song, I think it’s a bit too tame to stand out much at the contest. But we’ll have to wait and see what the Slovene public say!

Still no one has touched the chocolate….

I suspect those envelopes contain the jury vote. But before we take a peek in those, it’s time for a recap

Remember, the Top 2 from the jury vote will then go to a public vote. I rather suspect Tinkara and Lina, the veteran and the ingénue, will be pitted against each other for that, but I still say Ana Soklič and Voda should be amongst the Top 2. Parvani Violet should also be considered. Sometimes you watch a final and you can see the winner coming a mile off, but tonight in Slovenia I’m not so sure where this will go!

“So Tinkara, what’s Eurovision like?”

I’ve also just noticed the unicorn hairband…

“So Lina, what’s JESC like?”

Told you those 2 would be singled out 😉

An envelope has appeared… it’s either a gas bill, or a finalist!

Oh wow!!! Ana Soklič is the first finalist!! EXCELLENT CHOICE!! ❤

I actually cheered so loudly, people at home asked me what had happened hahaha

Oooh that was cheeky! We have to wait till after the break to find out the next finalist!! Don’t go too far!

*checks the result from Ukraine* Oooooooohhh! 😀 SPOILER: Maruv is back (not really)

The second finalist is Lina Kuduzović

Another performance each from our super finalists, then onto the vote!

Super Final – Ana Soklič – Voda

SLOVENIA! THIS IS WHAT AN OBVIOUS CHOICE LOOKS LIKE!! This is sublime! I can see this very easily getting into the Top 10. Beautiful! Pure and simple! ❤ ❤ ❤

Super Final – Lina Kuduzović – Man Like U

I’m sorry Lina, you’re a fantastic performer and have a very bright future ahead of you – I just don’t think Eurovision 2020 is going to be part of that with this particular song. Don’t stop trying though, you certainly have the talent, I just wished this song did more to show case it.

So now it’s over to the Slovene public to vote – start voting now!!

And while Slovenia votes, here are EMA 2019’s winners, Zala Kralj and Gašper Šantl. Still rocking the same staging from Tel Aviv, but this year in black

A quick chat with our finalists… for one, their Eurovision dreams are about to come true!

3 minutes left to vote!

Not sure what he’s talking about, but the audience keep gasping…

Hahahahah brilliant!! It’s a One Man Eurovision show! This just goes to prove Slovenia have sent some brilliant entries over the years! How many do you recognise?

The question is, who now will be the next Slovene Eurovision singer? Think we’re about to find out…

Last year’s winners are ready to pass on the baton… but to who?

Oooooh that was cruel!!! AN AD BREAK?! NOW??? REALLY?!?!

And we’re back to find out our winner!

And it’s Ana Soklič!!!!! JAAAAAAAA!!!!!

I’m so happy, brilliant choice Slovenia!!! ❤ ❤ ❤

What a fantastic result, it’s been an amazing night! Thank you Slovenia! Hvala Slovenija!

I’ve been James, this has been EMA 2020 – Thank you Europe and good night!

Author: James Scanlan
Source: RTVSLO

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