Let’s face it… the last 18 months have been anything but ordinary!! And in these strange times of COVID, social distancing and frantic hand washing, even Eurovision has undergone massive changes to ensure the event we know and love can go ahead. We all knew it was going to be a contest unlike any other – but just how different will it be?
In this diary series, Eurovision Ireland regular James will give you his daily personal thoughts about the goings on backstage at Eurovision 2021, both through the lens of a contest being hosted during these unprecedented times and as someone following rehearsals from afar. Will it be The Weirdest Eurovision Ever? Quite possibly!
Day 13 – Unlucky for some… unlucky for 7!
So what can I say about today? If I were in Rotterdam in a more ordinary year I’d have stories of days out, more interviews and titbits like visiting the Eurovision Village and my once a year night club visit to the EuroClub… but in a Eurovision unlike any before it, most of today is spent quietly waiting for tonight’s live show. There’s the usual banter between my colleagues as we take a look at the final rehearsal for the Second Semi Final, which always makes me laugh. There comes a moment later in the afternoon when the EBU announce that Junior Eurovision will be taking place in Paris on December 19th… this has caused two lines of thought amongst us. The first is “Oh, that’s late!? Why is that so late?!” and then other is “Ooooh!! Christmas in Paris!! How wonderful!”. I’m in the third, smaller camp saying “Well I hope we get to go!”
For me, tonight’s Second Semi Final is bittersweet. There’s the excitement of another live show and of more qualifiers – more of Eurovision history being made! But there’s also the sense of time passing quickly, and the knowledge that your second week at the Eurovision Song Contest is drawing to a close. There’s still the final to enjoy, of course. But today is usually the moment it dawns on you that your time in this host city that you’ve grown quite attached to is running out. It’s a strange and a little sad. This year of course we aren’t in Rotterdam, so there isn’t quite the same impending goodbye to a host city. There’s more of the excitement that we’re just days away from crowning a new winner! But there’s time for all that later. Now it’s time for the Second Semi Final!
So my gut feeling at the moment (as opposed to 10 minutes from now, or indeed after I publish this!) says Albania, Austria, Bulgaria, Denmark, Finland, Greece, Iceland, Portugal, San Marino and Switzerland are tonight’s lucky picks. I can also see routes for Serbia, Moldova, Czech Republic and even Estonia too, but I’m not sure who they’d be at the expense of… this contest is unpredictable at the best of times and this semi final is particularly open! For 7 countries, their dreams of Eurovision glory will end tonight. For the remaining 10 – it’s only just beginning!
Going to end here to get ready for the live shows. I know this is a very short diary entry from me, but there isn’t much to tell you and I know 99% of you are (like me!) excitedly waiting for tonight! Wherever you’re watching, enjoy tonight’s show! I’ll be sure to let you know my thoughts about the qualifiers and those who don’t make the cut tomorrow! So I should have much more to say and write about! Enjoy the Second Semi Final everyone!
Signing off for today – thank you Europe, and good night!
Author: James Scanlan
Source: Eurovision Ireland
Banner Image Source: Adapted from realireland.ie