Let’s get the party started!

I spent Monday afternoon at the dress rehearsal for the first semi-final. There were no major calamities, and unlike in previous years we got through without having to stop for a technical error. That said some of the vision mixing on the screens in the auditorium was a bit fudged. What is looking stunning, however, are the transitions between songs: the postcards are charming, involving people from each nation, and then what I can only describe an ‘eurovision aura’ (loads of swirling dots) will fly onto your TV screens to first form the outline of each country, and then the flag from it. You’ll see what I mean! Also, as the artists enter the stage you will see that too! A nice touch that we haven’t seen since 1979, apparently (I didn’t know that – I’m not that much of a geek!). Some looked more nervous than others today!

So, on with the runners and riders for Tuesday night (BBC3 at 8.00pm!)

Oh, one MAJOR change to the proceedings this year is that you can text to vote for a song you like at any time, rather than waiting until the reprise after all the songs have been performed. This might just shake things up a bit.

01 MOLDOVA

A good opener for the first semi-final. I’ve liked this for a while, but today at the dress rehearsal she was a little off. Loving the M People stylee sax flourish – sounds a bit like Moving On Up from back in the day?

02 RUSSIA

Russia seem to have realised that now they have hosted the ESC they are in no hurry to win it back. The lead singer looks slightly bored – and you might be too..

03 ESTONIA

The first time I heard this it made me think of music from the 1980s (aah, the 80s – the best of times!). I think it sounds like Midge Ure and Heaven 17 mixed together. Must say that I have not been a fan of this song, but he delivers it really well – with a quirky style that makes the song sound better. I know you might laugh, but I wouldn’t be surprised if this gets through…

04 SLOVAKIA

Best song of the night so far. Is it me, or does the green costume remind you of that episode of Doctor Who recently when the people turned into trees? This is straight through to the final.

05 FINLAND

This is bonkers, but charmingly so. You’ll be clapping along by the end. The assembled press at the rehearsal today were doing just that!

06 LATVIA

I love this song. Not sure why Aisha has taken to the stage in what looks like her bath robe? Perhaps she’s going for the dirty old man vote…

07 SERBIA

Rearrange these words and I think it’s all I need to say:

BOX – FROGS – A – AS – MAD – OF

Except that – if you don’t judge the poor fella for having a haircut that his mother gave him because she’d hoped for a girl – it’s irritatingly catchy, and it’ll be popular with the voters in Eastern Europe for sure.

08 BOSNIA & HERZEGOVINA

A bit retro. Bosnia have made the final for the last couple of years – I’m not sure that they will this year. What do you think?

09 POLAND

Poland need to realise that less is more, as there is far too much to distract the eye from the ear. Also, singer Marcin grabbing a backing singer by the throat during the performance it a little sinister…

10 BELGIUM

This is really popular here in Oslo. It’s got one of the best reactions in the auditorium today. As a song it does build in all the right places and is a clap along crowd pleaser.

11 MALTA

I’m on the fence with this one. Generally well staged – with great gospel singers adding very strong backing vocals to provide a dimension to the track that we have not heard before, and actually making me want to hear it again.

12 ALBANIA

There is a song every year that the fans love that never makes it to the final. I think that this might be that song this year. And if you thought that Pete Waterman had composed a song for the UK that sounds more cliché than retro, then I think that this is in the same league.

13 GREECE

Greece is the word once again this year with another strong contender. Infectious and catchy – sure to go to the final! Feel the testosterone…

14 PORTUGAL

2010 is quite ballad-tastic. In such a wide field this charming performer might struggle to qualify.

15 F.Y.R. MACEDONIA

I said today at the dress rehearsal that this would be one of the songs if I was watching at home during which I would put the kettle on and have a cup of tea. I quickly corrected myself. It’d be a song when I would refresh my G’n’T!

16 BELARUS

And then, following the previous song where my gin and tonic had been refreshed, I’d be on my feet again to go and get another one! A wee bit bland for me. A pity that they replaced their original entry this year with this substitute – the former song was much better. BTW: keep a close eye on the female singers who will literally sprout butterfly wings on the key change at the end. No, really! Eurovision, cheesy – surely not!

17 ICELAND

Hopefully you’ll be in the europop zone by this point in the proceedings. So, go on- push the coffee table to one side, put down that bottle of Lambrini and it’s hands-in-the-air-shake-em-like-you-just-don’t-care. Do it for me – sashay with Hera and her team. Love it – a great finish to the night.

‘Team Oslo’ – will deliver our “Napkin of Death” predictions tomorrow, for the third year. We did quite well last year!

😀

6 thoughts on “Let’s get the party started!

  1. I love the Estonian entry!! I may have to take up that dance style myself 🙂

  2. UK entry: can someone throw that baby out with the bath water… now, please!!!

  3. Oh Gosh!!! Well I picked the ten I thought would go through and six did in fact get there! Most sad that Latvia, Slovakia and Finland didn’t make it – shame about Estonia too. Thought Russia would go through and not surprised about Portugal either. Belarus – well, couldn’t believe the wings!

    Word from the Rolfe house is that Dr Rolfe likes Belgium – thinks it will go all the way.

    I wonder what our pundits in Oslo thought…

    Oh, also a bit sad that I don’t fancy any of the Greeks this year – song full of oomph but no Opa for me I’m afraid – my fancy pants this year is Mr Belgium – cute as a button.

  4. I think I got 5 – will have to consult the ‘napkin of death’. I did so much better last year! My Euro mojo still hasn’t kicked in! Missed you tonight! x

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