Eurovision 2018: The UK national final, and recent selections

Tonight’s UK final takes place at the Brighton Dome, venue of Abba’s Eurovision triumph in 1974. The BBC have put together six adequate songs, arguably a better collection than last year’s. My one general criticism is they feel too safe, as if written for and approved by committee.

The most distinctive in studio form […]

Eurovision 2018: The French national final, and early state of play

The road to Lisbon really kicks into gear with the French national final tonight. A decent field of eight is, according to the Betfair market, a two-horse race between the semi-final winners, Lisandro Cuxi with ‘Eva‘ and Madame Monsieur with ‘Mercy‘. The former is marginal favourite at the time of going to press.

The Voice […]

Eurovision 2017: Grand Final preview

This year’s Eurovision looks like a three-horse race between market leaders Portugal, Italy and Bulgaria. Last year was nail-bitingly close between the eventual top three, where huge disparities between respective jury and televote scores added to the suspense. I think this renewal will be more reminiscent of 2014, where the top three all scored really […]

Eurovision 2017: Grand Final rehearsal

This afternoon the press centre watched the first rehearsal for tomorrow night’s big event. Not everyone was in their battle outfits, and the important pre-show run-through is tonight for the benefit of the juries. Follow us on Twitter for our views on that as it happens.

Israel’s Imri was an example of the Eurovision performer […]

Eurovision 2017: Second semi-final preview

The first heat was a competitive one in which there was enough strength in depth for a shock non-qualifier (Finland). The second semi feels like there’s a bigger group of more secure qualifiers, and a lot of mediocre songs scrabbling for the last couple of places.

Bulgaria is a deserving odds-on favourite to win tonight’s […]

Eurovision 2017: Second semi-final dress rehearsal

After some technical issues, the first dress rehearsal of the second semi-final kicked off with Serbia’s Tijana. After disappointing earlier in the week, ‘In Too Deep’ is now at least meeting its low expectations, with the vocal better than before. But Austria’s Nathan Trent is a much-needed injection of charm and easy listening straight afterwards.

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Eurovision 2017: First semi-final preview

This feels like a tricky semi-final. At the time of going to press, the Betfair qualification market has a clear top ten. These are, in descending order: Armenia, Sweden, Portugal, Azerbaijan, Greece, Moldova, Finland, Australia, Belgium and Cyprus.

But there were good vocal performances from Poland, Georgia, Iceland and Slovenia during last night’s jury rehearsal. […]

Eurovision 2017: First semi-final dress rehearsal

What follows are my impressions of the first dress rehearsal of the first semi-final. The opportunity to watch the participants in quick succession theoretically means we can compare them more easily. Later today, I will tweet my thoughts of each act during the crucial run-through that national juries watch and vote on.

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