Eurovision 2015: First semi-final preview

Eurovision is upon us. Tonight’s first semi-final contains the usual caveats: there are only 16 countries chasing ten qualifying spots; a points total in the 40s may well be enough; we are likely to get 4-5 jury-only votes; thus a rogue jury score or two could make all the difference between getting through or not. […]

Eurovision 2015: Semi-final 1, first dress rehearsal

Checking on rehearsal write-ups from the press centre must feel like a frustrating game of snakes and ladders, as entries improve or deteriorate at various moments. That was certainly the case in today’s first dress rehearsal for the first semi-final.

Moldova’s Eduard plays his own version of snakes and ladders, jumping up and down levels […]

Eurovision 2015: May 17 rehearsals

It’s good to remember that we went from watching second rehearsals to first run-throughs today. To varying degrees the automatic qualifiers treated it as they’re meant to – as a technical exercise in trying out different camera angles – rather than giving it their all. Therefore, fast and firm staging judgements made on the basis […]

Eurovision 2015: May 16 rehearsals

Even though the second rehearsals pass by quicker, the section of the second semi between the end of Lithuania and the start of Israel felt as long as before. At least the viewer will only have three minutes of each song, not 20.

Lithuania’s Vaidas and Monika are still “feeling love”: Vaidas now has a […]

Eurovision 2015: May 15 rehearsals

The days are getting longer in Vienna, indoors as well as outdoors. Today witnessed the second rehearsals for all of the first semi-final, and impressions will necessarily be a little more fleeting given the quicker pace of proceedings.

I really enjoy Moldova’s ‘I Want Your Love’ but then I am (a) British (b) male (c) […]

Eurovision 2015: May 14 rehearsals

The second half of the second semi-final is an intriguing mixture.

We started today with Israel’s ‘Golden Boy’ Nadav Guedj. The concept is the right one here: three male backing dancers bringing movement and fun; two backing singers who join in for the final chorus; and a blue-to-gold stage. My one problem is that Nadav […]

Eurovision 2015: May 13 rehearsals

The first half of the second semi-final isn’t the most thrilling part of this year’s contest. Today it served up a series of largely competent rather than exciting initial run-throughs.

Starting things off, Lithuania was a ray of sunshine – literally in its purple and orange backdrop. The summery feel was carried over into Monika […]

Eurovision 2015: May 12 rehearsals

Today saw the second half of the first heat have their initial run-throughs. We started with Serbia, where a frizzy-haired Bojana in grey sequins pleased the fans with her message of ‘Beauty Never Lies’. A staging description of her backing singers discarding their white masks, cloaks and flags for an amateurish dance-along may scare off […]