Eurovision Day 7: Russia, Gemany, UK, Spain

by Richard West-Soley 45 views

Follow live coverage of Day 7 of Moscow 2009 with esctoday.com. It is now the turn of the five pre-qualified 2009 Eurovision Song Contest finalists. Host country Russia, along with Germany, United Kingdom and Spain will hold their first technical rehearsals.

View our gallery of today's rehearsal pictures at this link .

Russia

Anastasiya sang her first run-through off stage as a member of the crew stood in her place for the camera work. The remarkably agile floating screens appear in various positions around the stage, featuring the singer's face in a suitably pained expression. They are bordered in greens and then pale pinks and whites later in the song, with the backlighting in simple, bold white behind the impressive array of screens.

The Russian delegation experimented with different positioning of the screens, settling on placing Anastasiya directly in front of one of them, creating the striking visual effect of the singer performing in front of a huge version of herself. She appeared in simple black top and trousers for today's performance.

The singer left out the high notes until the last couple of run-throughs, after which she performed them with real gusto – perhaps oversinging slightly, although with a delegation viewing and a second rehearsal to come, the Russian camp has plenty of time to sort out these kinds of issues.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QAxyAGSWqHM

Germany

The German entry is called Miss Kiss Bang Bang and it is performed by Alex Swings Oscar Sings! The song is written by famous German music producer, DJ and composer Alex Christensen, who also joins Oscar Loya on stage.

We have a very colourful stage set-up, much in gold and the song title also projected on the screens. There is a grand piano on stage, played by Alex Christensen. Oscar has a shiny silver jacket on. There are two female backing dancers in small black lycra numbers.

After the key change a third lady appears on stage, waving a leather whip. She initially has a white jacket on, which she then removes. We finally see her straddling a mouth shaped black rocking seat that is on a podium on the stage.

This did give the impression that is was not a complete performance, so we might still see a slightly different version of this later on.

United Kingdom

Twinkling stars fill the back of the hall for Jade's big ballad, with the stage floor simply bordered with green. A moveable staircase are brought onto the stage, and Jade is joined by four violinists and a piano (as yet not manned by Lord Andrew himself!), as well as a good turn-out of UK supporters here in the hall!

Jade's soundcheck off-stage went very well, with vocals in top form. Once on stage, the UK team experimented at length with different configurations of the props, with open discussion between Jade and her mentors (including Arlene Phillips, who will be familiar to viewers of BBC's Strictly Come Dancing).about the exact timing of their use.

Jade, today wearing a glittery top and black trousers, begins her song crouching on top of the staircase. She soon stands and sings on top of the stairs before beginning her walk down in the second verse. It is a lingering walk, with Jade alternating between the two pairs of violinists on either side of the stairs. For the instrumental break, she walks over to the piano player before a rousing finish centre-stage. Graphics of a a crystal chandelier spin throughout the performance above the set on the enormous floating screens. Large amounts of dry ice fill the stage throughout.

The performances were vocally faultless, and Jade looks and sounds extremely comfortable on stage. The team managed four full run-throughs in total today, and face their second stage outing tomorrow.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hCh8bbIhH5s

Spain

Soraya spent some time with her backing singers off-stage, getting the mix of the vocals just right – essential given the rich harmonies between her and the support group. Together, they are producing an extremely close, rich sound which is vocally faultless all the way to the crystal-clear high note at the end of the performance. Two male dancers join Soraya and the two girls on stage in a closely choreographed routine.

The stage is backlit by a huge wall of glittering red and gold lights. A vertical wall of purple light stands behind the performers, who start off on a small staircase, standing in formation with heads down, only to burst up into life as the slow intro begins. Soraya is wearing a short, tassled, white dress which is shaken to full effect during the routine. The delegation played with several background effects during the rehearsal, including giant glitterball graphics.

As more international press members and fans reach Moscow, the level of support in the hall for each performer has risen tremendouly. Spain was no excpetion today, with encouraging cheers from the crowd after each run-through.

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Richard West-Soley

Senior Editor

Richard's ESC history began way back in 1992, when he discovered the contest could fuel his passion for music and languages. Since then, it's been there at every corner for him in some way or another. He joined the esctoday.com team back in 2006, and quickly developed a love for writing about the contest. In his other life, he heads the development team at the learning resources company Linguascope, and writes about all aspects of language learning on the site Polyglossic.com.

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