The fourth esctoday.com TOP TEN list ccontinues today with the places 5 and 4 being announced. As announced on Saturday, this week's topic are the TOP TEN most impressive debuts.
The ranking will in fact be based on a mathematical formula that consideres the following criteria:
- A country's placing
- The number of countries taking part in a certain year
- The number of countries having their debut in a certain year
- The participation of a country under a different name/flag in previous years
Here is a fictive example to show how the raking will work:
Let's say in 1953, ten countries competed in the contest: A, B, C, D, E, F, G, H, I and J. The countries A, B and C take part for the first time, the other countries have already taken part in previous editions. If country A is the highest placed debuting country finishing second, how impressive is that debut?
Although a second place is always impressive, it is not as impressive for a debuting country as it seems in the first place for the following reasons:
- Only ten countries took part. Therefore every country has a mathematical chance of strong 20% to reach the top two.
- Three debuting countries took part. Therefore, the mathimatical chances of at least one of them reaching the top two stands at about 53%!
For this reason, the seven countries that competed in the first Eurovision Song Contest in 1956 are excluded from the top ten. The mathematical chances of a debuting country winning was 100% – Lys Assia's picture in the logo is therefore purely symbolical.
The full formula will be revealed on Saturday.
No. 5 – Israel (1973)
Israel was not only the only country to join the Eurovision Song Contest in 1973, it was also the first country outside Europe to compete. The broadcaster internally chose popular singer Ilanit, who had already been named singer of the year in 1971 and 1972, to represent Israel in Luxembourg with the song Ey sham, written by Nurit Hirsh and Ehud Manor. Composer Nurit Hirsh would also conduct the orchestra being the second woman only to do so. At the end of the voting, Israel finished fourth with 97 points. After her success in Eurovision, Ilanit remained very popular in her home country and she was named singer of the year again every year between 1973 and 1977. In 1977, she represented Israel a second time. Again, she had been chosen internally but this time, her song Ahava hir shir lishnaim only reached eleventh place. In 1984, she was supposed to represent Israel again – this time with a song called Balalaika – but Israel withdrew from the contest that year when it turned out that it would be held on the national memorial day.
The fourth place remained Israels most successful result until the first victory in 1978, which was achieved by another song composed and conducted by Nurit Hirsh. Israel also won in 1979 and 1998 and finished in high places on many other occassions. In recent years, results have been mixed with Israel reaching the top ten only twice in the last decade. The country was also eliminated during the semi finals twice.
No. 4 – Armenia (2006)
The semi finals, which were introduced in 2004, allowed more and more countries to debut in the competition. However, the run calmed down in 2006 with only one debuting country: Armenia. Popular singer André was chosen internally to represent his country in Athens. With his song Without your love, written by Armin Martirsosyan and Catherine Bekyan, he opend the semi final and closed the final. In the voting, the song eventually reached a remarkable eighth place among the 37 competing countries. André remains a successful performing and recording artists in Armenia and is most recent studio album was released in 2008. He also co-hosted the 2007 Armenian national final. Composer Armin Martirosyan would co-write the 2010 Armenian entry Apricot Stone.
The strong debut was actually an omen for a series of good results for Armenia. So far, the country has reached the top ten in the final every year. The best result so far was a fourth place in 2008.
Tomorrow, we will introduce the numbers 3 and 2 on the list.