The first rehearsal of Monaco took place this afternoon, Lise Darly with Tout de moi. She is accompanied by two female backing vocalists who will use the presenters platform stage to the right hand side. These platforms are capable of rising up and down, to add variety to the set. Lise herself appears on the main stage alone. The song is a straightforward presentation, with no gimmicks or choreography, and was well received by the audience.
Like the other performers today she had the obligatory sound checks and camera checks to go through before we were able to see the result. There were four complete performances of the song, with no obvious problems. There will be a steadycam operator moving around Lise during the song, which is almost a standard requirement these days.
The press conference followed shortly afterwards. The first announcemnet by the Head of Delegation was that the CD single contained not only the French language version, but an English version and an instrumental version.
The first questions concerned the doubts about Monaco participating following the death of Prince Rainier recently. The late Prince was a big supporter of Monaco in the Eurovision Song Contest, and the Palace had been consulted about the participation. Prince Albert too gave his approval, but as a small mark of respect the singers will all wear a small black ribbon pinned to their dresses.
Lisa was asked about the stage, “It's huge, I love it, the lighting, the floor, the decor, it's wonderful and nice she replied.
Had she heard any of the other entries from this year, and did she have any favourites? She replied in French that she had heard all the songs and that her favourites were Israel and Denmark.
What had she done before the Eurovision Song Contest and what were her plans afterwards? Lise said she had been singing since she was 15, and recently turned professional, amongst her favourite singers were Jeanne Manson, who sung for Luxembourg in 1979. She was also considered last year to represent Monaco in Istanbul, but lost out to Maryon. She must have impressed everyone enough to be given the opportunity this year, and considers it a great honour to represent her country, which she never thought would happen.
On past Eurovision Song Contests, she remembers Natasha St Pierre very well, and also loved Celine Dion, though Lise was very young at the time. But in recent years she has had no particular favourites.
The moderator of the press conferences had his own question to ask, as to whether there were any more plans to record with the Monaco Philharmonic Orchestra? The answer was that they would probably plan more shows, but admitted it was a very expensive cost to use an orchestra.
The press conference finished with a photo opportunity for the photographers and journalists.
Monaco are next scheduled to rehearse on Saturday 14th May at 14.30 local time.