27. Daring to be different: Austria rehearses

by Richard West-Soley 30 views

There had already been a lot of coverage given to Eric Papilaya's proposed styling for the stage performance of Get a Life, Get Alive, and today's rehearsal represented a first chance to see that on stage, as the group stepped out in full costume.

The Austrian delegation must take the prize for the most unusual of all performances; they have really gone all out this year to be noticed, and the whole thing really is unforgettable. Eric wears possibly the shiniest, most glittering suit that was ever created; his silver glamour picks him out from the crowd, that crowd comprising four dancers clad in skin-tight red costumes of lycra and feathers. A guitarist in a slightly less shiny silver suit completes the line-up.

Daring styling pays off
All the action takes place around a red AIDS ribbon made of red feathers, which the dancers form part of at the beginning of the song. Eric kicks the song off standing in the loop of the ribbon, before all five take to the front of the stage to perform a punchy, contemporary dance routine. It looks fantastic on stage, and the daring style decisions have paid off in that respect; the black, silver, red and white mix oozes sophistication while screaming look at us!

Eric is undoubtedly a very strong and capable vocal performer, and by the second run through he was throwing himself into the show. There is so much energy in him and in the surrounding routine, which culminates in the words GET ALIVE emblazoned in colossal letters across the stage. Today's performance, one of the few given in full costume, has made many observers reevaluate their opinion of the Austrian entry's chances.

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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.