19. Flag reinterpreted for UK act

by Richard West-Soley 51 views

Out goes the full Union Flag, and in comes a new, stylised version for Scooch's performance of Flying the Flag (For You) at Hartwall this evening.

Instead of the overwhelmingly huge British flag flying behind the four-piece and their two dancers, the flag is broken up into large coloured dots, like a funky Monet of the country's colours. This waves in a digital wind in between shots of planes, in outline, flying outwards and upwards. The effect is a lot less nationalistic that the yesterday's performance might have been, with a focus on the colours red, white and blue instead of the pattern of the flag itself, which might appeal to many countries with similarly coloured flags! The only thing to break up the continuity of this is the rather garish costumes of the support artists, in bright green and orange beneath candy pink coats. It does seem a shame to spoil the colour scheme, which stands out so starkly on the TV screen.

The visual metaphors supplied by the props work brilliantly on screen, the stage being transformed into the whole flying experience, from check-in, through to the flight and finally disembarking at the end of the song. In particular, the semaphor waving percussion break should get the audience going in the hall.

Experienced performers
For any doubters, Scooch are still in fine vocal form, the backing singers just adding a bit of richness to the overall mix. Caroline is a cheeky minx on stage, with tongue-in-cheek wiggles of the hip and sly winks to camera. The routine the whole group perform faultlessly is the mark of a good deal of experience in pop – even if that experience was some years ago – and with good solo performances from Natalie and Caroline, Scooch otherwise just have a lot of fun on stage, and hope that the audience at home do the same.

Press conference

AsScooch's press conference was cancelled yesterday due to the fact all journalists had left for the reception of the Lord Mayor of Helsinki, today it was longer than planned, taking up a full thirty minutes.

The band members were very positive about both of their rehearsals and the song itself. But even more positive about the Eurovision Song Contest: "We've been here for a couple of days but it's been so amazing for us. It's a great contestfor unitingEurope."

In the case of their victory they would recommend many different cities in the UK for hosting the Eurovision Song Contest, from Leeds to Birmingham. Commenting on the origin of the lyrics of their entry they had indeed found help from real in-flight sources. "If you are on our airline then you get a lot of things complimentary," they added. They have a surprise prepared for Saturday which has something to do with things hidden behind the trolleys used in their act but they refused to reveal it at this moment. Naturally they have several versions of the song prepared, including a classical / acoustic version.

Talking about Terry Wogan's mistake in announcing the winner in the British selection for the Eurovision Song Contest (giving the wrong nameofwinner) they said that it had worked out really well for them because they had got more publicity because of the error.

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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.