Sweden: The Ark sank everywhere

by Benny Royston 95 views

Sweden's result was a disaster for The Ark. The band, one of the most popular in Scandinavia, picked up top marks from Denmark and Norway, 10 from Iceland and 8 points from Finland, but only two countries from the 37 non scandinavian countries voted for them. They received 7 points from the United Kingdom, and 2 points from Andorra. 35 countries overlooked them altogether.

The Ark are one of Sweden's leading acts with a string of chart successes and decorated albums. They were installed as clear favourites when they were announced in the line-up for Melodifestivalen and finished true to form with the swedish ticket to Eurovision. Their entry The worrying kind has been a massive hit in Sweden, remaining on the top spot in the charts for several weeks.

They were also installed as early favourites by the bookmakers to win the Eurovision Song Contest and were widely tipped for a top five finish in the competition due to Sweden's track record as one of the most successful entrants in the last 20 years.

International fans of Melodifestivalen and the Eurovision Song Contest were disappointed with Sweden's choice for 2007, clearly favouring entries by Mans Zelmerlöw (3rd), Sonja Alden (7th) and Sanna Nielsen (6th). The band were also critised by many journalists in Helsinki for an arrogance that did not fit with the traditional Eurovision Song Contest attitude of friendship and support of other entries.

The Swedish choice was popular with the United Kingdom viewers, who are used to such acts and have recently been treated to the success of glam rockers, The Darkness, but the rest of Europe overlooked Sweden's choice this time.

Melodifestivalen is annually the most popular national final across Europe, and enjoys strong international CD and DVD sales. It is also one of the last finals to take place, giving the Swedish viewers the chance to pick a song to compete against many already known songs.

Although the show is one of the most important music competitions in Sweden, it stands accused by some of the Eastern European delegations, as many of the Western finals do, of catering for the domestic market rather than for a European audience. This is an explanation as to why the Eastern countries appear to have taken control of the Eurovision Song Contest.

The Ark were one of many rock songs in a year where Europe decided that Lordi was enough, and returned to voting for traditional ballads and pop songs.

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