Eurovision 2015: Analyzing the semi-final running order

by Helio Qendro 338 views

Yesterday, the running order for both semi-finals of the 2015 Eurovision Song Contest were released. Sighs of relief and painful tantrums were heard in the Eurovision family when they saw the positions that the country they are rooting for was performing. So after the storm, it’s time to sit down and calm down (reference to The Common Linnets, yes) and see who might be building bridges to the final based on their position. Here at we can’t predict things but we can sure analyze and learn from what happened in previous years, social media buzz and current odds. That said, who will be the 10 lucky countries to proceed to the final on the 23rd of May? 

What do statistics say?

When going over the running order, the important thing to keep in mind is the statistics and how different positions have performed in past years. To make it clear for everyone, statistics do not imply whether a song is good or bad, it’s pure math and probability. So, when speak about statistics, keep in mind that song number 14 is not always the best, but that’s when there’s usually a peak number of viewers or voters that of course associated with the quality of the song.

Statistics come with good news but bad too for some fans. This year the favorable 10 to make it through to the finals are; from Semi-final 1: Armenia, Greece, Estonia, FYR Macedonia, Hungary, Russia, Denmark, Albania, Romania and Georgia. While from Semi-final 2: Ireland, Norway, Portugal, Czech Republic, Latvia, Iceland, Sweden, Switzerland, Cyprus and Poland. 

On lucky spots we have Albania from Semi-Final 1 and Switzerland in Semi-Final 2 with a 85% chance of success – number 14 having succeeded 12 times out of 14 and on questionable positions we have Georgia and Moldova who go head to head with 50% success chance in Semi-Final 1 joined by Poland and Slovenia in Semi-Final 2.

What do YouTube viewers think? 

Another popular means of song popularity, is definitely YouTube. Living proof of that are some of the past winners and top 5 placings like Conchita Wurst, Emmelie de Forest and Loreen joined by the Russian grannys who came 2nd in 2012.

From the first Semi here are the current standings:

  1. Russia – 1,744,033 views
  2. Albania – 855,146 views
  3. Armenia – 779,617 views
  4. Georgia – 404,279 views
  5. Estonia – 375,094 views
  6. Belgium – 357,343 views
  7. Belarus – 272,353 views
  8. FYR Macedonia – 248,466 views
  9. Serbia – 146,615 views
  10. Moldova – 129,341 views

The second Semi qualifiers according to YouTube are:

  1. Azerbaijan – 421,180 views
  2. Sweden – 331,131 views
  3. Malta – 262,831 views
  4. Israel – 253,625 views
  5. Iceland – 228,667 views
  6. Montenegro – 133,779 views
  7. Norway – 130,804 views
  8. Czech Republic – 114,661 views
  9. Lithuania – 107,245 views
  10. Slovenia – 90,086 views

Too many ballads could mean…

There is no denying that this year the Eurovision stage will have an overflow of ballads but kudos to the ORF team for balancing the order so well. Actually this year’s semi-finals might end up being the slowest in tempo measuring with 99  BPM approximately in both semi-finals, now just a comparison most songs in the radio today are 128 BPM. Below you will find the tempos of songs measured in beats per minute (BPM):

Tempos don’t really say much – song quality wise, but at the borderline of falling asleep during the show, uptempo songs will be your good friends. The first semi-final looks good for Armenia, FYR Macedonia, Serbia, Belarus and Denmark who have the chance to get some people moving, however, Albania and Georgia might get away with it too knowing that their songs both have double beats which can also be translated for the average listener to double the regular beats.

In the second semi Lithuania, Norway, Czech Republic, Israel and Sweden might just grab some votes for getting the party mood on and getting out of the ballad mood for some time. Montenegro, Azerbaijan and Iceland have a good chance in that too.


After all the evidence we gathered here’s what we got. The first semi-final is looking real good for: Armenia, Estonia, Russia and Albania. Close competitors are FYR Macedonia and Georgia – with surprises that might include Denmark, Belarus and Moldova. On the second semi-final Sweden, Norway, Iceland and Israel seem to have a clear way to the final, followed by Azerbaijan, Czech Republic, Malta and Slovenia – with sweet surprises that might include Montenegro.

Tell us what you think of the running order – who are your winners and losers?


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