esctoday.com editor Kristian Nicolai Stakset-Gundersen is live in Stavanger ahead of tonight's first Melodi Grand Prix semi final. In the first dress rehearsal of the Norwegian First Semi, Melodi Grand Prix veteran Veronica Akselsen created a magical mood with her song Am I supposed to love again, making her the hot favourite before tonight�s qualification. In the mean time, esctoday.com can reveal the plan for the Melodi Grand Prix interval acts, and they are set to be a big hit with Eurovision Song Contest fans!
This year’s interval acts will reflect the different decades of Melodi Grand Prix. In this first semi, the sixties are the theme. With 10 participations and 4 victories, Kirsti Sparbo was the queen of the Norwegian Melodi Grand Prix in the sixties. The interval act therefore ends up with her entering the stage with her song Oi oi oi så glad jeg skal bli. It ended last out of 16 back in 1969, but still is one of the best-known schlager songs in Melodi Grand Prix history.
The show starts with the rock band Podium, which opens up with pyrotechnics on stage. They are followed by one of this year’s outsiders in the Melodi Grand Prix, Ann Mari Andersen with the song Andagassii. This is the first song ever in Melodi Grand Prix to be performed in the native Sami language, and is accompanied by both drummers and a wind machine. In the dress rehearsal, however, you could see in the close-ups that Ann Mari was very nervous, though she had a technically good performance.
Nicolas Carlie managed to make a better live performance in the rehearsal than the studio track. He is moving up as one of the favourites to proceed to the final in Oslo. Michelle, who has the most modern song in this heat, is accompanied by two dancers. She sang out of key in the beginning of the song during the dress rehearsal, but got back on track. Michelle has a background as a dancer, but had disappointingly few moves on stage. The trio Tinkerbells looked more like an amateur act in the rehearsals, but might charm with their housewife-like energetic appearance.
This semi final’s last song might be tonight’s big winner. During the dress rehearsal, Veronica Akselsen created a magical mood with her gypsy-like ballad. Her act reminds many of Norway’s 1993 entry, Alle mine tankar, performed by Silje Vige. A young woman with a fragile voice singing a simple love song.
Once the show is under way, esctoday.com will be publishing a gallery from the rehearsals. In line with press policy for the competition, we cannot publish them before the show.
Join us at 19:55 CET for our live coverage article where you can watch the show and react under our realtime live report.