Members of the Royal Academy of the Spanish Language expressed in the past already their disagreement with having Spain represented by a song in English. This year the reprimand is being repeated and seems to get harsher at each occasion.
As reported by different media in Spain, the Director of the Royal Academy of the Spanish Language, Darío Villanueva, expressed his dissatisfaction with Barei’s entry for the Eurovision Song Contest 2016 Say Yay! During a meeting organized by the news agency Europa Press, Mr. Villanueva stated that he believes that choosing a song in English to represent Spain shows an inferiority complex and foolishness.
Mr. Villanueva is not the first to bash the Spanish Eurovision entry for Stockholm. Other artists, like the Eurovision winner Massiel, have stated their dislike for the language choice.
Another member of the Spanish Academy, José María Merino, declared a few days ago that sending a song in English is surprisingly stupid when Spanish is spoken by 500 million people in the world, while also telling off many Spaniards who find English the most appropriate language to represent us abroad. He further explained that choosing a more widely spread language would be understandable for countries whose language have a lower number of speakers, but for Spain it is disgraceful.
This criticism may be more heated this year as it coincides with the anniversary of the death of Miguel de Cervantes, a master author and a symbol of the Spanish language.
The Royal Academy also expressed its concerns about the song that Ruth Lorenzo took to Copenhagen in 2014, Dancing in the rain, which contained a remarkable amount of lyrics in English when it was presented in the national final that year, which triggered the reaction of the institution. The author, Ruth Lorenzo, modified the lyrics slightly once it was selected Eurovision, including yet more words in English after the remarks from the Academy.
Say yay! was written and submitted in English. Upon request by the Spanish broadcaster RTVE some verses in Spanish were included for the national final, but after winning her ticket to Eurovision Barei stated that the song will be performed fully in English in the Grand Final.
Barei will represent Spain in the Eurovision Song Contest 2016 with Say Yay!, the first entry completely in English that the country sends.