Super Saturday – a review

by Marcus Klier 59 views

After yesterday's Super Saturday, it's more than obvious that we are in the middle of the 2007 Eurovision Song Contest national final season. 13 countries held a show in their national selection, including four countries that have decided for Helsinki: Estonia, Slovenia, Poland and Malta.


According to the reactions, most people expected either the 2005 Swiss representatives Vanilla Ninja or the 2000 Estonian singer Ines to win the selection. Eventually, both didn't even make it to the top three. Gerli Pader won Eurolaul with Partners in crime – a pop rock song that could have also been sung by Vanilla Ninjs. If this song will make it to the final? Estonia was one of the most successfulcountries in the late 90s and in the early 2000s. Nevertheless, after hosting the 2002 Eurovision Song Contest, the star began to fall: a bad placing in 2003 and non-qualifying entries in 2004, 2005 and 2006 followed. Therefore it is hard to tell right now if Estonia will have big chances this year. You can read more here.


Another country that has yet to make it to the final since 2004: Slovenia has decided – for the first time via televoting only – that Alenka Gotar will go to Helsinki with her song.Cvet z Juga (Flower from the South). It's a dramatic ethinc ballad that was generally very well received by the readers. If this song will be sung in an English version has not been decided yet – if this would be a good idea is another question which is going to be well discussed. Nevertheless, after Lanemojeand Lejla, songs in a similar style,achieved a 2nd and 3rd place in 2004 and 2006 respectively a song performed in a Slavic language might not be the worst choice. You can read more here.


Among the ten competing music acts, Swedish rock band Charizma were the big favourites. Nevertheless, the televoters have decided that they want to see The Jet Set in Helsinki. Time to party will be their motto and the title of their song – but will this party will have toend before the final? In 2005 and 2006, Poland finished 11th in the semi final – missing the qualification only by a few points. The Jet Set had already taken part in the 2006 Polish final with their song How many people? – they finished third.Later the song appearedin the OGAE second chance contest, but finished in last place with 'nil points'. You can read more here.


Those who have watched the Maltese final yesterday, have had to wait a long time until they have heard that Olivia Lewis will represent the island in 2007. It has not only lasted more than one hour until the first song was presented, but the interval act has also included – among others – a 45 minute long concert by 2004 Eurovision Song Contest winner Ruslana. Olivia Lewis was runner-up in the Maltese finals in 2004, 2005 and 2006 and will finally get to represent her country. Her song Vertigo is an orientally inspired Flamenco song, a style that might be not called typically Maltese. Nevertheless, she was the only singer who has received standing ovations and might therefore expect a strong Maltese support in Helsinki. After Fabrizio Faniello's last place in Athens, the expectations are of course very high. You can read more here and here.


At 18:00 CET,Euroviisut was the first show of the evening.There can be no doubt who was the favourite in the hall: Lovex received byfar the biggest applause in this semi final, maybeeven the whole Euroviisut show. Thesix songs that were performedwere mainly of average quality. With nine out of twelve songs chosen, the visitors seem not to see another Finnish victory in the 2007 Eurovision Song Contest. You can read more here.


After Christine Guldbrandsen's 14th place in Athens with her fairytale performance of Alvedansen, Norway seems to go for rock or up-tempo again: CRASH! and Jenny Jenssen made it to the final. Overall, it seems to become a wide-ranging final next Saturday, including rock, pop, samba, dance and country – only a typical ballad is missing. Maybe in the second chance round? You can read more here.


After a stronger and well received second semi final, the quality seems to have dropped a bit again. Most of the entries were mid-tempo pop or rock songs. Therefore, it might not be a surprise that the only rather lively performances – Ragnheiður Eiríksdóttirwith Ég og heilinn minn and Hafsteinn Þórólfssonwith Þú tryllir mig – made it to the final. Nevertheless, the visitors are mostly talking about FridrikOmar and Jónsi from the second semi final… You can read more here.


As every year, Swedish Melodifestivalen is a well-discussed topic. Looking back at the last years, it's no surprise that two more traditional songs made it to the final: Samba sambero by Anna Book and Jag tror på människan by Tommy Nilsson; both have Melodifestival (and for Tommy even Eurovision Song Contest) experience. It's fair to say that Sweden has always done better in the contest when they stuck to the more classic sound – the only more extraordinary Swedish entry over the last years – Las Vegas in 2005 – received the worst placing since 1992. You can read more here.


It was a Baltic weekend: Latvia has decided on another five singers to go to the final on 24th February; three were chosen by televoting and two by a jury. Trivia: while the qualifying songs from the first semi final were all written by Latvian composers, the second heat saw various Swedish entries making it to the final. According to the reactions, Take off your mask from the first semi final still seems to be the favourite. You can read more here.


The winding road continues. Eight singers out of the 'yellow' group with semi-established performers made it to the semi finals. Natas was the favourite of both the jury and the televoters – despite an average vocal performance. After LT United last year, Lithuania seems disinclined to go for a comedy act again: Super Kolegos were voted out, although the audience was enthusiastic about the entry. You can read more here.


After good placings in 2002, 2003, 2005 and 2006, Romania has become a favourite country for many people. The overall show was as spectacular as last week, making the hearts of Eurovision Song Contest fans beat faster (maybe also because they had to fear that the webcast would break down any minute): cover versions of various contest entriesand Mihai's boxing match were some of the highlights. Despite accusations of plagiarism and disqualifications, the songs were generally well received. You can read more here.


The semi final saw nine songs moving to the final as well as the three wildcards that were also announced yesterday. Bulgaria is one of last Eurovision Song Contest countries that still decides by a jury only (nevertheless, televoting will decide the eventual winner). Generally, wildcard entries seem to have bigger chances in national finals everywhere in Europe. You can read more here.


Those who stayed up for a long time tonight, could wait for the last five Spanish acts to qualify for the semi finals. After a long break – as the Spanish shows were moved from Tuesday to Saturday – the fourth heat in Mision Eurovision was held. 12 soloist and 4 duets have performed classic international hits. You can read more here.

Next week will be another big Saturday: Denmark, Norway and Romania will decide for Helsinki while Spain, Lithuania, Sweden and Finland will continue their search for the best entries to represent the countries in Helsinki. Of course, will keep you updated with the latest news on the selections.

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