It’s taken me a bit of time to come to terms with the music event of the year but I am finally recovered enough to speak of watching a re-run of the Eurovision Song Contest. Every year I prepare to be amazed by this celebration of the avant-garde. Each year it I am blown away by the extraordinarily entertaining mish-mash of utter strangeness which demands to be delighted in.
Deep down we all secretly think that other nations are a bit strange with their different ways and ideas and here is the one time of the year where it is socially acceptable for you to indulge in national clichés and gentle merriment at the expense of our European brethren. A chance to allow your bewilderment to be satiated for over three hours of faintly terrible but brilliant music and characters.
There is something for everybody, it is a true celebration of lowbrow culture, campness and pure cheese, it is a kitsch spectacular and it is impossible not to love, Take Frances upbeat sounding song about a man who has everything he wants but can’t grow a moustache or the Russian twins who started singing with their hair entwined…the show gets away with it because it’s just too ludicrous.
The lighting in Copenhagen was fantastic and something to be rightly proud of for those who created it, in some instances the lighting impressed more than the songs in this garish rampage through countries as far-flung as San Marino and Azerbaijan. Marry this feat of hilarious with some awkward presenters with wooden acting and flat jokes – showing humour is not a universal thing – making it all the more hilarious, yes this year didn’t disappoint at all. Highlights included:
A man running in a big hamster wheel, a round piano, a member of parliament as a backing singer for the Icelandic entry, Greek rappers on a trampoline and a bearded lady from Austria. That’s all in one show and that is considered pretty normal…only on Eurovision!
Between songs there was the visual treat of the flag making segments in the form of promotional videos in which the participants get all arty making their flags out of whatever they wish from the classic red London bus to vegetables and Rubik’s Cubes. This is without going into the voting biases of all the countries who vote for their near neighbours which some see as unfair, which it is if the song isn’t that good like this year’s top three but I suppose with migration and being a global society it is perhaps understandable these days.
Anyway make sure you look out for it next year, it’ll be just as unconventional next time and then some! Here is my favourite tune (all the rest can be found on YouTube), one with a message from Iceland, be warned it is a tad catchy and may encourage you to dress more eccentrically…