Tuesday, May 20, 2008


EDU has officially stuck its fingers in its ears and is singing 'La La La [key change] La La La' from now until Saturday night (AEST).

We may be back between the end of Saturday's delayed telecast of the 2nd Semi on SBS-TV (2130 AEST) and the Final commences of Sunday morning (around 0400 AEST) - but we are planning on having an international drinking night, so we may just be in the corner in a drunken stupour giggling at IPL team names.

For non-Australians and Aussies who love spoilers - here are some 'fabulous' sites with all the latest news and reviews:





NB: Oh, and we're pretty sure Wogan is just blowing hard here. He will retire soon - but the UK will stay in Eurovision. ESC is bigger than Terry (we can't believe we said it either!)

Saturday, May 17, 2008

I Feel Like TV Tonight

One of our fave Oz bloggers - David Knox of the seminal TV Tonight - has been invited by SBS to provide a Eurovision blog for 2008.

SBS Blog by David Knox

Il Faut Du Temps

EDU is not saying that Greece and Russia are over-compensating for anything...but... apparently their stage props are too big for the stage!

Previous stages have had 2 or more stage doors, allowing the largest props to be cleared and the props for the next act to be brought out within the 30 second 'postcards.' Belgrade has just the one stage door and that has become a problem at rehearsals.

The Greek delegation have adapted their giant book that turns into a heart, adding wheels to speed the movement and making the prop lighter. The Russians however seem to be holding their breath and stomping their feet. They are refusing to crop a ladder from their stage set up. Expect a TV ad break to get moved to before their act.

Where Men Ride

As fans begin to pour into Belgrade for the semi finals which start in 72 hours, some security concerns remain - especially with regard to gay and lesbian fans. In early April the Serb newspaper Alo! included an interview with Mladen Obradovic, president of fascist party Obraz in which he described Eurovision as ‘gay youth day’ and made specific threats against gays and lesbians planning to visit Serbia for ESC.

European Pride Organisers Association (EPOA) has written to the EBU about Serbia's poor record on human rights of lesbian, gay men, bisexuals and transgender (LGBT) people. For its part the EBU has received a guarantee of the safety of delegations, press and fans from the President of Serbia.

Recent parliamentary elections also favoured pro-western parties, which hopefully indicates groups like Obraz are increasingly marginalised.

Tuesday, May 13, 2008

Never Let it Go

The Director of Eurovision TV - Bjorn Erichsen - has criticised (Sir!) Terry Wogan's commentary for Eurovision. Most right thinking people consider Woganisms the highlight of most years and his barbed witicisms are the way many viewers get into Eurovision in the first place. The attack is really akin to going after the goose that lays the golden egg.

Said Erichsen: "Terry Wogan is a problem because he makes it ridiculous. I know he is very popular, and maybe that is the reason why a lot of people watch. But one day he will have to retire and the BBC will have to find someone else. It will be interesting to see if that attitude changes. The BBC gets a very large audience but it chooses to represent the Contest in a certain way. They take it far more seriously in Sweden. They have a genuine love and respect for it."

They also take it very seriously in Denmark - which is where Erichsen hails from. You remember Denmark, the nation which lodged an official complaint about Wogan after he described the 2001 hosts as Doctor Death and the Tooth Fairy as they used rhyming couplets for the entire night.

"The UK has double standards in the contest. It is something you love to hate. It's something to laugh at. It's something continental. It's a scam. It's ridiculous. The British like to distance themselves from it." (The Contest, not Europe). Erichsen's view is that all viewers of the BBC feed should receive only serious commentary which promotes the quality of the competition. No word yet on when the EBU will regulate for quality to be introduced.

Mr Erichsen also reject out of hand any investigation into the claims that Cliff was robbed of the 1968 Eurovision Song Contest victory by General Franco.

Tuesday, May 6, 2008

A Homage to... Congratulations!

A fascist dictatorship, thousands slaughtered in a vicious civil war, holding back Spain for decades, allying with Hitler - we know Franco was bad - but this, this (!) is just beyond the pale!!

A new Spanish doco reveals that Franco bought Spain their Eurovision victory in 1968 by promising other nations that Spain would buy their television series if they sent votes the way of Massiel. As all Euro-buffs know, La La La pipped Cliff Richards by a single point!

Shame Franco. Shame!
Full story here

Sunday, May 4, 2008

Three Times the Schalger Fun!

As per usual with SBS and Eurovision we have some good news and some bad news.

The surprisingly good news is that the First Semi Final will be shown. The BBC - whose feed is what we see on SBS in Australia - are only required to show the second semi final by the EBU. The BBC are electing to cover both semis - Paddy O'Connell and Caroline Flack will provide commentary on both nights.

The bad news is that the delays are getting longer. Semi Final #1 takes place in the early hours of Wednesday 21st (Australian time) but will be screening on Friday night - a delay of 60 hours! The second semi will be delayed 36 hours and the Final by the requisite 12 hours (or so). The silver lining of that cloud, of course, is that we get three straight nights of schlagerfest over a weekend. (Book your sickie for Monday 26th now!)

SBS will show both semi-finals and are advertising Julia Zemiro as the presenter. Whether she just introduces the show before crossing to the telecast is unknown. Julia has been a long-time cast member of Eurovision: The Musical and knows her stuff.

SBS screening times:
  • Friday 23 May 7.30 1st Semi
  • Saturday 24 May 7.30 2nd semi
  • Sunday 25 May 7.30 Final

The Triumph of the Musical Mediocrity

EDU fave, Terry Wogan, who again provides commentary on SBS's coverage of Eurovision - Sunday 25th May from 7.30pm, has been talking up the show in the UK press. He claims any US network "would kill" for something like Eurovision. "It's the only international television/radio event of its kind anywhere...a wonderful idea – bringing Europe together in song – a huge, brilliantly produced triumph of musical mediocrity."

Wogan has given up predicting the UK will win each and every year - and now predicts someone from Eastern Europe will win each and every year. Much safer that way.
Original interview here

Nomads sucks slightly more

Lithuania's re-vamped version of 'Nomads In The Night' has failed to impress the composer of the tune. Vytautas Diskevicius said, "the result is disgusting" - come on Vytautas , tell us what you reall think. Accepting our challenge, Vytautas continued to describe the version we will hear at Belgrade as "really sad and dissapointing," doing a "hundred times more damage than improvement."

Having never been huge fans of version 1 - we can still appreciate Vytautas' opinion. A song with subtle instrumentation and a focus on an operatic vocal has been rendered into a maelstrom of clashing instruments, 'up' vocal inflections and guitar wank that would do the '80s proud.