Today is the first day of the Eurovision week! We can already hear the “Sound of Music” echoing from Pala Olimpico in Turin and it’s just a few days before we finally know who is actually going to win the 66th Eurovision Song Contest!
The dress rehearsal of the Eurovision 2022 First Semi Final has just started. EurovisionFun will be watching all the shows live at both the on-site press centre in Turin and at the online press centre and we will be covering this rehearsal, commenting on all the performances and describing in detail what is happening during the show.
You will be able to to follow the entire process and get the feeling that you are right at the heart of the contest! This article gets updated in nearly real-time, all you need to do is hit the refresh button on your browser and all the rest is on us!
We will keep you up to date with all the latest details about this dress rehearsal for the First Semi Final show, allowing you to get a glimpse of what you will get to see tomorrow May 10th, at 21:00 CEST when the actual semi-final show takes place.
The hosts of the show are Laura Pausini, Alessandro Cattelan and Mika. The competing countries that will be performing at the first semi final show are 17, but we will also see two of the BIG 5 countries perform their own entries at this show, the hosting country Italy and France.
The “Sound of Music” starts with a harp by laser beams and turns into a song comprised of many genres and many many dancers that fill up the stage! An interesting show that reminds us of the spectacular shows that RAI always produces!
Now it’s time to welcome the three presenters on stage! Before the competing part begins, the hosts of the show describe the voting process and show the number where the viewers in each country will have to phone or text, in order to vote in French and English.
The Competing Countries
Albania: Ronela Hajati – Sekret
Ronela has kept her original staging and choreography and seems to have overcome most of the technical issues that she had faced in all her rehearsals. The mixing of the song seems a bit off though, probably they will have time to fix it till the Jury Rehearsals tonight. Do I see Albania qualifying tomorrow? We will see!
Latvia: Citi Zēni – Eat Your Salad
Next up on stage are Citi Zēni. I have to admit that their performance is so uplifting and they also manage to hide the “eclipse” of the sun-stage, with their camera angles and lightworks. The song is catchy and so is their staging. It is highly likely that Latvia might qualify tomorrow.
Lithuania: Monika Liu – Sentimentai
Monika turned the background lights and LEDs of the stage into an extension of her glittery-glowy maxi dress. Her vocals are impeccable. Here’s another staged entry in such a way that I cannot tell that the sun of the stage does not actually work as it was supposed to. Maybe not a strong song for qualification, but why not?
Switzerland: Marius Bear – Boys Do Cry
Marius has a really simple staging, fitting to a ballad song as “Boys Do Cry”, he’s very strong vocally but it is not a performance that you will actually remember. Kinda forgettable. If he does qualify tomorrow, it will be purely due to his vocals being on point!
Slovenia: LPS – Disko
LPS brought their enormous disco ball on stage with them, fits the style of the song they perform. They don’t do too much on stage, but the song oozes good energy. Not sure if Slovenia will qualify tomorrow, but if they do, I won’t be surprised!
Ukraine: Kalush Orchestra – Stefania
Kalush Orchestra are the absolute favourite of this semi-final, but also of the entire 66th Eurovision Song Contest. Their staging seems to be uplifted by the malfunction of the sun on stage, apart from the LED work on the floor they have LED work getting displayed at the background LED screen, at least partly. Vocally they might not be a jury winner, but probably they will place first tomorrow.
Mika and Laura Pausini appear on screen explaining that these were the first six competing songs, however they’d encountered some technical issues, with Laura Pausini making fun of having to do another go by singing “Oops I did it Again“! Then a video describing briefly the construction of the scene and the reconstruction of the arena in order to be able to host this year’s contest.
Following, we have another bunch of six countries, starting with Bulgaria!
Bulgaria: Intelligent Music Project – Intention
The band of Intelligent Music Project with a rock song, that thankfully doesn’t remind us of last year’s winner Måneskin! Their percussionist and synth are on circular platforms with lights all around and LOTS of pyro is going on stage. The lights of the staging are interesting, would be nice to see how these will appear with the crowd in the arena. I believe that it is likely for Bulgaria to qualify this year.
Netherlands: S10 – De Diepte
S10 has an amazing voice and nobody can deny that, but she is a bit too static and her staging doesn’t counteract this fact. I totally miss the laser beams on one of her appearances at the Dutch television. I have to admit she sounds 99% like the studio version of the song. She might do well at the jury vote, but not really at the televote. Certain qualifier in any case.
Moldova: Zdob şi Zdub & Advahov Brothers – Trenulețul
Moldova with a “folklore rock and roll”? They are fair vocally, the staging is fun, but I’m not sure if it is fun in an exciting and amusing way or whether it crosses the line between being a fun or a troll act. I have to admit that they do cover a lot the “eclipse” of the stage in Pala Olimpico! Nice try but I don’t see them as qualifiers tomorrow!
Portugal: MARO – Saudade, Saudade
MARO is next up on stage, along with five more vocalists that are similarly styled as she is. Lots of smoke on stage totally matching their vocal harmonies. Vocally she is pitch perfect! The staging is simple and nostalgic and they also seem to have put a lot of effort to cover up the discrepancy of the non functioning stage-sun. They might qualify but that remains to be seen!
(short break showing what’s coming up next, in terms of interval acts)
Croatia: Mia Dimšić – Guilty Pleasure
Mia is up on stage playing her guitar till the first main part of the song, accompanied by contemporary dancers. She certainly gives Taylor Swift “Willow” vibes. Not only the song sounds similar, but also the colour of her voice! Pink and blue the colours of the staging. We also listen to her song partly in Croatian, which is nice and that part doesn’t sound that similar to “Willow” as the English version of the song does. She might qualify, but also she might not, nothing’s certain for Croatia.
Denmark: REDDI – The Show
REDDI are on stage with a grand piano in the beginning of the song, but after the first main part of the song, it turns into a rock, kind-of British style. The staging (at least it was supposed to be full of colours) is somewhat ruined by the part of the stage that doesn’t have LEDs on. They might struggle to qualify tomorrow.
Mika explains what Eurovision means to him and what it should mean to everyone and then a video showing parts of the turquoise carpet that took place yesterday evening!
Following, we have another bunch of countries, starting with Austria!
Austria: LUM!X feat. Pia Maria – Halo
An ultimate fan favourite, at least of the studio version. They actually have a light sort-of halo up on stage and lots of lights strobing around the stage. Pia’s vocals are super-weak, she’s off tune most of the time and maybe she gets a little help of the backing vocals and a lead dub. Except the enormous ring/halo and the smoke machines not much is going on on stage. This might come as a shock to all the Eurofans but, Austria won’t qualify if they perform like that tonight at the jury rehearsal and tomorrow at the actual show!
Iceland: Systur – Með Hækkandi Sól
Another casual performance by Systur, they might easily score a nice sum by the jury vote but I wouldn’t count on the televoting though. Maybe they could be a suprise qualifier of the night, tomorrow.
Greece: Amanda Georgiadi Tenfjord – Die Together
Amanda sounded nearly like the studio version of the Greek song! Her staging is based on lighting effects on her face and while the song is a ballad, her stage presence, bold hand-moves and perfect vocals make her performance stand out of the rest. Certain qualifier of the night tomorrow!
Norway: Subwoolfer – Give That Wolf A Banana
Next up on stage Subwoolfer. The whole concept that reminds me of “Masked Singer” is quite interesting and entertaining to the public. They’re quite nice vocally, the staging is fun and uplifting and this will certainly give them an edge against the other countries in televoting. That won’t be the case as far as the jury vote is concerned though!
Here we have another video showing what’s coming up next, including the interval acts of the show! Then Mika and Alessandro sit right in front of the stage fountain, toss a coin and make a wish, as if they were in Fontana Di Trevi in Rome!
They really needed this break in order to set up the Armenian stage prop which is quite massive!
Armenia: Rosa Linn – Snap
Rosa is alone on stage, inside what seems to be like a bedroom full of white post-it notes, or maybe parts of fabric that can be pulled-off. She’s fair vocally and during her performance she pulls-off parts of the walls of her stage-prop! Intuitive staging! For me, Armenia will get votes from both the public and the jury!
Following the 17 performances, the voting process starts by showing the recap of all the competing songs and their respective voting numbers appear on screen!
Almost certain qualifiers
Based on this dress rehearsal, the following countries seem to be clearly qualifying to the final (in random order):
It remains to be seen, whether the following countries will qualify tomorrow, or get disqualified instead:
Either due to poor staging and performance or due to a poor song, the following countries might not be able to qualify to the finals tomorrow:
Benny Benassi and Sophie & The Giants (Interval Act)
“The Dance of Beauty” will be another interval act for this semi final, when Pala Olimpico will be trasnformed into a giant disco by Dardust, Benny Benassi and Sophie & The Giants, who complete the line-up of interval act artists.
Starting of with a DJ set by Benni Benassi, global-megastar DJ, but even his act is affected by the mechanical difficulties of the stage! But who can forget “Satisfaction“, or who hasn’t ever danced to that sick beat? Lots of dancers on stage and then Sophie and the Giants take over the stage and duo with Benni performing their single “Golden Nights“!
After the end of the first interval act, the hosts come back on stage and pay tribute to Raffaella Carrà by playing and singing along to the song “Fiesta“, who sadly died last year on July 5th.
Then we have another recap of all the competing songs and their respective voting numbers, after Benny Benassi and Sophie & The Giants leave the stage!
Counting down towards the end of the voting window, the three hosts of the show ask the public to “stop voting now”, giving way to Diodato!
Diodato (Interval Act)
It is worth noting that finally Diodato will get his chance to sing the 2020 Italian entry “Fai Rumore”, in his home country, two years after he was selected as the Italian representative for the 65th cancelled Eurovision Song Contest. “The Dance of Beauty” will be another interval act for this semi final, when Pala Olimpico will be trasnformed into a giant disco by Dardust, Benny Benassi and Sophie & The Giants, who complete the line-up of interval act artists.
He appears on stage playing the piano, singing to this sentimental ballad, dancers appear behind his back while he sings at the piano. After the first chorus of the song, he gets up and then we see him going around dancers that stand still on stage. They start moving to contemporary dance moves, as soon as Diodato gets into the second chorus of the song! Goosebumps!
Plus, now the sun does move! Impressive! Sad we can’t see that during the several performances of each country!
It’s time for a video showing older contests and country performances! After the video, the winner of Junior Eurovision Song Contest 2021 Malena (Armenia) with her song “Qami Qami“, joins Alessandro on stage and a video tribute to her winning last year comes up on screen after that, mentioning that this years Junior Eurovision Song Contest will be hosted in Yerevan. A preview of the host city Yerevan, capital of Armenia comes up next!
After the fourth break the French entry “Fulenn” by Alvan & Ahez should come up, followed by the Italian entry “Brividi” by Mahmood & Blanco.
BIG 5 Performances
France: Alvan & Ahez – Fulenn
Here come Alvan & Ahez and their song “Fulenn“, that is definitely a grower! A song entirely in Breton, with a deep and dark beat, combining EDM and traditional music, is certainly going to do quite good at the televote. Their mixing sounded a bit off too, or maybe they encountered in-ear monitor issues and they couldn’t hear themselves. Sounded like it. But overall good!
Italy: Mahmood & Blanco – Brividi
Here comes the host country duet song, “Brividi“. Both Mahmood and Blanco sound very much improved, compared to their past rehearsals, especially Blanco. Their staging looks like they already knew that the sun of the stage wouldn’t work! Blanco on his second and third solo parts sounded a bit off, a bit tired. Mahmood was overall stable. They will get voted by the public, but I wouldn’t count on the jury vote though. Let’s see what will happen next Saturday!
Martin Osterdahl executive producer of Eurovision Song Contest 2022, declares that he is happy to see that we now have a valid result!
The ten countries that (virtually) qualify to the finals are the following (alphabetically):
- Denmark: REDDI – The Show
- Bulgaria: Intelligent Music Project – Intention
- Croatia: Mia Dimšić – Guilty Pleasure
- Switzerland: Marius Bear – Boys Do Cry
- Lithuania: Monika Liu – Sentimentai
- Slovenia: LPS – Disko
- Latvia: Citi Zēni – Eat Your Salad
- The Netherlands: S10 – De Diepte
- Moldova: Zdob şi Zdub & Advahov Brothers – Trenulețul
- Greece: Amanda Georgiadi Tenfjord – Die Together
Closing the televised show, we will get to watch a recap of the ten finalist songs.
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