Spain 2021: Benidorm Song Festival returns as national final

Spanish broadcaster RTVE announced the revival of the Benidorm Song Festival.  The historical music festival took place in the city of Benidorm from 1959 until its last edition in 2006.  Moreover, the new Benidorm Song Festival will be the Spanish national selection for Eurovision.

The revamped contest will take place in February, 2022.  Three main shows will make the festival: two semi-finals and a grand final.  RTVE will broadcast the show via La 1 and RTVE Play.  More details will be available soon.  However, we already know that a split jury/public vote will decide who will represent Spain in the Eurovision Song Contest 2022.

RTVE president José Manuel Pérez Tornero; the president of the Valencian Government, Ximo Puig; and the mayor of Benidorm, Toni Pérez announced the news in front of the beach.  In addition to this, Ruth Lorenzo performed for the audience her 2014 entry Dancing In The Rain and Waterloo.

We want Benidorm to be a meeting point for what we need most now: music, Europe and diversity. With the ‘Benidorm Festival’ we intend to achieve an emotional and tourist reactivation of the Valencian Community.’

The Benidorm International Song Festival took place from 1959 to 2006.  The contest was modeled after the Italian Sanremo Music Festival.  The winner of the Benidorm Festival received the Golden Mermaid Trophy.  RTVE used to broadcast the event.  Further, RVTE President José Manuel Pérez Tornero said that the Spanish broadcaster would take their participation “very seriously”.

Spain’s last results on Eurovision have been far from satisfactory, being outside of the top 20 since 2015.  In addition to this, their best achievements in recent times have been two top 10s in 2014 and 2012.  Spain came in the top 5 for the last time in 1995 with Anabel Conde who ended in second place.

Hopefully their new national selection process will help Spain make a turning point on Eurovision.

Source: Eurovision.tv

 

Sietse Bakker: Cyprus did not ask to be first in the running order of the Grand Final!

In their most recent video William Lee Adams from Wiwibloggs stated that the Cyprus delegation asked the organizers to let Elena Tsagrinou open the night of the Grand Final with her song El Diablo.  However, the producer of the Eurovision Song Contest 2021 and one of the members of the Reference Group Mr. Sietse Bakker has denied these rumors.

When asked on Twitter about the alleged request by Cyprus, Sietse Bakker reminded the public that it is up to the public broadcaster who hosts Eurovision to make the running order.  Furthermore, the running order requires the subsequent approval of the EBU.  Thus the participating broadcasters do not suggest which place they would like to be sorted out.  In addition Seitse Bakker mentions that he attended the sorting process of the running order for the Eurovision Song Contest 2021.  According to him, the opinion of the delegations did not play a role in this process.

After this public denial it seems that the information Wiwibloggs had was inaccurate.  Nonetheless, William seemed absolutely sure that Cyprus had in fact made this request.  This may be because many Cypriot fans have echoed the alleged petition by the Cyprus delegation to perform in first place for months.  It is possible that the fans have get these fake news from the same source.

You can watch William mentioning this rumour in the embedded video, at 44.30:

Historical Benidorm Festival returns as the Spanish national selection

Spain has made an important announcement about their selection for the Eurovision Song Contest 2022.  In July 16, the president of RTVE stated there will be an official announcement on July 22.  Further, the announcement will take place in the city of Benidorm, Alicante (Spain).  The big 5 country last results have been far from satisfactory, being outside of the top 20 since 2015.  In addition to this, their best achievements in recent times have been two top 10s in 2014 and 2012.  Spain came in the top 5 for the last time in 1995 with Anabel Conde who ended in second place.

 

However, the Spanish broadcaster is looking forward to reverse the current trend with a new format.  The news came as a surprise for many fans because it is not usual that Spain starts her Eurovision plans so early.  The first speculations pointed to the possibility of bringing back the Benidorm International Song Festival as a national final.

“We are going to take the Eurovision Song Contest very seriously.  (…) (RTV) is the only Spanish public broadcaster that is part of the EBU.  We are interested in the contest and its contact with the youth in a European context”. José Pérez Tornero, RTVE president

 

Moreover, the president of the Valencian government announced that he is working with RTVE on a big musical event.

“We are working together with RTVE to make Benidorm a meeting place for what we need more than ever: music, Europe and diversity.  We will communicate all the details on thurday”.  Ximo Puig, president of the Valencian government

What was the Benidorm International Song Festival

The Benidorm International Song Festival took place from 1959 to 2006.  The contest was modeled after the Italian Sanremo Music Festival.  The winner of the Benidorm Festival received the Golden Mermaid Trophy.  RTVE used to broadcast the event.  However, the public broadcaster withdrew their support due to a lack of interest from the public.

Among the winners of the Benidorm Festival we have Raphael (Spain 1966, 1967) and La Década (Spain 1988).

Source: ABC

Stay tuned to Eurovisionfun for more news about the Spanish national selection for Eurovision 2022.

Turkish chances to return to Eurovision got slimmer as TRT Chairman steps down

Hopes to see Turkey  returning to Eurovision seem to have reduced as Ibrahim Eren, the former chairman and general manager of Turkish public broadcaster stepped down as director.  Eren recently made public that TRT was in contact with the EBU to discuss the potential return of the country to the pan-European competition.  However, president Erdogan decided to replace him.

A few weeks ago Erenrevealed that the public broadcaster was seriously discussing a potential comeback.

Our Board of Directors still continues with the same decision, but meanwhile, we are also in talks with ‘Eurovision’. A very good person came to ‘Eurovision’ from Northern Europe. I think this year was very successful. After a long time, they had a nice competition. Our friends started meeting with the newcomer. I don’t know what will happen?

Furthermore, the EBU itself  confirmed that they were in direct with TRT, in order for Turkey to return to the Eurovision Song Contest.  The EBU made the following statement on eurovision.tv:

Turkey hasn’t participated in the Eurovision Song Contest since 2012, pressing pause on a rich history within the competition that includes 34 entries and a 2003 victory thanks to Sertab Erener’s Every Way That I Can.

Despite the break in participation, the Contest remains popular in the ‘land of four seasons’ and speculation about a potential return has been fueled by İbrahim Eren, Chairman and Director General at national broadcaster TRT, after commenting on the prospect of Turkey returning to the Eurovision Song Contest.

 

However, Ibrahim Eren’s departure from his position, reduces the possibilities of seeing Turkey in Eurovision for 2022.  Ibrahim Erem publicly thanked Erdogan via Twitter for the opportunity he gave him in his previous role.

Ahmet Albayrak will take office as the  new President of TRT .  At the same time, Mehmet Zahid Sobacı will take the role of new General Manager . Both Albayrak and Sobacı are political allies of Erdogan and members of the Islamist AKP party.  Therefore, their profiles do not seem to reconcile with the spirit of the Eurovision Song Contest.’

Nevertheless, fans can keep their hope of a future Turkish return to the competition.  This however, will depend of a political decision by Erdogan who may be interested to demonstrate that Turkey remains a European country and to improve his international reputation.

Do you think that Turkey will finally return to the Eurovision Song Contest?

17 cities competing to host the Eurovision Song Contest 2022

The race to host the Eurovision Song Contest has officially started.  17 cities submitted their candidacies to host the song festival in 2022.  The candidate cities submitted the official documentation to get the honor of hosting next year’s competition.  For next year we will have a large number of potential candidates representing the various regions of Italy.

Candidate host cities

The following cities aspire to welcome the Eurovision Song Contest next year:

  • Acireale (Catania)
  • Alessandria
  • Bertinoro di Romagna (Forlì – Cesena)
  • Bologna
  • Florence
  • Genoa
  • Jesolo (Venice)
  • Matera
  • Milan
  • Palazzolo Acreide (Syracuse)
  • Pesaro
  • Rimini
  • Rome
  • Sanremo (Imperia)
  • Turin
  • Trieste
  • Viterbo

What comes next?

On July 14, 2021 the cities will receive the BID Book from broadcaster RAI and the EBU.  The candidates must submit their bid books and proposals up after August 4th, 2021.  After deliberation RAI and the EBU will decide which city will host next Eurovision Song Contest.  We will know the name of the next host city by late August.

 

Are you excited about the bidding process?  Which city should host the Eurovision Song Contest 2022?

Source: RAI

Romania: Everything that was discussed on the special show about the analysis of the bad results!

As we informed you in our previous article, the Romanian public television (TVR) organized on July 5 in prime time, a special show, where the series of bad results of the country in the contest were discussed, while solutions were also sought.

Wrong choice of artists and lack of direction the two big thorns

The show presented by the journalist and former head of the Romanian mission in the competition, Marina Almăşan, and participated many people from the music industry, but also former eurostars, such as The Humans, Ovi, Paula Seling, but also Mihai Traistariu , focused mainly on this year ‘s failure of Roxen.

Most of the panel members criticized Roxen for her choice, both on TVR and on the record label Global Music, as they mentioned her complete lack of experience, but also her mediocre vocal skills did not help her to stand out and qualify for final.

Almost everyone agreed that it was wrong for TVR to leave the project entirely to the record company, since while both the guy and the fans pointed out the mistakes, the record company did nothing to correct them (I do not know if this reminds you of something…) .

The other big problem that many were left with was the issue of directing. Mihai Traistariu stated that unfortunately TVR does not seem to be able to successfully undertake the staging of the Romanian entries. What has been suggested by many is the collaboration with foreign directors, something that many countries are already doing. In fact, it is worth noting at this point that the names of Sacha Jean Baptiste were mentioned, but also of Fokas Evangelinos.

Romania will be present in 2022

It seems that Romania will be present in Italy next year, at least that is what was said on the show. The most probable scenario is the return to the national final, the well-known Selectia Nationala and the subsequent support of the song that will be selected by TVR, so that at least in the next competition the country will return to the final. The format supported for the Selectia Nationala is 50% audience – 50% juries.

The observations of the Romanians are correct and we are happy because they largely agree with what we proposed and wrote in our relevant editorial. If the respective national public broadcaster is not interested and does not deal, no external partner and no record company can bring a good result. The examples are endless.

See the case of France. From the moment the external partner they had for both the Junior Eurovision and the regular Eurovision contest left, they won and took second place respectively. See the case of Switzerland, which with a stable team in recent years manages to star. On the other hand, see what happened in the United Kingdom, the BBC’s complete indifference, brought BMG to things as a machine god…. The result is one last place with an absolute 0 in the audience and juries! Of course, there is also the example of ERT, which since 2019 has taken the project in its hands and has literally achieved leaps in relation to the recent past.

The secret recipe for success by Christer Bjorkman

This is the solution for Romania and for all the other countries that have bad results. A conscious group, which will aim not just to participate, but the good result and which of course will methodize and organize everything related to the selection of the song, whether it is through a national final or through an assignment, aiming at its 3 minutes May and nothing else. Far from meaningless comments and complaints of the fans, without looking at bets and without being influenced by record and external factors.

In this year’s interview, Christer Bjorkman “revealed” the secret for a successful participation in the competition:

“Three things must have a participation to go well. A good song, a bright and good performer and a careful stage presence. The first is the hardest to find. But if you have the other two, then you can do very well. ”

So the choice of the right artist, as well as the careful stage presence, are two elements that every broadcaster can work and carefully build, so that it has more chances of success in the competition. ERT has understood it very well and the Romanians probably seemed to understand it. What do you say, will they go better next year?

Stay tuned to Eurovisionfun for all the developments related to your favorite contest!


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Italy: The race to host the Eurovision 2022 starts!

The race to host the Eurovision Song Contest has officially begun.  Today Italian broadcaster RAI announced the requirements candidate cities must meet in order to compete to be the host city of the Eurovision Song Contest.  In the following weeks we will get the exact list of candidate cities that meet the official requirements and are willing to host the event.

 

Candidate cities must have:

  • An international airport no more than 90 minutes from the city.
  • Over 2,000 hotel rooms in the area close to the event.
  • An infrastructure (stadium/venue/centre) capable of hosting a large-scale live broadcast with the minimum requirements listed below.

Moreover, the potential arena should have an audience capacity in the main hall of around 8,000 – 10,000 during the event, be indoors with air-conditioning and have a well defined perimeter, have a main hall with the capacity to house the set and all other requirements needed to produce a high level broadcast production, have ample space within easy access of the main hall to support additional production needs, such as: a press centre, delegation spaces, dressing rooms, artist facilities, staff facilities, hospitality, audience facilities, etc.

 

In addition to this, the arena has to be available for 6 weeks before the event, 2 weeks during the show (which will take place in May) and a week after the end of the event for dismantling.  Accordingly, fans can start discounting from the bidding process arenas that have scheduled events taking place during the weeks surrounding the Eurovision Song Contest.  Before this announcement different cities had announced their interest to host the song contest.  The list of potential hosts includes Turin, Rome, Milan and Bologna.

Are you excited about the Eurovision Song Contest 2022? Which city would you like to see hosting the shows?

Source: Eurovision.tv

 

Picture This: We would love to write the Eurovision winning song for Ireland

Jimmy Rainsford and Ryan Hennessy from the Irish pop rock band Picture This have told they would love to write the next song for Ireland on Eurovision.  The two band members are also huge fans of the show.  For instance, Jimmy Rainsford has been a member of the Irish jury.

 

“Yes, absolutely (we would consider writing a song). We actually love Eurovision.” Ryan Hennessy.

 

Talking about Måneskin, the 2021 Eurovision winner the band members have also positive comments.  According to Jimmy Rainsford, he was “blown away” by Måneskin’s performance in Italian.  The duo also considered the possibility of sending a song in Irish.  Ireland has only submitted one song in Irish for Eurovision: Ceol an Ghrá by Sandie Jones in 1972.  However, the band members are not sure if a song in Irish would get a good result since there are not many people who speak the language.

Nevertheless, Jimmy Rainsford loved that the top 3 this year sung in their national languages.  Further he said, Gjon’s Tears song was incredible and his performance was amazing.

Who are ‘Picture This’

Picture This are an Irish pop, rock band formed in 2015.  Their first two studio albums and EP reached number 1 in their home-country.  Their latest studio album “Life In Colour” was released in June 25, 2021.

Would you like to see “Picture This” composing the Irish song for Eurovision 2022?  Would you like to see Ireland sending a song in Irish?

Source: Iris Mirror

Melodifestivalen 2022’s songwriting camp kicks in

Sweden has already started looking for their 2022 Eurovision representative.  Melodivestivalen’s songwriting camp has already kicked in.  However, there are still at least 3 months on the way before we start guessing which acts will participate in the main competition.

Every year Melodifestivalen is one of the most awaited Eurovision national finals for the fans all over Europe.  According to Scandipop the following acts are participating in the songwriting camp for next year’s competition:

  • Dotter
  • Wiktoria
  • Liamoo
  • Efraim Leo
  • Robin Bengtsson
  • Malou Prytz
  • Victor Crone
  • Klara Hammarström
  • Nanne
  • Lillasyster
  • Sebastian Walldén
  • Nadja Holm
  • Julia Viktoria
  • Phelly
  • Neimy
  • Andreas Weise
  • Adrian Maceus

The list has many familiar names for the Eurovision fans including former Melodifestivalen contestants and  two former Eurovision participants.  Nevertheless, we will still have to wait to know which songs will make the cut for Melodifestivalen 2022.  Notwithstanding this, it seems that Sweden is not planning to change their formula for next year’s Melodifestivalen.

With six victories and many top 10s, and top 5s Sweden is one of the most successful countries on the Eurovision Song Contest.  Their last victory to this date took place in Vienna in 2015 with the song Heroes.

Are you excited about Melodifestivalen 2022? 

Source: Scandipop

Romania: “Maybe, it is healthier to stay out for a year or two…”!

Third disqualification in a row for Romania was this year, after Roxen failed to qualify for the first semifinal. The reasons for the continuous bad results in the contest will be discussed by the country’s public television, in a two-hour live show, on July 5 at 9 pm.

The former head of the Romanian mission and TVR journalist, Marina Almăşan, is editing and will present the relevant show, called Eurovision, pe şleau! (Eurovision by the way).

The panel of the show will include composers, music producers, fans of the contest, but also three former eurostars of the country, The Humans (2018), Ovi and Paula Seling (2010, 2014). The public can also intervene in the discussion by phone.

The questions that the show panel will be asked to answer are:

  • “Why don’t Romania’s big voices participate in Eurovision?”
  • “Why has Romanian interest in Eurovision decreased so much?”
  • “What are the solutions to deal with the situation?”

Marina Almăşan reports:

It has been 11 years since I was at the helm of one of the most successful versions of Eurovision. In 2010, the wonderful Paula and Ovi brought Romania a third place in the Grand Final in Oslo, the artists surpassed the performance of Luminiţa Anghel.

I was at that time, the head of the Romanian delegation, and my team was on the buttons, in all these preparatory work – internal and external. Of course, without the two great voices, without the song, without the talent of the two talented artists, we would not have gotten here. There were, therefore, years during which Romanian Television (through my other valuable colleagues) did a very good job in the European competition.

Then, suddenly, the movie broke. And in recent years they have brought a lot of frown and sadness on the faces of Romanian Eurovision fans. On Monday, July 5, TVR finally wants to put its finger on the wound: find the weaknesses (but also the strengths, because they also exist) of our participation in Eurovision, propose solutions to rectify the situation and wash away shame .

I will coordinate an intense discussion, on the afternoon of the 5th of July, on TVR 1, with selected and specialized guests and even if it comes out with tensions and disagreements, it is important that things go smoothly. And in the next edition, Romania must reach the top 10! … If, after discussions, it does not turn out that, perhaps, it is healthier to stay out for a year or two…! Thanks to Romanian Television for entrusting this event to my team and I hope we will not disappoint you!

It is striking that the possibility of Romania abstaining from the contest for one or two years is mentioned, in order for them to regroup and come back stronger afterwards. Greece followed the same tactic in 2000, when it voluntarily withdrew, to return in 2001 with a third place and Antique.

We will look forward to the conclusions from this show!

What do you think are the reasons for Romania’s failure in the Eurovision Song Contest?

Source: paginademedia