France: Loreen comments on La Zarra’s controversial gesture!

It’s already a month since the Final of this year’s contest took place, but artists, still have a lot to say.

Something that people are still talking about, is the controversial gesture of the French representative, La Zarra; namely the hand gesture she did facing the audience during the live show, after receiving 50 points from the televote.

What is more, France Télévisions seems to be dissatisfied with the final result and France’s place on the scoreboard, but also La Zarra’a exclusion from various festivals and concerts.

According to French press, La Zarra was not able to reclaim the public’s trust. She had many of her concerts canceled in the previous weeks due to lack of audience, while on the same time, many radio stations have stopped playing the French entry.

Eurovision 2023 winner, Loreen, was also asked about La Zarra’s gesture, with the first, supporting the French representative:

In an interview at “Le Parisien”, she said:

“La Zarra is very proud and hard working. I feel like she’s a girl who fought to get this far. I think her gesture is connected to a frustration: we work so hard for Eurovision and we don’t always achieve what we expected. It’s win or lose. You can never really prepare for it. She may have had a feeling of great disappointment at that moment.”
We remind you that La Zarra has stated the following about her gesture:
“You have to understand that although I represent France, I also have a culture and it is a bit genealogical. It’s not a negative gesture, it’s a frustration gesture that we use between friends.”
La Zarra represented France in Eurovision 2023 in Liverpool, with her song “Évidemment” and ended up in 16th place of the Grand Final:

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Eurovision 2023 France: France Télévisions condemns La Zarra’s attitude after the Grand Final!

One month shy after the Grand Final,La Zarra’s infamous gesture during the voting of this year’s Eurovision continues to stir controversy,with the national broadcaster France Télévisions taking issue against and critiquing her overall demeanour.


Asked by Télé-Loisirs, Stéphane Sitbon Gomez, director of programs for the public audiovisual group, he stated: “We are obviously disappointed by this year’s result and by La Zarra’s overall attitude had after having spent several months supporting and promoting her song”. Indeed, if winning is not always an option, “we did not expect to be so low in the scoreboard”, he continued. He added \: “we know that we can do better. We are still focused on our ultimate goal  set by Delphine Ernotte [general director of France TV] which is to win Eurovision”.

Because indeed, French entries have no longer the same impact on the audience. France’s last victory at Eurovision dates back to 1977, with Marie Myriam and her title L’Oiseau et l’Enfant. To change the situation, Stéphane Sitbon-Gomez is also considering  leaving the choice of representative open to the public, as it was done in 2021 and 2022. “We are seriously considering that. But there is no clear answer: Barbara Pravi had finished 2nd in 2021 and Alvan & Ahez, second to last in 2022. There is the question of choice, but it is not the only one “he said.

Tickets at 3.50 euros

One thing is certain: a month after its “bad buzz”, La Zarra has failed to regain the public’s trust.In the recent weeks,various of her concert dates have been canceled. The Quebec artist has even been forced to postpone her first two concerts in Marseille (June 2) and Lille (June 8), to December 9 and 17. Moreover, some radio stations have stopped airing her Eurovision entry.

Although she is scheduled to perform tonight at “Pleyel” Concert Hall in Paris,she is yet to sell enough tickets,with some sites selling them for as low as 3,50 euros in order to cater for the concert’s needs.

France in Eurovision

La Zarra represented France in this year’s Eurovision with her song “Evidemment”,finishing at an overall 16th place,receiving 54 points from the juries and 50 from the public.

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France: Eurovision 2024 participation confirmed!

France has confirmed its participation for the Eurovision Song Contest 2024.

Public broadcaster France 2 has confirmed the intention of the Big 5 country to be present in Sweden next year.  Therefore, France is joining the list of countries that will take part in Eurovision 2024.

The list of participating countries includes to this moment host country Sweden, Finland, Norway, Iceland, Israel, Netherlands, Spain from the big 5 and Luxembourg as a returning country.

France internally selected Canadian singer La Zarra to represent the country in Liverpool.  La Zarra finished in 16th place with the song Évidemment.  It is yet to be decided if France will have an internal selection or a national final for Eurovision 2024.

Source: Esctoday

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France: The reason behind La Zarra’s cancellation from Greenland Festival!

A few hours ago it became known that France’s entrant of this year’s Eurovision, La Zarra,got kicked out of Greenland Annual Festival, taking place in France on June 23rd, due to her infamous gesture shown during the live broadcast of this year’s Grand Final. La Zarra was caught red-handed doing an inappropriate gesture after having received 50 points from the public vote.

La Zarra herself had made an official statement on Instagram right after the Grand Final, claiming that the gesture was nothing more than a sign of disappointment, an “it is what it is” moment.

It is stated on Greenland Festival’s Official Facebook page that the elimination of La Zarra from this year’s festival is attributed to reasons “beyond any control” and that they apologize for “any inconvenience caused”, thanking the audience for their understanding.

Nonetheless,the French website actuPeringan explicitly states that the reason behind La Zarra’s cancellation from the festival is ascribed to her so-called “disappointment” gesture that sparked enormous controversy among the Eurovision audience.

La Zarra represented France with her song “Evidemment”, reaching the 16th place in the Grand Final of this year’s edition in Liverpool.

Source: ActuPeringon

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France: “France does not deserve this!” | The comments of Marie Myriam, the last French winner!

The last winner of France, Marie Myriam, who won the contest back in 1977, commented on Le Parisien La Zarra’s gesture and believes that she is a bad loser.

La Zarra’s gesture towards the camera during the announcement of the televoting in the final of Eurovision 2023 had a negative impact on social media and upset Marie Myriam, the last winner of France back in 1977.

“That gesture by La Zarra at the end of the night because she didn’t win is really shocking”

However, La Zarra clarified that this was not a middle finger, but a “gesture of frustration”.

Furthermore Marie Myriam added:

“I’m extremely disappointed”

“Watch the video, it’s a middle finger! And it was seen by almost 200 million viewers. What a shame! I am extremely disappointed because this is simply not possible.”

“She made this gesture sitting in an armchair with French flags behind her. France does not deserve this! She justifies herself by saying that this gesture expresses a frustration in the Moroccan culture, but it will start a racist war rhetoric that we really don’t need.”

According to Marie Myriam, La Zarra is eventually a bad loser.

“Perhaps they should explain to her that it was not guaranteed that she would come first. This is the principle of the competition. If you don’t want to lose, you don’t participate!”

“Expressing her displeasure, her disappointment, with this vulgar gesture, she put gray on her image, the very same woman who was sunny with that red, that black, her beautiful hat”

France ended up in the 16th place of the Grand Final receiving from the televoting and the national juries 104 points.

Source: BFMTV

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Eurovision 2023 France: La Zarra responds to fans’ accusations about her gesture!

Eurovision 2023 has officialy come to an end and the post-Eurovision depression is now a thing.Nevertheless,there are still things,facts and statements to be taken into consideration after such a tense Saturday evening.

La Zarra,the French representative of this year’s Eurovision,was caught red-handed doing a questionable gesture on camera during the announcement of the televote.This triggered numerous reactions by the fandom which was quick to express its disdain towards this act.La Zarra herself issued a statement through her Instagram account mentioning,among many things,the following:

“I am glad to have represented France and the French-speaking world in general.I would like to clarify that I had no intentions of insulting anyone with that gesture.It was just a sign of disappointment,an “it is what it is moment”.Nothing more than that.There was no intention of provoking or sparking controversy.I am really sorry if this was misinterpreted.”

She concluded the statement by congratulating the winner and all the talented artists that she had the chance to compete with,promising her fans that she is looking forward to embark on new adventures with them.

La Zarra competed on yesterday’s Grand Final and reached the 16th place with her song “Evidemment”.


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Eurovision 2023: France’s second rehearsal!

The next country to have its second rehearsal today is France with La Zarra and “ Évidemment 

Who is La Zarra?

Fatima-Zahra Hafdi, known with her artist name La Zarra, was internally selected by France Télévisions to represent France in the Eurovision Song Contest 2023, making her the second Canadian singer to represent the country after Natasha St-Pier in 2001.

As a self-taught musician, La Zarra embodies the style and essence of iconic figures like Audrey Hepburn and Marilyn Monroe, while also embracing the tragic sensibility reminiscent of Édith Piaf. Her breakthrough came in 2016 with the release of her debut single “Printemps blanc,” a collaboration with French rapper Niro. In 2021, her popularity soared with the success of the single “Tu t’en iras,” which received extensive airplay. This achievement led to her nomination for the NRJ Music Awards, one of the most prestigious music awards in France, in the category of Francophone Revelation of the Year. Adding to her accomplishments, La Zarra’s debut and currently only album, “Traîtrise,” further contributed to her rising fame.

The Rehearsal

Unfortunately this year, accredited journalists don’t get the chance to watch the first and second rehearsals, so we only get the information and content that the organizers officially release to the public through and the official social media accounts of the contest.

Sarah Louise Bennett / EBU

As we saw from the first rehearsal snippet, La Zarra is elevated on a shimmering platform adorned with sparkles, dressed in a form-fitting gown crafted entirely from black and red sequins. The ‘platform’ is actually a moving column five meters tall, draped in sparkly black fabric all the way to the floor. The fabric disappears to reveal a cylindrical column with a mirror-tiled top. At the end of the performance there is pyro and the french flag appears on the led wall behind La Zarra. This is very French, dramatic, very Eurovision, as the blog live feed describes. And that’s why we are looking forward to see the full performance!

Sarah Louise Bennett / EBU

Tonight, after the completion of all the second rehearsals of the Big 6, a recap video will be released with 30 second snippets of the performances, giving us a glimpse of how the acts will look on stage.

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Eurovision 2023: France’s First Rehearsal!

Next Big 5 act to step on stage for her first rehearsal is La Zarra, representing France with the song “Évidemment”!

Who is La Zarra?

Fatima-Zahra Hafdi, known professionally as La Zarra, is a Canadian singer and songwriter based in France.

A self-taught musician, this chanteuse channels the style of Audrey Hepburn and Marilyn Monroe, with a healthy dose of Édith Piaf’s sense of tragedy. She rose to prominence in 2016, when she released her debut single “Printemps blanc” in collaboration with French rapper Niro. In 2021, her fame increased with the single “Tu t’en iras”, which was regularly broadcast on radio and television. In the same year, La Zarra was nominated for the NRJ Music Awards, the leading French music awards, as Francophone revelation of the year, boosted in part by the success of her debut and only album so far “Traîtrise”.

La Zarra was internally chosen by France Télévisions to represent France in the Eurovision Song Contest 2023, becoming the second Canadian singer to represent the country after Natasha St-Pier in 2001.

The Rehearsal

La Zarra stands on top of a sparkle-draped plinth wearing a fitted gown made entirely from black and red sequins. The ‘plinth’ is a moving column five metres off the ground, draped in sparkly black fabric all the way to the floor. The fabric disappears to reveal a cylindrical column with a mirror-tiled top.

Corinne Cumming / EBU

Corinne Cumming / EBU

Sarah Louise Bennett / EBU

At the end, the French flag appears on the LED wall.

Sarah Louise Bennett / EBU

You can watch the official snippet of La Zarra’s first rehearsal on TikTok below:

@eurovision Ooh la la La Zarra = ART 🇫🇷 #Eurovision2023 #Eurovision @La Zarra ♬ original sound – Eurovision

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Finland: Käärija reacts to Eurovision 2023 songs!

Käärijä has reacted to some of the songs competing in Eurovision 2023.

In the video uploaded by the official UMK Youtube account, the Finnish representative reacts to the songs from Austria, Sweden, United Kingdom, Germany, Croatia, France, Spain and Greece.

Although Käärijä’s comments about his fellow competitors were positive in general he has some favorite songs from this group which he would give 12 points.  According to Käärijä, the songs from Austria, Sweden, Germany and Greece are his personal favoruites from this group.

You can watch Käärijä’s reaction in this video:

And you can also watch our reaction by the Eurovisionfun team to Käärijä’s Eurovision song Cha Cha Cha

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The Netherlands: All the performances of “Eurovision in Concert 2023”!

Eurovision in Concert 2023 took place in AFAS Live in Amsterdam, last night, with 29 of this year’s entrants performing live.

The concert was hosted by Cornald Maas and Hila Noorzai. Cornald has been the Dutch Eurovision commentator since 2006. Hila is a radio DJ and member of the committee that selected this year’s Dutch representatives (Mia Nicolai & Dion Cooper). She also hosted the Eurovision 2021 press conference in Rotterdam.

The artists that performed last night were the following:

Albania – Albina & Kelmendi Familija

Balcan sounds and consistent vocals is what we got from Albina and the Kelmendi Family! Might be the suprise entry of this year.

Armenia – Brunette

Brunette singing about her Future Lover with ethereal vocals and the crowds singing along. Beautiful performance!

Australia – Voyager

Voyager give what they promise! Rock and electronic sounds, so 2025! What is concerning though, is that even though their song is supposed to be very uplifting, the crowd was too static. Also falsetto was not always on point.

Austria – Teya & Salena

That’s not a song where you can show off some unreal vocals, however it’s the song that will definitely make you dance! And Teya & Salena deliver, solid vocals and much much fun! One of my personal favourites and if you ask me, a finalist and highly likely a Top5 entry!

Azerbaijan – TuralTuranX

TuralTuranX “tell us more” about their entry this year, however I’m still not getting it. A song that I could listen to the radio without complaining, but wouldn’t catch my eye/ear at the contest.

Belgium – Gustaph

The queerest entry of the year! His vocals are as good as the studio version! He is a fun guy! This is the kind of entries that I would like to qualify, even though that’s not the style of songs that I normally listen to!

Czechia – Vesna

I can only comment on their vocals. They were okay. However, this entry started off as a potential winner, but I’m not getting that vibe, at least not yet. But hey! It’s just a party performance! Let’s wait for their contest rehearsals!

Denmark – Reiley

Danish heart-throb Reiley, had his best performance to date. Some minor vocal issues, but overall a nice performance!–QEIyag

Estonia – Alika

Nice song and great vocals! But for me, it’s no more than just that. I wouldn’t be surprised if Estonia got disqualified.

Finland – Käärijä

Normally, that’s a song that I can’t stand listening to for more than 10 seconds. Strangely, combined to his eccentric looks and his super nice personality, I could now handle listening to his entire Amsterdam performance! Personal opinion aside, I can totally see why this is a contender for the win.

France – La Zarra

Unfortunately, after a statement in her personal Twitter account, La Zarra announced that she has to cancel her appearance in Amsterdam, due to personal circumstances.

Germany – Lord of the Lost

I can’t be objective, I don’t like this style of music. I can only be objective about their vocal abilities, which are on point I must admit!

Iceland – Diljá

That’s a song that I would add to my daily playlist, however, this song lacks something that I still don’t know what it is! Diljá’s voice is great admitedly!

Ireland – Wild Youth

Every Teardrop Is a Waterfall” x “Ritmo De La Noche” x “We Are One” would be a great mashup! I low-key like this song and I loved their Amsterdam performance. But something tells me that they will struggle to qualify this year. Let’s see what happens!

Latvia – Sudden Lights

Another performance that sounds exactly like the recorded version of their song! I didn’t see the love from the AFAS Live crowd.

Lithuania – Monika Linkytė

Monika definitely sounds even better than the studio version of the song. She will try to claim a high placement in the rankings of the jury voting in this year’s contest! In the beginning I didn’t quite like “Stay“, I can now say that I love her vocals on this track!

Malta – The Busker

They were not bad, not at all sounding bad live, but were they as good as it needs to be to qualify to the final show of Eurovision Song Contest? Song-wise I think not.

Moldova – Pasha Parfeni

Despite the technical issues with his Madrid performance, Pasha, the Moldovan 2012 representative and returning artist of this year’s Eurovision Song Contest, managed to pull off his performance. Great vocals and energy overall!

Netherlands – Mia Nicolai & Dion Cooper

It’s really sad to see my 2nd place to perform questionably in their own country’s party concert. Their vocals sound a bit off at times and as a duo their vocals don’t seem to connect on their live performance. I hope they fix it till their semi-final, I don’t want to see them become the shocking non-qualifier of the year.

Norway – Alessandra

Very much improved vocally, Alessandra, gets carried away by the strength of her song and her fans are absolutely loving it! The whistle note was so-so. She will improve, I am sure!

Romania – Theodor Andrei

Theodor has a nice voice, but this song is totally “Off and On” so one would either like it or not. I don’t.

San Marino – Piqued Jacks

Their are very very good vocally. Their lead vocalist sounds like Klaus Meine, frontman of Scorpions band. Their song is not at all bad after all.

Slovenia – Joker Out

I simply love this band and this song! One of my favourites! I love how they sound in each and every appearance they make before the contest. I hope they continue delivering up until the Eurovision finals!

Spain – Blanca Paloma

A blend of flamenco and modern sounds, bringing Spanish tradition to 2023. Her vocals are absolutely amazing. I just don’t get the hype around this entry, it is a great entry for Spain, but definitely not a top 3 entry as many fans are claiming over at social media!

Sweden – Loreen

Her vocals are out of this world! Another amazing performance of the former Eurovision 2012 winner and potential 2023 winner! And for those that claim that she sings with the assistance of an Auto-Tune device, I can assure you that even when she rehearsed in the corridors of Malmö Arena or Friends Arena during the Melodifestivalen season, she sounded exactly the same, or even better than the studio version! My winner for sure!

Switzerland – Remo Forrer

I absolutely love his Amsterdam (and every single one of his) live performance! I can’t wait to see this song complete and staged and Remo joined by his four dancers! I think he will qualify! But let’s wait and see!

Ukraine – TVORCHI

I love TVORCHI and their song and their Amsterdam performance. They sounded really really good, I am a fan of their style of music, but I don’t see this entry winning. Let’s see another country winning this year!

United Kingdom – Mae Muller

Come on, she doesn’t sound as atrocious as most of the Twitter people claim. And at least she enjoys it and the crowd loves her! I hope she will do much better in Liverpool!


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Photo: EurovisionInConcert