Eurovision 2013: Semi-final running orders revealed

What’s it been, five days without some Eurovision stuff? I knew you’d worry about me, so here’s a little morsel for you to chew over.

Get your foil-hats at the ready, as SVT reveal the running order that they’ve decided for the two semi-finals. Conspiracy theories and second-guessing abound, as the usual critics complain about hidden agendas and vendettas that alleged antichrist Christer Björkman has against so-and-so a country etc. This is the inevitable side-effect of SVT’s controversial decision to try to make Eurovision a fun show for viewers, rather than rely on the fair but haphazard iPod Shuffle method that previous contests have used to determine their schedule.

The usual setup of country groups was again used to try to break up the supposed voting blocs into separate semi-finals, since countries can only vote in the semi-final they participate in. The “Big Five” (UK, France, Germany, Spain & Italy) and the host Sweden are each designated a semi-final to vote in too. From there, a random draw decided which semi-final a country participated in, and which half of the show they would perform in. SVT then decided the final running order in as balanced a way they could, they claim to avoid long strings of similar songs that would lead to songs getting lost in the mix.

Malmö Arena Eurovision song Contest 2013

Personally I’m all for it, and unless you are fervently anti-SVT you could at least acknowledge what they were getting at. Turkey didn’t, I expect they pulled out because of this development rather than protesting rules that have been in play for years. But it only takes your favourite to be placed in an unfavourable slot to start the calls of “FIIIIX!”. That said, the majority of these songs will qualify, and the shorter semi-finals lessen the effect of the running order.

That said, here’s what we ended up with.

Semi-final 1 Order Semi-final 2
Austria  Austria 1 Latvia Latvia
Estonia  Estonia 2 San San Marino
Slovenia  Slovenia 3 FYR FYR Macedonia
Croatia  Croatia 4 Azerbaijan Azerbaijan
Denmark  Denmark 5 Finland Finland
Russia  Russia 6 Malta Malta
Ukraine  Ukraine 7 Bulgaria Bulgaria
Netherlands  Netherlands 8 Iceland Iceland
Montenegro  Montenegro 9 Greece Greece
Lithuania  Lithuania 10 Israel Israel
Belarus  Belarus 11 Armenia Armenia
Moldova  Moldova 12 Hungary Hungary
Ireland  Ireland 13 Norway Norway
Cyprus  Cyprus 14 Albania Albania
Belgium  Belgium 15 Georgia Georgia
Serbia  Serbia 16 Switzerland Switzerland
17 Romania Romania

And yes, I’m quite pleased at how that formatting worked out. I’ll learn HTML yet!

Anyway there you go. Since I’m not convinced that running order is the SINGLE deciding factor in a song’s success like some people do, there seems little need to comment on how this changes things, I just thought you might want to know. That said, I’m a little concerned for San Marino, but it is bookended by two horrors so I’m sure it will shine even brighter as a result.

That’s all you’re getting out of me, Eurovision-wise until… next week. I’m planning to do what I did last year and review an entry per day in the run-up to the contest, which means I need to start on Thursday at the latest. I might start a little early to create a buffer zone. I WILL keep writing other stuff of course, as labour-intensive as it might be. I realise not all of you are interested!

If you ARE interested though, keep an eye on the Malmö 2013 tab at the top of the screen, it will show you all the ESC 2013 posts I’ve made, including reviews of ALL the national finals held this year (glad THAT’s over), and the entry reviews will pop up there as I go along.

Later! xoxo

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