Public service announcement – I have a spare ticket for the first semi-final next Tuesday. Get in touch if you want to buy it off at an insulting knock-down rate!
Israel are looking to return to the final this year after a few tough years, and I think they have a decent chance this year. Israel have a long history at Eurovision, debuting in 1973 and only missing a handful of contest inbetween. Curiously one of these absences was 1980 after two consecutive victories for Israel, leaving hosting duties to the Netherlands.
They have had decent results over the years; those consecutive victories in 1978 & 1979 joined by perhaps the dawn of the modern Eurovision age when Dana International won the 1998 contest with “Diva”. However the semi-final years have been tougher, indeed Dana International herself was a shock non-qualifier in 2011, and Izabo’s 2012 entry for Baku similarly missed the final.
Undeterred, Israel’s Kdam selection event got a big-budget makeover (see my review of the national final here), and popular reality TV star Moran Mazor was selected to fly the Israeli flag in Malmö in just over a week’s time.
I hope I’d be forgiven for thinking that was a little distracting during what is a rather straight-faced ballad. I often love the Israeli entries, and this is no different, I think it’s the Hebrew language. She’s got a powerful voice, more than a match for the song.
It starts off slowly and a little boring, but it builds to a pretty huge finale. I never know quite what makes the difference between an Israeli song qualify or not, but this is one of the more emotional moments of the second semi-final. With most of the power ballads stuck in semi-final one, this should have a clear path at least.
For more ESC2013 reviews and news, please visit my Malmö 2013 hub, or click “Malmö 2013” at the top of the page.