Wow, what a show! From what appeared on first glance to simply contain the “other” countries, while the big names occupied the first semi, I think it may have been the superior show. A great mix of styles and energy. But we did this for a reason – there were 10 slots left for Saturday’s grand final, but 15 countries were still in the mix. Who would qualify?
For reviews of ALL the competing entries in the 2014 contest, as well as coverage of all the national finals and all sorts of other news, please visit my Copenhagen 2014 Hub by clicking the link, or the “Copenhagen 2014″ menu on the top banner, or the “#Joinus” crystal on the left-hand bar.
Some of the songs in this semi-final – though surprisingly few – were all but guaranteed to get through. Greece for example have a 100% qualification record, and judging by the crowd-pleasing performance, it’s not hard to see why!
Romania pulled out all the stops too, protecting their 100% record by sending 2010 entries Paula Seling & Ovi one more time. That circular piano was a waste of space though, at least TRY to pretend you’re using it, even if it’s a daft idea! Poor Paula’s money note didn’t get the attention it deserved.
Norway, as one of the contest favourites, so it’s no great surprise that Carl’s heavy ballad made it through to the final, further strengthening Norway’s position in the contest after 2011’s surprise DNQ.
Finally Austria, while I wondered if the bearded lady act would go down well, it definitely did – the crowd were roaring in appreciation for Conchita – I hope that continues to Saturday’s show.
Well, it was always going to be an unpredictable night, and after the favourites were out of the way, there were a lot of countries with really patchy qualification records to get through. Of course some of them had to get through this time!
Finland completed a clean sweep of the Nordic countries, with all 5 appearing in the final. I wasn’t 100% sure it would make it, but the performance was good, contemporary and filled the arena, so well done.
Slovenia bucked a long trend of non-qualifiers and with an amazingly hypnotic Tron backdrop managed to win over the voters.
Belarus were a bit of a surprise, I thought the staging was a bit lacking. Teo himself was find, and a great performer, but they could have made it a lot more eye-catching. Either way, Belarus are my favourite Communist nation, so I’m still happy for them.
Finally, Switzerland of course charmed everybody, I think this could be one to watch on Saturday, or at least be the best Swiss result for nearly 10 years!
Sadly five countries couldn’t make it through – and tragically one my favourites, Israel, was among them. Lumped with the slot of death (2nd), Mei did an amazing job with some unparalleled vocals. I think DR was more interested in showing off their flashy new stage though. This is the DNQ result that I really hoped I wouldn’t see… it’s really heartbreaking.
Ireland won’t be too pleased, they have a bit of a chip on their shoulder about Eurovision anyway, and no doubt they thought this was a potential winner. Step it up, Ireland! It was a decent performance but decent doesn’t always cut it.
Georgia also didn’t make it – not a big surprise though, it was pleasant but a bit of a mess, not something you can easily sing along to.
I feel bad for Lithuania & FYR Macedonia though, both very strong performances that didn’t connect with the voters for some reason. Lithuania particularly brought it together from what was a bit of a noisy track – loved both of them though. Lithuania out means none of the Baltic bloc made it through, a bit of a disaster there. The Balkans fared better than last year, but still only Montenegro made it – depends how you count Slovenia, Romania & Greece though.
So here are the results:
IN: Austria, Poland, Belarus, Switzerland, Norway, Malta, Romania, Greece, Slovenia, Finland
OUT: Lithuania, FYR Macedonia, Georgia, Ireland and… Israel :((
By dumb luck more than anything, I got 8/10 of the qualifiers again!! I didn’t think Belarus or Slovenia would make it, but didn’t think Israel of Lithuania wouldn’t make the cut… I think I prefer my way!
So that’s it – one more post coming up to preview the grand final running order, but I have to get ready for work now, it’ll have to wait! Hope you are enjoying it as much as I am!