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May 26th 2012

Today is the day! The Grand Final of Eurovision Song Contest will be held tonight, live from Baku, Azerbaijan at 19:00, Icelandic time. This year we will have 26 songs after 20 countries joined the final to the „Big 5“ (UK, France, Italy, Germany and Spain) and of course the hosting country, Azerbaijan.

I had my surprises about the qualifying countries for from the Semis-Finals, some are good actually and some are not. My biggest surprise is Malta – which I never thought would qualify but it was such a great surprise to have! On the not so good surprises was to see Albania and Hungary qualifying – still think those songs should have been left at the Semi-Final. Besides that, I’m pretty happy with the results of both Semis-Finals.

The United Kingdom will open the grand Final tonight with „Love Will Set you Free“ by Engelbert Humperdinck, (a very boring beginning to the Final if you ask me) and will be finished with Moldova’s song „Latuar“ by Pasha, a fun way to end it. Iceland’s song, „Never Forget“, by Greta & Jonsi will be song number 7, not a very good spot to perform but I believe they will do great tonight.

My winner for tonight is still Romania with the song „Zaleilah“ by Mandinga. If I heard this song so many times and still have fun listening to it and singing it like crazy, I guess its says a lot. However, I have to admit that I don’t think it’s going to win but I will keep my fingers crossed.

My number 2 for tonight is Estonia with „Kuula“, such a powerful song and an amazing voice by Ott Lepland.

Loreen with „Euphoria“ for Sweden is my 3rd place. The song is very not a typical Eurovision song and that is why it’s so interesting and refreshing. Her performance is still a little bit odd to me but I guess that is why it’s so interesting and why it’s one of the favorites to win the contest.

My 4th place goes to Ivi Adamou from Cyprus with „Lala Love“. Ivi does a great job in her performance and her 4 female dancers make it even better. A very catchy song which I’m sure would be stuck in our heads for a very long time.

Spain is closing my top 5 with „Quedeta Conmigo“ by Pastora Soler. Like I said once, I had some hard time with song at the beginning but as heard it more and more I started really liking it. Pastora is doing a fabulous job but actually it’s my number 5 since something in this song is missing to me and I can’t put my finger on it.

To complete my top 10 it’s actually kind of hard for me.

Iceland is taking the 6th place in my list. I really like the song but it is a little bit too „dramatic“ to me.

Roman Lob with „Standing Still“ for Germany is at my 7th place. Such a cute song with a very cute singer as well.

My 8th place goes to Jedward with „Waterline“ for Ireland. Love their performance and the song also, but still, they are not exactly the greatest singers.

„L’amore e femmina“, Italy’s song by Nina Zilli is my 9th place (though I’m pretty sure it will be much higher if not the winner). It reminds me too much the song „Big Spender“ from the musical „Chicago“. I liked the previous song, „Per Sempre“, much more.

Last, but not least, is Ukraine which is taking my 10th place. As I wouldn’t mind at all to be Gaitana’s „guest“ since the song is so cool, the back dancers are doing a wonderful job but Gaitana’s voice is just not good enough. If to be even more accurate, her voice is just bad.

So this is it. Tonight Eurovision will end and we are all waiting to see which country will win the contest and will have the proud to host the 58th Eurovision Song Contest. All I have left to say is: Good luck to all the participants and of course to Greta & Jonsi!

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May 24th 2012

Today will be the 2nd Semi-Final after 10 countries already have been qualified to the Grand Final on Tuesday: Romania, Iceland, Albania, Hungary, Russia, Ireland, Cyprus, Greece, Denmark and Moldova.

These Semi-Final in my opinion is not as good as the first one but still very interesting actually to watch.

Here are my thoughts about this Semi-Final (In order of appearance):

1)    Serbia – Zelijko trying again to win the contest after he tried on 2004 with his song „Lane Moje“ (Representing at that time Serbia& Montenegro). This year’s song, Nije Ljubav Svatar, is ok I guess, not really my type of song. The song is very soft and some may say it it a good thing but to me it’s actually boring.

2)    FYR Macedonia – Another lady that has to scream from some reason. I don’t really like her voice, to „low“ to me and suppose to be I guess a powerful voice but I admit this is just annoying me.

3)    The Netherlands – Or as I call them „The NEVERrland“ since they never qualified for the Grand Final. This year they decided to send an „Indian“ style song which is cute I guess, but still not really a good one and the performance is kinda weak. My guess is that they won’t qualify again.

4)    Malta – This song is actually very good in my opinion but just like San Marino, Malta has also a problem of being a small country and I believe it would be very hard for them to qualify with whatever song they will send (Unlees its Chiara).

5)    Belarus – This song is a reminder to Switzerland’s entry (which didn’t qualify) but a better one. Unlike Swiss, they don’t have such a bad accent and they are making a good job performing.

6)    Portugal – After lasts year entry every song would be much better. However, they don’t really learn since I really can’t explain this anemic song that is not interested for one second.

7)    Ukraine – One of the best songs of this Semi-Final. Very powerful song and Gatiana has a very powerful voice as it should be. Also she has one of the best performances. I’m sure that Ukraine will do very well.

8)    Bulgaria – Another dance song which is very catchy actually but Sofi’s voice is not that good. Besides, for a much better performance the need some dancers around her since she isn’t dancing herself.

9)    Slovenia – Personally I’m not a big fan of this song since this song puts me in a „sleep“ mode but the performance is nice.

10) Croatia – After lasts year disappointed with the lovely dance song „Celebrate“, today Croatia went with a softer song. The song is very good in my opinion and the performance as well.

11) Sweden – One of my favorites for winning! Such a unique song and an amazing performance by Loreen. I’m sure for Sweden this year to be in top 5 if not a winner. Who knows, maybe next year we will be in Stockholm🙂

12) Georgia – OMG what a terrible song! I’m having hard time to decide which song I hate more – this one or Montenegro’s from the 1st semi final. It is just too embarrassing to see watch it on television.

13) Turkey – This song wasn’t a good song to me at the beginning but after a while it started to sound nicer. I’m not saying that it is a good song, but now I don’t think it is a bad one.

14) Estonia – Oh, how much I love this song. Such a great voice for Ott. The thing that I like the most is that Ott shows actually that less is more. He keeps his performance very clean and simple without any big effects.

15) Slovakia – A rock song which I will never like. Some people might like it but for me it just a continual noise and suffer.

16) Norway – Norway’s entry it’s just Sweden’s from last year. Despite that it is, like a said, a copycat of Sweden I really like this song. It has good beat and the choreography is very good as well.

17) Bosnia & Herzegovina – From some reason I heard that not a lot of people like this song which is very weird to me sing this song is so magical to me. I have no idea what she sings about but I just love it.

18) Lithuania – An ok song, nothing more than that. I don’t like that he is blindfolded even if the songs name is „Love is blind“ – it is just too tacky to me. Otherwise, it’s a nice song but not really a good one.

After reviewing all the songs I must say I don’t really have Top 10 for this Semi Final but still I can say that I think that the 10 finalist’s countries will be: Sweden, Norway, Ukraine, Estonia, Bosnia & Herzegovina, Lithuania, Croatia, Belarus, Bulgaria and Serbia.

May 22nd 2012

Our correspondent in Baku, Flosi and Lior (who are both members of OGAE Iceland) will send us brief summaries of their stay. Here’s one from Lior about the dress rehearsal for 1. semi-final:

Lior in Baku

When Azerbaijan won last year in Düsseldorf, Germany I was totally shocked and said to myself that there is no way for me to go the following year to Baku.

One year later, here I am, doing the „impossible“ and went to Baku, Azerbaijan. Got to admit I came here with a lot of concerns about how will „Eurovision Week“ would look like – Are the people ofAzerbaijan friendly? How would they manage to organize such a big event? Once I landed in Baku, immediately saw friendly faces which are committed to be as helpful as they can be. The city of Baku is absolutely beautiful. It shows that there is a big effort to make this event successful.

As my concern to the event itself, I was amazed to see the „Crystal Hall“ they built especially for the event, very impressive.

So its 3am, Baku time, and I just came from the Dress Rehearsal of the 1st Semi – Final which was absolutely amazing. Here are my impressions of the songs for the 1st Semi – Final (In order of appearance):

1)  Montenegro – Such a BAD beginning to Eurovision. The singer looks like a gangster and the performance bad as well. If it will qualify for the final it would be a real shame.

2)  Iceland – At the beginning I didn’t really like that song, but as it changed to English I started to like it more and more. Their performance is AMAZING. Really like the overlook of the stage and there is no doubt that Iceland should qualify. My biggest concern about not qualifying is because they follow Montenegro, which I’m not sure how many would keep listening to that and might switch channel in the meanwhile and miss Iceland’s entry.

3)  Greece – For me this song is a typical „Greece“ song for Eurovision and it all start to sound the same. The performance is good as always, but again, it looks exactly like former years which to me in a way kinda boring. Even so, I believe it will go to the final.

4)  Latvia – Such a cute song. In a way it’s even a little bit „Nostalgic“, but I don’t know why it didn’t keep me interested all the way. Don’t think it will qualify.

5) Albania – Although her performance is really good, I have a big problem with singers who tend to „scream“ a lot instead of just sing. For me its just not good enough. Hope it won’t go the final.

6) Romania – Oh Romania, Romania… My favorite in this Semi Final and actually in general. I really love the melody and her dancers – its looks like all of them have such a big fun together that you just want to go up the stage and join them dancing. Definitely qualify to the final and in my opinion would be in top 5 at the final.

7) Switzerland – Personally, I’m not a big fan of this song. The singer has a very bad accent in English and it shows. The performance wasn’t as good as I expected, they actually looked tired – maybe it’s because of too many rehearsals or maybe it’s the late hour, but still, they to do something about it. Even so, I think Switzerland has a good chance to qualify.

8)  Belgium – The youngest contestant this year, only 17 years old. The singer is so cute and makes such a peaceful performance on stage, looks so adorable. Despite that, I don’t think Belgium would qualify, if it will, it would be a nice surprise.

9) Finland – Finland decided to send this year a ballad which in general I think its good but something went wrong in this song. The song sounds the same the entire time with no „high picks“. Don’t think it would qualify.

10) Israel – I’m not a big fan of the song, but it is different from other songs in the Eurovision I have met. ActuallyIsraelsurprised me at the rehearsal with a very good and fun performance. There is a „50-50“ chance for Israel to qualify.

11)  San Marino– A silly song in my opinion. I don’t know whatSan Marinohad in mind when they decided to send this song to Eurovision. The singer is cute but still, the song is just not good enough. It’s hard time to San Marino to qualify anyway since they are a small country so if they do want to qualify one day they will have to do better job than this one. Big surprise if they will qualify.

12) Cyprus– Though it’s Greece’s entry look alike, this one it the better version. I really like this song, the singer is good and the performance is very nice. My hope is for Cyprus to qualify and for Greece not to.

13) Denmark– Usually this one won’t be a song that I like, but from some reason I do. I can only guess it’s because of the singer and that odd outfit she is wearing. It reminds me in a way an Alanis Morissette song. I think Denmark will qualify.

14)  Russia – If judging to the rehearsal we just saw,Russia is the big winner of Eurovision 2012. While performing, the whole crowd was standing and clapping hysterically. Have to admit that I was captured as well by these adorable grandmothers (especially the „little“ one). After this rehearsal I’m pretty sure they will qualify.

15)  Hungary – A big disappointed to me after Kate Wolf’s song from last year. This year’s song is just fine, starts good but it still doesn’t keep me interested. Their performance wasn’t so good too so that is why I think Hungary won’t qualify this year.

16)  Austria – As for a song that I actually hated in the beginning, after some more hearing of it, and seeing them performing live I started to like it. I keep finding myself during the chorus joining them at the „oo“ „oo“ part. From a person who thought they won’t have any chance to qualify, I starting to think they just might do.

17)  Moldova – This is a tricky one to me. The song is nice, but I don’t think it’s that good, even a little bit annoying. But, and there is a big one, their performance is fantastic in my opinion. The dancers are doing a great job and actually the whole song is based on that. If they will do as great as they did on the rehearsal they will have a good chance to qualify.

18) Ireland – Jedward is representing Ireland again after last’s year „Lipstick“. This year’s entry is much better, and as always they are making a very good performance. I’m sure they will qualify once again to the final.

May 10th 2012

One of All about Eurovision in Iceland’s editors met with songwriter and representative of Iceland in Eurovision 2012, Greta Salóme Stefansdóttir and had a little talk about the big night in Baku on May 22nd and all the other Eurovision jazz!

How are the preparations going? Is it mad work? 
It has been a lot of work and we have been working on the PR-preparations for interviews in Baku etc. Rehearsals of the performance are also well on way.

I’m very much involved in everything and have my fingers in every issue, being both songwriter and performer. It’s a bit strange to sit on both sides at the table, and I often have to wear the songwriter’s hat and switch to the performer’s hat.

On top of all this work I am graduating with a masters degree in classical music this spring and have just turned my master thesis in. I had the chance to intertwine the Eurovision-project in the thesis and am really happy about it!

Tell me about the performance, will it be very different from the NF or stay similar? We use many elements from the former performance in Harpa but we really need to widen the scale of the act itself since the stage is a lot bigger. But don’t expect crazy fireworks and such!

People have been wondering about the dramatic silence in the video and whether we will import it to the stage. I personally would love to but the song itself is 2:59 minutes and is only allowed to be 3 minutes. And we wouldn’t want to get cut off the air!

The act itself will have Icelandic factors and we will be showing Icelandic design both on the stage and in press conferences in Baku.

How are you going to promote the song in Baku?
We have people on the PR-stuff but I think it’s a little stressful to go out with all the expectations and fans’ prediction. But I remind myself that it’s Eurovision – everything can happen. I consider the performance as a concert and that I know, I deal with it every day (violinist at the Iceland National Symphony). I have faith in the song and when you have a song you believe in and thinks is strong you don’t need big costumes or gimmicks.

Speculations were about the language of the song and it was finally decided to sing it in English, how do you feel about that? I never would have thought the language would be such an issue! Of course the song was created around the Icelandic story of Ragnheiður daughter of the archbishop and her lover, Daði and their forbidden love affair, and the text in Icelandic.

The song is meaningful, has Icelandic fifth singing but also the eastern elements which will hopefully get even more foreigners to listening. Since the launch of the video I have only gotten positive responses. I have also been asked: Will you sing one verse in Icelandic? or something but it has been decided like this and we will not change it. The Icelandic of the song lives on even if it is in English.

What is the most memorable comment about the song you’ve gotten? “I love to hear people’s reaction to the song. Some say that the melody’s haunting and captivating – even when they are sunbathing in Greece or something. That must mean that the story and the influences from the cold time in the Icelandic countryside when I created the song, has its way to get to people. I am really glad that the same impression is to be found in the video, I love it!

The weirdest comment I’ve gotten is from a girl in Turkmenistan who has the song – in Icelandic – as a ringtone in her cell phone! She can’t even vote in Eurovision from Turkmenistan! It’s mind-blowing!

What are the song’s chances in your point of view?
I am totally excited to get to perform on stage before 120 million viewers and think it’s a real honor.

In all honesty, you have to consider that the some elements of the song speak directly to Icelanders but do not connect to foreign viewers. We as Icelanders know the story, the impression of the music and don’t necessary see the others’ point of view. The English text is maybe one way to help others to get into the song in the same way and share the mental influences with us Icelanders.

Are you a Eurovision fan?
I always watch the contest and have a Eurovision party, but see the competition maybe in a different way from others, I look for the quality in the song first and foremost. And some songs are real diamonds. I love the Norwegian Nocturne from 1995 and also the Serbian melody from 2007 which was a complete Eurovision song with power but really lyrical.

Last but not least, can you tell us the name of the biggest city in Azerbaijan and what the currency is called? :o)
Isn’t it Baku? I don’t know the currency but I know that 1 piece of it equals 1 euro, or almost. That’s easy to remember.

We thank Greta Salome for her time and wish her and the Icelandic delegation all the best of luck in Baku – and furthermore, we wish that they won’t be in the last envelope yet again!

—–

April 20th, 2012

From Flosi J. Ófeigsson, OGAE Iceland’s and AUJ-correspondant in Baku, Azerbaijan:

There was a group of friends in Switzerland that created a parody video of the Russian entry this year. Three of the members are part of the OGAE Iceland, Dekel  Ben Avi the director, Bastien Venturi assistant director and me (Flosi Jón Ófeigsson). I thought it was a great idea to have a little talk with the director about the process and of course  ask him about Eurovision.

Name: Dekel Ben Avi
Age: 30
Occupation: Flight attendant

  1. How long have you been a fan of Eurovision? Ever since I first watched it as a child back in 1991.
  2. What is your favorite Eurovision song of all time? Lonely symphony (UK 1994)
  3. What is your favorite Icelandic entry? August and Telma – Tell me (2000)
  4. What do you think about the Icelandic song this year?  It took some time to grow on me, but I think it’s a beautiful touching and powerful ballad
  5. How did the idea come up to make parody video? Our first parody video was of the classic ‘Les Jardins de Monaco’, it was just a silly video for our friend we made during an actual trip to Monaco. Afterwards it became a tradition, and we started making a video every year before the contest, now of most recent songs.
  6. How many have you done? We have done 4 so far : ‘Les Jardins de Monaco’, ‘Tyolki ellaa’, ‘Popular’ and the 24 hours old ‘Party for everybody’.
  7. How do you choose a song every year? We choose the song that most entertains us and is most Eurovision-ish. The more kitch the better!
  8. Does the video have any message? This year the video has a message indeed. It shows that with a little will, everybody can get along. No matter where you are from and who you are, we can all accept one another and enjoy time together. That is very much what Eurovision is in my opinion – a party for everybody, where people from all over come together in order to celebrate and enjoy.
  9. Do you do everything for the video? Script? Making the video?ect….. Together with my dear boyfriend Bastien and a group of devoted friends, we put the video together every year. Bastien and I write the script, and I do the video editing. The actors are our great friends and us.
  10.  Anything you want to ad in the end? That I hope people will take the video as a good spirited, Eurovision spirited joke. It comes to teach us all the values of accepting, understanding and loving through humor. I hope the fans will enjoy it as well as the babushkas themselves.

For those who haven’t already seen the video, I am proud to show it here below. Dekel got an email from the Russian grandmothers and they were delighted with the result of the video and were looking forward to entertain us in Baku.

April 1st, 2011

As most Euronerds, we, the editors of All About Eurovision in Iceland, were dead curious about the preperations the Icelandic delegation is doing for the big contest in May. We met with the songwriter (Sjonni’s) wife, Þórunn Erna Clausen and one of the singers and drummer Benedikt Brynleifsson (Benni) and had a little chat.

AAEI: The song has now gotten English lyrics but was performed in Icelandic in the National Final (NF). Was the plan always to perform it in English in the main contest?

Þórunn: “Yes, it was always supposed to be performed in English and Sjonni himself had made a demo version in English but I wrote the Icelandic lyrics before the song was sent to the NF. We thought the rules a little strange, for the song had to be performed in Icelandic in the NF, since it would eventually be performed in English but now I can see some advantages to having the Icelandic lyrics.”

Benni: “I think more people learn the song by heart in Icelandic, especially little children. My 4-year old knows all the lyrics.”

Þórunn: “Yeah, it’s wonderful to hear children all over sing the song. I know Sjonni would really have loved to know how many people have started to love it.”

AAEI: How did the English lyrics come to be?

Þórunn: “It happened after the song won the NF. I wrote new lyrics with Sjonnis demo lyrics in mind and it stays true to the Icelandic lyrics. The English lyrics also cover some of the story behind the performance and song. I kept many of Sjonnis lines, such as Oh, oh, oh, it‘s time to go, I’ll see you I’ll see you soon… which is really remarkable when you think of what has happened. I also wanted to connect his character even more to the song so I added the lines Your smile will always lead my way, which has had a personal meaning for me and Sjonni and the line My love is you but “Love is you” is a song Pálmi (one of the singers) wrote and he and Sjonni and the rest of the rockband Rokk released in memory of John Lennon. It also happens to be a line which Pálmi sings in Coming Home!

When you look at it, the lyrics are full of little referrences and extremely personal for me. It’s deep in a way and includes meaning I would like to deliever and I am sure that Sjonni would have too.”

Benni: “It’s probably one of few song lyrics this year with as much meaning and heart put in it.”

AAEI:  Can you tell me how the performance of Sjonni’s song came to include six of his friends?

Benni: “It was always the plan that me and Sjonni would perform the song, even just us two. Back vocals were added by the young singer Ólöf Jara Skagfjörð.”

Þórunn: “The brass touch was added later and it’s really strange to think, in light of events, that our aim with it was to get this certain “New Orleans-funeral” touch… The official video for the song was made by Sjonnis nephew, Arnór Pálmi. And all of us, his family and friends appear in it. When he passed away we thought that this was the way that he would have liked the performance to be, surrounded by his friends and so we build the act up in that way.”

AAEI: How are the preperations for Dusseldorf going? Have you figured everything out, such as lighting and costumes and such?

Þórunn: “Lighting design has been taken care of and the costumes will be simular to the ones in NF, but not the same color. The design will be to make the guys stand out and so they will always be simular in clothing in Dusseldorf. Although the whole performance will be simular to the NF it will not be just “copy-paste””.

AAEI: How are you going to present the song – any thoughts of “marketing” ourselves in Dusseldorf?

Þórunn: “The stageing and consept of the whole act will be in spirit of the video. One of the last interviews Sjonni gave was in a horse stable and since he kept horses and rode out frecuently I thought: There’s a good connection! And also, in his demo version the song was called Countryside and what is more connected to Icelandic countryside than the horse stable?”

Both: “We are a group of 13 people that are going to Dusseldorf and a very tight group of friends. That is why we can bring that extra something to the scene there, especially the press conferences. We have a Facebook site (Sjonni’s Friends-„Coming Home“ (Aftur heim) Icelandic ESC entry 2011) and a site on Eurovision.tv. We are also working on a website of Sjonnis songs and lyrics which will be sjonnibrink.is. We have sent out a short summary of the history behind the song in various languages. But we also hope that people will come to us in Dusseldorf to chat and ask questions.”

AAEI: Have you gotten any feedback from abroad, fans?

Benni: “The singers and I have gotten quite a few questions regarding interviews and a lot more of friend requestes!”

Þórunn: “People are asking for promotion material and the song. It’s also important to present each of the guys singing so that people recognize them and know who to talk to.”

AAEI: How do you estimate the chances of the song to do well in Eurovision? Are expectasions high before hand?

Both: “With all this story behind the song we stand out a little and are very different from other songs. We are all deeply connected on a personal level to the song and performance in whole which is maybe different from other songs that Iceland has sent to Eurovision before.”

Benni: “Whatever the rumours are around the NF, when May comes the Icelandic song always becomes “our song” for the whole nation and most people are cheering for it.”

Þórunn: “I don’t want to predict anything but I think the Icelandic people have hit the jack pot with this song. We are always trying to choose a song we “think” rest of Europe will like but I think that by voting with our hearts a song that touches people and people genuinely like is a much better way.”

AAEI: How were the reactions after the NF win?

Þórunn: “We heard a few negative voices but that’s like that every year. Such rumours will always follow when you’re compeeting in arts. Not everyone will agree, and maybe just as well. The song won the NF by a landslide and I also heard that the jury who was present just in case, had Sjonnis song also as a winner. There was some talk of “pity votes” but seriously, I don’t believe the Icelandic nation would really make the effort of calling in and voting for a song just for pitys sake! It’s just a really good song and different from the others.”

AAEI: Are you ourselves Eurovision fans?

Benni: “I grew up in a small town in northern Iceland and I always watched Eurovision as did my friends.”

Þórunn: “I have been a fan since I was a little girl and have always dreamt of compeeting. Although Sjonni was more of a rocker, he also loved Eurovision and the chance to present his music and perform for people.”

AAEI: Have you checked out other songs this year?

Benni: “Yeah a little, I like the Danish 80’s rockers and the Netherlands.“

Þórunn: “I like the Swiss entry and the Norwegian one.”

AAEI: Some of the guys are going to Eurovision for the first time, who? How do you feel about these 2 weeks of Eurovision craziness?

Benni: Yes, Vignir has been in Eurovision 5 times, Gunni Óla went in 2001 with Angel and I went in 2007 with Eiki Hauks and 2008 with the Euroband. It’s going to be different now though – I can sing now and not just pretend to be playing an instument! Matti, Hreimur and Pálmi are going for the first time and are very excited.

The hardest part of this trip will be to leave our children and families behind. We have many children and by counting the other day, I think we are up to 17 children, the seven of us!”

We would like to thank Þórunn and Benni for the chat and will continue to follow their path to Dusseldorf and Eurovision in just a few weeks!

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January 7th 2011

The Icelandic national broadcaster RÚV has now revealed the name and singer of the first five songs competing in Söngvakeppni Sjónvarpsins, the Icelandic national selection for Eurovision 2011. The performing acts are:

  • Erna Hrönn Ólafsdóttir – ÁSTIN MÍN EINA (Arnar Ástráðsson)
  • Haraldur Reynisson – EF ÉG HEFÐI VÆNGI (Haraldur Reynisson)
  • Böddi og JJ Soul Band – LAGIÐ ÞITT (Ingvi Þór Kormáksson)
  • Pétur Örn Guðmundsson- ELÍSABET (Pétur Örn Guðmundsson)
  • Hanna Guðný Hitchon – HULDUMEY (Ragnar Hermannsson)

One of these acts will continue to compete in the Grand final on February 12th. The Icelandic selection can be viewed on RUV (in TV and on the web) the last three Saturday evenings in January  (15th, 22th and 29th).

May 27th 2010

We mentioned on the blog our favorite Eurovision-blog in Norway, Guri and Astrid’s Good evening Europe. Their humour is fantastic and they write about songs and performers, mostly about the hot guys!

We ran into them at the Euro-club here in Oslo and chatted a little. We found out that their blog is relatively new, founded last March. Since then the blog has gotten many hits and the word spread out fast. Now they are with NRK in planning events for the Eurovision week here in Oslo. How exciting for a true Eurovision fan!

Astrid and Guri met when they were students at Bergen University and the started to plan Eurovision parties together. Now Guri lives in Oslo and Astrid in Bergen and she came to stay with Guri to be able to take full part in the festival.

When we asked about the results of the 1. semi-final they said that unfortunatly their favorite guys from Estonia and Poland didn’t make it to the finals. Also that the Finnish entry had gotten such a great feed back that it had been strange that they had not qualified. Surely the Scandinavian countries stick together and are just another voting block like the others. Such a shame that our block isn’t bigger. Astrid and Guri say that the Danish and Icelandic entries have gotten quite popular in Norway and of course Sweden will get their votes from Norway!

They really didn’t like the icelandic song and Hera at the first impression but after seeing her on the stage and felt her energy the song and the Icelandic group has become one of their favorites. Norwegian will surely give Iceland 12 points!

April 26th 2010

The fansite All about Eurovision in Iceland met the icelandic contestant Hera Bjork last week and took a little chat with her.

Hera‘s fans know all about her Eurovision career but lets take a look anyway:

2007 – Hera sang Mig dreymir in Söngvakeppni Sjónvarpsins, where the icelandic entry is chosen but had to bow for Eiki Hauks with Valentine Lost
2008 – Hera got second in the Danish Melodi Grand Prix with Someday. She also sang vocals in Iceland‘s entry This is my life with the Euroband.
2009 – She sang vocals in Iceland‘s entry with Yohanna, Is it true?

You must be very busy planning the big event in May?
Oh yes, I‘ve been head over heels in preps and promo stuff. We are going to Brussels April 30th and I am also performing with the Irish singer Niamh Kavanagh in London on May 2nd. On top of that I am working on my solo album which will be released on May 8th. It will be sold mainly in Iceland but we might pack a few copies to bring to Oslo! My website, www.herabjork.com is also being updated and refreshed and will be full of info!

How‘s the video coming along?
Very well, we shot it last weekend in the indoor swimming pool in downtown Reykjavík. The video will debut next week (this week).

We just saw the volcanic version on youtube, you didn‘t just want to use that?!
That was really brilliant. I came across it on youtube and it really has a great number of hits. All this volcano thing has put its mark on all of our lives. I had the idea that if we couldn‘t fly we could always go by Smyril line (ferry) to Oslo. That would be a terrific entrance, just sailing across the pond to Norway!

So are you excited to go to Oslo in May?
I am really excited and can‘t wait to go and meet everybody, all the wonderful fans. It‘s my third time to Eurovision this year and of course you always meet some of the same people again and again. I will be spreading hugs around, for sure!

Has Eurovision help you in your career?
I think so, I am always getting emails and propositions to sing in all kinds of events and competitions. Songwriters from all over have contacted me, I was for example asked to sing in the Ukranian and Greek nationals this year! The Scandinavians have also asked me to sing in their nationals. But I love the feeling of presenting my own country, Iceland, in the Eurovision song contest next May!

The fansite went to the Rockfish Event on Saturday 17th to see Hera Björk perform.

The DJ, DJ Haha a.k.a. Haffi Haff played a lot of funky music…

… and made the crowd dance!

The young and rising rap/hip hop-star Friðrik Dór sang two song that pleased the crowd a lot:

Everything went crazy when Haffi Haff introduched „the Queen of Iceland“ on stage and Hera Björk went on!

Hera sang three songs. First Someday from the Danish nationals 2009 which is still really popular with Icelandic fans (and should have won :)) Then Knock on Wood in a dance mix version, really cool!
Last but certainly not least, the new version of Je ne sais quoi. The crowd danced of the feet and it’s obvious that this hit will be in discos and pubs this summer!

Then Hera said goodnight and returned to the video-shooting in Sundhöllin. The preview video for Je ne sais quoi will be released in next week. We will update on it – so be sure to follow us here!

Eyrún Ellý and Hildur T. Flóvenz

_____________________________________________

Eruption stops Eurovision preparation!

As you all know, we have a little volcanic eruption here in Iceland. Or to be exact, big enough to close nearly all airports in Europe right now (16.04).

The worst news is that the preparation for Eurovision is challenged by the ash fall from the eruption. It stoppes the video journalists from NRK to travel all around Europe to film the postcards which are aired prior to each entry’s performance on the big night!

All of us here in Iceland are pretty chilled about it, it is nature’s course and little to do about it! But we really hope that all this mayhem will stop soon so our favorite TV-show of the year won’t face more damage or (dare I mention it) maybe will be canceled! Gisp!

All about Eurovision in Iceland is now working along side Hera Bjork and the Eurovision team that is going to Oslo in May. We will be posting hot news about the preparation and stuff!

Hope you are as excited as we are! Stay tuned :)

2 thoughts on “English

  1. valentinos michael skrifar:

    Goodmorning dear Eurovision Fans from Iceland. We would like to thank you for voting and supporting us in the OGAE voting poll. We also wish you the best of luck in this year’s Eurovision Song Contest. Greetings to Greta Salome & Jonsi. They are really talented, charismatic with magical voices.

    With lots of love and respect
    OGAE Cyprus

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