Following the unprecedented cancellation of the Eurovision Song Contest this year, SBS is excited to announce a week-long festival of Eurovision from 10-17 May, culminating in a brand new alternative Eurovision 2020 with SBS’s Eurovision 2020: Big Night In! and Eurovision: Europe Shine a Light from The Netherlands.
1. Australia Conquers Europe (almost)
Pipped at the post! We missed it by….that much. Australia justified its return to the Eurovision Song Contest by taking out the #1 position in the Jury Vote and 4th in the public vote. But the story of the week has been Australia’s triumph at this year’s contest most of which is down to our Dami. Our diva has worked tirelessly throughout this fortnight and not only sold the song incredibly well but demonstrated our unerring love for this singing contest. The land down under is not seen as either a novelty or curiosity at this contest anymore - Australia is now one serious contender. Now we have to sit back, cross our fingers and hope that the Ukraine invites us back.
2. Fashion parade of Nations
The Swede’s invented the Parade of Nations, first appearing at the staging of the 2013 contest in Malmo, and this year they took their concept to another level. Each nation was accompanied by a dancer/model elaborately decked out what can only be likened to contemporary light fittings in the shapes of elephants, jellyfish and other random items that could be found on the shelves in Bunnings. Beyond bonkers and camp as Christmas it was the perfect opening to show.
3. Perfect Petra & Marvelous Mans
Dami Im may have won over the hearts of many on Saturday night but it was the fabulous hosts Petra Mede and Mans Zelmerlow who conquered Eurovision week. These two will go into the Eurovision history book as the best hosts the contest has had the privilege of watching. Petra Mede had the audience eating out of her hand and Mans, well, he had the audience wanting to just eat him!
From the stunning Broadway sequence, to Mans brief appearance sans clothing with strategically placed stuffed animal, to Petra’s tongue-in-cheek and super saucy one-liners Eurovision should consider putting these two as permanent hosts.
Visual effects and creative staging has become a staple of the contest in recent years and 2016 delivered some dramatic moments. The staging of Sweden’s “If I Were Sorry” demonstrated how simple use of LED lighting is as impactful as Russian Sergey Lazarev’s incredibly complicated visual masterpiece. Dami’s “Minority Report” moment in “The Sound of Silence” may have appeared complicated but it was Armenia’s staging of “Love Wave”, containing over 180 shots in 3 minutes, which will go down as this year’s most elaborate.
5. The Big Five Deliver
Regardless of where the Top 5 finished on this year’s leaderboard all 5 nations delivered brilliant performances on Saturday night. From the sophisticated and contemporary effort of the Italians, even if she did seem to channel Dirt Girl in her styling, to the fresh-faced boy-pop from the UK to Spain’s dance floor thumper this year’s contest was a big success for the Big 5.
6. Recipe for Eurovision
The Manster Wheel, the Russian grannies, Loreen, shirtless and very oiled drummers, Mans as Sakis and Petra as Charlotte. A song about how to create a song and stage it at Eurovision performed during Eurovision was all very meta. Justin Timberlake was great but give me a Petra & Mans number over JT anyday.
Justin Timberlake at dress rehearsal for Eurovision Grand Final
7. Rise of the Minnows
Every year one of two unexpected nations emerge from the Eurovision wilderness and deliver knock-out performances which garner their nations best ever results. And this year was no different. Bulgaria’s Poli Genova knee-knock danced her way up the leaderboard, lovely Austrian Zoe proved that it’s not only Conchita that can deliver a result for the Central European nation and Donny the leaping Lithuanian Montell somersaulted his way to a top 10 finish.
8. Our Twelve Points go to…
Love it or hate it the new voting announcement delivered what it promised. The outcome was not known right until the final votes were read. Deliciously drawn out by Petra and Mans the tension and the excitement created an entire new element to the contest.
9. Frock me Part 3
It’s been a week of marvellous fashion and man perms – but who takes out the stakes for the best frocking of 2016? It was a close run thing and special mention must go to the Croatian costumers and their Lighthouse smock. But, the big winner in the fashion stakes was our Dami. Her stunning bejewelled gown has been the talk of Stockholm.
10. Thank YOU for the Music
The Eurovision Song Contest is a singing competition encouraging all different stylings of music to enter and be judged by viewers and experts alike. And this year the Ukraine’s Jamala demonstrated that a song with strong story containing some unusual musical stylings delivered by a powerhouse performer. The most powerful song won this year’s contest. Congratulations Ukraine.
Eurovision 2016 Grand Final in pictures
Relive the magic of the Eurovision Song Contest 2016 on SBS Tuesday 12 May at 1:30PM. Available to catch up at SBS On Demand after broadcast.