12 Days of Eurovision: Day 6

On the sixth day of Eurovision…

With Norway winning the contest in 2009, it means today we’re heading off for a nice day trip to Oslo, where the 55th annual Eurovision Song Contest was held. The contest was hosted by Erik Solbakken, Haddy N’jie and Nadia Hasnaoui in the Telenor Arena. This was the third time that Norway would host the contest, with the previous times being in 1986 and 1996. A total of 39 countries took part in the 2010 contest, with Georgia returning to the contest, and a total of four countries withdrawing, which were Andorra, Czech Republic, Hungary and Montenegro. The theme and slogan for the contest was ‘Share the Moment’ and it was almost like they had this very moment in mind, because I’m about to share with you my thoughts! Remember, I want to hear yours too, so make sure you comment down below who you think would win these categories!

Best staging

The stage is dark, but surrounded by smoke and flashing white lights. The band is illuminated, and we’re faced with the Turkish band MaNga. The darkness of the stage is something we didn’t see that much, but with the design of the stage, I personally found that it took a lot to make the staging look good, and one of the key things which bothered me was the actual stage floor and having the clear floor. With Turkey, I think there’s so much focus on eye level that you don’t get distracted by that. The band also filled the whole stage, and having smoke coming up from behind them looked great. The costuming, the lighting, everything was on point. The strangest bit of the staging was the angle grinders, but a little gimmick like that only added to their performance.

Best Costume

Sometimes it’s the simplest of outfits that’s the most memorable (memorable for good reasons), and for 2010, it’s Tom Dice who has the best outfit of the year. The lighter blue shirt with the darker blue vest is visual perfection, and actually fits him, unlike previous Eurovision acts where the clothes are about 38 sizes too small to ‘accidentally’ show off the abs *cough cough Sakis Rouvas*. With the blue guitar, and the simplicity of the staging, everything melds into a perfect performance. Certainly helps that Tom Dice is a total babe.

Worst Costume

For 2010, there were two acts which selected some unfortunate costumes, and not necessarily for their outrageousness but simply because they just did the artist absolutely no justice.

The idea was there for Albania’s costume, but something about it always looks unfinished or cheap. When watching the contest again to select these winners, this costume stood out to me simply because it just doesn’t do her any justice at all. It seriously looks like it was whipped up in a day before the contest, and surely that isn’t the look they’re going for.

The other offender is Malta’s Thea Garrett, who performed the song My Dream. Well, Thea, it’s my dream to turn back time and re-dress you because this isn’t working for me. You might be thinking, what’s so bad about the dress? Well, at the time of the contest, Thea was 18 years old…… if you didn’t know this, it may have shocked you, but this is what I mean, why is an 18 year old dressed in something that ages her so much? Her hair, makeup and costume literally doubled her age, which is a shame because she’s a beautiful girl and it feels wasted on that.

Best Live Vocals

This may be out of left field, but after watching through the entire show, I really think FYR Macedonia had something really special going on there with the vocals. It was a bit of a mish-mash of a song, but I’ve always really liked it, and for me, Gjoko has this tone of voice which just suits that rock style of song. As he gets into that first chorus, the notes get bigger and more impressive and through the chorus I think this slays, and a lot better than the similar entry of Bosnia and Herzegovina. Even the rapper was more on key than some of the performers this year!

I’m obliged to give an honourable mention to Paula and Ovi from Romania, and although I’m not their biggest fan, her vocals are pretty great.

Most Underrated

Let’s just have a moment to focus on Inculto here, who represented Lithuania with the catchiest song of 2010. This is sort of a parody song, if you listen to the lyrics, but it’s so, excuse the pun, funky! The staging was so entertaining, but not only that, his vocals are totally great. Their dancing isn’t the greatest thing ever but it all adds to the charm of this song, which I’m not ashamed to say that I really REALLY love. What tops the cake is the pants being ripped off to reveal the sparkly silver underwear. Genius. Too bad it didn’t make the final, because it was certainly a lot better than some of the songs that did make it.

Best All-Rounder

Iceland is perfection. Hera Björk is an absolute diva who served up one of the best performances on the night, and it was criminal that this didn’t finish up higher. Everything about this performance ticks a box. We have really nice costumes, we have a really good stage performance which is synchronised perfectly with the flow of the dresses, we have a perfect vocal for a perfect song, and we have perfect backing singers. What else is there? In the middle of the second verse when Hera and her backing singers move across the stage is so aesthetically appealing,, and then you’re hit with a huge note and it just reminds you how good this entry is, and how it really shouldn’t have ended up so low in the final.

Best Gimmicks

This has to go to the Belarusian butterflies, who look pretty regular on stage – until – the butterfly wings pop out. For a pretty average song, which I’m still confused as to how it qualified, the actual dresses are quite nice. Having the wings pop out towards the end of the song finally gives the song a bit of interest, which for me was certainly lacking for 2/3 of the performance. It’s a gimmick which probably got them to the final, but probably shouldn’t have.

Most Cringe worthy Moment

If you’ve watched Eurovision 2010 many times, you’ll know exactly which country I’m talking about when I talk about the apple situation. It’s Poland, who use fruit as an interesting prop during their performance. The song already is an interesting mix of traditional and modern, but I wonder whose idea it was to feature the backing dancers to awkwardly bite into apples while on close up with the cameras. It comes across as quite strange, to say the least.

I also have to give a really special mention to Russia, who managed to have the funniest dialogue in the middle of their song;

‘What are you doing man?’

‘I’m looking at her photo. What should I do with them?’

‘Put them into the fire’

‘Oh yes. Yes! I’m going to burn them now! Because I have to forget her now!’

Yeah, this is the best thing ever.

Best Hairstyle

For our slightly sarcastic awarding of Best Hairstyle we have to give this to Serbia, who not only had the most bowl-y bowl cut ever, but even sung about it in the chorus of the song!? Bowl cut, bowl cut, bowl cut, I’ve got a bowl cut? Wait, those aren’t the lyrics? My bad, just like the state of Milan’s hair, which actually makes him look like a K-pop star, which then again, probably isn’t a bad thing in this day and age!

Bonus Category: Best Stage Invasion

Well, naturally this has to go to Spain who featured an unwelcome guest on stage during Daniel Diges’ performance. Jimmy Jump, a serial pitch invader saw no boundaries, and joined Daniel and his crew on stage during the performance, and what’s so great about this, is that he didn’t just steal the show for himself, but he joined in the dancing! It was absolutely perfect timing to invade the stage, and he had a proper few moments before security on him.

Fun Facts about Eurovision 2010

  • The ‘Big Four’ rule was introduced in 2000, and Germany’s win in the 2010 marked the first time since this rule that a Big Four country had won the contest

  • There was a campaign to bring back the live orchestra for the 2010 edition of Eurovision, and it would have been the first time since 1998. Despite over 5000 people joining the campaign, the revival wasn’t EBU approved

  • Israel won all three of the Marcel Bezençon awards, which were the Artists Award, Composer Award and the Press award, however ended up in 14th place in the final

Quick-fire Top 5:

In no particular order,

  • Estonia

  • Belgium

  • Iceland

  • Israel

  • Cyprus

Top 3 Guilty Pleasure Songs

  • Armenia

  • Russia

  • Poland

Make sure to tell us below who your favourites are, and who in your opinion would win these categories for 2010!