EuroRevision: Scandinavian Highs and Lows (1963)

Eurovision 1963 was the eighth edition of the Eurovision Song Contest and despite France winning the previous year, they declined hosting due to financial difficulties at the time. Instead, British broadcaster BBC stepped in to host the contest. The venue was the BBC Television Centre in London, and the contest was actually filmed in two studios. The first was where the host of the show, Katie Boyle was situated along with the audience and the scoreboard, while the other studio was for the performers and the orchestra. Eric Robinson was the head conductor for the show, which took place on the 23rd of March.

A total of 16 nations took part, with no debut nations and no returning nations. Juries were still the source of voting, with twenty-member juries awarding points to their five favourite songs. There were some voting controversies in 1963, one of which revolved around Norway. Norway’s spokesperson did not use the correct procedure to announce the votes, which was the song number, followed by the name of country and then the points. Host of the show, Katie Boyle asked the spokesperson to repeat the results, but was asked to return to Norway once the other results had been received. When Katie returned to Norway, their votes were altered, and it turns out that the points that Norway originally gave were incorrect. This changed the results of the contest, giving the victory to Denmark over Switzerland.

Monaco was also asked to repeat their voting, and in the second time announcing the votes, the nation’s previous point for Luxembourg was discarded. This didn’t have an effect on the positions of the nations.

Here is the full list of participants:

  • Austria
  • Belgium
  • Denmark
  • Finland
  • France
  • Germany
  • Italy
  • Luxembourg
  • Monaco
  • Netherlands
  • Norway
  • Spain
  • Sweden
  • Switzerland
  • United Kingdom
  • Yugoslavia

There was just one returning artist in 1963, and that was Ronnie Carroll, who returned to represent the United Kingdom for the second consecutive year.

Ronnie Carroll, the only returning artist in 1963

Here are the competitors:

  • Ronnie Carroll – Say Wonderful Things (United Kingdom) 🇬🇧
  • Annie Palmen – Een Speeldoos (The Netherlands) 🇳🇱
  • Heidi Brühl – Marcel (Germany) 🇩🇪
  • Carmela Corren – Vielleicht geschieht ein Wunder (Austria) 🇦🇹
  • Anita Thallaug – Solhverv (Norway) 🇳🇴
  • Emilio Pericoli – Uno per tutte (Italy) 🇮🇹
  • Laila Halme – Muistojeni laulu (Finland) 🇫🇮
  • Grethe and Jørgen Ingmann – Dansevise (Denmark) 🇩🇰
  • Vice Vukov – Brodovi (Yugoslavia)
  • Esther Ofarim – T’en va pas (Switzerland) 🇨🇭
  • Alain Barrière – Elle était si jolie (France) 🇫🇷
  • José Guardiola – Algo Prodigioso (Spain) 🇪🇸
  • Monica Zetterlund – En gång i Stockholm (Sweden) 🇸🇪
  • Jacques Raymond – Waarom (Belgium) 🇧🇪
  • François Hardy – L’amour s’en va (Monaco) 🇲🇨
  • Nana Mouskouri – À force de prier (Luxembourg) 🇱🇺

The winner of the show was Denmark, with a total of 42 points. It was a close race, with Switzerland finishing on 40 points, and Italy finishing in third place with 37 points. While Denmark took the top spot, all three of their Scandinavian neighbours finished in last place with nul points. In total, four nations finished with zero points; Finland, Norway, Sweden and The Netherlands.

Watch the winning performance below: