It’s the time of year when the Post-Eurovision depression is in full swing, but there’s no better cure than to reminisce! Together with ESCDaily Editor, Dennis Van Eersel, we will be discussing each of this year’s competing nations – from their results to how we think they could improve in the future!
Predictions, Personal Scores and Results
Results: 16th place, Final
Did Cyprus live up to expectations?
D: To me, Cyprus was a certain qualifier for the Eurovision final. In that light, they managed to live up to those expectations. If everything fell in its right place, perhaps there was some potential to make it to the top-10, but with this strong field of songs in 2021, this was already very unlikely.
A: I agree that Cyprus was a sure qualifier, and we were both fairly certain of that prior to rehearsals. The song itself was strong enough to qualify, and Elena gave a very confident performance. I personally enjoyed the staging, but as a package, it never felt like a winner. I did feel like this would make it into the Top 10 in the final, however the running order didn’t really help Cyprus out this year.
How do you personally feel about the song for Cyprus at Eurovision 2021?
D: ‘El Diablo’ had a touch of Lady Gaga to its composition, which is something I like. Cyprus stayed true to their Latin strategy which served them well in recent years and the song had a theme and hook, making it ideal to stage at Eurovision. When I also add how gorgeous Elena is and how smoothly she moves on the stage, this is one of the stronger songs in the uptempo genre of the 2021 contest for me.
A: While the song seemed in the realm of ‘Fuego’ and that Latin style, I think this was far enough away that it wasn’t a carbon copy. The song definitely was reminiscent of music from Lady Gaga, and I think that gave the song wide appeal. I enjoyed the song prior to the contest, but the spark has died down for me now.
Could Cyprus have done anything different?
D: Cyprus could have gone even wilder with the devil-theme within the song, than just the four backing dancers dressed in red and slightly having a demonic look and feel. However, it’s tricky at Eurovision with the juries. When you overdo it, the gimmick side of the act comes to play a part and have them downgrade the potential result. I think the act was balanced enough.
A: I’m glad they didn’t go down that route, because at that point it would have been too gimmicky. In honesty, I don’t think that there was anything else Cyprus could have done to improve their results this year. The performance was contemporary and memorable, and had strong public appeal. The vocals were strong, as was the song. Overall another strong entry from Cyprus.
What can Cyprus do to ensure success in future years?
D: Even though this genre of song, with ‘Fuego’, ‘Replay’ and ‘El Diablo’ has given Cyprus much more success than the other types of songs they have given us in the recent years, I would like it if they try something else again next year. That being said, I would totally understand if they stick to this, since they certainly know how to stage these kinds of songs in just the right way to have success.
A: At this point, Cyprus has put themselves in a box, and it’s going to be interesting to see whether they can find success outside of that box. Fuego, Replay and El Diablo all followed a certain formula – a strong female lead, latin elements and strong, choreographed staging. We saw the potential for change in 2020, with a different style of song by Sandro, however in 2021 opted for the same formula that has worked for Cyprus. It’s worked thus far, but it’s bound to get way too predictable.
Which was better, the live-on-tape performance or the actual performance?
D: This one was clear for me as well. Cyprus is another example of a nation where the back-up tape lacked the energy and feel that we did see in the live performance in Rotterdam. The big letters that catch on fire, the huge prop, also weren’t there for the live-on-tape recording and Elena did not look as comfortable in her routine as she did in Ahoy. This makes sense, since she had more time to rehearse up to May, than she did up to the back-up recording. It shows me that the Cypriot team took things seriously and really put a lot of effort and hours into their preparations for the Eurovision 2021 act.
A: There was definitely some continuity between the two performances, however I do agree that the Eurovision performance trumps the back-up tape. There’s something strange about the sound in the recorded performance, could it be live backing vocalists or just really bad sound engineering? Elena doesn’t look as comfortable in the recorded performance, and it really highlights the difference the mirror prop made to the actual live performance. If Cyprus had to use the back-up tape, I don’t think they would have been in such a comfortable qualification position.