Think About Things (Results Edition) – Romania

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


Prediction: Non-Qualifier

Personal Score: 10


Prediction: Qualifier

Personal Score: 7.5

Results: 12th place, Semi-Final

Did Romania live up to expectations? 

D: A big no for me. Romania was a pretty certain qualifier to me this year, based on the song and the appeal and connection I thought Roxen would make with young televoters. Her nerves were audible in the vocals and the over-choreographed performance made it hard to connect to her. A wasted opportunity in my opinion, since this song had a lot of potential to do well in the contest.

A: I was also sure that Romania was a certain qualifier prior to the contest, but rehearsals painted a different picture. Roxen had one of the strongest songs in the field, but the vocals were full of nerves, and the visual performance was far inferior from the music video. Her casual tracksuit outfit in the rehearsals suited the performance more than the final dress, which felt way too formal for this song. Nothing really matched. It certainly was a wasted opportunity.


How do you personally feel about the song for Romania at Eurovision 2021?

D: The song for Romania was of good quality. Modern and alternative and it would have been a worthy qualifier. In the live performance however, they did not translate the quality of the song to the performance. Especially after giving Roxen a fancy dress right before the actual shows, not coherent with the message of her song. It’s always about the total package and having everything add up together. Sadly, Romania failed to do so.

A: I really enjoyed the song from Romania this year, and it was perhaps one of my favourite entries from Romania overall, so it was incredibly disappointing that the stage show didn’t support the song. Mediocre vocals could have been less of an issue if the visual performance was up to scratch, but alas, it didn’t work out for Romania this year.

Could Romania have done anything different?

D: Roxen did not look comfortable with the over choreographed performance of her song. It affected her vocals even more, whilst she was already trembling with nerves. In the first round of rehearsals she was dressed like in the video clip and previous performances. A bit sloppy and alternative. It matched with the rest of her persona and song. Suddenly, they overdressed her for the actual live performances, which to me was the final push towards an early exit at Eurovision 2021.

A: I don’t know if it’s just me who feels this way, but it came across like the Romanian broadcaster wasn’t giving Roxen the support she needed. When you consider the music video, there was huge potential for this to look incredible, but none of that potential was reached. Knowing that there was a lot of choreography, I wonder how much vocal training went into this before Eurovision. The song itself was great, but no other aspect was convincing. Just every decision felt undercooked, and in the end, it came as no surprise that Romania would be sitting the final out.

What can Romania do to ensure success in future years? 

D: Not long ago, Romania had a 100% track record of qualifying for the Eurovision final. Now they have missed out three times in a row. With Roxen they tried something different, an internal selection, since The Humans and Ester Peony were non-qualifiers through the same set-up that gave them their success in the past. The basis of the Romanian success in that past was in their unique songs with a hook. Whether it were the high-pitched notes from Paula or the yodeling from Ilinca. For another national final Romania needs to put the song first again, a song with a unique and memorable hook.

A: Romania certainly is a true example of a once successful nation who have lost their touch at the contest. I think the nation could find success again either in an internal selection or public selection, but both singer and song need to be the right match. In this case, an internal selection led to a strong song, but not a strong live singer, but the national finals might guarantee a decent singer, but not necessarily the best song. Romania do best when they themselves are having a fun time, so let’s hope they can bring back that element of fun.


Which was better, the live-on-tape performance or the actual performance?

D: The actual performance was a swing and miss for me, as I stated above. In the live-on-tape performance the first steps towards over-choreographing this song were already taken, but it wasn’t as bad as it got in Rotterdam in the end. So I would say the back-up tape was better.

A: While there were still some underwhelming moments of the back-up tape, I do agree that it was better. Even just for the outfit. Vocals were still hit or miss, perhaps marginally better than the live performance. In terms of the choreography, I think it had hints of the music video, but as you said, it was over-choreographed. It turned too much into a routine, rather than an interpretation of the song, as it is in the music video. I think either way, Romania would have remained in the semi-finals.