All Kinds Of Everything
The Irish Eurovision Website
 

 

"CONGRATULATIONS "

 

THE SHOW

Fans of the Eurovision Song Contest, do not have to wait until next May to get their next dose of their favourite event. To celebrate the fifty years of the contest, a special two-hour celebration show will be broadcast live in thirty countries across Europe on Saturday 22nd October 2005. The show called "Congratulations" is being organised by the Danish national broadcaster DR and will be staged at the Forum arena in Copenhagen. On the night, European viewers will vote to choose the most popular Eurovision song of all time. The fourteen songs taking part in "Congratulations" were selected by fans across the world, who chose ten of the songs by voting at the official Eurovision website (eurovision.tv.) and an additional four songs were chosen by the Eurovision Song Contest Reference Group, which organises the contest for the E.B.U. As well as the fourteen finalists, many other Eurovision favourites will be performed, in medleys, many featuring their the original Eurovision performers.

The fourteen songs in contention to be selected as the greatest Eurovision song of all time are listed below, and in the weeks building up to the event I will be profiling each song in greater detail. At the moment it is believed that video recordings of the original Eurovision performances the songs in competition will used. You can find the latest bookmaker's odds on the contest here. Danish television has also opened up a special website for the event; http://www.congratulations-info.com/

Perhaps surprisingly the show will be hosted by two former Eurovision contestants, both from outside Denmark; American Katrina Leskanich and Latvian Reinars Kaupars.

Katrina Leskanich was lead singer with Katrina & The Waves who won the Eurovision Song Contest for the U.K. in Dublin in 1997 with "Love Shine A Light". Now a solo artist, she participated in the Swedish selection for Eurovision in 2005 but didn't make it to the final of Melodifestivalen.

Reinars Kaupers is the lead singer of the popular Latvian band Brainstorm, who finished 3rd at Eurovision in Stockholm in 2000. In 2003 He co-host the contest in Riga with Marie N.

The list of former Eurovision stars who will be on stage in Copenhagen is now almost complete.

The biggest news for Irish viewers is that this country will be well represented in Copenhagen. Two time winner Johnny Logan is performing one of the intervals.  Linda Martin who won with "Why Me" in 1992, Charlie McGettingan who was one of the duo who won with "Rock'N'Roll Kids" in 1993 and Eimear Quinn, Ireland's most recent winner in 1996 with "The Voice" will be teaming up to perform their winners. They will be joined on stage by local star Jakob Sveistrup who brought Denmark a Top 10 result in Kyiv in 2005 with "Talking To You". The other Irish winners were invited but Dana, Niamh Kavanagh and Dana all had prior arrangement and could not attend. The latest Irish additions to the show are the "Riverdance" dancers who performed Eurovision's most successful interval act in 1994, and 1997 presenter Ronan Keating, who will perform as part of the show. The list of stars from other Eurovision stars looks like this :

Lys Assia who won the first Eurovision for Switzerland in 1956 and also sang in 1957 and 1958.
Mocedades who represented Spain in 1973 with the famous "Eres Tu", finishing 2nd. 
Brotherhood of Man sang "Save All Your Kisses For Me" and won for the U.K. in 1976.
Nicole gave Germany its only Eurovision win in 1982 with "Ein Biechen Frieden". 
Bobbysocks who gave Norway its first Eurovision win in 1985 with "La Det Swing". 
Sandra Kim sang "J'aime La Vie" for Belgium 1986 and is the youngest person to win the contest.
Dana International gave Israel its third win in 1998 singing "Diva".
The Olsen Brothers won with "Fly On The Wings Of Love" for Denmark in 2000.
Sertab Erener sang "Every Way That I Can" to victory for Turkey in 2003.
Ruslana won the contest for Ukraine in 2004 with "Wild Dances".
Helena Paparizou is the most recent winner winner winning in Kyiv in May with "My Number One".• • Massiel who gave Spain their first win in 1968 with "La La La".
Marie Myriam who sang the most recent French winner "L'Oiseau Et L'Enfant" in 1977.
Gail Atari who sang "Hallelujah" with Milk And Honey in 1978, winning for Israel.
Baccara who's "Parlez Vous Francais" is still a Eurovision favourite after finishing 7th in 1978. 
Bucks Fizz who famously won the the U.K. in Dublin in 1981 with "Making Your Mind Up".
Richard Herrey was one of the Swedish trio who in 1984, will be joining Bobbysocks in a medley.
Emilija Kokić was the lead singer of Riva who's "Rock Me" gave Yugoslavia its only win in 1989.
Birthe Kjær is a huge local Danish favourite and finished 3rd in 1989 with "Vi Maler Byen Roed"
Alsou gave Russia its best Eurovision result, finishing 2nd in Stockholm in 2000 with "Solo".
Emilija Kokic was the lead singer of Riva who gave Yugoslavia its only win with "Rock Me in 1989. 
Fabrizio Faniello sang "Another Summer Night" for Malta in Copenhagen in 2001, becoming a Danish favourite. 

Update October 20th ; unfortunatly local star Danish Birthe Kjær who finished third in the 1989 Eurovision Song Contest with "Vi Maler Byen Rød" who was supposed to perform in the the "Congratulations" show suffered a heart attack earlier this week, while filming another television show. She is currently recovering in hospital. Tomas Thordarson, who represented Denmark in 2004 with "Shame On You"  will replace her. 

The "Finnish surprise" has also leaked to the local media.  The male choir Huutajat ("Shouters") will perform. They are renound for singing very loudly, so it should be an interesting performance. (Thanks to Jere Purmonen for the information).

Dana International Has also revelaed the outfit that she will be wearing in Copenhagen. Apparently it's another Gaultier design and you can see what it looks like on the right (picture courtesy of Eurosong.be).

Work inside the Forum has apparently now all but finished, and the rehersals begin on today. Marty Whelan, who will commentate for RTÉ on Saturday night will be broadcasting live from Copenhagen on his 2FM radio show on Friday morning.

Below The Forum in Copenhagen, inside and out.

 

THE FORMAT

If various internet sites are to be believed, this is how the show will run.

The Opening
After the traditional Eurovision Te Deum, Cliff Richard will open the show on video telling a story about his experiences and 50 years Eurovision Song Contest. Host broadcaster DR's radio orchestra will play several songs including "Congratulations", "Dinge Dong", "A-ba-ni-bi", "C'est Le Dernier Qui A Parlé", "Dschinghis Khan" and finally "Love Shine A Light", which welcomes the show's host, Katrina Leskanich.

The contenders
After a video about the 50 winners of 50 years Eurovision Song Contest, Carola (Sweden 1983, 1991) will announce the first of the 14 participating songs in the all-time favourites contest, "Congratulations", which like the other songs will be seen in the original Eurovision performance. Then Cliff Richard will introduce Massiel (Spain 1968), who will present the second song "What's Another Year". The hosts will announce the third song "Diva". Dana International (Israel 1998) will announce the fourth song, "Eres Tu". We will then get a themed video. "Ein bisschen Frieden" will be introduced. Sandra Kim (Belgium 1996) will announce  "Volare". Bobbysocks (Norway 1985) will introduce "Waterloo". The performance of the 1974 winner will apparently be combined with a Finnish surprise (it wouldn't be Eurovision without the Finns getting in there somewhere!).

After break / themed video and the hosts will introduce "Fly on the wings of love". Emilija Kokic & Riva (Yugoslavia 1989) will introduce "Poupée de cire poupée de son". After another break, Marie Myriam (France 1977) will introduce "Everyway That I Can". Sertab (Turkey 2003) will introduce "Ne Partez Pas Sans Moi". After a special message from Céline Dion, "Hold Me Now" will be introduced. Cheryl Baker, one of the members of Bucks Fizz, will introduce "Save Your Kisses For Me". Lys Assia, the winner of the first ever Eurovision Song Contest in 1956, will introduce the lastest Eurovision Song Contest winner "My Number One".

The voting
After the 14 songs, the first televoting window will open. After the interval act (rumoured to be "Riverdance"), the first voting session ends and a seven minute medley will be performed by Dana International, Carola, Alsou, Fabrizio Faniello, Richard Herrey, Birthe Kjaer and Marie Myriam. After a break, Johnny Logan will take care of another interval act performing a new song "When A Woman Loves A Man".

After the top five has been announced, televoters have another four minutes to vote for their all-time favourite. After a second medley, the second televoting window closes and the infamous Nicole & Hugo (Belgium 1973) will say a word to the viewers. Ronan Keating will perform and another themed video, the local favourites Olsen Brothers will perform a small medley as well.

The winner
The winner of "Congratulations" will be known around 22.30 BST/23.30 CET, which also marks the end of the two and a half hour show. Then it party time! 

THE CDs AND DVDs.

To mark the event and the 50th birthday of the Eurovision Song Contest there is also a series of CDs and DVDs being released throughout Europe on October 17th. This is a great way of boosting your Eurovision collection as there are 100 tracks on CD and DVD, many of which haven't been commercially available for a long time.

50 Years Of Eurovision CD1
This double CD contains all the winners from 1956 to 1980: 28 winners in total, as 1969 had a four way tie and 22
favourite non-winners from the same period

50 Years Of Eurovision CD2
This double CD contains all the winners and selected favorites from 1981 to 2005; 25 winners
and 25 favourites. 

50 Years Of Eurovision DVD1
This double DVD has the videos of all the winners from 1956 to 1980 and 22 additional "favourite" non winners from these years. For many, this will be the first chance to see the 1956 and 1964 winners.

Congratulations DVD2
This double DVD has the videos of all the winners from 1981 to 2005 and 25 additional favourite non winners from these years.

Congratulations Box set
This has both CDs and both DVDs (eight discs in total) and will retail at a lower price than the individual discs.
At the moment these items are only available to pre-order from www.eurovisionshop.tv but I will add a link to be the website with the best price, before the release date. You can now find the track listing for the CDs here.

 

THE CONTENDERS TO BE EUROVISION'S GREAT EVER SONG

Watch a compilation video of the 14 songs competing here (broadband) and here (narrowband).

 

 

ITALY 1958 - ”Nel Blu Di Pinto di Blu (Volare)”

Performed at Eurovision by Domenico Modugno

Music composed by Domenico Modugno

Lyrics written by Franco Migliacci and Domenico Modugno 

Finished 3rd at Eurovision

Bookmakers' Odds : 33/1

Read more about the song here

LUXEMBOURG 1965 - ”Poupée De Cire, Poupée De Son”

Performed at Eurovision by France Gall

Music and lyrics by Serge Gainsbourg

Finished 1st at Eurovision

Bookmakers' Odds : 33/1

Read more about the song here

UNITED KINGDOM 1968 - ”Congratulations”

Performed at Eurovision by Cliff Richard

Music and lyrics by Phil Coulter & Bill Martin

Finished 2nd at Eurovision

Bookmakers' Odds : 5/1

Read more about the song here

SPAIN 1973 - ”Eres Tu”

Performed at Eurovision by Mocedades

Music and lyrics by Juan Carlos Calderon

Finished 2nd at Eurovision

Bookmakers' Odds : 40/1

Read more about the song here

SWEDEN 1974 - ”Waterloo”

Performed at Eurovision by ABBA

Music composed by Benny Andersson and Björn Ulvaeus 

Lyrics written by Stikkan Anderson 

Finished 1st at Eurovision

Bookmakers' Odds : 4/9 (favourite)

Read more about the song here

UNITED KINGDOM 1976 - ”Save All Your Kisses For Me”

Performed at Eurovision by Brotherhood Of Man

Music and lyrics by Tony Hiller, Lee Sheridan and Martin Lee 

Finished 1st at Eurovision

Bookmakers' Odds : 13/2

Read more about the song here

IRELAND 1980 - ”What's Another Year”

Performed at Eurovision by Johnny Logan

Music and lyrics by Shay Healy 

Finished 1st at Eurovision

Bookmakers' Odds : 14/1

Read more about the song here

GERMANY 1982 - ”Ein Biechen Frieden”

Performed at Eurovision by Nicole

Music composed by Ralph Siegel 

Lyrics written by Bernd Meinunger  

Finished 1st at Eurovision

Bookmakers' Odds : 20/1

Read more about the song here

IRELAND 1987 - ”Hold Me Now”

Performed at Eurovision by Johnny Logan

Music and lyrics by Sean Sherrard (aka Johnny Logan)

Finished 1st at Eurovision

Bookmakers' Odds : 10/1

Read more about the song here

SWITZERLAND 1988 - ”Ne Partez Pas Sans Moi”

Performed at Eurovision by Celine Dion

Music composed by Atilla Sereftug

Lyrics written by Nella Martinetti 

Finished 1st at Eurovision

Bookmakers' Odds : 20/1

Read more about the song here

ISRAEL 1998 - ”Diva”

Performed at Eurovision by Dana International

Music composed by Syika Pik 

Lyrics written by Yoav Ginai

Finished 1st at Eurovision

Bookmakers' Odds : 10/1

Read more about the song here

DENMARK 2000 - ”Fly On The Wings Of Love”

Performed at Eurovision by The Olsen Brothers

Music and lyrics by Jorgen Olsen

Finished 1st at Eurovision

Bookmakers' Odds : 16/1

Read more about the song here

TURKEY 2003 - ”Every Way That I Can”

Performed at Eurovision by Sertab Erener

Music composed by Demir Demirkan and Sertab Erener

Lyrics written by Demir Demirkan

Finished 1st at Eurovision

Bookmakers' Odds : 40/1

Read more about the song here

GREECE 2005 - ”My Number One”

Performed at Eurovision by Helena Paparizou

Music composed by Christos Dantis

Lyrics written by Natalia Germanou and Christos Dantis

Finished 1st at Eurovision

Bookmakers' Odds : 14/1

Read more about the song here

As well as a couple of surprise inclusions such as the 2005 Eurovision winner, which has made little impact since its victory in Kyiv in May, and the similarly low profile 1988 winner (probably chosen for the singer rather than the song), the list does not include many internationally successful Eurovision songs like "Puppet On A String", "Apres Toi", "Hallelujah", Making Your Mind Up" and "Ooh Aah (Just A Little Bit)". The selection of "Waterloo" as favourite is hardly surprising, but those hoping for an ABBA reunion in Copenhagen, are likely to be disappointed. as are Eurovision fans in the United Kingdom and France, as the Copenhagen show is not likely to be shown in those countries. The lists of countries and broadcasters confirmed as showing the show is below.

The  Copenhagen logo. 1. Andorra (RTVA) 16. FYR Macedonia (MKRTV)
2. Austria (ORF) 17. Malta (MT/PBS)
3. Belgium (RTBF/VRT) 18. Netherlands (TROS)
4. Bosnia & Herzegovina (PBSBiH) 19. Norway (NRK)
5. Croatia (HRT) 20. Poland (TVP)
6. Cyprus (CyBC) 21. Portugal (RTP)
7. Denmark (DR) 22. Romania (TVR)
8. Finland (YLE) 23. Russia (C1R)
9. Germany (ARD) 24. Serbia & Montenegro (YRT/RTS/RTCG)
10. Greece (ERT) 25. Slovenia (RTVSLO)
11. Iceland (RUV) 26. Spain (RTVE)
12. Ireland (RTE) 27. Sweden (SVT)
13. Israel (IBA) 28. Switzerland (SFDRS)
14. Latvia (LTV) 29. Turkey (TRT)
15. Lithuania (LRT) 30. Ukraine (NTU)

CD & record covers from the ESC Record Covers Website