For a country with a population about the size of a suburb to one of the bigger cities in continental Europe, the Icelandic never cease to impress us with a seemingly bottomless pool of talented writers, composers and artists. Meet Maria Olafs!
Sure, the seasoned Eurovision follower will notice a certain reuse and recycling, like backing singers swapping places on stage giving it a go as lead singer every once in a while, different constellations of the same composers and lyricists and so on. But they never fail to deliver a fresh entry, sounding nothing like the one from the year before, it never gets repetitive or predictable and it goes to show both creative force and a confidence we only find very appealing.
Crazy cute María Ólafsdóttir is a new acquaintance to an international audience, but she is of course a multitalented artist who’s been in showbiz since she was an embryo with actress, singer and songwriter added to her CV so far. And with the looks like a fairy princess, voice like an angel, a charisma more radiant than Chernobyl and the most charming dimples ever to be seen since evolution invented the concept, she will of course take Vienna by storm.
We are so smitten with the artist we almost forget the fact that the song Unbroken is nothing special, really. And we’ve seen the whole “barefoot girl with unruly hair and a fairtrade frock made of ecological cotton” act before. Being inspired by previous winners is one of the oldest tricks in the Eurovision rulebook, but has a surprisingly low success rate. Based on merits in the past we expect the Icelandic to come up with something more original.
We don’t think our Nordic neighbors should fear to be left behind in the semi-final, Maria Olafs will probably secure another decent placing, but we suspect the Icelandic are aiming for something bigger.
And eventually Iceland will hit the bullseye and send us all on a trip to Reykjavik. We would gladly pack our bags with our finest pink woolen underwear and every waterproof, windproof, breathable piece of clothing we own, ready to embrace the elements and to have a blast. So until then we keep our fingers crossed and hope the cool and creative bunch out there on our favorite saga island comes up with the winning recipe sooner rather than later.