First impressions from the first dress rehearsal of the first semi-final

Yay, we just attended the first dress rehearsal for the first semi-final and it is shaping up to be a fabulous show. Here’s our first impressions for you:

01 Finland Sandhja Sing It Away

We keep mixing this up with the Spanish song. Which is not a good sign in our book. Backing singers are sweeping the floor with their microphone stands. Hope they get paid by SVT.

02 Greece Argo Utopian Land

Those who think this won’t qualify are seriously deluded. Sporting steaming hot bloke who rips his shirt off towards the end. Opa!

03 Moldova Lidia Isac Falling Stars

We know we are entering into our final week psychosis when we look at each other in nodding approval for the Moldovan entry. If we can’t have Laika the lonely dog in space in Eurovision, at least we can have a hot cosmonaut doing a summersault on stage.

04 Hungary Freddie Pioneer

Stands on what appears to be a perfectly marbled entrecote, which is pretty great because we love a good steak! He’s quite beefy too, come to think of it. We’ll take him medium rare, thank you. Yum!

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Beefy Pic by Andres Putting/EBU
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Eurovision in Concert – how did it go?

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We ask for the deepest silence possible. We have a golden leather jacket on stage

So, in true Norwegian style we did not show up in Amsterdam. We were really sad to not experience all the fabulousness that went on in Melkweg, but lucky to have good friends like Schlagerboys and ESCKAZ that shared so perfectly we almost felt like we were there anyway. A big thank you to them and here are our high- and not-so-highlights of the evening:

Most underrated performance by others:

Montenegro. We are seriously impressed that Highway even bothered showing up, knowing the hardcore fans do not exactly favour their music style and can be less than welcoming. But they just have to live with that for a while longer, because with voices like theirs, they are bound to please quite a few voters. And us, which is most important, of course. Also, you have to love a band with two vocalists.

Most surprising performance:

Greta from Iceland, starting off with a beautiful violin solo and following up with a great crowdpleaser of a schlager. Good thing Iceland has a few millions reserved for hosting an international final in a bank account in Panama.

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Fug or Fab, Eurovision edition!

So, Saturday it was finally time for the Eurovision stars to shine and bedazzle us on the red carpet before the official opening party! We heard rumors the party wasn’t that great, so we’re not sorry one bit we weren’t there. We never show up at parties without finger food anyways. But at least an EBU photographer caught the action through his lens and and shared his pics with everyone on the official Eurovision website. As a reward someone should give this guy an introductory course in how to capture the glamour of celebs strolling up the red carpet. Maybe next year he’ll give us something decent to work with. Here are some highlights and (a lot of) lowpoints for you! We’ll do the comments in alphabetical order. It should take you about 4 hours to read through this post. (Oh, and click on the pics to get a bigger image.)

Not happy about Eurovision being held in Baku? Blame these two! But Ell&Nikki sure set the standard for looking swell on the red carpet. Low key, yet stylish and trendy. And Nikki doesn’t look like Ell’s mum at all. Definitely a Fab from the GEE jury.

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Beautiful Harmonies from the Balkans

There are quite a few dreary ballads in the running this year. This is not one of them. There’s nothing even remotely dreary about this lavish little number from the piano playing backup singer behind Dino Merlin in Düsseldorf. We noticed Maya Sar last year and she proved that she had a strong stage presence. Not everyone can pull off looking good dressed in your nan’s kitchen curtains pretending to play the piano like a four year old. It actually looked kinda retarded. But Maya somehow managed to add a touch of class to the whole scenario.

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Red carpet extravaganza!

The official welcome party of Eurovision Song Contest 2011 went down on Saturday and since we were not there parading up the red carpet like we did last year, we have decided that it wasn’t half as good, and we probably didn’t miss out on anything. Most of the Eurovision celebs had thrown on their fanciest rags for the occasion, and let’s just say that some have a better sense of style than others…

Flipping through the pics from eurovision.tv we can at least point out a couple of observations. The EBU photographer is clearly no fashion photographer, in fact, we wonder if he has even held a camera in his hands ever before. And at times we wonder if this is even taken from the right event as it looks more like some random guy’s Facebook album from a Halloween party he attended in high school. Good grief! Very well, here’s some red carpet highlights and lowlights for you.

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Age before beauty from Bosnia & Herzegovina

Time to continue our tour de Balkan, this time we’re heading over to the geriatric section. Cause while we were busy sulking over the Moldovans leaving their grandma behind in Chişinău, it turns out that Bosnia & Herzegovina decided to give grandpa center stage this year. This grandpa is behaving pretty much like any average male in that age group normally does, wearing hideous outfits he mistakenly thinks is making him look hip and cool and acting completely bonkers in an attempt to fit in with the youngsters in the family. None of this is actually working of course, as the teenagers who happens to be related to him almost die of shame and embarrassment, the older kids are becoming only bloody annoyed while the wife pulls him aside telling him to put a lid on it and give everybody a break.

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Magic from Bosnia and Herzegovina?

Tonight the Bosnian broadcaster BHRT will reveal the song for ESC 2011. We already know that it will be performed by Dino Merlin, an experienced and merited artist, well-known and popular in the Balkan countries. We believe this to be a wise choice and are thrilled that he has accepted the challenge, after having avoided being part of ESC for several years, according to eurovision.tv. He participated for BH back in 1999 reaching a respectable 7th place and during his years of absence he suggested other artists to participate such as Laka and Regina. Which only happen to be two of our favorite entries during the last few years, along with Hari Mata Hari.

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Well played; Sweden and Bosnia & Herzegovina

It really makes sense to us to have an award for the worse dressed participant in this competition. We don’t mean to sound all negative here, quite on the contrary, we love watching men and women from all over Europe, belting out their sorrow or joy or love or whatever on the ESC stage, while being wrapped in what looks like Queen Elizabeth’s latest stationery supplies or a wallpaper the Queer Eye guys could kill for. In fact, we wish there could be a whole range of categories so more than one contestant could win a Barbara Dex Award every year.

On the other hand, there are always quite a few contestants who look absolutely stunning on stage and we love watching them just as much. And after all it’s better to get a “wow” from the audience either in admiration or disgust, than an indifferent… “meh”.

A couple of those who receive thumbs up and a pat on the back from GEE are the rocker dude Vukašin Brajić from Bosnia & Herzegovina and rocker chick Anna Bergendahl from Sweden. Before ESC, there were much media attention in Norway on our very own Didrik’s embarrassing attempts to pick up this sweet Swede. Well, who can blame him for trying, but he should have realized that boring and bourgeois is not Anna’s cup of tea. Rebellious and red-hot are probably more Anna’s flavors and she would make a cute couple with Vukašin.

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Looking sharp while presenting the latest weather report.

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