The world looks forward to Malmö this week

Those were the days when Udo Jurgens sat at the piano or Nicole won the Grand Prix Eurovision with a white guitar on a bar stool. “Only” with good singing and catchiness. To the chagrin of many ESC fans, a live band has not existed since 1999, and since 2021 even backing singers have been allowed to step out of the box. At the beginning of the 1990s, the wind machine was still the most notable technical show “treat” for a performance, trick costumes were also frequently used at ESC, and from the end of the 1990s funny guerillas infiltrated the singing competition. Today, many songs stand out solely because of their stage bombast and stage effects. Sometimes it looks like a video clip.

Since the opening of the East, the number of participants has grown so much that semi-finals had to be introduced. From 2004 to 2007 one semi-final was enough, and since 2008 there have been two semi-finals. 26 countries are in the final, including the host country and the five biggest Eurovision contributors (Great Britain, France, Germany, Italy and Spain).

Austria’s Kalin will advance to the second semi-final next Thursday, with only televoting counting since last year. Five expert juries from the music industry in each country are used as judges in the finals only. A total of 37 countries will be ranked this year.

Luxembourg is back in the singing competition after a long break. Before the ESC withdrew from the world in 1993 (officially for cost reasons), the Grand Duchy won five times. Remarkable! “Poupée de cire, poupée de son” by France Gall (1965) and “Après toi” (1972) by Vicky Leandro became evergreens. A French-English song by Tali, a singer with Israeli-Peruvian roots, was chosen for the comeback.

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Speaking of costs: Participation is very expensive for some of the smaller countries, with Bulgaria, North Macedonia and Montenegro missing this year. Turkey and Hungary were not interested for long; Conclusions regarding the ESC’s LGBT-friendly stance.

Nemo could win the 68th Song Contest for Switzerland with “The Code”.


Nothing has changed in the rule that there should be a maximum of six people on stage per contribution. Marie-Sophie Kreisl alias Kaleen “We Will Rave” features four dancers and a second singer from Sweden, invisible to the audience, who backs up the upper Austrian’s voice. We managed to win twice: in 1966 with Udo Juergens (at the third attempt) and in 2014 with Conchita Wurst. Caesar Sampson, Waterloo & Robinson and Thomas Forstner rounded out the top five.

This year’s favorites

Several factors point to Zurich or Zagreb as the host city in 2025. Because Switzerland’s Nemo and Croatia’s Baby Lasagna are neck and neck with the bookmakers. Nemo’s original composition “The Code” is about the self-discovery of a non-binary personality and breaking the social code. Croatia’s “Rim Tim Dagi Tim” breathes Rammstein’s rock influence and describes the conflict between staying at home and leaving in the vernacular.

“Douze Points” could be the third-party Italian angelina mango smiling with the rain – energetic, charismatic and confident. Italy will host the ESC only in 2022. Israel’s contribution was only recognized after textual changes because it referred too much to October 2023 and was too political for the organizers.

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Participation – keyword: Azerbaijan, Israel – is not based on geographical location in Europe (which is why the repeated use of the European Song Contest is incorrect), but rather on membership of the Broadcasting Union EBU. Australia is an honorary member and made its ESC debut in Vienna in 2015.

Baby lasagna from Croatia: Will he bring the ESC to Zagreb?

Baby lasagna from Croatia: Will he bring the ESC to Zagreb?


How ABBA’s anniversary will be celebrated in the finale is being kept a secret by Swedish television. It’s been 50 years since the quartet won with “Waterloo”. However, there is little evidence of increased police presence in everyday life in the city of 345,000; Tomorrow will change from the first live broadcast to the world (estimated audience: more than 150 million). The terror alert level is on a four-to-five scale. Police forces from Norway and Denmark have been called in for security.

Nemo's performance could bring the ESC to Zurich

Nemo’s performance could bring the ESC to Zurich


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