November 12, 2019

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The participation of Ireland in the Eurovision Song Contest has always conjured up a lot of interesting noting that they were the country who everyone would to be like during the nineties due to the fact that they managed to win the competition on four (4) occasions, including three (3) in succession totally their amount of victories to seven (7). In the past two years, the Irish broadcaster responsible for the participation of the nation being RTÉ had a national selection where a set of mentors brought forward act and songs to compete against each other and both times, it was Jedward who were selected noting their major fan-base amongst the teens, a new demographic brought about to the Eurovision Song Contest when it comes to Ireland. On both occasions, the boys were accompanied by a set of backing vocalists, one of them being the lovely Leanne Moore.

The leading lady of the talent show You're A Star just after being dropped as the national selection method has been trying to succeed in the Irish music industry and following the victory, she went onto release her debut single entitled On Wings which debuted at #1 on the charts meaning that she had momentum but nevertheless, other stuff came first for the performer and lost her way at some point. Nevertheless, she has been working hard on her comeback and even tried to represent Ireland in the Eurovision Song Contest back in 2010 with the track Does Heaven Need Much More? written by Tommy Moran and John Waters. Unfortunately, it did not perform well finishing in fourth place in total but nevertheless, she has been diligently working with Louis Walsh in recent years, noting her choice with Jedward. She is currently the odds on favourite to represent the seven time winning nation according to Paddy Power beating Jedward in second place and then Johnny Logan in third place. Other interesting performers coming in positions four and five are Mikey Graham of Boyzone and Nadine Coyle of Girls Aloud. Stay tuned to escflashmalta.com for all of the latest news about Ireland in the Eurovision Song Contest.

Source: Paddy Power

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9jpp4DluZ_c

One of the most important assets in the music industry is definitely experience and we have gone onto talk to one of the most experienced performers from the local sector in the form of three time representative Chiara who up till now has also released four studio albums, three of which are of original material and the other one featuring a number of cover versions. In the past couple of months, Chiara has been reinventing her musical taste noting that she has gone onto a current sound, one which is being played on the radio. She has also joined the cast of entertainment on the programme Ħadd Għalik hosted by Angie Laus on Television Malta (TVM). She has found some time to answer some of our questions about her career in the past, present and even the future!

In the past couple of months, the local music scene has continued to grow in strength and prowess and it seems that this idea has spurred on a lot of people to work even harder. One of the most interesting careers which is still developing to this day is yours noting that you have very much changed since 2009 by virtue of taking up a brand new genre, one which shows a completely different image to what many have become used to over the years. What could you tell us of this sudden change and you should we expected an album any time which would maybe correspond to the new you?

Well, change is something that all of us have to go through and I embrace it always, this change came on me slowly, step by step and as you say now I find myself far from where I began but I am in a good place, I like the way I am singing now and it gives me as much satisfaction as my old ballads did.  To be honest albums are always on my mind and I was thinking that all the songs I did in the last couple of years should actually be put on an album to be more reachable to my fans as well, so I cant say I’m not thinking of it.

Your rise to fame commenced during the 1995 edition of the Ghanja tal-Poplu competition when you had entered the competition with the track ‘Ismaghni ftit Habib’ composed by Jason Paul Cassar and penned by Sunny Aquilina. This was just the beginning though because despite the fact that the song had a strong message, you returned with an even more iconic track in the form of ‘It-Tlett Ibliet’. Competing against some of the countries’ leading talent, you still managed to achieve the results but looking back at the beginning, would you consider taking part in a festival in which you would have to perform in Maltese again or is that part of your career completely over?

Malta is my beloved country so singing in Maltese gives me a certain satisfaction. I love to sing in Maltese but taking part in festivals is over for me. Obviously The Eurovision for me is just part of my life and “Chiara” so I am not talking about it. I would go to Eurovision even tomorrow if I had the chance as it is such an important part of my life and carreer and also as I am a big fan. But competing in other festivals, I don’t think I would be comfortable doing that anymore.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jtLykLkjZYQ

Entering the Malta Song for Europe for the first time in 1998, you were gunning up against some of the most notable names in the local music industry at the time including former representatives Georgina and Miriam Christine Warner as well as notable runner-up Claudette Pace yet the track that you presented entitled ‘The One That I Love’ composed by Jason Paul Cassar and penned by Sunny Aquilina was the one that made the upset and ultimately, the decision did pay off because Malta was just a couple of points away from winning in Birmingham. What can you recall of winning over here on our shores and being so close to victory abroad?

It was overwhelming, I still think back today and feel all the astonishment I had that night, and still feel the grandness of what happened to me. I feel that that night, maltese people opened a door for me which gave me so much, It was what made me fall in love with the festival and what gave me all my fans around Europe who today, after all these years have become personal friends, so it is a very deep emotion for me to think of the festival in 1998. the victory was very close and up till today when I watch the last part of the festival of 1998 I still half expect Macedonia to give Malta 12 points and we win..but unfortunately it never happens!

When asked about the possibility of future participation back then, you never discounted it and therefore, when you submitted two tracks to the competition in 2005, the people were somewhat excited to see what you were ready to bring to the table this time round. Both of the tracks being ‘Angel’ and ‘Sail Away’ would make the album cut and are still very much favourites of the public but you had to take up a song which you believed could take you all the way and chose the former. Do you believe that your second song would have been received differently by the respective viewers of the Eurovision Song Contest?

I can never say how it would have been, I think I made the right choice with Angel.  Being that I wrote angel myself for me it was very special and I am always very glad to be able to transmit this special feeling to the audience in front of me, I know that today Angel is special not just for me but for a lot of people around Europe too.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BhzMQgmi7SY

We are moving forward in time and this brings us to your final participation up to this point in time as you made one final return in 2009 with the track ‘What If We’ composed by Marc Paelinck and penned by Gregory Bilsen. When speaking about this participation, you cited that it was clearly representative of your fathers’ wishes and ultimately when it won in Malta, the track was received well. In the semi-finals of the foreign competition, you made it through to the final stage for the first time since 2004 when Julie & Ludwig had done the honour with ‘On Again .. Off Again’. Three years on, many people believe that the track was not as strong as other material that you have presented to the competition but would you have done anything differently or do you believe that you were in the right?

In this industry you sing because you love singing but you have to be loved by your audience or else the sense is gone out of what you do, so I never say I was in the right, obviously it is a matter of opinion and my fans opinion is very important to me.  What if we at that point in my life was very strong for ma, also because of the emotions wrapped around the passing of my father so I would not change a thing. Although I do agree with most of them that probably the remix of What If We would have been more effective but as you know it is very difficult to change a song after you have won a national selection with it.

The Public Broadcasting Services have seemingly shown increased attention to the participation of Malta in the Eurovision Song Contest in recent years having taken up the competition under their wing directly and initiating a former format to the national final, one which includes both a semi-final and a final round giving the majority of the weighing to a panel of jury, most of which are foreign. Nevertheless, the issue lies at hand that despite this, the favourite of the public has triumphed two years in a row due to the fact that he achieved a respectable top three placing by the same professionals. Do you believe that the system needs to be altered in order to have more of a representative feel?

I feel that the Maltasong is becoming more and more professional and I like the fact that they are always changing and keeping up with the times.  I feel that the people’s opinion is very important as when we go to eurovision its people like maltese in other countries who will then vote for our song, true if you are famous here it helps, but this happens in all the countries not just in malta and we always have the jury to balance it out so I don’t think I would alter anything just now. Some countries go out of their way and get singers from all over the world to try and win the festival, again it is a matter of opinion and of how strongly the country would like to actually win the Eurovision at the end.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5F7AJXWD40A

Keeping in line with the present, just a couple of weeks ago, Malta was rerpesented int he Eurovision Song Contest by Kurt Calleja and his band who performed the tune ‘This Is The Night’ written by Johan Jämtberg, Mikael Gunnerås and the main performer himself. During the semi-final, there had been a lot of talk that the performance was crucial to whether our country could qualify for the very first time since you had done so in 2009 and when the eighteen (18) semi-finalists had performed, many had been saying that we had a very good chance and ultimately, we did qualify only to suffer a disappointing result in the final, one place better than you had achieved. What was the difference from one performance to another in your opinion and what is your view about the winning entry?

Euphoria for me started the race with a lot of advantage, It is a song that captures you immediately when you hear it and in my opinion it was a full set of things which made it win. Sweden have been working really hard for the past years to win , the song is an amazing piece, the production of the song put Euphoria above all the others in the festival and Loreen is captivating on stage, her presence steals your attention for the whole duration of her song. It was just the winner without doubts.  As for the performance of Kurt, I must say that the performance of Thursday was amazing, they were very concentrated and it showed, i felt personally that Saturday was a little bit different but I do understand that the pressure and all the responsibility of the final night can play tricks on you, so I still think they did really well also on the final night.

Chiara has been involved in a number of projects in recent weeks noting that the past year has been quite busy with activities both on local and foreign soil bringing about people of different countries together to enjoy your music. One of the most recent activities that comes to mind is a tribute to the Late Whitney Houston in a concert in which you featured as a guest performer to the lead performer of the evening being none other than former Malta Eurosong runner-up Eleanor Cassar. Each experience is surely a different one but what do you draw from each one and do you have anything coming up in the weeks and months to come?

I am now preparing to go to Germany for a concert I will do there with Hera Bjork from Iceland and other Eurovision singers.  For me every performance gives me a new memory to be proud of, by now I have come to know so many singers who I love and I am very proud to say I sang with them. When I sing in Malta its always more special as my Maltese audience is my family and I want to give them my best , also singing with singers like Eleanor and other maltese singers for me is more special and emotional as these singers are actually my personal friends so for me it is honour when I am asked to take part in such concerts.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FC6-QWBsOt0

This years’ edition of the Eurovision Song Contest has just finished but many countries are already preparing for the next one which will be held in Sweden. The Public Broadcasting Services is yet to formally announce their participation even though it seems that the positive showing this year would be enough to consolidate our future in the competition. Should the rule of the former participants be lifted, would you be tempted to the return and hopefully represent Malta for a fourth time in the competition and if so, would you fuse the elements that you have encompassed throughout the years together or would you take one style and make sure it is well represented?

As I always say if I was given half a chance I would go back to eurovision tomorrow!! I love the festival and it would be a great honour for me to be entrusted with this important task to represent my country once again. I have also been asked by other countries quite a lot of times to represent them in the Eurovision but till now I am still waiting for another chance to represent my own Malta before I actually go for someone else. But I can never say I will never go again, It is a wish of mine to be there amongst the fans once again. As for the style, it would depend on the particular place I would be at the time so I can’t say what it would be.

Would you like to say anything to your fans and our readers at escflashmalta.com?

There is one thing I always say to my fans and I will always repeat, and it is THANK YOU , for everything you have given me, for the chance to share my music and emotions with you and the luck of getting to know you and love you so much. Richness for me is not money, it is the collection of people who surround you in your life, and  you make me richer every year and I will be grateful forever. I promise to always do my best to make you proud of being my fans.

Source: escflashmalta.com, JJ Chircop Photography

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IeKBo56B7Hc


Published in Interviews

There has been a lot of talk that two of the most notable names to come out of the Eurovision Song Contest had been recording an original duet and many did not know what to make out of the speculation the exclusive premiere which took place in Romania just yesterday. The duet which features none other than Paula Seling and Alexander Rybak bears the name I'll Show You and it is written by the Belarussian/Norwegian performer himself. Both of them had finished in the top three at the European event noting the victory of Rybak for Norway in 2009 with the song Fairytale and the second runner-up finish for Paul Seling alongside Ovi for Romania in 2010 with the track Playing With Fire.

The singers made a number of television appearances in the past couple of hours to promote the track in Romania but the idea was for it to be recorded and shown in various countries. According to our information, it seems that Paul Seling might be asked to return to the Eurovision Song Contest in 2013 as a solo performer so one will see whether this could happen. Apart from being a great performer, many note her as having a spectacular personality and this could be very well the boost she needs for her solo career. One has to add that their popularity in recent months has been quite high so this might end up being a chart sensation in the weeks to come. Stay tuned to escflashmalta.com for all of the latest news from artists related to the Eurovision Song Contest.

Source: Olivier Vanhoutte

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pcHyYxvIyY0

The Maltese Delegation for the 2012 edition of the Eurovision Song Contest which is set to take part in Baku, Azerbaijan is definitely flying under the media radar as much as possible this year noting that Kurt Calleja is currently in the country of Georgia where he seems to be promoting his track This Is The Night which will be performed in the fourth position within the second semi-final of the esteemed music competition. Nevertheless, this secrecy has been somewhat a theme to how the promotion has been taking place but nevertheless, if the results are achieved, then the Maltese people as a whole will be happy as there were with Chiara back in 2009 performing What If We in the finals.

In the past couple of months, Kurt Calleja has been visiting nations which had yet ever to be touched upon by Maltese representatives actually and these included Azerbaijan, Bulgaria and also Lithuania. It seems that the strategy of the Public broadcasting Services is to try and attract as much votes as possible from the Eastern side of the continent. Georgia of course are competing in the second semi-final with Anri Jokhadze and his song I'm a Joker. The song has not been highly regarded but nevertheless, since a brand new version appeared, it has got some positive reviews from the fans and the critics. Kurt Calleja will have more trips still to come noting that he is set to attend the Eurovision In Concert set to take place in The Netherlands and our esteemed sources tell us that he will also make an appearance at the London Preview Party. Stay tuned to www.escflashmalta.com as we keep you posted on the latest happenings.

Source: Facebook

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hASd_cMBJO0

Thursday, 29 March 2012 22:10

Malta: Amber Reaches Out to the Public

In recent days, everyone has been talking about the appointment of Amber as the backing vocalist of Kurt Calleja for his performance of the song This Is The Night that will be representing Malta in the second semi-final at the 2012 edition of the Eurovision Song Contest which is being staged in Baku, Azerbaijan. When the performance was unveiled during the national final, the female vocal was that of Ylenia Vella, the young sixteen year old who most recently won the talent show Don't Stop Me Now hosted by Eileen Montesin this past summer on Television Malta (TVM). Nevertheless, the team that will be taking up the song for the annual music competition held between members of the European Broadcasting Union decided that the second runner-up of this years' music competition is a much better fit than her younger counter-part.

The singing sensation who first appeared on the local festival scene during the Konkors Kanzunetta Indipendenza in 2010 with the song Trid Tapprezza composed by Ray Agius and penned by Alfred C Sant is set to take the stage in Baku to perform alongside Kurt Calleja. Her role in the song seems to be larger than the one that Ylenia had and people might be in for quite a surprise. Today, Amber took to Facebook to speak about the decision of the Public Broadcasting Services and how she had nothing to do with the final decision stating this respective statement;

'I would l like to thank everyone who have been supporting me throughout my career. Being chosen to join Kurt’s team as a backing vocalist is something I never thought would happen. I would like to make it clear that I haven’t chopped anyone from the team. It was PBS’s decision and if it wasn’t me who took this opportunity it would have been another singer and not Ylenia. I haven’t paid any money, I am DEFINITELY not trying to take Kurt’s place in anyway ,or try compromising the song , or try to ruin the song . I am nobody’s puppet and there is no need for anyone to pity me. I never in anyway tried to mock Ylenia. I believe that Ylenia is a very talented girl with a voice of an angel and I believe that one day she will be the ambassador to represent Malta at the Eurovision song contest. Let us all support Kurt Calleja who will definitely make us all PROUD to be Maltese.' We would like to wish Amber and the rest of the Maltese team the very best of luck. Stay tuned to www.escflashmalta.com for all of the latest news.

Source; Facebook

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8wHuWz9vqmM

 

Our coverage of the 2012 edition of the Eurovision Song Contest is currently being planned out noting that a number of our editorial board members will be making their way to Baku, Azerbaijan with another batch of individuals working from their respective home base, tending to the needs of the website wherever possible especially with an extensive brand new design which also provides a new identity to escflashmalta in general. As has been the case since our inception, there is the idea of promoting the local artist and thus, two of the leading ladies in the local music scene have been appointed to be special guests during the respective commentaries of the first semi-final and the final of this years' musical event. The first of the two is none other than Raquela.

Raquela is quite a household name to the fans of the Eurovision Song Contest in Malta having taken part in the finals on two occasions, the first coming in 2009 when she performed the song 'Crossroads' composed by Philip Vella and penned by Gerard James Borg and the second being 'If I Could Do It All Again' composed by Marc Paelinck and penned by Matthias Strasser. Apart from this achievements, the talented artist has also been to Italy to perform with the legend that is Gigi D'Alessio during one of his concerts whilst in recent weeks, she also got the opportunity to perform with Critically Acclaimed Dance Music Duo; Tenishia who despite being Maltese are well known in a number of countries. Raquela is looking to break the barriers of the local music scene by working on a number of new songs which can break into the radio scene hence her last single 'Entertain Me' which succeeded in her aim by virtue of making it into the top ten at Bay Radio. It is an honour to have an artist of grand stature with us and we will sure try to be critical and on point as much as possible. Stay tuned to www.escflashmalta.com for all of the latest news.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tCNb8tDp8R4

Earlier this month, in a slightly lengthy national selection process, Donny Montell ended up being announced as the representative of Lithuania with the song Love Is Blind, which is actually starts as a big emotional ballad before becoming a rythm and blues type of number with jazz elements. There have been mixed comments about the entry and whether it will ultimately qualify and in fact, this idea is also reflected in the bettings odds where the best ones are at 50/1 with the lowest at the current moment being those at 100/1, meaning that the result could sway in both ways. 

 

There has been a lot of talk on whether the studio version of the song will be released anytime soon and it seems that the day has come because the submitted version to the European Broadcasting Union, meaning the one shown on the video was also a live performance and therefore, one had to see whether the new, remastered version had any particular differences but this does not seem to be the case. Apart from releasing the studio version in English, the singer who is quite renowned in his country released two other language versions, one in Russian and one in his native Lithuanian tongue which you can listen to by pressing on the respective languages mentioned. Lithuania will be competing alongside Malta in this years' Eurovision Song Contest within the second semi-final where Kurt Calleja will be performing his song 'This Is The Night' alongside the vocals of Amber as confirmed last night by the Public Broadcasting Services.

Source: LRT

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=28Zel35BCwo

 

Saturday, 19 February 2011 15:05

Italy: San Remo 2011 Won by Roberto Vecchioni

Ciao Tutti e Bonasera, welcome to our live coverage of the annual San Remo competition which is being staged at the beautiful Teatro Ariston which is situated in the city which bears the same name at the events' name. A total of fourteen acts were competing at the start of the week but following the elimination and the re-entry of some acts, we now stand at ten. I think that it is nice to see Italy really putting the effort this year and it shows with viewing figures improving quite a bit.



The hosts of the evening are singer/songwriter Gianni Morandi along with the ever so beautiful models Belen Rodriguez and Elisabetta Canalis who has been making headlines with her high profile relationship with actor George Clooney. We have been keeping you posted over the last couple of days about the shows but this evening marks the grand finale with the act to represent Italy in the Eurovision Song Contest Final on the 14th May 2011 to be announced. You can watch the show through RAI UNO which could also be found through satellite.

Here we are for a long and surely exciting evening as we will finally know the first Italian entry in Eurovision since Jalisse magnificent 4th place in the 1997 Eurovision with 'Fiume di parole'. The show is starting with a dance act and looks very nice. The presenters come on stage and an act is being performed in honour of the presenters, but obviously we are all waiting for the finalists to perform their song. The presenters are opening the televoting, so just like in Eurovision one can vote from the very first moment.

Participants:

01. La Crus – Io Confesso
02. Giusy Ferreri – Il Mare Immenso
03. Davide Van De Sfross - Yanez
04. Luca Madonia ft Franco Battiato – L’Alieno
05. Nathalie – Viva Sospesa
06. Anna Tatangelo - Bastardo
07. Modá and Emma - Arrivera
08. Albano – Amanda e libero
09. Roberto Vecchioni - Chiamami ancora amore
10. Luca Barbarossa & Raquel del Rosario – Fino Il Fondo

We are off for the first performance...

01. Davide Van De Sfross - Yanez
A nice opening for the festival but in my opinion in view of Eurovision not the song to go for. I'm pretty sure we are heading for better songs.

02. Roberto Vecchioni - Chiamami ancora amore
I really adore Italian music, it's one of my favourite languages to listen to, but with all respect to Roberto, i don't believe for a minute that this would be a wise decision to send for Eurovision. Undoubtably a good performer, but in terms of Eurovision no way.

03. Anna Tatangelo - Bastardo
Comparing to the first two songs the song is already much more appealing to me. Quiet good performance although i believe Anna is forcing a bit too much herself. But overall not a bad performance.

A first commercial break is currently done.

04. Luca Barbarossa & Raquel del Rosario – Fino Il Fond

Luca Barbarossa, the 1988 Italian ESC entry is back with Raquel and it's clear the level is going only up tonight. Quiet a nice performance of the two singers. In terms of Eurovision, i'm not sure if this would be the song, but i like the performance. It has a nice build-up, like it! And a big compliment that the orchestra is here, how much we miss it at the Eurovision!

05. Albano – Amanda e libero
And here we have the great Al Bano, he represented Italy in the seventies together with Romina Power and being a backing singer in 2000 for the Swiss Entry in Eurovision. This week he first got eliminated but through a second chance still got into the finals and it's clear why: still a great performer and definately a great Italian artist. A nice song however i don't think this is a song for Eurovision.

We have a break with a guest peformance by Belen Rodriguez and Fernando Alonso, the Fomule 1-driver is asked on stage.

06. La Crus – Io Confesso
A nice performance by La Crus, a male singer accompanied by an opera singer. I like it, but again in terms of Eurovision i don't think it would work completely although i think one of the better songs though, kinda confused.

07. Giusy Ferreri – Il Mare Immenso
Giusy Ferreri is bring a rock-ballad. I don't know about this one, i might be totally wrong but i dont' have any connection with this song and performance. It's not bad in terms of performance but i think this would  not be a good entry for Eurovision.

08. Nathalie – Viva Sospesa
Now this is an interesting entry. The last Italian winner of X-Factor is performing playing the piano. I like this a lot, this has Eurovision all over it and i believe this could be a great entry for Italy in Düsseldorf! Nathalie is leaving the piano and performing strongly on stage. This could work out very good for Italy in Germany! And i admit i was expecting a lot on this as Nathalie is half belgian (her mother is belgian) but objectively this is the best entry for now in terms of Eurovision.

And we are off again for a commercial break.

09. Modá and Emma - Arrivera
This duet is not bad at all, i'm happy to be able to judge the songs on a first hearing so without any prejudice. This is really well done and i believe this entry could be a dangerous contender for the Eurovision Contendor.

10. Luca Madonia ft Franco Battiato – L’Alieno
The last participant is not bad either bad with all respect for the performers we've heard better songs. Especially in terms for Eurovision i don't believe this would work at all, for this the song is too much ordinary and has nothing special.

We had all the songs for now and we're off for some typical talking and comic talking. Hopefully this is not taking too long and they'll tak us to the important part of the show...the results!

There is again a call for televoting and the cd with all songs of this year's festival is being promoted. And now we are off for a interval-act with many dancers, amongst only one female, looks pretty good actually! We are having another guest performance before waiting results for the superfinal!

The presenters are now talking about the selection for Eurovision we'll be seeing now any moment the entry for Eurovision!

And there it is, it's Raphael Gualazzi who will represent Italy in this years Eurovision Songcontest! He is the winner of the new coming category! Very funny though that this is briefly mentionned during this show! I wonder about the real interest of the Italians for the Eurovision actually. If 'Follia d'amore', Raphael's song in San Remo is really the song for Eurovision, this is a HUGE disapointed for the returnal of Italy in Eurovision. Actually i honestly believe they'd better had been out for another year. Shame on you RAI!

In the meanwhile, the televoting has stopped for determing the winner of this years San Remo Festival.

Avril Lavigne is called on stage now to give a performance. With all respect to this singer but in the past we had more big stars in the festival, i expected more about it.

The top 3 are announced... They are:

Al Bano

Moda and Emma

Roberto Vecchioni

On the first two i can agree, but such a pity Nathalie didn't make it, especially in terms for Eurovision! And a long talking from the presenters we are off again for a dance-act. Well the italians surely know how to keep on dragging a show for ages!

And again the top 3 are performing again: first Roberto Vecchioni, then Moda and Emma and finally Al Bano! Hope this will not take too much long anymore! At least Maltese Television learned how to keep a show more compact this year, my compliments on it, but shame on RAI!

After another performance televoting has finally come to an end. Let's cross fingers this never ending story is coming to end soon now!

Finally!!! The results are being announced!

Third place is: Al Bano

Second place: Moda and Emma

Winner is Roberto Vecchioni!

So that concludes this never ending evening. A very disapointing evening in regards for the return of Italy in the Eurovision Songcontest. There were much better songs that could have given Italy a great result in my personal opinion. We'll see now, goodluck anyhow!

Yes indeed the only way to thank Swedish TV Producer Svante Stockselius, for the last 8 years at the helm of both the Junior and Eurovision Song Contests, is to quote the biggest artists to emerge from Eurovision itself – ABBA. The upcoming running of the Junior Eurovision Song Contest will be Svante’s last appearance at Eurovision. So to honour the man that has revolutionised the song contests, we decided here at ESCFlashMalta to take a look at the man who has counted and re counted and verified and re-verified every single vote for us all across Europe for almost a decade.

Where does one begin? Well in the small Swedish town of Hudiksvall on December 31st 1955. He was however raised in the town of Ockelbo and it was from here that he grew his interest in journalism. This lead Svante to become a journalist for the Stockholm based newspaper Expresson – a position that he held for 16 years. However television production was to be his calling in live. From the late 1990’s he was head of the Entertainment Division at SVT (Sweden’s National Broadcaster) and thanks to Charlotte Nielson winning the Eurovision Song Contest in 1999 – Svante was asked to work on the 2000 running of “Europe’s Favourite Television Show.”

Svante’s involvement in the 2000 song contest was to be his calling card to bigger opportunities in his career. Firstly he was asked by SVT to provide the Swedish National Selection Process with a new look – and from this was born Melodifestivalen with its 4 semi finals and second chance show. This has become not only a huge success in Sweden but is probably the most watched National Selection show across Europe today.

Then when Estonia was preparing their staging of the Eurovision Final in 2002 they knew the man to call for the job and Svante found himself like a footballer – on loan – to Estonian TV for their Eurovision Song Contest. It was easy to see that Svante had a passion for the Eurovision Song Contest and knew that the show had to evolve with the ever changing times.

With such flair and talent it was not long for the EBU to see that the man who they needed for the job as ESC Executive Supervisor was Svante, and he took up his role in 2003. Under his guidance “Europe’s Favourite TV Show” has seen some new innovations. Firstly there are now 2 semi-finals each year to give all countries an equal opportunity to reach the final. Secondly and most importantly the Jury vote is back in Eurovision. The Moscow final saw the reintroduction of the jury vote – accounting for 50% of the marks. This was seen as a positive move by Europe and was extended to include the Semi Finals this year in Oslo.

Not only that – Svante has indeed helped to strengthen the Brand of Eurovision – which is highly visible now from logo design to website (eurovision.tv) to You Tube Chanel and Eurovision Merchandising. Indeed Svante has certainly helped to strengthen the popularity of the Eurovision Song Contest and turn it into a celebration of music and cultures – so much so that he was awarded the highly prestigious Europapriset (European Prize) by the Swedish newspaper Sydsvenskan in recognition for bringing the people and regions of Europe closer together through popular culture.

While announcing his departure today from Eurovision, Svante commented "When I took this challenge nearly eight years ago, the Eurovision Song Contest was at a crucial cross road. Since then it is has become one of the greatest TV-entertainment events in the world! After the successes of Moscow and Oslo, I decided that now would be a good moment to say farewell, and to give others the opportunity to take the event to the next level."

Well we here at ESCFlashMalta want to thank Svante for the last 8 years of Eurovision memories and we wish him the best of luck in his new career – where ever that will take him. We are sure that this is not the last we hear of Svante Stockselius. Only one question remains – WHO WILL REPLACE HIM? Well for that answer keep reading here at ESCFlashMalta!!

Source: Eurovision.tv

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