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Is the Eurovision Song Contest just an expensive anachronism?

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Is the Eurovision Song Contest just an expensive anachronism?

Post by Ivan on Sat May 19, 2012 11:47 am

The European Broadcasting Union (EBU) was formed on 12 February 1950 by 23 broadcasting organisations from Europe and the Mediterranean at a conference in Devon. On 6 June 1954 Montreux in Switzerland became the venue for the first transmission by the EBU's Eurovision Network of the Narcissus Festival and its flower-bedecked procession floats. The first Eurovision viewers watched on four million television sets in homes, bars, and shop windows in Germany, Belgium, France, the United Kingdom, Italy, the Netherlands and Switzerland.

Then the EBU came up with the idea of an international song contest whereby countries, represented by their respective public broadcasters, would participate in one television show, to be transmitted simultaneously in all represented nations. This was conceived during a meeting in Monaco by Marcel Bezençon, a Frenchman working for the EBU. The competition was seen as a technological experiment in live television: in those days it was a very ambitious project to join many countries together in an international network.

Satellite television did not exist at that time, so staging such an event was seen as a technological achievement. However, nowadays there’s nothing out of the ordinary in linking any number of countries by television at the same time.

Few people will admit to watching the annual contest which is held every May and which is often described as ‘kitsch’. Yet the UK (in the form of some of the BBC licence fee receipts) is one of the five biggest financial contributors to it via the EBU. So is the Eurovision Song Contest just an expensive anachronism?
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Re: Is the Eurovision Song Contest just an expensive anachronism?

Post by Ivan on Sat May 19, 2012 11:53 am

Few people will admit to watching the annual contest
But they do! Here is a quiz for secret Eurovision lovers to test themselves on their knowledge of the event:-

1. In which year was it first held?

2. Where was it first held?

3. Which country won the first contest?

4. Which country has won the most times?

5. How many times has the UK won?

6. Which was the first UK song to win?

7. The winning Spanish entry in 1968, “La, La, La”, was accused of being a plagiarised version of which song by the Kinks?

8. Which UK singer came second in 1968 and then third in 1973? Name the songs.

9. In the 1970 contest, (a) who won for Ireland with a song called “All Kinds Of Everything”, and (b) who won fourth place for Spain with a song called “Gwendolyne”?

10. Which Australian-raised singer came fourth for the UK in 1974 with a song about the Salvation Army?

11. Which Canadian singer won for Switzerland in 1988?

12. Which city staged the contest three times in four years?

13. Which country has come last ten times?

14. In what year did Katrina and the Waves win for the UK by a landslide, just two days after a political landslide?

15. Name the only singer to have won the contest twice.

16. In a special competition to commemorate 50 years of Eurovision, (a) which song was voted the best winner ever, and (b) which song was voted the best of all the ones that didn’t win?
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Re: Is the Eurovision Song Contest just an expensive anachronism?

Post by oftenwrong on Sat May 19, 2012 1:04 pm

Who recalls Katie Boyle hosting the Eurovision in the 1960s? She was so full of herself she could hardly speak, and will always be remembered for her French enunciation of, "Le Noruege - null pwonts!"
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Re: Is the Eurovision Song Contest just an expensive anachronism?

Post by astra on Sat May 19, 2012 3:16 pm

Who can forget Matt Munroe botching up his whole performance.
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Re: Is the Eurovision Song Contest just an expensive anachronism?

Post by Ivan on Sat May 19, 2012 3:46 pm

astra. That was 1964, when Matt Monro came second with 'I Love The Little Things' (thank you, Wikipedia!). A really botched performance came in 2003, when Jemini sung completely out of tune and came last.
Shocked

The UK has won Eurovision a few times (I won't say how many, as it's one of the questions above). However, we've only won once when a Tory government has been in power (1981).
What a Face


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Re: Is the Eurovision Song Contest just an expensive anachronism?

Post by Phil Hornby on Sat May 19, 2012 4:24 pm

In the past decade or so I have regarded the Eurovision Song Contest as simply a mechanism for measuring the UK's popularity with its neighbours... Crying or Very sad
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Re: Is the Eurovision Song Contest just an expensive anachronism?

Post by oftenwrong on Sat May 19, 2012 6:03 pm

But, like Millwall, "Nobody likes us and we don't care!"
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Re: Is the Eurovision Song Contest just an expensive anachronism?

Post by Phil Hornby on Sat May 19, 2012 7:11 pm

A Sure-Fire Winner for the UK
(timetomarket.co.uk)

" ..Like a Puppet on a String..."
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Re: Is the Eurovision Song Contest just an expensive anachronism?

Post by Ivan on Tue Mar 18, 2014 7:41 pm

It's getting close to that time of the year again, I'm afraid! The contest is in Copenhagen on 10 May, so at least you have plenty of notice to make other arrangements for that evening.  What a Face 
 
This is the UK entry for 2014:-
 

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-wFUPCkmlOo
 
Does anyone want the answers to the quiz I posted here two years ago? No, I didn't think so. No
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Re: Is the Eurovision Song Contest just an expensive anachronism?

Post by Phil Hornby on Tue Mar 18, 2014 8:20 pm

A sure-fire winner.

It sounded great - at least, that is, until I turned off the mute button and then it fell away a bit...    Shocked

PS - was one of the quiz questions : " Why do we bother entering this contest?"
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Re: Is the Eurovision Song Contest just an expensive anachronism?

Post by oftenwrong on Tue Mar 18, 2014 10:36 pm

Anything to keep the Plebs away from the polling station, where they might have something to say for once in five years.
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Re: Is the Eurovision Song Contest just an expensive anachronism?

Post by boatlady on Wed Mar 19, 2014 8:13 am

It's a bit like Coronation Street - something to talk about in coffee break - but really of no interest or significance
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Re: Is the Eurovision Song Contest just an expensive anachronism?

Post by Ivan on Fri May 09, 2014 1:26 pm

You wouldn't really expect UKIP to like the Eurovision Song Contest; all that interaction with foreigners must be difficult for 'Little Englanders' to accept. Shocked
 
Now Nigel Farage has said bias against Britain in the contest shows how hard it will be for the UK to secure a good deal renegotiating its relationship with the EU. No, that's more to do with the fact that changes to our relationship with the EU would have to be agreed by 27 other countries, but trust Farage to try to make political capital out of a piece of so-called 'entertainment'.
 
The flaw in Farage's argument is that the main aim when entering the Eurovision Song Contest is NOT to win, since if you do, you have to stage the event in the following year!
 
I see that Farage has also suggested that the BBC's coverage of the event had "deteriorated in recent years". That must be since gay foreigner Graham Norton started presenting the show!  Rolling Eyes 
 
http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-politics-27339143
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Re: Is the Eurovision Song Contest just an expensive anachronism?

Post by Phil Hornby on Fri May 09, 2014 1:33 pm

I am convinced that the Comedy Show which is Farage has only a limited time to run. In the meantime,however, he continues to deteriorate daily himself.

Are we sure he is not related to Jeremy Clarkson?
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Re: Is the Eurovision Song Contest just an expensive anachronism?

Post by Dan Fante on Fri May 09, 2014 3:04 pm

I caught a bit of the semi-final last night. Jesus wept is all I have to say.
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Re: Is the Eurovision Song Contest just an expensive anachronism?

Post by Phil Hornby on Fri May 09, 2014 7:30 pm

Faced with some genuine culture, people on this thread simply seem to go to pieces...    Very Happy 

For years, I have considered the Eurovision Song Contest as something to have on in the background as one munches on some cheese and oatcakes with chutney, washed down with some suitable alcoholic beverage.
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Re: Is the Eurovision Song Contest just an expensive anachronism?

Post by Ivan on Tue May 13, 2014 3:59 pm

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Re: Is the Eurovision Song Contest just an expensive anachronism?

Post by Phil Hornby on Tue May 13, 2014 5:04 pm

Ah yes - the Bearded Lady versus the Beersoaked Loony : we can always rely on Private Eye  to hit the nail on the head- although, to my shame, I haven't bought it for years...    Embarassed
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Re: Is the Eurovision Song Contest just an expensive anachronism?

Post by oftenwrong on Tue May 13, 2014 8:24 pm

Now THAT might be a face-to-face worth switching on the TV for!
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Re: Is the Eurovision Song Contest just an expensive anachronism?

Post by Ivan on Wed May 14, 2014 10:15 pm

These people complained about Conchita Wurst singing in the Eurovision Song Contest - because they don't approve of bearded men wearing dresses:-
 

https://pbs.twimg.com/media/BnmmoJoIEAEV6TN.jpg
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Re: Is the Eurovision Song Contest just an expensive anachronism?

Post by Ivan on Sat Mar 07, 2015 10:02 pm

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Re: Is the Eurovision Song Contest just an expensive anachronism?

Post by Ivan on Thu May 21, 2015 9:12 pm

Eurovision memories: Oh, what a night!

Emma Saunders writes:-

It is 60 years since the Eurovision Song Contest was born as the 'Eurovision Grand Prix'. Although the format has changed over the years, and the number of participants have sky-rocketed, the principle has remained the same: Every country submits a song, then battles it out to be crowned the most popular.

With the 2015 edition nearly upon us, we take a trip down memory lane and speak to some of the former winners and runners-up to find out how Eurovision changed their lives
:-

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/entertainment-arts-32624011
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Re: Is the Eurovision Song Contest just an expensive anachronism?

Post by boatlady on Thu May 21, 2015 9:47 pm

Used to love it when I was a youngster - probably because it was the only time you could listen to something like pop music without the grown-ups whinging about it - patriotism seemed to trump the need to ridicule the idols of our youth.
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Re: Is the Eurovision Song Contest just an expensive anachronism?

Post by oftenwrong on Thu May 21, 2015 10:44 pm

Poor Aunty BBC has been writhing around the "problem" of Pop music since the Top Ten was decided by sales of sheet-music. They are currently "pleased" that a new DJ on Radio 1 Breakfast Show has "lost" a chunk of the listening audience. (the ones over 60).
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Re: Is the Eurovision Song Contest just an expensive anachronism?

Post by boatlady on Fri May 22, 2015 8:01 am

I always preferred Caroline
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Re: Is the Eurovision Song Contest just an expensive anachronism?

Post by oftenwrong on Fri May 22, 2015 12:36 pm

Can't get Monte Carlo on my set.
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Re: Is the Eurovision Song Contest just an expensive anachronism?

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