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This year, the Eurovision Song Contest (the highlight of so many people’s year) comes to Austria. After indomitable diva Conchita Wurst’s triumph in last year’s contest in Copenhagen, the competition is to be held in her nation’s capital of Vienna.
Eurovision is a tour-de-force event, a cultural landmark that unites nations and divides tastes. The camp, the cheese, the constant reminder of how hated Britain is by the rest of Europe… All essential ingredients.
We’ve put together our top 5 favourite entries of all time to get you in spirit for the musical event of the year. And obviously ABBA win hands down every time, but that would be too easy – so we’ve decided to not include them in our list. (But we do love them.)
1. 1998 Israel – Dana International – “Diva”
The year was 1998. The host city was Birmingham, United Kingdom. New Labour was in power in Britain, and a new wave of liberalism and inclusivity was sweeping across Europe. Dana International became the first trans winner of Eurovision, beating the UK into second place on their home turf. An iconic entry much loved by Eurovision fans.
2. 2012 Sweden – Loreen – “Euphoria”
Loreen may only have won in 2012, but her song “Euphoria” has already been heralded as a Eurovision classic and one of the finest songs to ever win the competition. Loreen smashed the record for the most number of “12 points” scores in history, landing the much coveted “douze points” from 18 of the 42 participating countries. The only country to not award any points to Loreen was Italy (boo you Italy!).
3. 1988 Switzerland – Celine Dion – “Ne partez pas sans moi”
Before we knew Celine Dion as the international icon we do today, she was Switzerland’s winning entry in the 1988 Eurovision song contest (beating the UK in a photo finish by one point!). It doesn’t come much more 1980s than this, and this entry is simply divine (although we’d maybe question the double-breasted tuxedo dress). If it wasn’t for Eurovision, we’d never have hits like “My Heart Will Go On”. God bless Eurovision!
4. 1975 Germany – Joy Fleming – “Ein Lied kann eine Brücke sein”
Despite this entry finishing in 17th place, which at the time was the lowest place Germany had ever finished, we feel it is one well worth remembering and reclaiming as a Eurovision classic! Forward-thinking Fleming apparently wanted to perform in a pair of jeans, but she was told by conservative officials that a woman in jeans could never be Germany’s entry. The Northern Soul-inspired song is genuinely a great track, and has become something of a fan favourite in later years. We still love you Joy!
5. 1996 United Kingdom – Gina G – “Ooh aah… Just a little bit”
Another brilliant entry from the 90s, Australian-born Gina G was the last artist to top the UK chart with a song from the Eurovision song contest. Although the Eurodance hit only received 77 points and finished 8th in the 1996 contest, it hit the top 10 charts in several countries across Europe and was even nominated for a Grammy!
Eurovision 2015 Running Order
Late May Bank Holiday 2015 Closure Info
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