What to expect when you’re expecting (JESC and ESC, of course!)

‘Tis the season to be keeping up to date with every last Eurovision-related development! You may not think there’s much happening at the moment, but planning the ESC is pretty close to being a year-round job – and don’t forget the fact that we’re not too far away from December, when the 9th Junior Eurovision will take place in Armenia. As such, there IS facts and figures about both events piling up already. In case you’ve not had the time or you just want a second opinion, here’s my role call of what we can expect…so far!

 JESC 2011

– It’ll be a trek to win JESC this year, what with the logo and the slogan (“Reach for the top!”) having been selected, both of which are musically mountainous.

– The show will take place on December 3, at the Karen Demirchyan Sports and Concerts Complex in Yerevan, Armenia. The venue can seat 8000 – 11 000 people, and has previously had the likes of Eurovision representatives André (2006) and Hayko (2007) as well as Deep Purple (if all you know about them is Smoke on the Water, you are not alone) pass through its doors.

– It looks like there’ll be 12 countries stepping on the stage, 2 down from last year. They are: Armenia (I should hope so!), Belarus, Belgium, Georgia, Lithuania, Macedonia, Moldova, Netherlands, Russia, Sweden, Ukraine and…San Marino! Italy might not be in it to win it (or lose it, since they really are not in it in any way) but us fans will get to hear Italian after all. Let’s cross our fingers that SM can rake in a few more points than they did in Belgrade and Düsseldorf. Do you remember Düsseldorf? It was such a long time ago now…

– Unfortunately, neither Latvia, Malta nor Serbia will be participating. The lack of Serbia makes my face a particularly sad one as they always have me picking up the phone to vote in Junior Eurovision. Of course, I immediately put it back down again since I’m in Australia and can’t vote…but the mere fact Serbia makes me forget that says a lot! Come back in 2012, all three of you!

– 2 very strong songs have been selected so far: Kak Romeo I Dzhulyetta (which translates to Like Romeo and Juliet) by Katya Ryabova for Russia; and Candy Music (which, believe it or not, translates to Candy Music) by Candy for Georgia. Russia is my favourite so far, but it cannot be denied how up-to-the-mainstream-minute both of the entries are. It’ll be a fab show if these are any indication of the standard.

– The next entry we’ll hear belongs to the Ukraine, who select on July 31, followed (at this point) by the hosts and Lithuania in September and the Netherlands in October.

 

ESC 2012

– May 22, 24 and 26 are the preliminary dates set for the Baku show, which means that the EBU is making us all pay for having to wait less than a year between the 2010 and 2011 contests. We’ve now got a fortnight extra to wait, but remember: it’s July, which means there’s less than 45 weeks to go (I think…I don’t often check things twice, unlike Santa Claus). That must be a scary thought for the Azerbaijani organizers, who did promise a show to rival Moscow!

– Debates continue over where the contest will be held, which is a fairly important detail to determine. Rather than “to be or not to be?” the question seems to be “to use a stadium we already have or to build a brand spanking new one?”. If a 20 000 seat venue doesn’t get built especially for Eurovision (oh to have such power!) then it looks like the Tofiq Bahramov Stadium, which seats a mere 35 700 people, could be the one.

– After just 2 years, voting during the show had been abandoned in favour of the previous voting window system. And just when I was warming to the new one! It definitely made voting for songs rather than performances more likely. Oh well, I should know by now that one of the ESC’s favourite things is change – not the Hotel FM kind either.

– 17 countries have confirmed their 2012 participation so far, which means we’ll have at least one semi final! They are: Austria, Azerbaijan (again, I should hope they’d make an appearance at their own show!), Belarus, Belgium, Croatia, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, Georgia, Germany, Hungary, Netherlands, Norway, Slovenia, Sweden, Switzerland and Turkey. I’m hoping the UK confirms soon and isn’t thinking, ‘If Blue couldn’t do it, and Sir Andrew Lloyd Webber couldn’t do it, what’s the bleeding point?’. It’d be nice to have the Czech Republic, Andorra and Montenegro back as well.

– The participation of Israel and Portugal is in jeopardy, with the preliminary final date clashing with a Jewish holiday for the former, and some serious broadcaster issues for the latter. NOOOOOOOO!  

– On a happier note, the Netherlands, Slovenia and Sweden have all begun their selection processes – albeit tentatively. Sweden is calling out for Melodifestivalen entrants, with one small requirement: NONE of the songs can feature the word popular. I am, of course, joking. But really, I think we’ve had enough repetitions of that word to last us a hundred years. Perhaps then Eric Saade can make a triumphant return to the contest via live satellite feed from his nursing home singing (I Used To Be) Popular.

 

So cheer up, because it is certainly not all quiet on the ESC front! If you’re not a JESC fan then keep your eyes on Baku, and if you are, enjoy the upcoming selections and the fact that I like you way better than those people who aren’t JESC fans! Ha ha. Eurovision can last 365 days a year if you really want it to…

About Jaz

Hi there – I’m Jaz, a 28-year-old Aussie with a serious Eurovision obsession. The ESC is the biggest and best party on the planet, and I like to keep it going way beyond May. That’s why I write about anything and everything contest-related (the songs, the costumes, my undying love for Ott Lepland...) on my blog. Visit and subscribe for rankings, reviews and stacks more fun stuff. You’ll get an automatic douze points from me if you do! www.eurovisionbyjaz.com

Posted on July 17, 2011, in Eurovision 2012, Junior Eurovision, Uncategorized and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 4 Comments.

  1. i am definitely looking forward to the ukraine selection for the JESC. Always a colorful show 😀 Nice blog by the way.

    Like

  2. I’m sorry, Jaz, but for me Georgia song in JESC 2011 is not that strong. Candy is a good performer and the song itself is catchy, but it’s still so far to compared it with Katya Ryabova.
    I’m also afraid if Portugal leave the contest – until now I have no idea how can the privatization of RTP can make them withdrawing.
    And you’re right, we can make Eurovision alive every day as if we want to. 🙂

    Like

    • Fair enough that Georgia’s not your thing! Candy Music wasn’t my favourite from the NF but you get what you get…I quite like it after a few listens. But Russia is still the winner for me so far. I can’t wait to see what the other participants have to offer =D
      I don’t really get the whole Portugal thing either, but let’s hope something can be worked out for them and Israel. A lot of fans will miss them in 2012 if they can’t be there.

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