Eurovision Press Centre
Day one is always a little difficult - we know this from years of attending - but we were really surprised at just how taxing some of the issues could be. First the terrible weather when queuing this morning was a real let down, and they would not open the security tent area even 10 minutes early so that the 60+ press people could at least shelter
Eventually when it was opened there were issues with all the "P" accreditation passes not functioning, which meant manually checking the whole queue and their passes. Not a great start.
That aside we entered the press centre with an open mind and first task of the day was preparing the interview lists. Always a huge drama for us to deal with - and this year was no different. Several hours - or at least it felt like it - later the first lists started to appear....oh well
The press centre itself is a story in itself - the working area, the press conference area and the interview rooms are all separated by some distance....we will see how this plays out later today. Additionally the press working area is probably the smallest I have seen ever. There will be a shortage of desks much later this week. It's already pretty full on day one
On positive notes the on screen rehearsals started on time, we had sound, and we had wifi!!!
More news coming up later when we settle in a little
My name is Desiree, I'm from the Netherlands and very excited to finally be in Kyiv! It's my first year as part of the ESCKAZ team but not my first Eurovision. I went to Eurovision three times before in 2008, 2010 and 2012 - the full two weeks each of them with accreditation for another organisation. In 2011 Eurovision was quite close (in Düsseldorf) so I went to the second semi-final where I hoped to see 3JS pass to the final. Well that didn't quite work out... I also went to JESC 2007 and 2012 - both held in the Netherlands. All of them so far have been great experiences, no Eurovision is the same!
After 2012 a lot has changed. From 2013 onwards press isn't allowed in the hall during the first rehearsal, so this time I will be spending a lot more time in the press centre, particularly in the first few days. However, whenever it is possible you will probably find me in the hall as I really love the 'live' experience.
Compared to the other years I went to Eurovision I found the songs were often more diverse in style - and language. I'm absolutely not writing off any songs just because they are not in their own language, but I enjoy to hear songs in other languages a lot which is often reflected in my personal favourites as well. Switching to - most frequently - English usually also involves a change towards a more mainstream genre. For me it makes the contest a bit less interesting but luckily I still manage to find some favourites each year.
This year is no exception. For example the Belarussian really stood out for me from the first time I heard it and I really enjoy France, Italy and Portugal - which is a grower. My personal top favourites are Ireland and Finland, in no particular order (as it changes every day). As for predictions - I'll get into that later!
I'm writing this from my hotel room which is incredibly close to the IEC. I arrived earlier today after getting out of bed at not very funny hours. In fact I can even see the IEC from my hotel room as I'm on one of the top floors. Definitely a room with a view!
Unlike Mike and Daniel told earlier, I had absolutely no problem at all to gather my accreditation. Hopefully the same goes for everyone else to arrive later on so that what was shown in the morning were just starting-up struggles..
Now it's time for me to find the rest of the team will check back later!