opinion

Australia - First rehearsal

Eran on Sun, 05/05/2019 - 10:15

Kate's bringing her Electro-Pop number on stage, with a performance completely different from the one we saw at the national final. She's wearing a silver regal dress and wearing a crown, which seems to be another motive in this year's contest. The video art shows space, while on the floor a video art of Earth. Kate and her two backing dancers, who are wearing black dresses, are basically floating on air! It looks like they're flying above the planet. It has a nice effect. At the C part, the Earth is vanishing in the back, which creates a sense of movement. If you liked the song, you'd love this performance.

Welcome to Israel - a local view!

Eran on Thu, 05/02/2019 - 17:14

כיכר השעון ביפו מגדל שעון תל אביב - יפו Clock tower  Square Jaffa Tel Aviv Israel

Hi guys, it's Eran again, here's some info and tips for people visiting Tel-Aviv for Eurovision.

About Tel Aviv
Here’s some info about the real star, the host city of this year’s Eurovision, Tel Aviv, or officially Tel Aviv-Yafo. It’s a rather young city, only 110 years old, also known as “The First Hebrew City”, “The White City”, "The City That Never Sleeps" and “The Capital of Cool”. It’s the 2nd largest city in Israel after Jerusalem, and considered to be its younger more modern little sister.

What to see in Tel Aviv?
For those of you coming from Europe, you might think the city is too Americanized, and you won’t be so wrong about that. Tourists have said it remind them of Southern California. Unlike a big European city, you won’t come across historical monuments that often, we’re writing history right now. Every neighborhood in Tel Aviv offers a different vibe and atmosphere. If you want to walk through the old neighborhoods and explore some of the city’s history, you can start at Jaffa’s Old City and Port, and have a visit at the flea market, or tour the Neve Tzedek neighborhood. Check out Tel-Aviv beaches and the beach promenade if you’re looking for some fun in the sun. If you’re interested in art, you can pay a visit to the Tel Aviv Museum, Nahum Gutman Museum of Art or the Eretz Israel Museum. There’s also some great shopping in Tel Aviv, visit HaCarmel Market and Levinski Market for grocery shopping. Azrieli Mall and Dizingoff Center are both of Tel Aviv most popular shopping centers. For those looking for more luxury boutique items, TLV Fashion Mall boasts some of the hottest brands in fashion. If you’re rich - you can go straight to Kikar Hamedina (wink, wink). Two of the biggest parks around are Hayarkon Park or Gnei Yehoshua, where you can jog or just lay in the sun.
For more information on current events and other recommendations, please visit Secret Tel Aviv (https://www.secrettelaviv.com/).

Introduction - Israeli correspondent for Eurovision 2019

Eran on Sun, 04/28/2019 - 09:29

Welcome to Israel guys, my name is Eran, I’m 37 years old (quite old, I know), from Israel.
I’ll be joining the ESCKAZ team this year for the coverage of the 64th Eurovision Song Contest in Tel-Aviv, Israel.

About me:
So you know my age, what else do you want to know? My Eurovision background is it? I’ve been watching the contest since 1989, when Gili and Galit went out of tune on the stage in Lausanne. I’ve been watching the show every year since then, with some exception of puberty years in which I thought I was too cool for Eurovision (I wasn’t). I attended two contests so far: 2008 in Belgrade and 2018 in Lisbon, where the excitement was real for me as an Israeli.
Nowadays I’m one of the managers of the Israeli fan Facebook group EurovisionIL and having my own blog for the past 3 years now called “EurovisionMadrich” (in full Hebrew).
I love Eurovision since I see it as an escapist entity, which we’re guaranteed once a year. Every Eurovision that you go and re-watch is like a time capsule and it’s fascinating to see how music, style and fashion have changed. I’m old school, so you’d catch me watching some old 60’s Eurovisions every now and then. Also love statistics and the voting gives us some more of these every year.
I think this year is one of the best years of the decade, songs quality wise. The diversity is amazing and I feel the contest has opened up to new musical concepts and up-to-date musical styles. I have a few favorites this year: Portugal has brought an amazing eclectic piece. "Telemóveis" by Conan Osíris blends a lot of genres, from Portuguese folk to Mediterranean vibes and elctro and techno sounds. The Icelandic entry, "Hatrið mun sigra" by Hatari is a “in your face” type of song, angry Industrial Metal, with angelic chorus, that keeps you wonder are they real or are they trolling? Slovenia is sending one of my favorite Slovenian contemporary artists, the duo Zala Kralj & Gašper Šantl. “Sebi” is an enchanting ambient-pop track with superb sad, yet optimistic lyrics. Then there’s also Austria, The Netherlands, Georgia (yes!), Hungary, Armenia, Italy and Spain. Love them all for different reasons. My least favorite song this year is the song from Croatia. I’m afraid “The Dream” by Roko is not really my style, a bit old-fashioned and probably too dramatic for me. Nonetheless, he’s a very good performer. I would mention also the songs from Germany, Moldova and Montenegro as songs I would not put on my playlist, no offense.

We're heading toward a really interesting and exciting event, and I wish all of you who are coming a great stay and a wonderful Eurovision experience. For all of you that will be watching the show from home, I hope the Eurovision vibes and excitement will shine through the screen.
Watch out for my next post, coming up in a few days, with some tips for visitors.

See you soon :)

Today's highlights and tomorrow's expectations - an overview

Desiree on Sun, 04/30/2017 - 21:13

Some last thoughts on today's first rehearsals. Overall there haven't been that many surprises I think. Everything started and ended perfectly on time.

Obviously a lot was expected from Belgium but I also think that the earlier performances already did a bit to lower those expectations. Georgia and Albania once again delivered great vocals (even though the latter's experiments weren't such a great idea in my opinion). Vocally Australia was also really good but his face all over the screens is a bit much for me.

That leaves Finland and Sweden who hardly changed anything to their performance and did a really good job, especially considering it's just a first rehearsal. Montenegro was the most extravagant act of the day and I would've been surprised with anything else. It also really stand out with its draw. Last but not least Portugal, I find it hard to say something about it as another singer can leave a completely different impression. I think it will be mesmerising on the night, especially if flags don't ruin the view as they kinda did with the Dutch performance of 2013 (Anouk - Birds).

So on to tomorrow where we will see the last songs from the first semi. I think there's a lot to look forward to. A few of them have been around quite a lot with promo-tour performances but for others like Greece and Armenia it will be really interesting to see the staging as they either were hardly performed live or didn't really show a lot in the previous performances. I'm also quite looking forward to Iceland. Before the national final it was quite the favourite already, then many people were disappointed but with a different staging that might all change again. And then there's Moldova, obviously not the masterpiece of the year but one of the songs that always gets me in a good mood, so I can't wait!

All in all another exciting waiting for us, see you tomorrow!

Sweden first rehearsal (update)

Desiree on Sun, 04/30/2017 - 08:20

So we have now officially started!

As already mentioned the first runthrough was without sound from the press centre. However, as we are next to the hall we can hear *a bit* - and notice that the stream is not in sync with the sound from the hall. I hope this will be fixed or it could cause some confusion!

The second time it is unfortunately still the same. What I like is that it's not all dark. The background is a mix of blue and pink/purple and looks like a nice opener. Haven't heard anything worth mentioning yet but looks like a solid opener and Robin clearly knows what he's doing.

Third time - we have sound! It sounds really good I must say and will probably do very well. It's just not really my cup of tea. Also, now it's exactly 10.30 am here so in a few minutes we move on to country nr. 2!