Zöe were asked about her dress. There is a runour, that we still haven't seen the final dress. However Zöe confirmed that the dress at this rehearsal is the one for Tuesday. After this Zöe was asked about what her Paradise is, since her song is about finding Paradise. Zöe responds that being on the Eurovision stage is her Paradise.
Minus One joking around with the manager. Telling that he whips them. The guitarist told that he took a poll online regarding what colour his beard should be. And blue ended up as a favourite. They were asked about comparison to Lordi. However Minus One don't think that they can be compared. And they don't have the costumes. But they do think, that they stand out, like Lordi did.
Minus One from Cyprus are 5 energetic guys with lots of humor. That is clear in their meet and greet with the press. As a coverband their ESC entry is their first "original" song. However they have covered Hard Rock Hallelujah from Finland and In my Dreams from Norway, since it's similar to their music style. They were asked what they would cover from this years entries. And they mentioned their good relations with the Spanish singer Barei as a possible cover. I think it could be fun to hear them cover the Czech Rupublic entry.
Time to get your rock on!
Minus One from Cyprus, have been working together with Sascha Jean Baptiste, who's directed Nina Sublatti's entry for Georgia last year (she's also doing the work for the Georgian entrant this year).
Apart from the lead singer, all other members are standing in cages on the staging, so there's not a lot movement going on the stage. Flashing lights are also part of the visual presentation. Francois as lead singer is of course the main focus and he's put on his best poker face, giving a lot of stern looks.
Vocally, he started off pretty well, but then in the chorus he seemed to be getting ahead of himself a little bit, which gave me the impression he was grasping for air. Relax, Francois, keep it controlled. During the second run through, he sounded vocally much better.
But this year is all about the wolf, because the animal used in the Cypriotic video is also making an appearance, albeit not a real one. I'm not sure if the wolf really works in this concept. It doesn't really seem to fit within the concept. Perhaps, if the LED backdrop had featured the wolf throughout the performance, it would make more sense, but otherwise.
A bit of rethinking that needs to be done here, I think, but overall a pretty good performance.
I decided not to hang around for the qualifier press conference tonight as I have a pretty hectic day tomorrow, but I have now caught up with the halves of the draw that the ten countries will perform in. It really has ended up as a show of two halves with most of the uptempo songs in the first half and the ballads and slower moody songs in the second.
Overall I think tonight's show was far better than Tuesday's. The songs were better, the pacing was sharper and there was less of last year's winner, though still far too much. The camerawork was also improved, but the issue with flags blocking the screen is still a major problem and has to be sorted on Saturday.
As for the seven songs that went out, only Switzerland and Ireland can feel hard done by and Poland qualifying was a bit of a shock. Some are suggesting it was a sympathy vote, but it was also helped by the draw so perhaps not totally unpredictable.
My thoughts on the seven that went home;
IRELAND: I think Molly performed well and for once I liked the Irish staging. However I thought we were probably doomed on the day we were given the awful #2 draw and so it came to be. I may sound like a broken record here but once again can I suggest RTÉ looks at its selection process. The current formula is giving is the worst set of results we've ever had in the contest.
SAN MARINO: Dreadful patchwork of a song and no amount of youthful enthusiasm can replace a lack of stage craft. It was always a no-hoper. It deserved to finish last and being honest, if this is the best that they can come up with, San Marino has no place in the contest.
MALTA: A much better performance by Amber tonight but there was far too much going on to distract you in the presentation.It was as if no lessons were learnt from Olivia Lewis in 2007. The song was always too weak for this semi, but might have had a chance in the first semi. No surprise this lost out.
PORTUGAL: The Portuguese chose the wrong song in the Eurovision selection, it's as simple as that. No matter how good Leonor was tonight (and she was very good), the song was just poor. Like Ireland, Portugal needs to re-think its selection process. There's enough talent there to do very well in the contest but RTP are not tapping into it.
CZECH REPUBLIC: Whoever decided to add the ridiculous shoe throwing to the act should never be allowed near the contest again. Until that point the performance was solid, even if the song was always a little dull. I fear that we may never see the Czechs back in the contest.
ICELAND: Not only the worst vocal performance of the night, one of the worst of this century. It was always a big heap of nothing of a song, with basically a repeated chorus and no verses but everything about this was absolutely dreadful from he staging to the costume, but especially the off-key performance.
SWITZERLAND: I really feel sorry for Melanie, because this was a terrific performance and hugely improved on the national final. Switzerland just doesn't have friendly neighbours or a diaspora, but if Austria can win, so can they. Really disappointed not to see this in the final.
The following countries are in the first half;
That's a lot of up-tempo and mid-tempo songs. Personally I'd probably open with United Kingdom, then go with Armenia and Sweden, for contrast. I would have Israel at #13
At #14 it's Austria
In the second half you have the following countries;
There's no up-tempo song in there at all, but Georgia, Germany and Montenegro are at least mid-tempo. Hungary, Greece, Russia and Spain need to be kept apart. The director will certainly earn his money tonight.
Tomorrow I will review the running order, as I fly back to Dublin.
Well,i think i have to start by saying that i am not the most objective person to review this since i've always thought that it has the best chances for Cyprus to do well since...Lisa Andreas :P
And it's the same concept on stage actually but technology has evolved the last 11 years so the black sky and the stars look more impressive and "full" as they did back then.
People who liked it before will be amazed by this performance,people who didn't will find it boring.I have a feeling this is going high.
Black and white long and close up shots for John with one light beam zoomed in on him, before we go over to colour in the chorus.
For the second verse the backdrop comes to live. It's fireflies in pink and white before the whole stage turns into a colour combination of first blue and white, then magenta and white and gold and white.
There's a lot going on in terms of the backdrop, a lot of different colours with a lot of firework.
Not entirely sure this is the right approach for Cyprus, as there's an awful lot going on. From no colour to a lot of colour. Sometimes less is more, Cyprus.
Liking John's voice more than I thought. It's very gentle sounding. Think Cyprus could actually wauw us all and do actually much better than we anticipated.
Nice effort, just think Cyprus needs to rethink the different backdrops.
Cyprus, Eight Points.