November 24, 2015
Adrian Kavanagh, November 24th 2015
On November 24th 2015 it was confirmed that Bosnia and Herzegovina will be returning to the Eurovision Song Contest in 2016 for the first time in four years. Two days later, it was also confirmed that Croatia would also be returning to the contest after having missed the 2014 and 2015 contests. It has also been confirmed that Australia will again be invited to take part in Eurovision next year, although no decision has yet been made on whether Australia’s membership of the contest will be established on a permanent footing. This time, however, Australia will not be getting a bye to the Final and will have to take part in one of the two Eurovision semi-finals. Portugal are withdrawing from the 2016 contest, but Ukraine are returning to the contest after having missed the 2015 Eurovision Song Contest, while – have successfully hosted the 2015 Junior Eurovision Song Contest last week – Bulgaria will also be returning to the Eurovision Song Contest for the first time since 2013.
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November 22, 2015
Adrian Kavanagh, 22nd November 2015
Aimee Banks finished in 12th place (with 36 points) with “Réalta Na Mara” last night in the 2015 Junior Eurovision Song Contest Final in Sofia. Aimee won points off 8 of the other 16 voting countries in last night’s contest, with her biggest tally of points coming from Malta (6), Australia (5) and Slovenia (4), with points also being won from The Netherlands (2), Georgia (2), Russia (2), Bulgaria (2) and San Marino (1). This represented the first time that an Irish act has won points off Australia, but also off Georgia, at a Eurovision contest. Aimee’s 12th place finish also represented Ireland’s best result at a Eurovision Final since Jedward’s 8th place finish at the 2011 Eurovision Final in Dusseldorf. Ireland awarded its 12 points last night to the host country, Bulgaria; being the only country to award the host the douze points at last night’s contest.
The contest resulted in a closely-fought battle between Armenia and Malta, with Malta’s Destiny Chukunyere (with Not My Soul) narrowly winning the contest ahead of Armenia’s Mika (with Love) – Malta finishing with 185 points and Armenia finishing in 2nd place with 176 points, 9 points behind. Slovenia finished in 3rd place – that country’s best ever finish in a Eurovision contest by far – with Lina Kuduzović’s Prva Ljubezen finishing with 112 points. Belarus (4th) and Albania (5th) rounded out the Top 5 – Mishela Rao’s 5th place finish was Albania’s best ever result at the Junior Eurovision to date, but also equalled Albania’s best ever result at a Eurovision Song Contest Final (Rona Nishliu’s Suus in 2012) up to this point in time. This contest also saw Montenegro’s Jana Mirković earn her country’s best ever result at a Junior Eurovision Song Contest, while equalling the best placing for Montenegro at a Eurovision Song Contest Final (Knez’s 13th place finish with Adio in the 2015 Final).
This was the third year in a row that the country who won the Kid’s Jury vote (Malta in 2013, Italy in 2014 and Malta again in 2015) has gone on to win the contest. The only time that a country won the Kid’s Jury and did not go on to win the contest was in 2012, when Georgia won the Kid’s Jury and Ukraine finished 2nd in this, but the order was reversed when it came to the final result, with a win for Ukraine and a second place finish for Georgia.
November 15, 2015
Adrian Kavanagh, 15th November 2015
The running order for Saturday night’s Junior Eurovision Song Contest was made this evening in Sofia, with a draw to determine what half of the running order the different countries/acts would perform in being followed by a running order allocation by the show producers. Hosts, Bulgaria, drew their own position in the running order, while Serbia drew to perform in first position and Montenegro drew to perform last on the night. The running order for each of the 17 countries/acts performing on Saturday night is outlined here, with a brief discussion of how acts previously performing in that position have fare in previous contests. Read the rest of this entry »
October 29, 2015
Adrian Kavanagh, 29th October 2015
Looking ahead to Ireland’s debut at the Junior Eurovision Song Contest in Sofia (Bulgaria) on 21st November 2015, this post offers a brief review of the contest’s history, while specifically drawing out the geographical dimensions of this. This finds that the membership of the contest has been much more fluid than for the (senior) Eurovision Song Contest, with the contest becoming increasingly dominated by Former Soviet states over the 2005-2013 period after having been more dominated by Western states in the first two years of its existence (2003 and 2004). Wins for Malta (2013) and Italy (2014), as well as debuts at the contest for a number of more western states (such as Slovenia, San Marino, Ireland, Australia* and Italy) over the last three years, have seen a growing western reorientation in recent years. Despite this more recent trend, the Former Soviet states of Belarus, Georgia, Armenia, Russia and Ukraine are shown to have dominated the contest – especially over the past decade. The post also looks at voting patterns at the contest and finds that the geographical (“friends and neighbours” and “diaspora”) voting trends associated with (senior) Eurovision are also evident at the Junior Eurovision Song Contest. Finally, the geography of support for Irish acts at the (senior) Eurovision Song Contest is discussed, as a means of teasing out potential support patterns for the Irish act at November’s Junior Eurovision Song Contest. Read the rest of this entry »
May 24, 2015
Adrian Kavanagh, 23rd May 2015
Ireland’s Molly Sterling finished in 12th place in the second Eurovision Song Contest on 21st May, winning 35 points in total and finishing 18 points behind the country taking the 10th, and final, qualification slot, Azerbaijan. However Molly Sterling fared much better with the jury voters than she did with the televote. This goes against the trend noted at the 2012 and 2013 Finals, as well as last year’s semi-final, in which Jedward, Ryan Dolan and Kasey Smith did much better in the televote than in the jury vote. Read the rest of this entry »
May 22, 2015
Adrian Kavanagh, 22nd May 2015
I have used this model to successfully predict the Azerbaijan win at the 2011 contest and Denmark win in 2013, while this same model correctly identified 17 of the 20 qualifiers from this year’s semi finals. Now that we know the running order for the 2015 Eurovision Final I am going to use this to try and tease out who the likely winners will be of the 2015 contest will be. There are, however, a variety of factors that suggest that the 2015 Final model may not be as accurate as in previous years (and particularly before the new rules on combining jury votes and televotes were introduced at recent contests).
With the numbers crunched, Sweden and Russia – both with relatively good positions in the contest running order, a tendency to do well in terms of “friends and neighbours” and “diaspora” voting and very high rankings in the bookies odds – stand on top of the pile. Azerbaijan, Italy, Australia and Serbia also figure strongly here. But be wary.
- This model cannot take account of the impact of the actual performances on Final nights (jury show and public show).
- As the voting history statistics are based mainly on past televoting trends, the model cannot take account for the voting decisions of the highly influential professional juries, who have as much bearing on the result as the televotes have (if not more).
- There are no voting history statistics for Australia, so there is no real sense here as to how the Australian televote will go, nor is there any real sense as to where Australia is more likely to pick up Eurovision points.
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May 21, 2015
Adrian Kavanagh, 21st May 2015
Song, performance and staging matter in terms of ultimate Eurovision success. “Diaspora” and “friends and neighbours” voting can also help a country’s prospects of doing well in the contest, though of course not in themselves proving sufficient to win the contest for those countries that can especially benefit from these voting trends. But another key factor that can shape a country’s hopes of winning the contest is the position in the contest running order that they get to perform in, with the usual rule of thumb suggesting that a later draw position will significantly help a country’s hopes of doing well in the contest. Positions in the running order had traditionally been decided by a draw up to the 2012 contest. But since the 2012 contest in Malmo, participating countries have just drawn to decide whether they will perform in the first half or second half of a contest, with the host TV producers then deciding the running order based on what combination of entries works the best in terms of producing a better TV show. (The host country is the only one that draws to decide their position in the Final running order). Read the rest of this entry »
May 20, 2015
Adrian Kavanagh, 20th May 2015
One trend that seems to be fairly consistent across Eurovision Song Contests relates to the often poor performances by countries that have won the contest two years beforehand and thus hosted it the year before, in what many people refer to as the curse of last year’s hosts. Read the rest of this entry »
May 19, 2015
Adrian Kavanagh, 19th May 2015
In 2015 (as in 2014), in a break from the pattern of the previous four contests (in which no details were provided on the split televotes and jury votes of the different participating countries), the European Broadcasting Union (EBU) is allowing for a greater detail of voting information to be released after the Eurovision final, in part as a reaction to various vote-rigging allegations after the 2013 contest. In a bid to promote further transparency, on May 1st 2015 the European Broadcasting Union also released the names (and gender/age/profession details) of the 200 different jurors (and 40 back-up jury members) who will form the professional juries for this year’s 40 participating countries.
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May 18, 2015
Adrian Kavanagh, 18th May 2015
Does the language that a song is sung in matter at the Eurovision Song Contest? A review of past success levels at the contest by language, as well as a review of the numbers of times that different languages have been used since the abolition of the national language rule in 1999, would seem to confirm this. Read the rest of this entry »