No Luck of the “Draw” for Ireland in Eurovision semi-final running order allocations

March 23, 2015

Adrian Kavanagh, 23rd March 2014

Having finished “Playing With Numbers”, ORF, the Austrian television producers, who are hosting this year’s Eurovision Song Contest, have today announced the semi-final running order allocations for the two semi-finals in this year’s contest. (As of the past few years, there is no longer a draw to determine positions in the running orders of Eurovision semi-finals and finals – with the exception of one to determine whether acts will perform in the first or second half of a contest  – with the exception of position taken up by the Host country in the Final. Instead, the host television producer decides on the running order, ostensibly to make sure that different types of acts are balanced throughout the running order in order to improvement the entertainment value of the show. This is – I would argue – an overtly large level of power to give to the host producers, given that statistics show that an act’s chances of doing well at Eurovision can be significantly helped/hindered by their position in the show’s running order.)

Figure 1: Average points per position in the running order at Eurovision Song Contest semi-finals between 2008 and 2014

Figure 1: Average points per position in the running order at Eurovision Song Contest semi-finals between 2008 and 2014

Ireland has been allocated the second position in the running order for Semi Final 2, being scheduled to perform just after Lithuania, who open the show, and San Marino, who will perform third on the night. The second position in the running order has been frequently referred to as the “draw of death”, given that no song/act has ever won a Eurovision Final or Semi-Final from this position in the running order and given that this is – statistically – the worst position in the running order to perform from in a Eurovision Final. As it stands, the third position in the running order is the worst position to be allocated in a Eurovision semi-final, as Figure 1 above shows, but the second position in the running order is the next worst position to attain, just ahead of the eight position in the running order. Read the rest of this entry »

The EuroSong 2015 entries: The five acts in contention to represent Ireland at the 2015 Eurovision Song Contest

February 9, 2015

Adrian Kavanagh, 9th February 2015

The entries for this year’s EuroSong were premièred on the Ray D’Arcy show today… Read the rest of this entry »

Who will make it to the Eurovision Song Contest 2015 Final? Predictions for the Semi Final contests based on past voting history

January 26, 2015

Adrian Kavanagh, 26th January 2015

As I used this model to successfully predict the Azerbaijan win at the 2011 contest and also Denmark’s win in 2013,  I am going to use this to tease out who the likely qualifiers will be now that we know the running order for the two 2014 Eurovision semi-finals. Those of you who have read The Eurovision Handbook 2013 will know that I used this same model to (sort of!) successfully predict most of the qualifiers for the 2013 final.

Read the rest of this entry »

2015 Eurovision Song Contest Semi Final allocation draw

January 26, 2015

Adrian Kavanagh, 26th January 2015

The semi final allocation draw for the Eurovision Song Contest has just taken place:

Eurovision Semi Final 1 (19th May):

Performing in First Half: Greece, FYR Macedonia, Estonia, The Netherlands, Moldova, Finland, Belgium, Armenia

Performing in Second Half: Serbia, Denmark, Belarus, Romania, Russia, Albania, Georgia, Hungary

Big 5/Host countries voting in this semi final: Spain, Austria, France


Eurovision Semi Final 2 (21st May):

Performing in First Half: Norway, Ireland, Czech Republic, Lithuania, San Marino, Malta, Portugal, Montenegro

Performing in Second Half: Switzerland, Azerbaijan, Slovenia, Latvia, Poland, Iceland, Israel, Cyprus, Sweden

Big 5/Host countries voting in this semi final: Germany, Italy, United Kingdom


A look back at the previous post, as well as the next post, will show that this is a rather good draw for Ireland, although it does contain a number of countries, such as Norway, Switzerland and Israel, that tend to be relatively generous towards Irish ballads but that also often tend to ignore the more up-tempo Irish entries.

Analysis of the draw for 2015 Eurovision Song Contest semi finals. Which countries does Ireland want to be drawn with and which do they need to avoid?

January 11, 2015

Adrian Kavanagh, 11th January 2015

The draw for the 2015 Eurovision Song Contest semi finals takes place on Monday 26th January in Vienna. After this draw, Ireland will know whether its act will be taking part in Semi Final 1 (on 19th May 2015) or Semi Final 2 (on 21st May 2015) and will also know the 15/16 other countries that will be competing against this act for one of the ten qualifier slots from this semi final. The three Big 5/Host countries that will have the right to vote in this semi final will also be known after this. This post will assess the possibilities facing Ireland ahead of this draw and pinpoint what would be an ideal/nightmare draw for the Irish act.  Read the rest of this entry »

39 countries??? No, 40 countries will take part in the 2015 Eurovision Song Contest

December 23, 2014

Adrian Kavanagh, December 23rd 2014 

The official Eurovision website confirmed on 23rd December 2014 that 39 countries were to take part in the 2015 Eurovision Song Contest in Vienna, Austria. This means that 33 countries will be taking part in the two semi-finals – 16 in one semi-final and 17 in the other – making semi final qualification a slightly more difficult prospect than it was in 2014, when the smallest ever semi-final in contest history (the second semi-final which involved just 15 countries) took place.

This would have amounted to two more countries than the number that took part in the 2014 contest in Copenhagen, Denmark. However, the news released on 10th February 2015 that Australia would be participating on a one-off basis in the 2015 contest means that 40 countries will now be competing in Vienna. Australia will – as with the Hosts and Big 5 countries – not have to participate in one of the semi finals (meaning the semi-final format remains the same despite Australia’s late entry) and will instead proceed directly to the Final. Australia will get to vote in the Final, but also in both of the semi-finals – which is not the case for the states in the Big 5 and Hosts grouping as these only get to vote in one of the semi-finals.

Read the rest of this entry »

Unpicking the Eurovision Semi Final 1 jury votes and televotes

May 12, 2014

Adrian Kavanagh, 12th March

We know the ten countries that qualified out of Eurovision Semi Final 1 (with the Top 6 countries in this semi-final accounting for six of the countries that finished in the Top 7!) but would the result have been different if it had been solely based on a jury vote or solely based on the televote/jury vote?

The results of Semi Final 1 were as follows: Read the rest of this entry »

Which countries voted for Ireland at Eurovision Semi Final 2: Televote and Jury Vote breakdowns

May 11, 2014

Adrian Kavanagh, 11th May 2014

Ireland finished in 12th place with 35 points at the second of the 2014 Eurovision Song Contest semi-finals, finishing 17 points behind the country that finished in 10th place, Slovenia. The result of Semi Final 2 read as follows: Read the rest of this entry »

Voting order for the 2014 Eurovision Final: How to read the early votes to see who the contest winner might be

May 10, 2014

Who are countries likely to give the big points to in tonight’s Final? The table below presents the most likely suspects for each of the countries voting tonight in the order that they have been scheduled to present their votes tonight, based on these countries’ patterns of Eurovision Song Contest voting since the introduction of televoting in 1998. This analysis just looks at voting patterns for the 26 countries taking part in tonight’s final and it must be noted that some of the countries listed below would traditionally give higher points levels to other countries that may have been eliminated this year at the semi-final stage (such as the three Baltic states or countries such as Moldova, Georgia or Ireland) or to countries that are not taking part in this year’s contest (such as Turkey, Serbia, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Croatia). Diaspora votes that may usually have gone to Turkey may go instead to Azerbaijan (as seems to have happened at the 2011 Final and the 2013 contest), while Montenegro and Slovenia may well be the beneficiaries of support from the Serbian, Croatian and Bosnian diasporas. A full outline of the usual voting patterns of all these countries (including losing semi-finalists in this year’s contest and countries that did not take part in 2014) may be viewed in The 2014 Eurovision Handbook, which is still available in e-book format at the price of €4.99 with all profits (if any!) from this going to the Irish Cancer Society.

Read the rest of this entry »

2014 Eurovision Final results estimate: Undo the journey from Malmo to Copenhagen?

May 9, 2014

Adrian Kavanagh, 9th May 2014

As I used this model to successfully predict the Azerbaijan win at the 2011 contest  and Denmark win in 2013, now that we know the running order for the 2014 Eurovision Final I am going to use this to tease out who the likely winners will be of the 2014 contest will be.

With the numbers crunched, Sweden – who were second favourites before the contest but after the semi finals have been vying with Austria  for the contest favourites position – sit on the top of the pile. If Sweden does not win, the figures suggest that Greece, Armenia, Ukraine and The Netherlands would be then very much in the mix to take the ultimate honours, with Denmark, Azerbaijan and Austria also vying for strong finishes. But be wary. This model cannot take account of actual performances on Final night, nor can it account for the voting decisions of the highly influential professional juries, who have as much bearing on the result as the televotes have.

Read the rest of this entry »


Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 5,204 other followers