If you happen to be in Reykjavík tonight between 19 and 22:20, you will find quiet streets, devoid of locals. You might hear strange sounds out of bars and living room windows though. Music, but not necessarily good music, will sound everywhere. It’s Eurovision night folks, something many Icelanders love and most Icelanders watch. Not familiar with the phenomenon? Let me enlighten you. First, a small sample of some of the very special entires:
The Eurovision Song Contest or Eurovision, is an annual song competition held among the member countries of the European Broadcasting Union (EBU) since 1956.
Each member country submits a song to be performed on live television then casts votes for the other countries’ songs to select the winner. The contest has been broadcast every year since 1956 and is one of the longest-running television programmes in the world. It is also one of the most watched non-sporting events in the world. That means “everyone” watches, but many don’t like to admit it.
Not all of the entries are bad or strange. With a few exceptions, the performers are not international stars (no Sigur Rós or Björk to be found here). But there is some good music to be found, among the all the glitter and madness.
Iceland’s entry this year will perhaps not go into the history books as the greatest Eurovision song ever. And it is not tipped as a winner. But is does have a great message, which we can all take to heart. And that is no small thing.
“This night is dedicated to everyone who believes in a future of peace and freedom.” Conchita Wurst