On 23rd August 2020 we (ESC Covers, EuroVisionMusic, Eurovision Coverage and Destination Eurovision) started publishing pictures of VICTOR BUSH modeling a Eurovision t-shirt and holding the promo material for that entry. It is to make artists aware of entering the COVER2COVER SINGING contest we were arranging. Having received just 3 entries by the end of August – one in each of the 3 categories, it was clear we cannot have a competition with just 3 local entries. We had a rethink over the concept. As of 1 October, the COVER2COVER concept will change but it won’t be a competition anymore. It will be a PROMOTION PLATFORM where we will give exposure and promotion to any Eurovision related cover – an artist can send us any such song whether it is a professional video, a home video of just an audio video. There are also no limit on how many songs/videos an artist can send. The closing date will be 28 February 2021 so we can look at all entries ahead of the 2021 Eurovision song contest in Rotterdam in May 2021. A radio station RADIO 5XSTEREO will be joining us as a partner. We continue publishing the t-shirts at random and the 19th one is from 2016 Eurovision song contest in Stockholm, Sweden. This t-shirt celebrates the names of all the entries of that year together with the official double CD and the press bag. In total we will publish around 30 t-shirts and after that about 10 pictures of promotional Eurovision bags for a bit of variety.
LENA PHILIPSSON, who represented SWEDEN at the 2004 Eurovision song contest, has a new song and video out. It is called STOCKHOLM. The video shows scenes of Stockholm, and those that attended Eurovision 2016 in Stockholm will recognize some scenes.
Thank you for your time by Luc Spencer-Gardner from Australia
I have been to 4 Eurovision Song Contests over the past 5 years. The last two of these, Vienna and Stockholm, have been as a member of OGAE Rest of World. My absolute favourite event to this date has to be this year, Stockholm 2016. While it may sound cliché, this year Sweden really put on a show. The purpose built “Euroclub/Euro Fan Café” provided a haven for us die-hard Eurovision fans, and by having both in the one venue, this made it easier to coordinate friends and fellow fan club members to meet with throughout the week. But this was only one aspect. Putting all the fans, delegations, press accredited persons, and the artists themselves in the one place made for the most integrated event. Meeting people from fan clubs and media services throughout the whole of Europe was delightful, making many new friends and contacts. Having the artists on site also allowed for impromptu stage performances, and random chance meetings. Our very first night in Stockholm, we ran into the extremely engaging and charming Serhat, representing San Marino, and he was the loveliest man. At 5am on Thursday morning, as the Wednesday night was coming to an end, we ran into two of the band members from Cyprus. We spent a casual hour chatting and quite literally howling (at the sun however, not the moon). We also met the band from Georgia, who I am a huge favourite of. I literally ran into (my sincerest apologies again) Iveta from Armenia walking through the Euroclub. We met and found many more of the artists throughout the entire week, at various events, and it was an absolutely unreal experience to be so close to them, and engaging in conversation. The integration of the fans, delegations and press personnel this year was superb.
A quick note, we also availed ourselves to the fellow fan members in ROW and other fan clubs, and planned several meetings to ensure that the whole of our club and those from other clubs were able to integrate also.
I could not fault a thing this year. The show, the hosts, the technology, the integration, and the fans. Thank you for making 2016 Eurovision the best event yet!
WORST AND BEST EUROVISION by Kyle Woods from the United States of America
As a disclaimer, since I’m participating in judging the competition, I will withdraw myself from eligibility for the prize, but it’s still fun to write a short note.
My best and worst Eurovision experiences…hmm…where to start. I have been to six Eurovisions now, starting in Düsseldorf and continuing through Stockholm.
Let’s start with the worst experience to get it out of the way. It was probably Copenhagen. The whole show felt cheap and poorly run. Having the show on a tiny island out of town accentuated transportation problems and really made me feel unwelcome in the city. Plus the Danes were homicidal with their bicycles. But let’s not dwell on the negative!
But I think my favorite experience from a travel perspective was, somewhat surprisingly, Malmo in 2013. The city was so small that I was constantly running into people I knew. Other cities like Vienna and Stockholm perhaps had more to offer in terms of things to see and do, but Malmo had its own charm and offered much more in terms of interactions with other fans.
I think my favorite thing I did in Malmo was a little river boat tour. It was just a cruise through the canals, and nothing particularly special. However, we happened to be there on the day they were doing a Balkan Music Party. You may not know that I spent a good portion of my life living in the Balkans (primarily in Croatia) so that music and those languages feel like home to me. I was also with a couple fans who live in Switzerland but are originally from Croatia, Serbia, and Kosovo. So it was a Balkan group on this little Balkan music cruise, and we just had a blast. We sang and danced and made utter fools of ourselves, rocking with Riva and longing for Dzuli.
It was a simple diversion, but it put a sort of stamp of approval on that whole Eurovision week, which was spent in many small memorable moments.
How We Nearly Missed Eurovision
by Stuart McNaughton
My heart sank as I read the email from SAS. With just three weeks to go before Eurovision week in Stockholm, my flight from Malta to Stockholm (via Rome) had been changed, so that instead of a 6 hour flight, we would end up with a 13 hour flight via Copenhagen.
Given that we had booked the flights already seven months earlier, I lost my cool because this 13 hour connection meant that we would miss the first Jury show as our flight wouldn’t arrive until after 10pm. I forwarded the email to Niall, my friend in Australia, assuming he had the same issue because we were meeting up in Malta and then travelling Stockholm together.
It emerged he had the same issue, and that’s when I started to worry: would we get there? Would we have to buy more flights? How much would they cost with just three weeks to go? After some whatsapp chat, we agreed that it was best that I called SAS from London so I’m patiently waiting to be put through to an SAS Agent.
Sven finally comes on the line, speaking perfect English. There’s me on the line, blubbering, hollering, begging Sven to check the connections, to see if there’s an alternative to the 13 hour total journey time. No, explained Sven. The problem is due to an aircraft being taken out of service from Malta to Rome, therefore missing your connection to Stockholm. I understood this, I told him, but then I started to explain that I had booked these flights so long ago and to get this information so late in the day was so bad.
In the meantime, Niall was looking at alternative flights with other airlines: the cost was too high, the connection was too bad, or even worse than what SAS were coming back with. It was only at this time I realised how isolated Malta clearly was.
Sven provided an alternative route, which was only 15 minutes shorter than the 13 hour route. This is when I lost my temper. “Sven,” I said. “I didn’t want to have to tell you this, but the reason why I must get to Stockholm earlier is because I am part of the Maltese delegation for this year’s Eurovision.”
I heard tapping in the background, and Sven finally spoke: “Can I call you back? I may be able to do something, Mr. Stuart.” Hmph, I thought. My name isn’t Mr. Stuart, but let’s focus on the issue here: getting to Eurovision. I gave him my mobile number and, about an hour later, I get a call from a Danish number. I answer the call and it’s good and bad news: we still won’t get there in time for the jury show, but our flight time has been reduce to six hours with a flight via Frankfurt.
I was relieved, and thanked Sven. While the show had to go on, we would be arriving fashionably late, as members of the so-called Maltese delegation.
My first Eurovision experience by Beth Hackley currently living in Hong KongAfter being fans for years, the stars finally aligned this year which meant that my husband Stuart and I were able to go to our first Eurovision!I had never been to Scandinavia before, and Stockholm was the perfect host city for my first Eurovision experience, not least, because Sweden is the home of ABBA (and who doesn’t love ABBA)!Of course, being in Stockholm, a visit to the ABBA museum was high on our list of tourist activities. We decided to catch the ferry to the museum so we could delight in the beautiful weather and the stunning sights of Stockholm on the way.The ABBA museum was absolutely wonderful – so well curated and such an extensive collection of ABBA memorabilia from around the world. Speaking of which, we were delighted to run into Roy at the “Ring Ring” exhibit, fresh from delivering his cache of ABBA collectables from South Africa – where we snapped this amazing photo!When people ask me what my first Eurovision experience was like, I tell them that it was like the Olympics – the same great vibe, friendly people and electric atmosphere in the air.I can’t wait for Ukraine in 2017!
My first Eurovision Song Contest: Stockhölm 2016 by Enrique Lopez de Vallejo
I am a follower of the ESC since I was a child. But I have always followed it from a distance, from “my living room”. Internet and new technologies allow us to get very close to the details surrounding ESC but, after several years of all kind of difficulties, I decided to fulfill my dream.
This special journey began in January, when the Spanish broadcaster announced when and where would be chosen Spanish entry. I managed to attend the show and I could see the special atmosphere accompanies all related to ESC.
Just then I set my mind to go to Stockhölm. It was a bit late because I didn’t belong to any official fan club and, as is well known, there are a lot of difficulties to get tickets. After having contacted OGAE Row I received all the help I didn’t get from the fan club of my country. I got a mail telling me that a member of OGAE ROW, due to work commitments, couldn’t attend and how I could buy his package.
After several weeks of making arrangements, at long last, I arrived in Stockhölm. I traveled alone but, from the beginning, I could check it would be a great time. I never felt lonely. In fact, I met the first eurofan when I was trying to open my room door at the hotel. Two strangers, from Germany and Spain, who spent the evening and lived the first semi-final dress rehearsal show together, as if they knew each other for a long time.
That was the beginning of a few unforgettable days, exploring a beautiful city, meeting new people from all around the world and enjoying the ESC events. And it could say that I have “Stockholm Syndrome ” (if I may make the joke): memories come flooding in and trapping me since I got back to my routine and it is a rare day that I do not find myself humming a song of this year. I guess it is due to a long-awaited desire for going and living it. Or because it has been one of the few really good things that I have enjoyed in the recent past. I am therefore convinced this will be a turning point in my life.
We have received the first entry to our lonely planet competition – from SOPHIE LLOYDStockholm 2016 was my first time to Eurovision and I had such a great weekend. I traveled with my boyfriend Harry and my friends Abi and Sam. We went to the jury final on the Friday night and although that was clearly the main highlight, one of the most memorable times was on the Friday afternoon when we had just arrived and went to meet our friends Beth and Stuart for a drink. They live in Hong Kong so we hadn’t seen them for a while and they were perched out on a pontoon on the water with a whole group of people drinking rose and sitting in the sun. Stockholm looked so beautiful. Everyone we met was also going to Eurovision and we were all so excited and looking forward to the show. It really showed the best of Eurovision – bringing people together from all around the world and the chance to catch up with old friends and make new ones!