About 4 o’clock yesterday afternoon, up popped the notification…the Romanian song was now on the official YouTube channel. I bemoaned on Twitter, how little fanfare there was for a song presentation. Little did I know what was to follow mere hours later…

Given we no longer have the Belarus open auditions to while away a Monday morning, Eurovision does feel like it’s losing a little bit of the proper unhinged madness. Thankfully, Philipp Kirkorov exists (strictly, in the context of this nonsense) and a drab Thursday evening was dramatically transformed into Dante’s seventh circle of hell, but with sequins.

The Ghost of Eurovision Past, Present and hopefully not Future

Livestreams can start a little late, of course they can. That’s only normal. In fact, it gave us all a nice opportunity to check out Jeangu Macrooy’s new entry for May. A lively performance followed by a rather stilted Q&A passed about 20 minutes, yet still not a peep from the Moldovan stream. It took an inexplicable 40 minutes for anything to happen and even when it did, it was just all of Kirkorov’s previous minions moseying around for the one night a year they’re allowed out his cellar. They milled around the red carpet, no masks and no social distancing as if 2020 was just something that happened to other people…

Eventually we found ourselves in a cabaret theatre. The sort of place where perhaps your singer might unveil her entry? Sounds like a sensible idea, no? Or…yeah you could do your own ‘This is Your Life’ if you want…that is also an option. What if Michael Aspel…but appalling? (That’s one for the kids!) Confirming every single preconception the Eurovision community has about Kirkorov, his own personal TED Talk was a new high in quite how far reaching his ego could go. I say was, he said this about 10 minutes later…

Yeah. That’s a thing normal people say.

You think after this presentation we’d be set to go. You’d think. There was still some 1920s swing jazz troupes to jig about the place because, of course there was. Some kind of modern dance nonsense, a quick break, more jazz and then finally, well over two hours after the stream began, there was Natalia Gordienko. To sing her entry? No, she sang Hold Me first, then My Lucky Day and then various other entries from the Kirky back-cat we’d just had to sit through a presentation about. Then she was there to sing her entry, yeah? No. Taking a leaf out of the Israeli playbook we had her there all good to go…and then watched the music video.

And after all that, the song’s decent. It’s a fun entry that will likely do very well. But it says a lot that a confection based landscape, dancing ice-creams and a man made of cake with half his face missing wasn’t even close to the weirdest thing about last night. The things we do for this Contest, eh?

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