Sunday, May 30, 2010

Eurovision & Gay

For the uninitiated, Eurovision is something the generations of the 1970s and 1980s grew up with as a must-see event. It was one of the biggest talking points of the year. In the UK, families nationwide would stay glued to their TV sets as bands like Abba, Buck’s Fizz and Brotherhood Of Man became household names overnight and went on to forge successful pop careers.
Of course not all bands proved quite as successful. In fact most of them, including the winners, were generally quite shocking. Indeed they still are – which is why the popularity of Eurovision has waned. The music moved on but the contest didn’t. The novelty of the format and the voting system, where countries that hated each other wouldn’t vote for each other, made the whole affair a bit of a laughing stock.
But then as the show morphed from serious national singing competition into car crash TV it earned itself a cult audience. For viewers of a particular, erm, bent, the camp costumes, dated acts and the utter lack of self-regard of the singers involved made the show a hit.

The BBC have recognised the pink pound demographic by recruiting gay funny man Graham Norton (pic. 1) to host a show now adored by students, schoolgirls and gay men, who will be attending Eurovision parties throughout the UK and getting almost as pissed as the acts appear to be when embarrassing themselves on stage.

In October 2008, it was confirmed by the BBC that Norton would replace Terry Wogan as the BBC's presenter for the UK heats of the Eurovision Song Contest, in a show to be called Your Country Needs You.
On 5 December 2008 it was announced that Norton would also take over from Terry Wogan as the presenter of the main Eurovision Song Contest. The 54th Eurovision Song Contest was held in the Olimpiyskiy (Olympic) Stadium, Moscow on 16 May 2009.
Norton's jokes during his debut received some positive reviews from the British media. The Guardian noted his comments on Iceland's entry (pic 2), which finished in second place, had "rooted around in a cupboard and found an old bridesmaid dress from 1987" and the Armenian singers (pic 3), who finished in tenth place, were sporting traditional dress, "which would be true if you come from the village where Liberace is the mayor". The Times noted his highlighting of the arrest of thirty gay rights protesters in Moscow - "heavy-handed policing has really marred what has been a fantastic Eurovision". His comment “The bad news is you’re about to watch Albania (pic 4). She’s only 17 so please bear that in mind. Where was her mother? Why didn’t she step in and say no?” which was made just before a young performer from Albania was set to take the stage dubbed an insult by many, sent ripples of outrage through not only Albania, but also the Albanian population in Britain. There was even a petition circling the net calling for a formal apology from Norton. The petition, which called his comment “very rude and insulting,” had drawn over 1,000 signatures.


  The gay Paul Henri de Leeuw (pic 5) (born March 26, 1962 in Rotterdam) is a Dutch television comedian, singer and actor.

Paul de Leeuw is establishing himself since mid-1990s as a supporter of the Eurovision Song Contest. He presented the Eurovision Song Contest in 1993, 1994, 1998, 1999, 2000, 2001, 2006 and 2007. At the Eurovision Song Contest 2006, he presented on behalf of the Netherlands, the Dutch points. The intention was that he simply the presenters, artists, and fans would thank, and then he would call the points. However, instead Paul was trying, during the live broadcast, to give his mobile phone number to the male presenter Sakis Rouvas. He also made other remarks that the presentation of the Dutch made points, took significantly longer. Paul has referred also to the gay culture when he remarked that Rouvas and co-host Maria Menounos (pic 6) made him think of Will & Grace. Since all of these events in a live-broadcast, and a further contribution of Paul were necessary for the progress of the show, he could not be truncated.
This action caused a lot of negative reactions of many a commentator, including BBC commentator Terry Wogan, that called him a "idiot".
He should, despite the criticisms of last year, in 2007 the points out at the Eurovision Song Contest. Terry Wogan said when it was the turn of the Netherlands to the points and saw Paul on the screen: the Netherlands were evicted in the semi finals, and this man might be the reason why.

The Eurovision Song Contest 2010 was won by Germany.
The 19-year-old, German Lena Meyer-Landrut from Hanover won with her song Satellite and got 246 points. It left the other 24 countries in the last round of the contest, far behind. Turkey was Second with 170 points and third Romania with 162 points. Fourth, the Danes ended with 149 points. Azerbaijan got with 145 points, on the fifth place.
The favorites were disappointing. Norway ended in the lower echelons, and Israel. Also Iceland was less than expected. Spain was not great in spite of the fact that they occur twice because a man earlier on Saturday evening the act impaired. She was previously a favorite. That is remarkable, as Lena has no vocals or stage experiments and her English, the language in which she is singing the song, is bad. According to a British journalist, sounds as "an Australian farmer in the outback".
Lena is the second German who wins the contest, after Nicole Seibert, with Ein bisschen Frieden was first in 1982. The 56th Eurovision song contest will now be in Germany next year.

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