In this live blog our reporter in the Eurovision press center in Turin, Denis, will keep you updated about all there is to know about the jury show of Semi-final 2! Keep on checking this blog, because Denis will keep you posted every step of the way!
In the second Semi-final 18 countries will take the stage, these countries are: Finland, Israel, Serbia, Azerbaijan, Georgia, Malta, San Marino, Australia, Cyprus, Ireland, North Macedonia, Estonia, Romania, Poland, Montenegro, Belgium, Sweden, Czech Republic.
Next to the countries above, Spain, United Kingdom, and Germany will perform in Semi-final 2, and they will also vote in this Semi-final.
- The jury show has a live audience, but can also be seen as the second dress rehearsal. This dress rehearsal is NOT broadcast live, neither on TV nor online.
- During the jury show all national professional juries cast their votes. These votes count for 50%. The votes of the public after tomorrow’s live show also count for 50%. The total amount of points will determine whether a country proceeds to the Grand Final or not. Only the first 10 contestants will proceed to the Grand Final, which means that in Semi-final 2 eight countries will have to pack their bags. 🙁
23:42 – THE END!
23:41 – The jury show, also known as “the second dress rehearsal” of Semi-final 2, is over! I could see that it had a lot of difficulties, let’s hope they do better tomorrow during the third dress rehearsal, and of course the live show of the 2nd Semi-final.
23:39 – There is a recap of all the FICTIONAL songs that have qualified.
23:32 – The FICTIONAL qualifier announcement sequence starts, but there is a problem, so they show a preview of the Grand Final. It all takes very long, especially because of the delay caused by the Big 5 performances.
23:30 – An awkward silence, followed by another cringeworthy piece of text by Laura Pausini. They start singing “Happy Birthday” for Alessandro Cattelan. Scripted or is it tonight really his birthday? Do not know.
23:25 – Germany has a very sympathetic song from a sweetheart of guy, but this song stands no chance. Sorry, Germany. I do foresee radio play on European music stations, but winning the contest…nope!
23:22 – Germany’s Malik Harris is also going to perform his song “Rock Stars”, but again it takes a long time to change the stage. I do not understand why they would let the Big 5 perform live if it takes so much extra time, and it causes a very awkward silence of sometimes even more than 6 minutes. Production problems?
23:16 – Yes! Yes! Yes! Sam Ryder of the UK sings his song “Space Man” with so much conviction and power. There is a need to win, and you can feel it. Goosebumps all-over! Just “wow”! Go Sam! Go United Kingdom! #UnitedKingdom2023 (or #Sweden2023). Hey ho, let’s go!
23:13 – There is an awkward long silence now. What is going on? Is everything Ok? Is there an error in the production of the show?
23:08 – Spain’s Chanel performs her song “SloMo”, and it looks very slick. The costumes are more Spanish now, but still sexy and with a lot of pazzaz. But as I said at 22:59 the whole thing misses something, and it is a certain je ne sais quoi, x-factor if you will, the thing that has no name, I do not know. There is also no “longing” or “really wanting” in the song. I love Chanel to pieces, and her song has a nice tune to it, but there is something missing.
23:04 – Alessandro Cattelan presents Germany, the last of the three Big 5 contestants we see in Semi-final 2. Malik Harris is a sweetheart and his song is very sympathetic, but “no”, I am sorry, the song fizzles out really quick.
23:01 – Mika presents the other Big 5 contestant, Sam Ryder of the United Kingdom. This song has a feeling of “wanting” to win, there is a “need” that is being presented in the greatest of ways. What a voice this ever so kind man has. Sam is one of my favorites to win.
22:59 – One of the Big 5 countries, which we will immediately see in the Grand Final, is being presented. It is Spain’s Chanel, and they show a snippet of one of rehearsals. Looks like an amped version we saw during the Spanish National and the pre-parties. The winner, no, I think not. The song misses something, do not know what, but it misses that je ne sais quoi.
22:58 – A very forced and scripted thank you to all those behind-the-scenes from Mika and Alessandro Cattelan, and a video about what was needed to make the contest in Turin possible.
22:56 – A video about the things we are willing to do to win Eurovision. A fun nostalgic throwback.
22:52 – Il Volo performs with two band members and one from home, because he is infected with COVID-19; he will also not be able to perform in the arena tomorrow during the live show. They bring a rendition of their 2015 Eurovision song “Grande Amore”. This time around it is more of a rock song. I do understand the appeal, but I only hear screaming. sorry.
22:46 – A promotional talk of the three hosts about the merchandise of this year’s show, like the album of the 66th Eurovision Song Contest. They also close the voting in this segment.
22:44 – Another recap. Yay! Now I can choose my 10 favorites: Finland, Israel, Serbia, San Marino, Cyprus, Estonia, Romania, Poland, Sweden, and Czech Republic.
22:40 – For some reason Mika and Laura Pausini sing “Fragile” by Sting. Why? Maybe it fits their voices. Apart from that, no clue why. They sing also another song, no idea which one. Why is Laura Pausini dressed like a mix of Elvis Presley and Nana Mouskouri?
22:38 – Not sure about my 10 finalists. There are a couple that are really easy: Sweden, Poland, and Estonia. There are three that seem to go nowhere, those are: North Macedonia, Montenegro, and Belgium. The rest…uhm…I will wait for the next recap.
22:34 – The voting system is explained by this year’s host, and the recap of the song starts.
22:30 – Czech Republic might survive because of their grand presentation of We Are Domi’s song “Lights Off”, but they kind of damaged their song on social media by far from smooth renditions of their song during the pre-parties. The singer of the trio did upgrade her singing, but I do not know. I like that I can hear this Summer tune on the radio right now. Will qualify because of its presentation, which is actually really strong.
22:25 – Cornelia Jacobs’ is by far the best song of this second Semi-final. The lyrics, the presentation, the charisma of Cornelia, her raw voice…just everything about this. Leave it to the Swedes to come up with a great rock ballad! Wow! Wonderful. Move on to the final, Cornelia! off you go!
22:20 – Belgium is next. The chorus I could do without. This is like early ’00’s R&B, but this song is kind of boring. Sorry, Belgium. Sung well, but it kind of fizzles out. Kuddos for the voice though. Maybe the national professional juries will award Jérémie Makiese with some solid points.
22:16 – I am sorry Montenegro, Vladana tries her hardest, but this ballad goes nowhere. The song is about her mother and other victims who dies of COVID-19, but there is nothing happening in this song. The weird ferris wheel with all the lights could have been a cool gimmick, but in this case it only remains a gimmick. Together with North Macedonia, this is an absolute “personal” no for me.
22:14 – I like and dislike this year’s song from Poland, I am not a huge fan of too high-pitched opera-type of voice, but that is just me “personally”. The staging with Harry Potter’s Dementors is also not my thing. On the other hand, this song is also kind of great. Not my thing, but he will qualify, there are enough people who really dig this.
22:08 – Romania’s act has Latin-vibes, queer representation (male-with-male dancing), and the song is a serious bop. Really nice! Romania chose to go full-on Latin America this year, and it works out really well. WRS might not be the best singer or dancer, but he sure brings the party to Turin, and the audience in the arena is eating it up!
22:06 – Now the three hosts are together again for a break to give a summary of this year’s shows. Should I write “#cringe” again or do you understand where I am going at with this?! 😉
22:04 – Now it is only Mika who talks about this year’s slogan again, “The Sound of Beauty”. We get it now, this is this year’s slogan. There is also a video about it now. #cringe
22:01 – Mans Zelmerlow-vibes from Estonia’s Stefan. I dig his very low voice though. A grand country-western song from a charismatic guy. This gets people on their feet. Really good, an absolute qualifier. It is good that they did not go full western with this song; pop-vibes are better for this one. Yes, I like this!
21:57 – This song by North Macedonia is just there. It goes nowhere. Sung well, as far as I can be a judge of that, but Andrea does not stand a chance, if I was the one deciding. At some point, she almost looks a little agressive on-stage. No, sorry.
21:53 – She might not be the best singer, but this ultimate break-up song of Ireland is everything! Brooke, you rock! I love the lyrics, sometimes you want to just tell them to your date or your “lazy lover”, as Brooke puts it. Britney, eat your heart out, because Brooke is our new spirit animal. Thank you for helping us with what to say to break-up with someone, and if your words don’t help…well…that’s rich! 😉
21:49 – Cyprus chose to come with a Greek ethnic vibe à la Helena Paparizou, and I am totally here for it. This is what we needed! Authenticity, people, that is what it is all about! The staging is just great! Andromache looks like a siren or a Greek goddess in her seashell. C’mon, Andromache, give us them Greek Summer vibes! This is the best entry up to now in this second Semi-final, if you ask me! Wow! “The Birth of Venus” painting by Botticelli, revisited. Absolute qualifier! No doubt about it!
21:47 – Alessandro Cattelan comes with a break in which he thanks all the national commentators. I wanted to write something about Laura Pausini again, but I was like: “Maybe I shouldn’t!”
21:43 – Australia. Wonderful androgynous costume of Sheldon Riley, but this powerballad is just too much, and it does not seem to have a hook, it just goes on and on. There is no build-up in this song, and just ends up in a whole lot of screaming. The message of “personal growth” is wonderful, but because of all the screaming does not hit a mark. I find it a little annoying even. Let’s just say that it is a very long 3 minutes.
21:40 – There is a small hick-up, which Mika knows to hide with offering the audience some facts about the Eurovision Song Contest. Crisis: Avoided!
21:38 – And now the enfant terrible of Italian pop music, Achille Lauro. He wears a black glitter see-through cat suit and boxerbriefs. Remind me why people were hating on Albania’s Ronela again? The act is to hide the fact that Achille csannot really sing. Is this real glamrock or is this a boy who comes from a good family that just wants to taunt his parents? I do not know, to me it is the male version of Ronela this year, too much of everything. There is unnecessary nakedness without being sexy, there are cages, there is homo-erotic touching, a mechanical bull, and bad singing. Italian-speaking country dig this, I am like: “No thank you, I’m good!”
21:35 – Mika and Alessandro Cattelan do an annoying sketch about this year’s slogan “The Sound of Beauty”. Very standard. Typical Eurovision humor.
21:33 – Laura Pausini comes with a well-deserved break (but a break with Laura Pausini is not really a break #cringe). There is a video about the San Remo Festival that is held every year in the Italian city of San Remo; the Eurovision Song Contest is based on the San Remo Festival. Laura Pausini had the chance to win the festival when she was just 18 years of age. So, we get a blast from the past in a dedicated video.
21:30 – Malta is next! Emma Muscat goes full on all-American coming-of-age song! It also feels like she is trying to win a Miss Universe pageant and she is in the middle of her personal talent segment. There is silver and gold, there are dancers, and there is glitter that is shot into the sky. There is a clapping-along bridge in the middle. A fun song, but every type of authenticity or originally seems to be washed away in the production of the song and the staging.
21:26 – I am not really sure what I am looking and listening to with Circus Mircus of Georgia. They seem to sing a whole lot of the same during the verses, and than in the chorus things seem to change. I also do not hear what they sing, but somehow it reminds me of the early work of the Dandy Warhols. The staging is totally bonkers, but very colorful. I do not know for sure whether I like this or find this full-on cringeworthy.
21:22 – Azerbaijan’s Nadir Rustamli has a musical and rock voice, which makes for a special type of mixture. His song is grand, but also makes you wonder whether you are listening to a rock rendition of a musical song, also because of the staging; Nadir steps up and down bleachers. A charismatic guy with a grand voice, this must count for something with the national professional juries. For me, “personally”, it is all a bit much. I do not know about this one, it just does not really appeal to me.
21:17 – Serbia’s Konstrakta asks herself: “Why does the hair of Meghan Markle look so healthy?” Her song is about how health has become life, and how much we are willing to do for health or at least to look healthy (when we really aren’t?). A strong song with a polictical, medical and social message. The clapping in the chorus is both a gimmick and haunting. Konstrakta came to slay and she does. Also nice that she washes her hands during her performance, because it reminds us all of the thing we did the most the last two years to avoid COVID-19. “In Corpore Sano” is Latin for “In a healthy body”, but are we really? Konstrakta, you tell ’em, girl!
21:14 – Next is Israel. I love this! Queer empowerment to the max, and Michael Ben-David knows how to sing, no doubt about that. A very slick performance with a strong message: “You are you, and #$%@ others!” Youngsters must love this, and others who need to hear this message again. Michael Ben-David got engaged this morning to his boyfriend. This is a moral with leverage and back-up. Go Israel! Go Michael Ben-David!
21:10 – First up is Finland. This time around lead singer Lauri has a grat voice, which was different during the rehearsals. Very powerful this time. The staging with the balloons looks intimate, yet messy. I am a huge fan of the female rocker, because #TheFutureIsFemale. The black-yellow staging is fun, still not a fan of the balloons, but Ok. Strong rock as we got used to from Finland. Wow!
21:04 – Here are the hosts of this year’s show: Laura Pausini, Mika, and Alessandro Cattelan. The screaming of Laura Pausini I could live without, but that might just be me. They also explain what Semi-final 2 is meant for, and that you can vote for the qualifiers.
21:03 – There is a comedic sketch revolving around Alessandro Cattelan. He also does some dancing. Nice start.
21:00 – Here we go! The jury show of the second Semi-final of the Eurovision Song Contest 2022!