It’s the second semi-final of the 54th Eurovision Song Contest tonight in Moscow. Ten countries from the nineteen singing tonight will go through to Saturday’s Grand Final, with the others on the first flight out of Russia. As with the first semi-final, here’s our handy spotters guide to some of the highlights on stage.
Ireland (2nd in running order)
I’m pretty sure the Irish will be represented in the Final, but it’s more likely to be Ronan Keating, who’s written the Danish entry, rather than Sinéad Mulvey and Black Daisy. WIth an early running slot and a genre (rock) that doesn’t normally perform well in Eurovision, it could be a short run this year for the Emerald Isle.
Serbia (4th in running order)
Not only bringing a toe-tapping song to Eurovision, but also looking to popularise the accordian throughout Europe is the mission of Marko Kon and Milan Nikolic for Serbia. Cipela is a delightful story about a shoe, brought to life by a singer who has hair that would make boxing promoter Don King proud.
Greece (13th in running order)
Sakis Rova has a huge following in Greece. He’s already appeared at Eurovision, coming 3rd in 2004 and hosting the 2006 show, as well as being ‘flown’ on a wire into the Olympic Games closing ceremony. The stage block he starts the show on goes through more changes than our female host Natalia Vodianova.
Ukraine (17th in running order)
One of the most impressive props this year, the multi-cog ‘Hell machine’ is reminiscent of the Torchwood Hub, but Svetlana Loboda makes good use of it through her three minutes on stage as the “Anti-Crisis Girl” looks to return Eurovision to Ukraine.
Netherlands (19th in running order)
It’s horribly addictive, with a trio of lounge singers that sell out shows by the bucket load, and lyrics that are just the right side of parody, The Toppers bring the Semi Finals to a close by taking the title “Shine” perhaps a touch too literally. And to paraphrase Gene Hunt, it’s as camp as a Christmas Tree.