Piše: Teddi Cular
#OPENUP as we continue with our rehearsal coverage! Today nine countries from Second Semi Final will step on Eurovision stage for their first rehearsal!
Let us at HEK (Croatian Eurovision Club) be your eyes and ears this Eurovision month. We’re bringing you full coverage on all our networks: Teddi will be live updating you right here on our Website, Lana & Ante will take over Twitter, Emily will take over our YouTube for daily videos and you can catch up with Dominik & Luka on our Instagram!
After each day all of us will sum our first impressions and give our final opinion, so remember to follow us and always be in sync!
MAY 10: MONDAY – Who is rehearsing today?
10:00 – 10:30 – San Marino
10:40 – 11:10 – Estonia
11:20 – 11:50 – Czech Republic
12:00 – 12:30 – Greece
13:40 – 14:10 – Austria
14:20 – 14:50 – Poland
15:00 – 15:30 – Moldova
16:00 – 16:30 – Iceland
16:40 – 17:10 – Serbia
MONDAY, MAY 10TH – FIRST REHEARSALS – LIVE UPDATES
[LIVE UPDATE] 10:04 – And good morning everyone! We’re on third day of rehearsals. Today we’re kicking of with San Marino! Did you know Senhit’s father never wanted her to be a singer? 🙁 But lucky for us she did it anyway! Woo Woo!
[LIVE UPDATE] 10:25 – Senhit just had first rehearsal! She kept it simple. She starts with close shot on her wearing some head piece, sort of goddess golden crown. She used a lot of graphics from her music video and projected it on every screen. It worked, stage looks full and busy even though it’s just her and four male dancers standing on the same rotating platform from her music video. She’s wearing black outfit and dancers have white suits on with face mask. They look a little creepy to be honest. She uses both stages. We didn’t see Flo Rida but there was a stand in for him who snag his part. There’s pyro and Senhit is communicating with the audience. She goes “Hello Rotterdam, are you ready to feel some ADRENALINA?” YES QUEEN, YES WE AREEE! Woo Woo! Vocally great!
[LIVE UPDATE] 10:40 – Next is Estonia! Voted Estonian sexiest man, Uku entered Eesti Laul four times! And now he’s finally here!
[LIVE UPDATE] 11:03 – Uku kept it very simple, he’s alone on the stage with minimalistic staging. He sticked to his waiter outfit. Stage is mostly in blue with moon on back LED screen. They got rid of chains (thank God), and camera work was fine. Estonia obviously loves storms, so they played with effects, we see some thunders, smoke and clouds going on. They also used few water shots from music video. I think whole performance was a little bit boring and really not memorable. I don’t think people will remember that this song was even performed until they see recap and go like: ohhh, yes, meh.
[LIVE UPDATE] 11:12 – Moving on to Czech Republic! Here’s irrelevant information about Benny you will never need, unless you get to go on a date with him, he’s vegan!
[LIVE UPDATE] 11:41 – Benny opens alone surrounded by glowing blue sticks. He’s wearing yellow bomber jacket, and is accompanied by four dancers. They’re all dressed casual and acting same way, just like you would around your friends, moving along. If I’m honest, it’s pretty boring. Nothing really happens here. However, LED screens added more depth to performance and lights are looking great. Camera work is also great, and it makes whole performance come together.
[LIVE UPDATE] 11:55 – Stefania from Greece is about to get on the stage for her rehearsal. Stefania is youngest contestand this year, she’s only 18 years old!
[LIVE UPDATE] 12:28 – One is for sure, this year’s contestants love pink! Stefania is another one to choose pink/blue for her staging. She’s wearing sparkly purple sexy jumpsuit and silver high knee boots. She looks and sounds flawless. She starts solo, flirting with camera angles and everything soon translates to green screen, which I usually find interesting but for some reason it doesn’t sit right with me in this particular performance. I didn’t like whole retro graphics. Also whole green screen is handled clumsy at moments, you can see dancer’s shadow when you’re not supposed to and it also had small glitch. In first part she virtually dances with half invisible dancers and later on she climbs this wall (that we don’t see) while fast moving city is projected on green screen. In last chorus green screen is off and it’s just Stefania and dancers. And I actually liked it better that way. Not feeling this whole green screen concept.
[LIVE UPDATE] 12:48 – Let’s get some lunch! Be back in 50 minutes
[LIVE UPDATE] 13:40 -We’re back! Next to try out the stage for the first time is Vincent from Austria! Vincent Bueno participated in Austria’s national final in 2016.
[LIVE UPDATE] 14:03 – Vincent is alone on the stage, positioned on long platform. Everything is dark with just perfect amount of long beam lights coming from behind. Really great usage of lighting, it makes it very atmospheric even though I still don’t like this song. I like camera work, it translated his emotion well. Generally very minimalistic performance with not much going on but still looks beautiful.
[LIVE UPDATE] 14:18 – Poland is coming through! Did you know that Rafal is actually a physical education teacher!
[LIVE UPDATE] 14:45 – It’s official – pink and blue is everyone’s favorite colors. Rafal is on stage with four dancers, he’s in black suit with sunglasses on – as expected and as needed, while they wear white suits. He’s looking sleek, cool, playing with lights and camera so wisely. I love when he “takes” control of camera, I found it quite charming. I also loved retro vibes in his performance, neon squares covered stage. There were some pyro in his second run, which I don’t find really neccesary in this already light packed performance. I think this was the most fun staging we’ve seen today so far. Someone said vocal hell, indeed. He was off the entire time, like he was trying to catch up with his own song but unsuccessfuly.
[LIVE UPDATE] 15:00 – Everyone give her some sugar, it’s time for Moldova! Natalia started DJ Star project some time ago and even did some DJ-ing herself!
[LIVE UPDATE] 15:40 – As this was one of my favorite songs and performance I was the most excited about, I feel extremely underwhelmed by this. Natalia and her dancers are standing on this white platform (another platform, yes) that later starts rotating. Dance from music video is here, but overall, as someone said, this might be the biggest departure from music video yet. Guess what color is on? Yes, pink again. And no, somehow it doesn’t look good. There’s a giant 3D pink squared cube on back wall that’s rotating and then wiggling. Nothing really works for me here. It looks very flat, not finished, not to say sterile. There’s no concept to this, or I’m just not getting it? Where’s sugar? Where are naked men? Where’s Ice Cream? Where’s fun? Natalia seemed like she’d rather be anywhere else but on this stage. She looked very tense. Vocally she was struggling, I’m not sure if she pretended to sing that high note at the end, or she was letting her back vocalist do it, or none? Not sure what happened there. Overall, this had so much potential for fun and creative staging, I don’t understand why they played on simplicity.
[LIVE UPDATE] 15:45 – Give me ten minutes to recover, and then we’re back at 16:00 for two last rehearsals. First, Iceland! Fun fact, Daði is sooooo tall, he’s 208 cm!
[LIVE UPDATE] – 16:30 – Quite simple. Performance starts with all of them lined up on purple background that soon becomes galaxy with their pixel figures flying through it. They kept their memorizing dance moves and iconic casual sweaters. At chorus we get this 3D yellow and purple little cubes that form a big one. Lights play big role here, they flash, they move, they rotate, they keep it interesting. At some point they walk over to the bridge, and three members that play keyboards stay forming round one (like seen in Romania’s “Miracle” performance). At the end they all come back again on main stage and finish strong. It was pleasant performance and I don’t know what else they could’ve done with it. However, I’m not so sure how interesting this will be to the viewers at home. I think this might do worse than we’re all expecting.
[LIVE UPDATE] 16:40 – Last one for today is Serbia! Sanja, who we all remember from Eurovision 2016 when she represented Serbia, speaks six languages, Ivana is dancing queen and Ksenija also performed at Eurovision before, as backing vocalist for her dad, Knez, in 2015!
[LIVE UPDATE] 17:08 – I absolutely love camera work for this performance! It really made this performance come together! Girls are wearing sleek black outfits, and the scene is in black and red with white rectangles on back wall for each one of them. They have great dance movies and stage presence, probably the best moves we’ve seen so far. They did it with such ease. Later one scene turns into disco with great light work and disco ball, and they finish their performance on smaller stage. There was some pyro at the end, and it looked perfect. I think vocally they were good. They had a little accident at the end when Ivana fell but she got up quickly. I hope she’s well and not hurt! Generally, I think it was great performance, I just wish there was more of bright colors instead of black and red, and maybe some silver or gold outfits instead of black, but it’s good the way it is.
Thank you all for joining me today, and catch me again tomorrow at 10:00 CET!
Stay tuned because every day at 20:00 CET we’re bringing you our top picks from rehearsals!