Well after a stonking Ukrainian bash noticeable by the lack of party spirit on behalf of it’s host, I’d already bagged photos with Big Phil Kirkirov and a rather reluctant Ani Lorak who’s body guards wrestled my arm away from her a tad more forceably than was necessary. Ms Laboda was flanked by her flag boys all evening and refusing to talk to anyone, even her own specially invited Ukrainian guests. Star turns by Ruslana and Ms Lorak though made the party move a bit more. The Greek/Cypriot shindig following straight after was a tad more exciting and had more singing guests. A good number of the crop including a memorable turn by our Moldovans who’s song has now become one of my favourites.
The real party though was the opening one on Sunday night. We finally got to see the other half of the venue and miles of food a drink abounded wherever we looked. There was an entire table dedicated to bread and several bread waiters who had a expression saying, “fancy a loaf?” They were desperate to be rid of their baked products. Quite possibly they’d be used as javelins later in the evening if the musical fare wasn’t up to scratch. Then the televised part began and it got really weird. Child “stars” pretended to be Euro stars past and were uncannily like them. So much so it felt like child abuse … Some dignitaries took to the stage. The first looked exactly like my boss Rodney Amis from King’s College. He threw his arms out wide to signify his welcoming everyone to Moscow. A rousing Yeltsin like speech made him go very red in the face and I thought he’d have a coronary but more likely he’d be hitting the vodka early. Another dignitary said, “I dreamed of this for 15 years, then Gawd made my problem for me”. I’m assuming it was mistranslated but the incorrect version could be just as apt.
Music in vast quantities. Kirkirov doing “Your disco needs you”, very camply to pictures of his former career in the background. Dzenghis Khan’s backing track failed and they were left ooh- ahhing with no music and looking very foolish. They sing another song called Moscow which bears an uncanny resemblance to their first song. They really have made an entire 30 year career out of one song. Elsewhere we had Tatu, Alsou, Ruslana, Teach In (what’s left of her), Lys Assia, Dana International and of course Mr Bilan himself. Carola did a medley of her three ditties to rapturous applause. At least I think it was for her, it could have been for another round of drinks being poured on the bar.
We did our rounds of star spots and bagged some rare scalps including Sakis, and Ms Laboda who’s boys kept giving us multiple copies of leaflets on domestic violence. I think we got the picture after 6 copies but to underline the point she turned up with a bandaged arm and covered in very realistic looking bruises. And we managed to finally get Carola to pose. She seems more amenable tonight than she was the previous evening and even jokes with us a bit. Roy is not a big fan of Ms Haggvist and is slightly disorientated when she is in conversation with Mrs Roy. Attempts to bag Ms Assia failed as too many fan boys fawned over her. She’s looking very old and frail now and I’m quite concerned that she may die any minute. So are the Russians who protect her. It would be terrible for them if she dies on their soil and at one point she almost does (see photo of her being throttled in Franko meets the Stars).
Good evening had by all. We may not have gone anywhere very original, but it was a great party. Thank you Moscow you did us proud!