JESC 16 Day 3 – Rehearsal Review and Rundown

So Day 3 in the Junior Eurovision mothership has meant more SMS from Andrew and Richard from Eurovision Ireland  who are “living la vida loca” in the MCC. And me? – I’m sat on Planet Work having arguments with people!! – It’s just like being at a Eurovision!!


Sadly no one has got to her and she is still wearing the horrific dress, TVP … oi …NO!

This song is class and sounds better now I have a decent mix (thanks Wiwi!).  There is not a lot going on here visually, it seems and there’s minimal choreography, but blimey Olivia’s voice is damn strong and she wrings every note out of this ballad.  She emotes well, and despite there being a plethora of words in the verse – usually the death knell for songs – she skips over them with a lightness of voice that is fantastic. This is strong, and despite reservations about the draw and the language, this has to be in with a massive shout.


This, to me, has improved significantly, but not enough from my original thoughts back on Tuesday.  There are lots and lots of holes in this song. The lack of words, the trying to be Destiny but failing vibe, the lack of an ending or indeed a parachute leaves me totally underwhelmed. It will pick up votes, but is struggling. Not through lack of effort by Christina, but by what the songwriters have lumbered her with. She doesn’t engage me in the first 30 seconds of the song, something all good songs have to do. Sorry.

FYR Macedonia

Now, I know a couple of members of the Macedonian delegation will be reading this (hi Roy and Russell!!) – but I don’t need to sugarcoat things. This is good. For me, it’s on a par with Israel and Poland in this half of the rehearsals. These are the three songs that will mop up votes. It’s sung excellently, well performed and staged … something that can not be said of other songs in this contest (or past Macedonian entries). Someone, somewhere, has listened to all the constructive criticism the internet has been giving over the years, and a diamond has come out of the rough. To use a phrase that is down with the kids, Martija “slays” this song. Looks down the camera, comfy, vocally excellent.  This will be there or thereabouts, I think.


This is still absolutely brilliant. Bearing in mind I had not heard any of the songs before writing the reviews on Monday, this is the one that has resonated with me the most. It’s arguably the most “Adult Eurovision” song in the contest. It has that familiar lilt of an Israeli ballad and is performed impeccably by Tim (with the help of Shir) for most of the song, apart from the odd harmony that is a bit off around the key-change, but they soon sort that out.

There has been some chatter around the Interwebs about what they are wearing, that Tim is the problem and that the formula is too sweet. It’s a duet, it’s supposed to be sweet, for heavens sake – Yes, its not suitable for diabetics, but it has enough to be top five.

The Netherlands

On Tuesday, I appear to have called this “underwhelming nonsense” and, to be fair, that may have been a bit harsh … on nonsense!

The girls have got rid of those ridiculous outfits with words on them and have replaced them with what appears to be equally ridiculous newspaper-inspired clothes. It really could be something out of the MiniPops 1982 back catalogue. For me, it neatly sums up what the public think is wrong with the contest: that Junior Eurovision is all about precocious stage school kids prancing about singing light bits of pop. The Netherlands have done nothing to dispel this. It’s not fun, it’s annoying! The girls can sing, but there is too much wrong with the look and lack of ambition for it to do much business on the scoreboard.

George is not a natural mover.  In fact, you can almost see him counting to eight in Greek in his head as he dances like Peter Crouch after scoring a goal. That said, the song is a strong dance-floor filler … if there were a floor to fill.

He certainly gives it energy, but the more I look at it, the more forced it becomes, and that’s a shame considering that I praised it.

I hope the mix is better on the TV, and it looks better on the right cameras because it’s just not giving me the wow factor it did on Tuesday.


From one that disappoints, to one that remains constantly good. The Boys of EI only had my word to go on from Tuesday, and now they have seen it, they seem to agree. This is good, very good.  Zena knows where the cameras will be and sings nicely.

The down side is that the song does take a good long time to build into that thumping crescendo that all of the good songs have, and that might be its undoing.

It’s not instant enough but Zena should improve on Ireland’s performance from last year.  Oh, one thing? – that dress? Have you got time to change it?


This is a real disappointment for me. Italy are flattering to deceive, once again. Fiamma has that annoying kinda voice that makes you want to turn off  after about 25 seconds. She could be singing the best song in the world but when she opens her mouth, that ruins everything for me.

If she’s lost the audience at that point, there is no other hope for the rest of the song. I’m struggling to see where this will be getting its votes from. It should be the right kinda song for sweeping shots and lots of closeups … but I’m afraid her voice is not suited to this song.