Eurovision fans all over the United Kingdom, gathered in London this sunday, as it was THE place to be for another huge Eurovision treat. For the fifth year, the London Eurovision Party, saw entrants of this years Eurovision Contest performing, joined by two surprise acts; Slovenian entrant Omar Naber, who represented his country in 2005 and last year’s Kati Wolf, representing Hungary in Dusseldorf. And what an amazing event it was.
The event, which was sold out and took place in Soho’s shadow Lounge celebrated the annual Eurovision in witty style full of atmosphere. Paddy O’Connell, former Semi final commentator on BBC3, and Nicki French, UK representative in 2001, were once again the dynamic presenters of the show. Full of humour, joy and engagement it has to be said that these two go so well together and have such a great personality that no one could do the presenting job better. BBC, if you hear this, these two are your hosts if Eurovision returns to the UK. Highlights from Nicki, were the several dress changes (Beat that Marie N) and her performance which included a Eurovision medley and her own entry ‘don’t Play that Song Again’ which the crowd went wild for . Paddy of course was himself, and proved to be the ‘joker’ throughout the whole evening.
Despite the overall Eurovision year being one of many ballads, we’re so happy to see that the organizers brought a varied line up of artists making the whole event a string of highlights. Opening the show was 2005 participant Omar Naber, who treated the audience with three songs, including his entry ‘Stop’, followed by fellow country-woman Eva Boto, representing the country this year with ‘Verjamen’. The girl is only 16 years old but proved to be an immense belter and almost tore the house down. Filipa Sousa, the Portuguese entrant got the crowd going completely treating us with her entry ‘Vida Minha’ and won over the crowd completely with her rendition of ‘Conquistador’ and the UK entry in 2009 ‘My Time’. Performing as well, were The Hungarian band Compact Disco, singing their entry ”Sound of our Hearts’ followed by one of their new tracks. In the crowd supporting them was last years representative Kati Wolf, who would later on, be on stage herself to perform her Eurovision entry, leaving with a message to everybody never to give up on your dreams.
The second half of the show saw birthday girl, and gorgeous looking Anggun, the French representative, singing her song followed by Valentina Monetta, the San Marino representative singing the initial and new version of her entry, and a jazzy ‘bebop’ song, which was really good. Azerbaijani representative and this years host Sabina Babayeva was present too and last but definately not least, Macedonian Kaliopi, closed the show with an amazing rendition of her song ‘Crno I Belo’, which she later on performed again in English behind a piano. Absolutely breathtaking.
Each of this years representatives was also treated to a suprise and received a pop icon figure on a poster, made by Minipop Icons. There were prizes handed out to people in the crowd, the birthday cake for Anggun, and so much more.
As a first time visitor to a Eurovision event, being on my own, and not sure whether to fit in, the whole experience has been breathtaking and a ‘Must Go Event’ for next year. Eurovision is like family and that’s how the whole London Eurovision Party has worked so well. Never in my life did I go to an event where the whole room was filled with people singing along every single song performed and played during the afterparty. It was Absolutely Fabuluous and an event which is definately not too miss next year!
We’ve also had the opportunity to interview a few of the representatives of this years contest so keep an eye on the website for those.