From Iceland — UMMM…


Published May 16, 2013


Dana International causes minor 
security alert with trophy
Eurovision was held in Jerusalem in 1999 and security was high, for obvious reasons. As Dana International, who had won the contest the year before, went to lift the trophy to award it to Sweden’s Charlotte Nilsson, she pretended to struggle under its ‘weight’ before actually toppling over, causing Mossad agents to spill onto the stage in case it was a terrorist attack.

Verka Serduchka dances ‘
Lasha Tumbai’ (Russia Goodbye?)
Russo-Ukrainians were at an all-time low in 2007. When Verka Serduchka took to the stage in Helsinki sporting the number 69 on their back and casually fondling their left breasts at regular intervals, it caused something of a stir. However, what made most Russians sit up and take notice was the astonishing phonetic similarity of “Lasha Tumbai” to “Russia Goodbye.” Subtle. Regardless, it was a genius performance—for all the wrong reasons.

Dutch spokesman chats up 
Greek presenter live on air
Sakis Rouvas, who co-presented the 2006 contest in Athens (yes, the Silvía Nótt edition), got more than he bargained for when he called in the votes from the Netherlands and was propositioned by Paul de Leeuw, the Dutch spokesperson. De Leeuw delayed proceedings by giving Rouvas his mobile number before finally revealing his country’s televote results. Terry Wogan, commentating for the UK described the episode as “pathetic.” Wow.

Bulgaria stuns audience with (literally) 
incredible semi-final performance
Bulgaria has only qualified for the semi-final once since its 2009 début. Krassimir Avramov is the personification of why. His song, “Illusion,” wasn’t too bad on CD, but dress yourself as a medieval knight-cum-superhero and add backing singers who look like refugees from “She-Ra,” none of whom can hit a note, and it’s quite a different affair. However, the real pièce de resistance is the man on stilts literally swinging a woman around the stage by her stilts before unceremoniously dropping her on the floor. Priceless. The respectable-looking Russian woman in the audience, hand clasped to mouth aghast at the end, spoke for us all.

Silvía Nótt calls Eurovision legend 
an ‘ugly f***ing old bitch’
Silvía Nótt caused quite a stir (and genuine anger) with her act at the 2006 contest. Having already gravely insulted the host nation, Greece, and then failed to qualify for the final, she ranted at journalists that she had lost out because she was not a “slut from Holland” or an “ugly f***ing old bitch from Sweden.” She was referring to Carola Häggkvist, who won the contest in 1991 and was back in 2006. The irony of the Icelandic humour was lost on many.

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