Monday, March 06, 2006

Severina: The Show Goes On

100,000 telephone votes, many more television viewers and even more column inches later, the Croatian media still isn't tired of Severina or her štikla, which will be going all the way to Athens after her weekend Dora win (the winning performance is now viewable on the HTV website).

Moja štikla has been happily increasing its notoriety for the last six weeks: partly due to who Severina is, partly due to what turbofolk is, and largely due to what newspapers, musicians, and the viewing public are.

Among its opponents is Vlatka Pokos, an unsuccessful competitor in Severina's semi-final on Friday. Vlatka, who had already stated before Dora that she was 'bothered' by the amount of turbofolk, told Večernji list afterwards:

'I just hope that Severina will translate her lovely song into Greek before she goes to Eurovision so that everyone there can also hear what lovely music the Croats are making.'

On the other hand, Tonči Huljić, manager of Jelena Rozga and his own band Magazin, is - publicly, at least - reconciled with Severina's victory:

'This is the best Dora yet and who finally wins isn't at all essential to me. I'm also happy that the singers have finally started to be pushed to the foreground in the media. And the high viewing figures show us that the people [narod] want that sort of culture of mass entertainment and have nothing against it.'

Newspaper columnists are beginning to get in on the act too: Davor Butković in today's Jutarnji list has a fair old time comparing Severina to Lepa Brena, although that isn't anything Seve isn't used to. Zlatko Gall from Slobodna Dalmacija, for one, can almost certainly be expected to come up with another in the next day or two.

(The real Brena has, meanwhile, given a rare Croatian interview to Tena magazine, tangentially related to the Posao snova premiere. Tena, to their credit, managed not to ask her a single thing about Moja štikla.)

Belgrade's Kurir has also joined in, calling the song 'the most stupid lyric in the history of turbo folk' (is this a trick question? But at least it's not My Humps) and replaying the lines-in-Serbian controversy that Kurir itself did much to start in the first place.

Željen Klašterka, one of the five members of the Dora jury, told today's Jutarnji list:

'In Moja štikla, primarily rural elements of folklore from the region of former Yugoslavia are woven together. There is both Montenegrin and Herzegovinan folklore in there. Opponents will say that the eastern [istočnjački] influence is prevailing, and supporters that Herzegovinan folklore is dominant. Personally, I wouldn't class Moja štikla as turbofolk, but in the category of so-called shock songs. I don't think it's inappropriate for Croatia to be represented by that sort of song in Eurovision.'

As usual, of course, some disagree.


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