Monday, March 05, 2007

Dora 2007: The Votes Are In

So it's Dragonfly and Dado Topić to represent Croatia at Eurovision in Helsinki: an uncontroversial enough choice, although Topić's intention to sing entirely in English might have been unthinkable a few years ago.

One really can't find much fault with T-Portal's assessment of the result: 'If Eurovision were a football tournament, we'd all agree that the manager had chosen a defensive formation with few ambitions to attack.' That sounds awfully like several years of England teams at the turn of the decade, and we know what happened to them, although with Eurovision's current ethno-schlager reputation, you could see the Topić-Dragonfly combination as a bravely experimental selection (a la Terry Venables' famous 'Christmas tree') which will either carry the team to the final or knock them out in the group stage. (At least there aren't any penalty shoot-outs in Eurovision for them to lose.)

The biggest disagreement between this year's Dora jury and the audience was (as ever?) in the field of what (not) to do with folk music. Podravina ethno-musician Miroslav Evačić (featuring vocals from Istria's Livio Morosin) took high marks from the jury but hardly anything from the telephone vote; the opposite happened to Klapa Maslina, performers of the pop-Dalmatian mega-hit Da ti mogu pismom zvati, even though they can't have got many votes from the public in Slavonia.

Various competitors would have been forgiven for feeling slightly aggrieved on Saturday night: Ivana Radovniković, who was placed into the same semi-final as Feminnem despite their both appearing with a big-band song and Charlestonesque choreography; Jelena Rozga, whose romantic ballad might have benefited from minimalist Lane moje-type staging rather than the fairytale cast it ended up with; and Danijela Pintarić, whose well-placed performance of Moj svijet recalled Croatia's string of top-ten Eurovision results from the mid-90s - but who entered the competition as a reserve entry too late for the song to be included on the official Dora CD.

Indeed, there's already an internet petition to send Pintarić to Eurovision instead - although somehow, unlike last year, it's probably not going to be talk-show material.

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