Ukraine won the Eurovision Song Contest for the third time in its history, at the Pala Olimpico in Turin (Italy), in a crowded house of 15,000 enthusiasts. The country was a favorite of bettors.
Translated by Kalush’s orchestra, the song “Stefania”, which blends hip-hop and traditional ballad, won acclaim from the jury but especially the television audience. “I will always find my way home, even if I destroy all the roads,” says the lyrics to songs written before the Russian invasion.
The UK moved up to number two, with “Space Man” by Sam Ryder. The artist became famous for his songs, which were broadcast on video during confinement. He has since released an EP. Stratospheric popularity of those who sing “I’m in space, man!” »
The spark of “Volin” did not take
France finished 24th with “Fulenn”, an electro song sung entirely by the Breton group Alvan & Ahez. A true UFO performance at Britton, although welcomed internationally, wasn’t enough for the trio’s podium.
The French quartet bet on a feminist song, inspired by the legend of a woman dancing with the devil. The spark of “Volyn” did not last. Was it the fault of the storm that rained down the streets of Turin the day before the final? In the original legend, the heroine dies of exhaustion … an evil omen. But, despite the disappointing result, we cannot exclude from Alvin and Ayse the achievement of reviving Breton culture in front of hundreds of millions of viewers.
The day before saw the “pride” of designer Pascal Guin, whose daughters at the Diwan School were like singers Alfan and Ahiz. Embroiderer Quimper came with his family to pay homage to those who created their theatrical apparel.
The last French victory dates back to 1977, with the performance of Marie-Miriam “The Bird and the Child”. In 2021, singer Barbara Bravy almost won, taking second place.
Saturday night’s Grand Final brought 25 nations on stage at the Pala Olympique in Turin, with over 200 million spectators.
He left early?
Alvan & Ahez came in sixth, behind Swiss Marius Bear (“Boys do cry”), but ahead of Norwegian duo Subwoofer and “Give that wolf a banana”. French fans who learned the news on Friday morning criticized the stance, which is partly due to the lottery and partly to Rai’s decisions. I’d rather be in the last five for the sake of showing the morale…and the public vote. Ukraine, passed in twelfth place.
However, Breton’s performance showed a good mastery of the stage, which in recent days rehearsals were able to confirm.
Fans who couldn’t get a theater ticket found themselves in front of the screen of bars around Central Station, or in the bustling village of Eurovillage near the banks of the Po River. Besides the tricolor flags, Gwen Ha Doo floated in the middle of the crowd. The Bretons made a trip to support the country’s children…
Throughout the show, Ukraine has benefited from a strong sympathy capital as well as its song of undeniable quality. In the discussions among fans in the arenas of Turin, the war occupied a good place for several days. While the siege of the Azovstal factory in Mariupol continued, no one could forget that the performers of the Kalush orchestra were specially exempted from the military mobilization to wear their colors in Italy. Nor that Russia, as well as Belarus, stakeholders in the aggression against Ukraine, have been excluded from competitions this year.
Amid the crowd in the front yard of the Olympic Stadium, many asked to take a selfie with anyone carrying the Ukrainian flag. Like these two blonde women a little far from the hustle and bustle: “I came to join my daughter who was living in Italy when war broke out in my Donbass, in 2014,,” Larisa Ochkarska testifies, with a bleak look, in hesitant English. “Yes, this Eurovision is very special to us,” she adds, clenching her fist at the banner that covers her shoulders.