Zwei kleine Italiener
|This article does not cite any references or sources. (June 2012)|
|"Zwei kleine Italiener"|
|Eurovision Song Contest 1962 entry|
|◄ "Einmal sehen wir uns wieder" (1961)|
|"Marcel" (1963) ►|
The song was performed seventh on the night, following Sweden's Inger Berggren with "Sol och vår" and preceding the Netherlands' De Spelbrekers with "Katinka". At the close of voting, it had received 9 points, placing 6th in a field of 16.
The song (with lyrics by Georg Buschor and music by Christian Bruhn) is a moderately up-tempo number in the schlager genre, with Froboess describing the plight of two gastarbeiter from Italy who wish to return to their homeland to be with their girlfriends, Tina and Marina. She contrasts this situation with that of the rest of German society (at the time undergoing the Wirtschaftswunder largely as a result of immigrant labour), for whom "a journey to the South is something chic and fine". The two Italians, it seems, despair of ever returning to Naples. This unusual subject matter marks the first time that a social issue was described in a Contest entry.
Despite its middle-of-the-table finish, the song has become a minor favourite among Contest fans. Froboess herself recorded versions of the song in English (as "Gino"), Dutch ("Twee kleine Italianen") and Italian ("Un bacio all'italiana"). Of these, only the Dutch version relates to the same topic. The English version is a love song to a man named Gino, while the Italian version describes her preference for lovers from that country.
The song was also widely covered throughout Europe and the rest of the world in a number of other languages; in Spanish as "Los dos italianitos", in the francophone countries as "Cheveux fous et lèvres roses", in Scandinavia in Danish, Norwegian and Swedish under the title "Tina & Marina" (in Sweden with lyrics by future ABBA manager Stig Anderson), in Finland as "Tina ja Marina" and in the United States Connie Francis subsequently covered Froboess' Italian version of the song, "Un bacio all'italiana".