Eurovision Song Contest 1996
|Eurovision Song Contest 1996|
|Final||18 May 1996|
|Executive supervisor||Christine Marchal-Ortiz|
|Executive producer||Odd Arvid Strømstad|
|Host broadcaster||Norsk rikskringkasting (NRK)|
|Opening act||"Heaven's Not For Saints" performed by Morten Harket|
|Interval act||Nils Gaup & Runar Borge feat. Aamil Paus-Beacon Burning|
|Number of entries||23|
|Voting system||Each country awarded 12, 10, 8-1 point(s) to their 10 favourite songs|
|Winning song|| Ireland
The Eurovision Song Contest 1996 was the 41st Eurovision Song Contest and was held on 18 May 1996 in Oslo Spektrum in Oslo, Norway. The presenters were Ingvild Bryn and Morten Harket. Harket, lead singer of a-ha, opened the show with a performance of his single "Heaven's Not for Saints". Twenty-three countries participated in the contest, with Eimear Quinn of Ireland crowned the winner after the final voting, with the song, "The Voice". The song was written by Brendan Graham, who also composed the 1994 winner "Rock 'n' Roll Kids". It was also a record seventh win for Ireland and the most recent win of Ireland.
A non-televised audio-only pre-qualification round was organised by the European Broadcasting Union (EBU), in order to shortlist the number of participating nations that would compete in the televised final from twenty-nine, to a more manageable twenty-three. Germany, Israel, Denmark, Hungary, Russia, Macedonia, and Romania all failed to qualify. Macedonia eventually went on to make their debut in 1998. The 1996 contest remains the only Eurovision without a German entry.
The European Broadcasting Union continued to experiment in their efforts to find a broadly acceptable method of whittling down the large number of potential participating countries to a more realistic figure. This year, they reverted to the pre-qualifying round that had been used for the 1993, but this time with just one country exempt from the process - the host Norway. The audio-only pre-qualification round, which was never televised, was used by the EBU in order to shortlist the number of participating nations that would compete in the televised final. With exception to the hosts Norway, audio entries from twenty-nine countries were played to national juries, of which only twenty-two proceeded to the televised final in Oslo. Germany, Israel, Denmark, Hungary, Russia, Macedonia, and Romania all failed to qualify. As a result, Macedonia's submission was never classified as a debut entry by the EBU, the nation eventually went on to make their official televised debut in 1998.
It rapidly became evident that this system was no more sustainable than any other the EBU had tried, as it meant that several countries had gone through their traditional full-blown national selection procedure to come up with an entry, only to suffer the anti-climax of having their challenge quietly extinguished without even having had the opportunity of presenting the song to an international audience. As a leading financial contributor to the contest, Germany were particularly aggrieved that their entry, the techno song "Planet of Blue" performed by Leon, was one of the seven cast aside. It was the only year in the history of the ESC in which Germany did not participate in the final.
The 1996 contest also featured two novelties — which similarly failed to become a tradition — firstly a short 'good luck message' for each entry, recorded by a political leader or official from their country. The seniority of the figure who delivered the message varied wildly from country to country, ranging from Presidents and Prime Ministers on one end of the spectrum to junior ministers or ambassadors on the other, but a few very significant European political figures did appear, including long-serving Swedish premier Göran Persson and President Alija Izetbegović of Bosnia and Herzegovina. But of course the only good luck wish that was fully rewarded in the end was that of Irish Taoiseach John Bruton, who introduced the song that took his country to a fourth win in five years.
Secondly, the voting section was conducted using "blue screen" virtual reality technology provided by Silicon Graphics. The host Ingvild Bryn introduced the viewers to the 'blue room', upon which a 3D scoreboard, views of the green room, the jury spokespersons and country graphics appeared. The only physical aspects were Ingvild herself and two podiums. For the first time in the Eurovision history, during the voting a spokesperson came to stage (exactly the blue room) down next to Ingvild: the Norwegian one, Ragnhild Sælthun Fjørtoft.
|Elisabeth Andreassen||Norway||1982 (for Sweden, part of Chips)
1985 (part of Bobbysocks!, winner)
1994 (in duet with Jan Werner Danielsen)
Countries listed below submitted entries for the audio-only pre-qualification round, which was never televised, and was used by the EBU in order to shortlist the number of participating nations that would compete in the televised final. Despite a submitted entry from Macedonia, it was never classified as an official debut entry, although the nation would eventually make their official televised debut in 1998.
Each country had a jury that awarded 12, 10, 8, 7, 6, 5, 4, 3, 2, 1 point(s) for their top ten songs. One year later, televoting would be introduced in only some countries, such as Sweden and the United Kingdom. When Belén Fernández de Henestrosa, the Spanish spokesperson, announced the votes of the Spanish jury, she awarded two points to "Czechoslovakia" (while meaning 'Slovakia'). Furthermore, she awarded six points to "Holland" (the Netherlands), which host Ingvild Byrn misheard as "Poland." The official results table corrected this error, and the Netherlands' seventh-place result was restored at the expense of the United Kingdom, who ultimately finished eighth. Because originally Poland awarded six points from Spain, Greece was placed 14th over Poland after the official results table corrected this error. Norway's entry, "I evighet", is notable for being the only runner-up not to receive a single "12 points" score in a Eurovision final since the current voting method was introduced in 1975.
|Bosnia and Herzegovina||13||6||3||3||1|
Below is a summary of all 12 point in the final:
|7||Ireland||Bosnia and Herzegovina, Estonia, Netherlands, Poland, Slovenia, Switzerland, Turkey|
|3||Estonia||Finland, Iceland, Sweden|
|Cyprus||Greece, United Kingdom|
|United Kingdom||Belgium, Portugal|
Good luck wishes
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In 1996 all contestants were wished good luck by a politician from their own country in their own language. Those wishes were shown right before their performance. This was the only year in Eurovision with such wishes. These are the people who wished their country's participant good luck (language in parentheses):
- Turkey - Süleyman Demirel, President of Turkey (Turkish)
- United Kingdom - Virginia Bottomley, UK Secretary of State for National Heritage (English)
- Spain - Don Alberto Escudero Claramunt, Spanish ambassador (Spanish)
- Portugal - António Guterres, Prime Minister of Portugal (Portuguese)
- Cyprus - Glafkos Klerides, President of Cyprus (Greek)
- Malta - Edward Fenech Adami, Prime Minister of Malta (Maltese)
- Croatia - Zlatko Mateša, Prime Minister of Croatia (Croatian)
- Austria - Elisabeth Gehrer, Federal Minister of Education, Science and Culture of Austria (German)
- Switzerland - Michel Coquoz, Swiss Chargé d'affaires (French)
- Greece - Caterína Dimaki, Greek Chargé d'affaires (Greek)
- Estonia - Tiit Vähi, Prime Minister of Estonia (Estonian)
- Norway - Gro Harlem Brundtland, Prime Minister of Norway (Norwegian)
- France - Philippe Douste-Blazy, Minister of Culture of France (French)
- Slovenia - Milan Kučan, President of Slovenia (Slovene)
- Netherlands - Aad Nuis, State Secretary of Education, Culture and Science of the Netherlands (Dutch)
- Belgium - Luc Van den Brande, Prime Minister of Flanders (Dutch)
- Ireland - John Bruton, Taoiseach (Prime Minister of Ireland) (English)
- Finland - Riitta Uosukainen, Speaker of Parliament of Finland (Finnish)
- Iceland - Davíð Oddsson, Prime Minister of Iceland (Icelandic)
- Poland - Aleksander Kwaśniewski, President of Poland (Polish)
- Bosnia and Herzegovina - Alija Izetbegović, Chairmen of the Presidency of Bosnia and Herzegovina (Bosnian)
- Slovakia - Vladimír Mečiar, Prime Minister of Slovakia (Slovak)
- Sweden - Göran Persson, Prime Minister of Sweden (Swedish)
International broadcasts and voting
Voting and spokespersons
The order in which each country announced their votes was determined by order of performance in the contest. The spokespersons are shown alongside each country.
- Turkey - Ömer Önder
- United Kingdom - Colin Berry
- Spain - Belén Fernández de Henestrosa
- Portugal - Cristina Rocha
- Cyprus - Marios Skordis
- Malta - Ruth Amaira
- Croatia - Danijela Trbović
- Austria - Martina Rupp
- Switzerland - Yves Ménestrier
- Greece - Niki Venega
- Estonia - Annika Talvik
- Norway - Ragnhild Sælthun Fjørtoft
- France - Laurent Broomhead
- Slovenia - Mario Galunič
- Netherlands - Marcha (Dutch representative in 1987)
- Belgium - Anne Ploegaerts
- Ireland - Eileen Dunne
- Finland - Solveig Herlin
- Iceland - Svanhildur Konráðsdóttir
- Poland - Jan Chojnacki
- Bosnia and Herzegovina - Segmedina Srna
- Slovakia - Alena Heribanová
- Sweden - Ulla Rundquist
- Austria - Ernst Grissemann (ORF1); Stermann & Grissemann (FM4)
- Belgium - Michel Follet & Johan Verstreken (BRTN TV1), Jean-Pierre Hautier & Sandra Kim (RTBF La Une); Julien Put (BRTN Radio 2), Alain Gerlache & Adrien Joveneau (RTBF La Première)
- Bosnia and Herzegovina - Suad Bejtović (BHT)
- Croatia - Aleksandar "Aco" Kostadinov (HRT 2); Draginja Balaš (HR 2)
- Cyprus - Evi Papamichail (RIK 1); Pavlos Pavlou (CyBC Radio 2)
- Denmark (non participating country) - Jørgen de Mylius (DR TV); Camilla Miehe-Renard (DR P3)
- Estonia - Jüri Pihel (Eesti Televisioon); Marko Reikop (Raadio 2)
- Finland - Erkki Pohjanheimo & Sanna Kojo (YLE TV1); Aki Sirkesalo & Kati Bergman (Yle Radio Suomi)
- France - Olivier Minne (France 2); Laurent Boyer (France Inter)
- Germany (non participating country) - Ulf Ansorge (Das Erste (relayed)/ WDR (live) / N3 (live)); Thomas Mohr(Deutschlandfunk/NDR 2)
- Greece - Dafni Bokota (ET1); Giorgos Mitropoulos (ERA ERT1)
- Hungary (non participating country) - István Vágó (MTV2)
- Iceland - Jakob Frímann Magnússon (Sjónvarpið); Jakob Frímann Magnússon
- Ireland - Pat Kenny (RTÉ One); Larry Gogan (RTÉ Radio 1)
- Israel (non participating country) - No commentator
- Macedonia (non participating country) - Vlado Janevski (MTV 1)
- Malta - Charles Saliba (TVM)
- Netherlands - Willem van Beusekom (Nederland 1); Hijlco Span (Radio 2)
- Norway - Jostein Pedersen (NRK1); Andreas Diesen (NRK P1)
- Poland - Dorota Osman (TVP1)
- Portugal - Maria Margarida Gaspar (RTP1)
- Russia (non participating country) - Vadim Dolgachev (RTR)
- Slovakia - Stanislav Ščepán (STV1)
- Slovenia - Miša Molk (SLO1)
- Spain - José Luis Uribarri (TVE1)
- Sweden - Björn Kjellman (SVT1), Claes-Johan Larsson and Lisa Syrén (SR P3)
- Switzerland - Sandra Studer (SF DRS), Pierre Grandjean (TSR), Joanne Holder (TSI)
- Turkey - Bülend Özveren (TRT 1); Ümit Tunçağ (TRT Radyo 3)
- United Kingdom - Terry Wogan (BBC1); Ken Bruce (BBC Radio 2)
- Yugoslavia (non participating country) - Mladen Popović (RTS2) (one day later)
National jury members
- United Kingdom – James Cohen, Kevin Pilley
- Spain – Montserrat Marial (businesswoman), Juan Diego Arranz (psychologist and teacher), Elvira Quintillá (actress), Álvaro de Luna (actor), Mónica Pont (actress), Mikel Herzog (singer, future Spanish entrant in the Eurovision Song Contest 1998), María Mayor (model), José María Purón (composer), Anabel Conde (singer, Spanish entrant in the Eurovision Song Contest 1995), José Sancho (actor), Asunción Embuena (TV hostess), Pedro Bermúdez "Azuquita" (singer), Adriana Vega (actress), Antonio Pinilla (student), Mabel Alfonso (singer and composer), Manuel Redondo (make-up artist and gemologist)
- Malta – Adrian Muscat Inglott
- Croatia – Ksenija Urličić
- Greece – Agni Hatzikotaki, Antonis Papaioannou, Litsa Sakellariou, Giannis Dimitras, Andreas Hatziapostolou, Spiros Papavasiliou, Stamatis Mazaris, Nikos Tsolakis, Artemi Plessa, Sofia-Marina Athanasiou, Eleni-Zina Bilisi, Sokratis Rousopoulos, Kiriaki Tzekou, Nikolaos Papanikolaou, Ioannis Trahanas, Panagiota Kesari
- Estonia – Urmas Lattikas (Estonian conductor in the Eurovision Song Contest 1994)
- Netherlands – Coot van Doesburgh, Frank Wetsteyn, Miron Komarnicki, Bart de Wit
- Iceland – Paul Oscar (future Icelandic entrant in the Eurovision Song Contest 1997)
- Poland – Justyna (Polish entrant in the Eurovision Song Contest 1995, Kayah, Grzegorz Ciechowski, Ewa Bem
- Bosnia and Herzegovina – Ismeta Krvavac, Dijana Grković-Foretić
- Slovakia – Helena Krajčiová, Martin Hudec, Dana Gavaľová, Radovan Slaninka, Dagmar Livorová, Juraj Žák, Daniel Kucej, Štefan Baksa, Eva Tunegová, Pavol Zajaček, Terézia Vojtková, Mária Puškárová, Marta Kružíková, Jozef Ďurďina, Beáta Hanulíková, Anton Vranka
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