Tonight is the Finals in the "Unser Star für Oslo 2010" (Our Star for Oslo 2010) televised contest in Germany. The winner will be Germany's entry into the 2010 Eurovision Song Contest being broadcast in May. Among some of the more notable careers that the contest has helped launch are ABBA, who performed Waterloo in 1974 and Céline Dion who performed "Ne partez pas sans moi" in 1988 oddly enough for Switzerland.
Germany is tried of finishing poorly for so long and they do some pretty creative things to win (or at least finish better). One of the first efforts that I'm aware of was that of ProSeiben personality Stefan Raab hosting a contest on one of his shows that resulted in Max Mutzke performing "Can't Wait Until Tonight" for Germany in the 2004 contest (note Max is performing this is song in the video embedded at the top of this post). This year ProSeiben and ARD have been airing a contest to determine who'll represent Germany in the 2010 Eurovision. While there are more and more music casting shows, this is first that is co-hosted on two different networks, with ARD being publicly run no less.
I remember seeing some of the promotion for Max when he was going to perform at Eurovision and getting excited about his song. The song was very catchy and sounded like something that Joe Cocker could have sung very well. I watched the 2004 Eurovision and realized that I had somehow gotten old and out of touch because most of the music being performed didn't appeal to me and I was surprised to see that Max didn't finish near the top. I had kind of written off the whole Eurovision experience off after that.
I didn't see the Unser Star Für Oslo from the beginning but came into it later on. I found it really refreshing that this was focused on people that could really sing and not creating drama and conflict. Clearly most anyone of the candidates could do a good job representing Germany. I've also enjoyed that the jury has not been overly critical, obscene, or uncivilized. Maybe the performances didn't lend themselves to those types of critiques but it has been nice not hearing any below the belt commentary.
Tonight it boils down to who will be representing Germany in Oslo this year, will it be Lena Meyer-Landrut or Jennifer Braun? I don't know if I'll be tuning into Eurovision this year or not, but it sure would be nice to see one of these two women win it. I'm looking forward to hearing some good music tonight.
Friday, March 12, 2010