Lithuania’s Eurovision marathon Eurovizijos Atranka started last weekend. It was won by Ieva Zasimauskaitė and the song “When We’re Old”, and apart from her, five other acts have made it to the next stage of the show. However, after seeing the very first heat of this preselection, Erica Jennings who was supposed to take part in the competition as well, withdrew!
Erica Jennings who already represented Lithuania in Eurovision back in 2001 as the singer of Skamp, and finished in 13th place, has made an official statement on her Facebook page in regards to her withdrawal:
I’ve been mulling it over in my head for a while. Yes I do have a great song – in my humble, but experienced opinion. “The Truth” means a great deal to me. I wrote it while I was still pregnant with my daughter who’s now just turned 7 months. It’s a big song and yes it’s perfect for Eurovision. If I didn’t feel that way about my song I wouldn’t have wanted to take part in the first place.
But I’ve decided to pull out. And I’ll tell you honestly why. I simply don’t want to jump through all those hoops again. I am an established singer. I’ve been to eurovision already, with my own song and we did pretty well as I recall. And so the idea of having to, once again, be in that almost “school girl” position of having to stand there, listening to a commission, after performing my heart out is simply cringeworthy. And with all due respect, most of them are less experienced than me in these particular topics of Eurovision, singing and songwriting. I’m fine with there being a panel in general. I’ve been on commissions myself. But I honestly believe the format should be reconsidered with all due respect to everyone involved.
Just scrolling down fb after the tv show has aired, you see all these so called “experts” complimenting themselves on how they got rid of the “rubbish” and didn’t “hold back”, patting each other on the back and massaging their egos. When most of them have never a) written a song b) written a hit or c) been anywhere near performing at Eurovision. I mean I’m just amazed at their gall.
When I went to Eurovision, there was a commission then too but their verdict was decided off camera. You performed and that was it. I get it – it’s tv and ratings and I’m fine with that too. It’s just this particular format, is not for me. I would suggest that perhaps they consider making some changes for the future.
And I hope that those on the commission this year will appreciate their position and behave accordingly. Constructive criticism, empathy and compassion. It’s not what you say but how you say it. If someone would like to try with “The Truth”, let me know.
Lastly, I wish everyone taking part this year the very very very best of luck!!!
The second heat of Eurovizijos Atranka will be hosted this coming weekend.