Throwback to Copenhagen – Eurovision 2014

Most of the iconic performances on the Eurovision stage were probably remembered due to the performers’ outfits, a remarkable staging or perhaps an on-stage scandal. Yet, some other performances are remembered for being simple but on point. The latter was the case for Emmelie de Forest. A girl with a simple overall look, a stage with hardly any effects but with a great song. This combination got her the Eurovision victory and got Denmark its third hosting of the Eurovision Song Contest.

Five cities applied to host the contest that year: Aalborg, Copenhagen, Frederica, Herning and Horsens. Each of the cities offered one potential venue to host the contest except for Copenhagen who offered three. It was later announced that Copenhagen will be the host city and that the B&W Hallerne will serve as the venue. The venue itself was refurbished for it to be able to accommodate the contest. Additionally, the surrounding of the venue was transformed into an “Olympic park” and it housed the venue as well as the press centre and some other functions. To host the live shows, national broadcaster DR chose three hosts: Lise Ronne, Nikolaj Koppel and Pilou Asbaek. The logo of the contest was the shape of a diamond with the slogan of the contest being #JoinUs. The logo changed from performance to another with the country’s flag appearing in it before the performance. That year’s edition was at the time the second most expensive production after Baku in 2012 who got to be so due to the building of a venue for the contest. The costs of this edition were three times higher than the costs of the previous edition in Malmo.

With three countries less than 2013, the contest in Copenhagen had 36 countries competing. This was due to the withdrawal of Serbia, Cyprus, Bulgaria and Croatia and the return of Portugal and Poland. Yet, it was the participation of Austria which was seen by many as scandalous. This due to the fact the Austrian representative Conchita Wurst being a drag queen who looks like a bearded lady. The participation of the latter was so scandalous to some it reached a point where some countries threatened to withdraw due to her participation. Eventually, no countries withdrew. On the other hand, Turkey who was then absent for the second year in a row used her participation as a reason not to come back to the contest. A surprising participation that year came on behalf of Australia. Although the country didn’t compete due to it not being eligible to do so back then, Australian singer Jessica Mauboy performed “Sea of Flags” as the interval act in the second Semi-Final.

Like all previous editions of the contest, this edition saw the return of multiple artists as well. Valentina Monetta would come back for the third time in a row to the contest. This record made Monetta the fourth artist to perform on the Eurovision stage three times in a row after Lys Assia, Corry Brokken and Udo Jurgens. After getting to the third place in 2010, Paula Seling and Ovi came back to represent Romania once again. Tamara Todevska who represented FYR Macedonia (nowadays North Macedonia) came back as a backing vocalist for her sister Tijana Dapcevic. After representing Slovenia in 2009, Martina Majerle returned to the contest as a backing vocalist for Montenegro. Majerle herself was the backing vocalist on numerous occasions for Croatia, Slovenia and Montenegro. The Tolmachevy sisters who formerly won the Junior Eurovision Song Contest in 2006 for Russia, represented their country on stage in Copenhagen.

Due to a lower participation rate than in former editions, the Semi-Finals were shorter than usual with 16 countries competing in the first Semi-Final and 15 in the second one. Both San Marino and Montenegro will qualify for the first time to the Grand Final. Switzerland qualified for the first time since 2006. Returning Portugal failed to qualify with a margin of 1 point between her and San Marino. Estonia who came 12th in the same Semi-Final lacked 4 points to tie with San Marino.

The Grand Final that year had numerous memorable moments: Azerbaijan finished 22nd at the end of the voting sequence. This was the first time Azerbaijan wasn’t in the top 10 since their debut in 2008. Although being in the top 10 in every contest since 2004, in exception of 2012, Greece finished 20th. That result was Greece’s worst-ever result in the contest and the second time they reached it. Returning duo Paula Seling and Ovi failed to restore their success from 2010 and finished 12th. Although it gained the same amount of points as host country Denmark, Spain will enter the top 10 once again. France got its lowest ranking in the contest’s history as it came last with only 2 points. This isn’t only the lowest ranking for France but also the first time the country came last in the contest. The Netherlands will get to the second position. This will be their first Top 5 ranking since 1998. Hungary who came 5th in the Grand Final got its highest ranking since 1994 where it came 4th. Following the disqualification of the Georgian jury due to an identical Top 8 from all Georgian jury members, Georgia used 100% televoting in order to get their results. This was the only country who used 100% televoting. On the other hand, both Albania and San Marino used jury voting only in order to get their results.

But the moment which is best remembered from that contest was surely the early annunciation of the winner. After the Ukrainian vote were given the host Nikolaj Koppel stopped the voting announcing Austria as the winner of the contest for 2014. This was possible as with only 3 countries left to give their voting and with the margin between Austria and runner-up The Netherlands being lower than 36 points, a scenario of any other country but Austria winning the contest was no longer possible. The voting itself went on afterwards and Austria ended up having 290 points as the final result.

Watch the voting session here:

In case you want to experience the contest once again, you can watch the Grand Final here:

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