With the Eurovision Song Contest already enjoying enormous popularity in Greece, Helena Paparizou’s victory in 2005 created the perfect circumstances to organize the show. Under the Greek sun, the 2006 contest took place in Athens!
SEMIFINAL – MAY 18, 2006
The 2006 Eurovision Song Contest Semi-Final brought us the 1000th song to be sung at the Eurovision Song Contest: Ireland’s entry Every Song Is A Cry For Love by Brian Kennedy.
The official logo of the 2006 contest remained the same from 2004 and 2005 with the country’s flag in a heart-shaped form. However, the 2006 sub-logo was based on the Phaistos Disc, which is a popular symbol of ancient Greece. According to ERT, it was “inspired by the wind and the sea, the golden sunlight and the glow of the sand.” Following Istanbul’s Under The Same Sky and Kyi’s Awakening, the motto for the 2006 show was Feel The Rhythm. This theme was also the basis for the postcards for the 2006 show, which emphasized Greece’s historical significance as well as being a modern tourist destination.
23 countries took part in the Semi-Final, covering all musical ranges: from Finnish hard-rock to Albanian ethnic sounds, via Swedish schlager. Contrary to the 2005 Semi-Final, most experts and fans agreed on the songs that went on to the Final, with the only exception being the shocking exit of Belgian star Kate Ryan, who had had a handful of European smash hits before.
Iceland’s diva character Silvia Night had all the cameras zooming in her direction due to her extravagant behaviour, but didn’t qualify either. In interviews, she referred to the Finnish participants as “stars without a real make-up artist” and she accused the Swedish participant of poisoning her. People of the host country certainly did not welcome her rather rude comments about Greeks in general, and she was welcomed on stage with loud boo-ing from the audience.
|01||Armenia||André||Without Your Love||150||07|
|02||Bulgaria||Mariana Popova||Let Me Cry||036||17|
|03||Slovenia||Anej Dean||Mr. Nobody||049||16|
|06||Albania||Luiz Ejlli||Zjarr E Ftohtë||058||15|
|07||Belgium||Kate Ryan||Je T’adore||069||12|
|08||Ireland||Brian Kennedy||Every Song Is A Cry For Love||079||10|
|09||Cyprus||Annet Artani||Why Angels Cry||057||13|
|10||Monaco||Séverine Ferrer||La Coco-dance||014||21|
|11||FYR Macedonia||Elena Risteska||Ninanajna||076||08|
|12||Poland||Ich Troje||Follow My Heart||070||11|
|13||Russia||Dima Bilan||Never Let You Go||217||03|
|15||Ukraine||Tina Karol||Show Me Your Love||146||06|
|16||Finland||Lordi||Hard Rock Hallelujah||292||01|
|18||Lithuania||LT United||We Are The Winners||163||05|
|19||Portugal||Nonstop||Coisas De Nada||026||19|
|21||Estonia||Sandra||Through My Window||028||18|
|22||Bosnia & Herzegovina||Hari Mata Hari||Lejla||267||02|
|24||Serbia & Montenegro||withdrew , but eligible to vote||000||24|
FINAL – MAY 20, 2006
There were lots of discussions in Athens among the media and fans who would be the winner of the 51st Eurovision Song Contest. Sweden, represented by Carola and her song Invincible, was named very often. The singer had already won the Eurovision Song Contest in1991 and wanted to be the second person on earth to win it twice. Another hotly tipped winner was Russian heartthrob Dima Bilan, who had already tried to represent Russia the year before. German group Texas Lightning did well in at the bookmakers with their refreshing pop-country song No No Never, but the song only managed to end up at a disappointing 14th place. Anna Vissi, the Greek pop queen who had already entered the contests of 1980 (for Greece) and 1982 (for Cyprus) had high hopes as well to win the competition with her dramatic performance of Everything.
However, not many experts expected the masked hardrockers Lordi to get the trophy. With their Hard Rock Hallelujah and their performance filled with spectacular pyrotechnical effects, the Finns managed to win the contest with 292 points. Funnily enough, they had the exact same score in the Semi-Final! These 292 points are the highest amount of points ever achieved in a Eurovision Song Contest to date. Lordi went on to have lots of success with their song which made the top 10 in dozens of European charts.
2006 saw some rule changes in the voting of the Eurovision Song Contest Final. Not all points were read out by the national spokespersons any longer as the marks from 1 point till 7 points were automatically beamed onto the screen, and just the three highest votes were still announced by the national spokespersons. The reason for this was that the voting in the previous years seemed too long, and with this rule change, the organizers wanted to streamline the show.
|01||Switzerland||Six4One||If We All Give A Little||030||16|
|02||Moldova||Arsenium & Natalia Gordienko||Loca||022||20|
|03||Israel||Eddie Butler||Ze Hazman||004||23|
|04||Latvia||Cosmos||I Hear Your Heart||030||16|
|06||Spain||Las Ketchup||Bloody Mary||018||21|
|07||Malta||Fabrizio Faniello||I Do||001||24|
|08||Germany||Texas Lightning||No, No, Never||036||14|
|09||Denmark||Sidsel Ben Semmane||Twist Of Love||026||18|
|10||Russia||Dima Bilan||Never Let You Go||248||02|
|11||FYR Macedonia||Elena Risteska||Ninanajna||056||12|
|13||Bosnia & Herzegovina||Hari Mata Hari||Lejla||229||03|
|14||Lithuania||LT United||We Are The Winners||162||06|
|15||Un. Kingdom||Daz Sampson||Teenage Life||025||19|
|17||Finland||Lordi||Hard Rock Hallelujah||292||01|
|18||Ukraine||Tina Karol||Show Me Your Love||145||07|
|19||France||Virginie Pouchin||Il était Temps||005||22|
|21||Ireland||Brian Kennedy||Every Song Is A Cry For Love||093||10|
|24||Armenia||André||Without Your Love||129||08|