With the huge success that was Volare the future of Eurovision looked mighty bright and I’m not sure it was entirely a coincidence that the French picked the fantabulous metropole that is Cannes as the venue for the 1959 edition. The element of show started to rear its head, be it in a rather modest way, and the presentation got a slight personal touch as well. A warm people, the French!
All singers were introduced via a rotating carousel that featured as the stage as well – how dynamic! It’s really old skool but cute to see and already a huge difference compared to 1956. But all credit for the lovely atmosphere must go to the jaunty Jacqueline Joubert who presented the event in Cannes. With her almost naive little comments in between the songs you can’t but feel all fuzzy and fluffy inside when watching this particular Eurovision.
Sure, there were a lot of extremely old fashioned songs among the competing entries – not in the least our own Belgian song which was contained a lot of archaic words and was song in the same fashion by Bob Benny who clearly took himself very seriously. Modugno himself was back with ‘Piove (Ciao, ciao bambina)’, this time including the memorable part of his song in the title without however putting it in the spotlight. The song had vague references to Volare but was never going to even come up to the ankles of its success. A couple of countries made the effort of going a step further than before, by adding som dance moves or simply exploring the world of the up-tempo songs. The first contribution by Monaco was a lovely one, with lyrics that sound rather prophetic if you look at them from a Eurovision point of view instead of Pierrot. Not too shabby, this year!
1 point: Belgium (only Austria was even worse)
2 points: Switzerland
3 points: France
4 points: Italy
5 points: United Kingdom
6 points: Monaco
7 points: Denmark
8 points: Sweden – Augustin
A second and consecutive bronze for Sweden from me and it’s all due to the performance of this rather basic lullaby. Britta Borg is simply genius, looking frank into the camera telling her little story.
10 points: Netherlands – Een Beetje
Entirely relying on the refrain (again) but with a freshness this Contest needed. Teddy Scholten is not the best singer in the world, occasionally droppping one of the high notes but all in all this is sweet enough to capture my attention.
12 points: Germany – Heute Abend wollen wir tanzen geh’n
Unlike many of its competitors this is not just a childish song, it’s got a certain twist. These milkmaid Marilyns serve the right attitude by being completely innocent at first sight but then add a naughty edge to it. In a very 50’s way of course.
Which turns my all time top ten into this:
1 Italy 33
2 Netherlands 32
3 Luxembourg 24
4 Denmark 24
5 Germany 24
6 France 18
7 Belgium 17
8 Switzerland 16
9 Sweden 16
10 United Kingdom 11
Let’s hope this vibe continues!