Today a little bit after 21:00 CET, Svala from Iceland will be ready to perform her song in the Jury Rehearsal of the first semi final. The pressure on her shoulders is enormous, after her country did not qualify the last two years.
Iceland had a massive streak between 2008 and 2014, qualifying for the Eurovision Grand Final seven years in a row. In those years, Yohanna even took them to a second place with her song “Is it true”. However the last few years, the country seems to run out of luck. Maria Olafsson failed to qualify in Vienna and last year, superstar Greta Salomé surprisingly got stuck in the first semi final.
Svala herself is a big name as well. Her career started already at a very young age when she sang songs in commercials. After that, she had a brief hit in the United States and always remained one of the household artists of Icelandic music.
Gísli Marteinn Baldursson: “We all feel like we own a bid of Svala”
With the bookmakers, Svala is in a bad position. Iceland once again is not a certain qualifier for the Grand Final and that adds to the pressure, because the country is counting on her. Big names scoring bad results – it seems a recipe for disaster. In many countries the viewing figures would drop in such a scenario. But not in Iceland, says Baldursson: “We Icelandics know that we are just a small country and that we might never win this thing. That’s why we also support other countries in the competition.”