Jury Darling Carousel denied Markus Riva a ticket to Eurovision

Eurovision 2019 is the year of jury darlings. No less than 9 times this preselection season, a song won without the support of the televoters. ESCDaily introduces them all to you in the build-up to Tel Aviv, moving on with Carousel from Latvia.

On February 16th, Latvia was ready for yet another battle between the boys. Markus Riva vs Edgars Kreilis in the final of Supernova, or so it was framed in local media at least. Would it have been a battle between just these two, Markus Riva would have easily crushed his opponent. However, this was not the case: Carousel won the Latvian ticket to Tel Aviv.

Carousel was the clear favorite from the professional jury, who did not put Markus Riva nor Edgars Kreilis in their top 3. Markus Riva, however, won the public vote. This public vote was a combination of televotes, internet votes, Spotify streams and arena visitors voting. Riva was particularly popular in the arena, and had a huge majority in Spotify streams as well. However, Carousel did better in the online voting and televoting, giving them a second place in the public vote over-all and victory in the over-all ranking.

“That night” (Latvia, Eurovision 2019)

The Latvian Eurovision song is a quiet, jazzy song that looks classy on stage, partly due to the clever use of black and white. Jurors will be tempted to vote for it on the image alone. However, the performance does not only look classy, it sounds that way too. Vocals are solid – though note the relatively low difficulty level – and there is nothing there to really set the Eurovision juries off their game.

Quiet and believable songs can do well in televotes as well. Whether Latvia can make an attempt on this category of votes, will depend on several things. Running order is important, as well as the total composition of the show it participates in. And we still do not know for sure whether the staging from Supernova will remain in tact. The monotone nature of the song, and the draw in the first half of the stronger second semi final, will not be helpful in getting a huge televote.

The alternative: Markus Riva – You make me so crazy

Markus Riva won the public vote in Latvia’s national final. Do you think Latvia should have chosen him instead of Carousel?