Kiev 2017: Live-blog Day 7

We are closing off the first week of the Eurovision Song Contest 2017 and so far it has been a blast. Check out what is happening today in Kiev in our special daily live blog.

In the following blog, you can find the latest Eurovision news from Kiev with the newest update appearing on top. For in-depth rehearsal coverage, check our rehearsal blog.

16:43 – End of the liveblog

EBU has not released the tv-footage for Israel yet, but if you stay tuned to their Youtube-channel you will be able to find it there later.

We are going home, but do stay tuned to the website for our round-up articles, reportages & of course a brand new day of Eurovision coverage tomorrow from 9AM CET!

16:37 – TV-footage for Estonia and Lithuania

Check out the Lithuanian and Estonian tv-footage snippets, provided by EBU!

16:33 – Wrapping up the day

This must be the earliest end of a Eurovision Saturday ever. Rehearsal schedule is very different this year from other years, and the Saturday is actually a relatively quiet day this year. The last press conference of the day has already started: Imri Ziv for Israel.

16:26 – Isaiah and Alma meet at the hotel lobby

16:19 – Estonia in press conference

Many questions about the previous participations of the two participants. No less than five former Eurovision participants took part in Eesti Laul this year. Koit & Laura tell the audience that they are very happy to be back this year.

16:01 – End of rehearsals

If you still did not have enough Eurovision for today, then please do check out our country reports about Denmark and The Netherlands today. Later on we will come back with more news, as well as a new episode of Songs in Rewind!

15:51 – Imri worse every runthrough

He started out better, but now every runthrough the high notes become worse and worse. This will be a long struggle.

15:49 – Bulgaria potential winner? See for yourself!

Here’s the EBU’s sneak preview of Kristian Kostov’s performance of next week:

15:35 – Slightly better vocals for Imri Ziv

Imri sings better in the verses. Coming from the pimp slot at the end of this semi final, these slight improvements might just be enough to get him over the line to the final. It must however be said that almost every single high note is still off-key.

15:21 – Laura saves her voice

She does not even attempt to hit the long notes at the end of the performance. For us, this makes it impossible to determine whether she can actually do them properly. Otherwise, vocals are fine in this performance.

15:15 – Belarussian rehearsal in EBU tv-feed snippet:

15:06 – Estonia found their Verona

Camera work improved a lot for Estonia’s second rehearsal. But the main gamechanger is the point at the end of the performance where Koit and Laura now actually come together and hold each other, while the camera swirls around them for quite a long time. Finally some kind of story development.

15:02 – Wind machine won’t save Fusedmarc

14:53 – Naviband play interesting Eurovision medley

No clichées in this medley: Deli (Turkey 2008) and a few other rock songs get acoustic plays at the Naviband press conference.

14:41 – Lithuania does not manage what Germany could

Germany yesterday produced amazing staging for a rather uninspiring song. Lithuania can’t do the same for Fusedmarc. The performance seems to drag on forever.

14:30 – “Much, much better”

Daniel Gould is impressed by Bulgaria’s second rehearsal, claiming the backdrop with rain comes across better and the camera work improved a lot. Gould and his colleagues in the world of professional gambling were all slightly disappointed by Kristian Kostov’s first rehearsal round.

14:15 – Sacha Jean-Baptiste adds distortion to Bulgaria’s act

Kristian Kostov delivers another strong performance of ‘Beautiful Mess’. He now has a black shirt instead of a white shirt under his coat. Artistic director Sacha Jean-Baptiste has added some new shots, including some distortion effects as well. Applause in the press center for the Bulgarian performance, which could perhaps give them another top 5 result at Eurovision.

14:03 – Bulgaria up next

One of the top favorites Kristian Kostov from Bulgaria is up on stage for his second rehearsal in just a few minutes.

13:50 – Armenia and Cyprus hang out

13:32 – Hardly any changes for Belarus

Belarus had their staging concept ready coming into this contest: the white boat combined with the wind turbines. Vocal balance between the two members of Naviband is improved.

13:17 – Timebelle struggles with last few notes

The lead singer stands on a yellow Cascada-like-stage wearing an also yellow dress. The last few notes of the runthroughs were off-key.

Check out the EBU’s tv-feed snippet here.

13:05 – Meanwhile, EBU videos are coming online

You can find full rehearsal videos in our Rehearsal Blog. However, EBU is also releasing official tv-footage snippets. Check them all out:

Ireland – Brendan Murray – Dying to try

San Marino – Valentina Monetta & Jimmie Nelson – Spirit of the night

Norway – JOWST – Grab the moment

13:00 – Björkman reacts to ESC Daily news about Australian preselection

”Right now I lay all my focus on my commitment as the Show and Contest Producer for the ESC in Kiev. It is flattering that Australia has shown an interest and I will talk further with them after the ESC. New Challenges are always exciting.”

He says this to Swedish newspaper Aftonbladet, who picked up on our news article yesterday.

12:46 – D-tails day

Besides Anja Nissen’s dress, there have not been many major changes today. Countries just seem to be working on the last few details of their performances.

12:44 – JOWST have the visuals they want

The hologram visuals during the bridge are now exactly the same as during the national final. There’s also distorted camerawork and a few nice close-ups of the lead singer.

12:37 – OG3NE wants to finetune performance

Check out our country report about OG3NE from The Netherlands:

12:30 – “We are counting you as one person”

The Swedish floor manager tells Jacques Houdek as he walks off the stage: “We are counting you as one person for now, but we’re looking into it.”

12:14 – Croatia adds a rainbow

The end shots of the performance have been changed. Jacques Houdek now has a rainbow projectd behind him. Camera shots and vocals are still slick for a song that might be perceived by many as too kitschy.

11:56 – And this is the official tv-feed for Denmark’s Anja Nissen

Anja Nissen – Where I am (EBU-feed):

11:48 – Skeletons becomes Occidentalis Karma

11:28 – Lunch break

We resume rehearsals with Jacques Houdek from Croatia in about half an hour.

11:17 – Anja Nissen puts the focus on backing vocalists at press conference

She asks her team to introduce themselves. Vibe within the Danish delegation seems to be good.

10:59 – Hungary’s tv-footage available

Joci Pápai – Origo (EBU tv-feed).

10:56 – Falling flat

San Marino’s first rehearsal was well received in the press center – albeit with some ironic laughter. Today, no reaction at all. It might be because the kitsch alone is not enough to maintain the attention. The performance falls flat after a while.

10:51 – Check out Anja Nissen’s dress

10:47 – Vocals, but no chemistry

Jimmie Wilson is a strong vocalist in San Marino’s second rehearsal and Valentina Monetta also sounds solid. But the duet is not believable as a couple and does not have the chemistry needed to lift this mediocre song.

10:25 – Ireland still struggling to impress

The squeeky vocals of Brendan still fail to impress, even though his attitude has improved a lot. Brendan is now looking more secure and safe on the stage in his hot air balloon. But WHY is there a hot air balloon on stage, what has it go to do with the song? This is not coming across well at all.

10:10 – OG3NE still not fully satisfied

“We are almost, almost there now,” the girls say at their press conference. “But we will continue practicing in our hotel.” Their exclusive rehearsal footage is also out there:

09:52 – Anja Nissen wears a “new” red dress

This looks a lot more like the red dress from the national final. She told us earlier this week that “slight alterations” would be made, but this looks like a new dress completely. Vocals are still great, and should bring Anja to the final.

09:45 – Drums in use

During the first rehearsal there were no shots of Joci playing the drums – now they’ve included them.

09:31 – Joci struggles to bring emotion across

The Hungarian rehearsal is well-prepared and in terms of musical and vocal quality this entry has everything it needs. There’s just the doubt about Joci’s appearance on stage – will he be relatable enough to bring the emotion across?

09:27 – Positive vibes on the big Australian news from yesterday

09:22 – Check out the rehearsal from The Netherlands

09:10 – No ‘morning vocals’ for OG3NE

Their vocals are their biggest quality and also in this early Saturday morning Lisa, Amy and Shelley are slaying their song ‘Lights and Shadows’. Some new camera angles at the opening of their song. Strong and solid performance and like this a contender for top-10 in the Grand Final.

08:50 – We drank our Daily Coffee

In the next episode of our daily podcast Daily Coffee, we looked back on the rehearsals of the big 5 and ahead on the day to come. Brandon McCann and Steef van Gorkum from ESC Daily express which nation surprised them most.

08:40 – Waiting for The Netherlands

We are waiting for the first rehearsal of the day to begin, it is OG3NE from The Netherlands! In the meantime, we will now record our podcast the ESC Daily Show.

08:00 – The schedule for day seven

After two very, very busy days, today all is a bit more clear. The remeaning countries of the second semi final return for the second rehearsals. Here is the full schedule for today. Please note that these are the local times in Ukraine, which are CET+1.