Live: Wer singt Für Österreich? Austria decides tonight

This evening is the finale in Austria’s selection Wer singt Für Österreich?, where the host nation will finally choose their representative for Vienna. But who will succeed Conchita Wurst’s champion entry in 2014? The pressure on broadcaster ORF for that decision is high. Find out tonight!

The preselection this year consisted of 20 shortlisted entries, from which only 6 advanced from the first show. Last week, those chosen 6 presented a total of 12 (2 each) potential Eurovision entries, and the jury decided upon one song for each to compete in the final.

There will be two rounds of voting. In the first, a jury comprised of members from 10 different countries will choose only two to qualify for a superfinal – in which the Austrian televoting public will choose the winner.

As usual, you can follow with us here and watch, here, beginning at 20:15 CET!

The lineup goes like so:

  1. Folkshilfe –Who You Are
  2. Zoe – Quel Filou
  3. Dawa – Feel Alive
  4. Celina Ann –Utopia
  5. Johan Sebastian Bass –Absolutio
  6. The Makemakes – I Am Yours

Follow our commentary below – newest updates appear at the top!

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Thank you so much for following with us this year! We hope you’ve enjoyed the show – and commentary – and we’ll see you and The Makemakes in Vienna!

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22:34 – Final Results!

And THE MAKEMAKES win Wer singt Für Österreich? with the song I Am Yours

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22:28 – Interval

Conchita is finally on the stage – “the Queen of Europe”, as host Mirjam describes her – with We are Unstoppable.

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22:26 – 6 minutes to vote

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22:23 – The two superfinalists are Dawa and The Makemakes – just a tad confused how Zoe did not qualify, having almost unanimously been voted through by the international jury with The Makemakes.

But the major question now is: which has won the televote?

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22:20 – The full Austrian Jury Results are:

5 Celina Ann

6 Johan Sebastian Bass

7 Folkshilfe

8 Zoe

10 Dawa

12 The Makemakes

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22:03 – The voting is over / International Jury Results

First up is Latvia, giving their 10 points to Dawa and 12 points to Zoe

France now gives 10 points to Zoe and 12 points to The Makemakes

Special guest to the competition this year Australia gives 10 points to Dawa and 12 point to The Makemakes

Fourth to vote is The Netherlands, giving 10 points to The Makemakes and 12 go to Zoe

Spain gives their 10 points Zoe to and 12 to The Makemakes

* As it stands halfway through, it seems the final televoting decision will come down to Zoe and The Makemakes

Israel now award The Makemakes with 10 points and Zoe with 12

Up next is UK dishing out 10 points to The Makemakes and 12 to Folkshilfe – shaking it up a bit!

Eight to give their vote is Germany with 10 to Zoe and 12 points to The Makemakes

Slovenia gives their 10 points to The Makemakes and Zoe gets their 12

Last up in the international jury is Italy, giving the final 10 points to Zoe and 12 points to The Makemakes

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21:56 – And we’re back!/Interval

After another recap and a few words from the host, the contestants again take the stage together. Zoe and Celina begin singing in French, Merci Chérie, while an old film of a performance plays in the background. Slowly the members of Dawa, Folkshilfe, Johan Seb Bass and the Makemakes join them on stage.

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21:53 – The break is almost over.

But for now, the 10 international jury members are going to be from: Australia, Italy, Spain, the UK, Germany, France, Slovenia, Israel, the Netherlands and Latvia.

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21:44 – Quick break for some adds! And a short ‘newsflash’, apparently. Hold tight.

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21:35 – Jury Voting

It’s time for the international jury to give in their votes to determine who the two superfinalists will be. After that, the two will go head to head for the televote, and we will then have the next representative for Austria.

In the meantime, it’s a quick recap of the evening. Followed by a peak into some of the songs that have been chosen so far for other nations.

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21:24 – The Makemakes – I Am Yours

The Makemakes are last up tonight, closing out the performances. Their entry is a stellar thing with their lead man on piano. It’s a soft ballad composition, compared to their usual old-school rock, with an easy, soaring melody. It has a true timeless feel, with polished, crooning vocals that just hang in the air with falsetto accents. The emotion strongly comes through in what is definitely the best we’ve heard from them in the competition. The chorus is catchy and a very easy tune to sing a long with, a bit simple, harmonized just slightly by backing vocals. It sort of screams a late ’70-early 80’s Billy Joel vibe. A huge cheer from the crowd.

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21:13 – Johan Sebastian Bass –Absolutio

This trio provide the spectacle to the competition this year, with their classical musician garb and unique style. Absolutio is accented with operatic female voices and an upbeat melody that is somewhat timeless in a classical bass kind of way. One thing they always use in performance is a talkbox that adds the distinct synth vocal to the chorus. Together with multiple keyboard electronics and steady pop/dance composition, there is a little swing to the sound, and of course drama in the presentation. Still, this song is not as strong as we’ve heard them in the past – and tonight they lack just a bit of their normal energy – concentrating on a more reserved delivery.

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21:01 – Celina Ann –Utopia

Halfway through, Celina has an incredibly powerful voice. Her chosen song is an upbeat pop number that shows her attitude – but it’s classy rather than in your face, due to the lower register. Possibly a modern ballad, it rather straddles the line between that and anthem. But the lyrics remain sassy and her vocals are fairly good this evening; Celina can belt the lyrics without overdoing it. The backing vocals are minimal, and the piano grows with the bass. It’s a nice composition, but not huge. Tonight to her performance they’ve added some fans to blow around these silky fabric sheets that give an interesting dimension to the song’s meaning.

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20:50 – Dawa – Feel Alive

Third up tonight is Dawa. The song that was chosen for them last week is based in a quick cello tempo with small glockenspiel-chime embellishments. It’s less folk and more alternative indie-pop ballad style, but even so. They’ve lost their usual accordion element, making it a softer composition that builds lightly. It’s a sweet melody and lyric, made for a summer nights spent in the country. The sounds all mix extremely well and the vocals are, as usual, emotionally anchored in a rough delivery that is very singer-songwriter. They’ve spaced out their performance this evening in a smoky, blue fog, enabling better camera angles – versus the line they usually stand in center stage.

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20:39 – Zoe – Quel Filou

Zoe took her second song French last week, and quite traditional too. But for tonight, she has made a tactical choice to translate the lyrics into English, all except some chorus lines. It loses just a tiny bit of the intrigue and energy through translation, but it’s still a nice mix. Some cello holds up the bass with fiddle accents and a 1920’s style melody and tonight she wears a golden flapper dress to ad to the image. It’s a bit club-ish in that old fashioned way – a sassy vocal and quietly suggestive atmosphere with breathy backing vocals. The quick-tempo guitar strumming makes up the bulk of the music with a folky French flair.

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20:28 – Folkshilfe –Who You Are

This group of guys has been a fun bunch through the contest, bringing a certain energy to everything they do. They kick off the performances with a feel-good song that samples a couple different  languages, with a clever English chorus, centered around a virtually untranslatable phrase “amoi so”. It’s an incredibly popular sound, a little mid-2000’s, as the melody is catchy, falling and rising with ease. The harmony is just a bit off tonight, which is unusual for them. But the tune remains happy and the accordion brings a little something extra and the percussion keeps the energy afloat, embodying the “be who you are” message. “Thank you. Gracias. Merci.”

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20:20 – Introductions

As usual, the show, the contestants, the coaches and jury… all are respectively introduced for the evening. And quick explanations of how the voting and details will go – which can be found in the lead of this article.

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20:15 – Welcome to the show!

It’s finale night and the competition is steeped in talent this year. Stick around to find out who will represent Austria in May!

Of course, the show kicks off with Rise Like a Phoenix – but it’s not Conchita singing, it’s the 6 contestants. Each brings their own flair to the song, arranging the music with cello, accordion, synth electronics and electric guitar, with an extra chorus of voices to really make the impact.