“Second semi in Iceland was a memorable show”

On Saturday night the second semifinal of Söngvakeppnin 2018 was held in Iceland, revealing another three finalists of the contest – Aron Hannes, Áttan and Dagur Sigurðarsson. In the final they will sing with the winning acts of the first semifinal – Fókus, Ari Ólafsson and Heimilistónar determined by televoting as well as with the wildcard winner who will be determined by jurors and revealed by RÚV later.

It seems like the Icelandic representative will be from the second semifinal as it had better and stronger acts than that of the first semifinal. The serious contenders are Aron Hannes, and Dagur Sigurðarsson. Both of them came with a memorable show. While from non-qualifying acts Stefanía, Agnes & Regína had a memorable show. This trio as well as Guðmundur Þórarinson from the first semifinal have a good chance to win the wildcard. Below each act of the Saturday night is reviewed separately.

Aron Hannes – “Golddigger” (qualified)

Eurovision fans remember Aron Hannes (pictured above) with his last year’s performance in Söngvakeppnin where he had one of the favorite acts eventually ending up in the third place of the Icelandic final. This year as well Aron is a serious contender to represent his country in Lisbon. “Golddigger” is an up-tempo hiphop song which Aron presents with quite confidence. He has five backing vocalists-dancers all in casual outfits – white T-shirts with “Golddigger” spelled on them. He also has a gold GD necklace. During his performance he has technical problems for which he is granted another chance to sing his song in the end of the show. Thus, opening and closing the Icelandic semifinal helps him to make his performance even more memorable. As a result, he qualifies directly to the final.

Rakel Pálsdóttir – “Óskin mín”

Rakel Pálsdóttir just like Aron Hennes was one of the finalists of last year’s Söngvakeppnin. However, last year she sang with Arnar Jonsson as a duet ending up in the fifth place of the final show. This year she sings a low tempo song “Óskin mín” which reminds of Disney fairytales.  She is in a light rose outfit with three backing vocalists and a musician playing cello. In her back there are white curtains that fall down from the mid of her song and later on there is a tree growing on the backdrops. Her vocals are strong and good enough for this song. However, it seems like her overall act of last year was stronger and unlike to last year she doesn’t make it to the final.

Stefanía, Agnes & Regína – “Svaka stuð”

Stefanía Svavarsdóttir is the lead-singer of this performance. She is another artist to have sung in the previous editions of Söngvakeppnin. In 2013 she came with Jógvan Hansen as a duet eventually advancing to the Icelandic final. However, in 2015 she came solo and failed to qualify to the final.  This year’s song “Svaka stuð” is an up-tempo music. They bring a retro disco mood on stage with a sparkly performance – they are dressed in shiny sparkling outfits of different colors,  backdrops are also sparkling  as well as there is a DJ/dancer behind a disco ball alike desk. In the mid-song singers are appearing on the backdrops with their reflection of what they are doingm giving an image of a crowded dance-floor and all it leaves a good image of this performance.  They fail to make to the final, however, they have a good chance to win the wildcard to sing in the final.

Þórir & Gyða – “Brosa”

The duet members have come to fame through the Voice talent show. For Söngvakeppnin they choose a love song which is co-composed by one of their contenders Guðmundur Þórarinson, eliminated last week. Initially the duet had to sing in the first semifinal with Guðmundur singing in the second one but they swapped with the semifinals as Guðmundur Þórarinson is known for his football career and the day of second semifinal was overlapping with the day of his match. During the performance of Þórir & Gyða the stage is full of home décor inclusing sofa, carpets and lampshades. The singers are in casual outfits with backing musicians playing different instruments – guitar, percussion and harmonica. The song and performance of Þórir & Gyða is a little bit reminding of Guðmundur’s performance of last week. However, both of the acts don’t qualify to the final. In case the jury is to choose between two of these acts to give the wildcard, it seems like that the famous footballer has better chances to win it.

Dagur Sigurðsson – “Í stormi” (qualified)

Dagur is of one the serious contenders of Söngvakeppnin. He has strong vocals and brings a nice staging. There are quick and sudden changes in camera views. His show is full of clouds and thunders with him and his four backing vocalists in black outfits. He delivers his song quite emotionally and qualifiers directly to the final.

Áttan – “Hér með þér” (qualified)

Duet comprises Egill Ploder Ottósson and Sonja Valdin. Their “Hér með þér” is a pop song. Among their backing vocalists there is Aron Brink who tried to sing in Kiev by competing in Söngvakeppnin 2017. At first there is Egil with his backing vocalists and later on he steps off giving a floor to Sonja and her backing vocalists. In the mid song they come all together with split screen featuring both Egill and Sonja simultaneously on screen. They qualify to the final, however they are not strong enough for Eurovision.

Conclusions after the second semi final in Iceland

 Summing up both of the semifinals the best acts are Ari Ólafsson from the first semi and Aron Hannes with Dagur Sigurðarsson from the second semifinal. Good candidates for winning the wildcard are Atefanía, Agnes & Regína and Guðmundur Þórarinson. However, it is still difficult to judge if any of these above mentioned songs will reach a definite success in Lisbon.