With the announcement that Australia will take part in the Eurovision Song Contest in May, some have already started talking tactics.
Along with being able to include an act in the grand final of the contest, Australia will have the chance to vote for its favourite act, giving countries with large migrant populations in Australia a chance of picking up some extra points.
Australian host to the Eurovision Song Contest, Julia Zemiro, says there’s a good chance Greece might get 12 points from Australia judging by the community’s size and involvement.
“I wouldn’t be surprised (if Australia votes for Greece),” she tells Neos Kosmos.
“There’s that really big community in Melbourne.”
Even if it didn’t count, SBS has been offering Australian fans a chance to cast their votes online for a number of years.
Almost every year, Greece has been in the top five. Notably, when Greek heartthrob Sakis Rouvas was representing the country in 2009, Greece won the SBS fan vote by a landslide.
Ms Zemiro says the voting will be a “social experiment” this time round.
“Australia’s got this wild card,” she says.
“In a way it will be fascinating, of the viewers that we have, who will be giving their votes to Europe and who in Europe will give Australia the votes.”
She has an inkling that most voters will vote with patriotism.
“There’s this assumption that our Greek or French relatives are going to vote (for their country),” she says. “Who knows?”
On the fluke chance Australia wins the competition this year, SBS will be tasked with co-hosting, but won’t be able to take the competition down under.
It will co-host the contest in a European city together with an EBU member broadcaster.
Would SBS consider choosing Greece as the host country? Julia Zemiro says she’s already keen to bring it up to SBS management.
“That’s a bloody great idea. I’ll pass it on to the boss,” she says.
“I suppose if Greece wants to put in their bid now and say we will do it cheap-as-chips, because we have to, I’d love that.”
No word yet on who will represent Australia on stage in Austria.
There’s a big push to get Kylie Minogue on board, and more interestingly, there’s been a call for anti-pop band, TISM (This is Serious Mum) to represent the country.
Former member Humphrey B. Flaubert (Damian Cowell) found the petition to get the band to Eurovision “hilarious and deeply flattering [that TISM was associated] with trashy crap disco music performed in a shoddy cheesy fashion in a highly rigged political arena”.
Eurovision initially was created to unify a post-WWII Europe in a friendly and peaceful competition but has never really avoided touching a political nerve.
Many acts have tried to sneak in politically motivated lyrics into their songs while others show their allegiance with their votes.
Greece is notorious for that, giving 12 points to its best friend Cyprus for years, with Cyprus doing the same for Greece.
Last year’s winner, bearded drag queen Conchita Wurst, saw many countries leave politics behind and support the gay rights movement.
Forty countries will participate in the contest this year, with Cyprus, the Czech Republic, and Serbia all returning, while Ukraine announced their withdrawal due to financial and political reasons.
source: neos kosmos