Tag Archives: #bogwhallerne

Semi 1: #joinus in Denmark

Update, 7 May: 7/10 for both of us. Neither of us predicted San Marino or Iceland, although we’re more than happy to see both #joiningus. Mik dropped Montenegro, while Ann dropped Ukraine. Making up the 10: Hungary, Russia, Armenia, Azerbaijan, Sweden and yay! The Netherlands.

The semi was not sold out so we were able to move forward and had a bird’s eye view of the green room for some sweet Montenegro moments. You can also see us arriving on @drgrandprix’s timelapse, at around 24 secs:

Back on Thursday with more predictions.

We’re off to semi 1 this evening, sitting in Olsen as a tribute to the snubbed Jørgen and Noller. From Twitter and the bloggage it’s pretty easy to work out how the show will pan out, but we’ll cover that elsewhere.

The public areas have been done in the nick of time, and maybe don’t quite live up to the pre-show hype:

A big round of applause herfra for the creative use of shipping containers, which we’ve been anticipating for months, not so much for the less than subtle branding for Host City partners REDA. Danes on Facebook noted a lack of twin touchstones hygge and Danish design, plus someone commented that it looked like it had been thrown together in a couple of hours…

What about the music? Below are our predictions for semi 1, with a full ranking from ordensmenneske Mik. It’s tricky, because after you’ve heard the songs more than three times you have a love/hate relationship with them all and can’t decide if you like them or not, but we need to lose six of these lovelies. Bolded is out. Check back on Weds to see how wrong we were.

Armenia

Ann: a class act but not likeable and not enough of a story arc for the big win

Mik: Intriguing 3 minutes. If he catches the camera right and doesn’t look too stressed or serious this goes straight to the final. (1)

Latvia

Ann: charming tipping over into annoying, maybe rein Jöran in a tad to go through

Mik: Recipe for hyggelig amateurism, convincing though. And a very good draw, makes a nice contrast to Aram Superstar and his serious business. (7)

Estonia

Ann: the most complete show of the night, entertaining without resorting to gimmicks

Mik: Contemporary catchy dance and singing class. (4)

Sweden

Ann: manufactured and clinical; those ornamental flourishes grate but soars to a climax

Mik: Professional plastic sing-a-long, straight from IKEA. It will give you goosebumps. (2)

Iceland

Ann: trying too hard. LT United without the xtra factor (who was your favourite?)

Mik: LT United light, but we can’t all be Winners. And it has been 8 years. (14)

Albania

Ann: trying too hard (2), but lovely voice

Mik: Little girl with great voice, but uninspired & whining song with poor Albanese English lyrics. (15)

Russia

Ann: best use of twins, best use of mystifying props; effective if unexciting

Mik: Cutesy twin girls will do the trick, with their charming, though very calculated act on stage. (8)

Azerbaijan

Ann: Dilara doesn’t do fur – what’s not to like? Answer: the trapeze in a church gimmick.

Mik: Impressive stage show helps this classic jury jewel. Very convincing. (3)

Ukraine

Ann: ticked off – a poor effort, first ever NQ for Ukraine?

Mik: Gets on your nerves, but Crimea crisis will give this contemporary trash some sympathy vote. (10)

Belgium

Ruslana2
Ruslana shows her appreciation at the Belgian national final

Ann: should be safe enough, as long as pple remember it’s a song contest, with added interpretive dance UPDATE: Out; might have made it with a Ruslana hologram

Mik: Belgique’s got talent goes Eurovision, but the sentimental old fashioned style won’t make you pick up your iphone. (12)

Moldova

Ann: a slight led down from my fave country – borderline, needs more Pasha, plus Aliona’s smile

Mik: Fascinating and Barbu-esque. Maybe too shouty for some, but it sticks to you. And we all love her accent. (9)

San Marino

Ann: a pearl in a shell, a diamond in the rough…too many metaphors. Ave atque vale – and arrivederci! 

Mik: There is no pearl in the shell: Old fashioned boring Siegel trademark. (16)

Portugal

Ann: it’s Beautiful Song without Anmary, no #suzyshake here

Mik: Suzy-shake flying the flag for Portugal, but without charm, sparkle or cheekyness. All that’s left are her very poor vocals, but Martha does a good job! (13)

The Netherlands

Ann: unexciting but does enough for now

Mik: This years dark horse: real musicians, real emotions, real chemistry between them and it looks very good on TV. The jury will love this! (5)

Montenegro

Ann: no Zjelko ripoff – this is the real deal musically. Despite Skating Dolly goosebumps city – see you in Cetinje!

Mik: Now we understand why Montenegro once joined the Serbian Republic. Zjelko has inspired many in a good way, but he wouldn’t approve of the roller skating. Might just miss out. (11)

Hungary

Ann:  I have nothing to say. MTV fodder.

Mik: Contemporary catchy believable song with a message and a hunky Hungarian. (6)

Eurovision Island (7): quicker to get to Malmö

I popped out to Eurovision Island on my  own yesterday to see how things were going, particularly on the transport front. The fan press pack hasn’t been too complimentary so far – I’ve a haul of quotes I’m going to sit on until after the event, as there are a range of factors at play and extra services from today, but for a sneak peek see Transport us to Eurovision Island.

One comment which tickled me was whether it would actually be quicker to get to Malmö, or the arena in Hyllie, last year’s venue, at least (whatever happened to that option?).

Here’s  a smörgåsbord of options from Rejseplanen for a journey from our south CPH suburb to Refshaleøen:

rejseplanen

And to Hyllie:

malmo

So pretty equal on time, but hands down to Hyllie for ease of access.

I was also interested in signage:

The evidence on the ground – click to scroll.

And #bogwhallerne itself? Part of the diamand in the rough metaphor, or just run out of money?

Transport us to Eurovision Island

Update: changes from 5 May (see Visit Copenhagen’s PDF map):

  • bus 9A runs to Eurovision Island, more frequent during peak hours, around 25 mins from central station (really?)
  • OTOH bus 40 stops running the whole way to Refshaleøen
  • harbour boats start running from Nyhavn, the ones which don’t run at the mo, voyage takes around 10 mins

Plus an email from Billetlugen yields up:

  • it’s a 15 minute walk from the bus and boat stops to the ticket only zone and security checks
  • for evening shows the ticket only zone opens three hours before the show starts, doors open two hours before
  • plan your journey with Movia; best ticket option – if you have a Danish mobile subscription a 12 hour Event SMS-billet costs DK 20 for zones 1-4 and DK 40 for all zones, if you don’t a City Pass is DK 80 : D
  • parking at Amager wotsit now free! if you bought a pass it shall be refunded; a bit more prodding and the shuttle boats/buses will surely go free too
  • there’s free wifi and a cloakroom (DK 30)
  • things you can’t take in: professional photo equipment, food and drink, bottles/tins, weapons and weaponalikes, laser pens, big bags – and animals

I  don’t mind admitting I’m a bit obsessed with the #escdk transport issue. How’s it going so far?

The fan press pack arrived over the weekend. Out first were ESCKAZ/Mike and Daniel, who frankly should have been better prepared, zipping across the harbour and, by the looks of things, not buying tickets. This society works on trusts, guys – man up!

Otherwise, a mixed bag:

  • Eurovision Times/Lynn Kenway (First look): Having seen ESCKAZ’s detours using the waterboats (are they off them yet?!), we took the safer route and got the 9A bus to the opera and walked. And walked. And walked. And then we walked all the way around the island. And then we walked all the way back to the opera as the no 40 bus only runs once an hour at weekends from the arena. Never again. 
  • Eurovision Times/Lynn Kenway (Day 1): We then had a boat fiasco, don’t ask, the transport links and information here is just awful quite frankly. We found the ESCXtra and Eurovision Insight guys so we got over to Eurovision Island and got lost together there. After too much walking we got checked in and got our accreditation passes.
  • The Eurovisionary/David Elder: After a bus journey, a seven mile walk and a water taxi ride across the Kattegat, oh and then a three mile hike across some industrial wasteland (carefully negotiating the barbed wire fences), we managed to find the accreditation tent. 
  • On Europe/Monty?: NOT The walk from the bus to the centre. Not because of the views and stuff, but because its just a tad too long. Lovely rustic views though.
  • WiwibloggsSeveral of us caught a public bus to the B&W Hallerne. When we got off we ended up in an apartment complex where hippie youths were smoking marijuana. They kindly directed us through this hole in a fence, which led to B&W. The giant concrete block may seem severe to some, but I think it’s kind of edgy and cool.

All that effort and then…

Once you get to the Refshaløen island itself, it’s not quite so pretty. The area is desolate, run down, overgrown, derelict. The venue must be one of the biggest, and ugliest (from the outside) buildings ever to host a Eurovision Song Contest and there is little to suggest everything opens tomorrow and Monday. We’re sure it’ll all be lovely inside though.

Oh Lynn…but panic over! 

Our trip to work is now by boat. We have travel that the city of CPH have given to us for free which includes all trains, buses and the like but, most of all, a boat trip. The same boat youve all been reading about – yes, it really exists and yes it does get you to Eurovision Island.

Plus there are shuttle buses laid on for press. Free travel and shuttle buses, what’s not to like?

Things may well get going again though when those without accreditation turn up, although the emergency arrangements should help. Anyone biking?

2014-04-26 11.36.39
fleet of new city bikes outside the town hall

Some advice from me:

  • it’s not worth taking the metro from Kongens Nytorv to Christianshavn unless it’s chucking it down – it’s a short walk over the bridge
  • don’t buy a single ticket – DK 24 for a 10 min boat ride, anyone?

It would be a nice gesture if the Nyhavn boats on show nights were free, to help with speedy boarding – but OTOH who’s going to check?

Tame The Danes

This may come as a surprise, but surveys have shown that a lot of tourists find The Danes a tad closed and unhelpful, particularly on the street. The #escdk volunteers have had special training in making eye contact, but DR has taken it upon itself to try to spread the message to the rest of the population through a series of videos featuring bow tied comms consultant Henrik Menk. Here he is on how to give a stranger directions:

Finally, here’s a list of my posts on transport issues:

Eurovision Island (6): a row of tents

Latest trip, Sunday morning, just before the fan press pack arrived. Definitely a different feel in the air – people smiling, tourists wobbling past on hired bikes, lots of working spaniels for the beagles to bark at. Sigh.

Now very much a private space, with a new wooden fence up, areas blocked off, security guards. Having been out there six times I thought we were pretty much inured to the raw look, but heck, it’s grim. And bizarrely, it can be too hot in Denmark in April, if there’s no shade to be had.

Some areas, like the flattened area where eager punters will queue to get in, I just couldn’t bear to take a photo of. Certainly lowered the bar for Eurovision venue environs – maybe that’s a good thing? And once you’ve actually got inside, it will all be forgotten, won’t it?

Click on an image to scroll through the lot.

Eurovision Island (5): branded to f**k

After our Holmen excursion we couldn’t resist taking another opportunity to peek at Eurovision Island itself. Now up to five trips and counting, it had started to feel like our place, but suddenly there are loads of people trespassing on our space and sticking up nasty blue notices.

We drove past Head of Show Jan LL with a couple of his mates and gave him a wave, but he seemed rather preoccupied.

Host City CPH’s Emil Spangenberg stressed to Ekstra Bladet last week that they aren’t finished yet (the old doors are still there, for starters), and it looks fantastic inside.

Click on an image to scroll through the lot.