Eurovision Count Down: A Snapchat of Sweden
In the 1950s, as the war-torn Europe was rebuilding itself, the European Broadcasting Union —based in Switzerland—set up a committee to search for ways of bringing together the countries of the continent around an entertainment program. At the committee meeting, the chairman of the committee offered a idea which is an international song contest where countries would participate in one television program to be transmitted simultaneously to all countries of the union. Everyone in the committee liked the idea and the first contest was held in the town of Lugano, Switzerland, on 24 May 1956. Seven countries participated in the first contest— Belgium, France, Germany, Italy, Luxembourg, Netherlands, and Switzerland. Sweden joined into the union in 1958 and Sweden has participated in the Eurovision Song Contest 55 times since making its debut in 1958, missing only three contests since then (1964, 1970 and 1976). Sweden is one of the most successful competing nations at the Eurovision, with a total of six victories in the contest, right behind Ireland who have seven wins.
This year, Stockholm will host the 61st edition of the Eurovision Song Contest, following Sweden’s victory at the 2015 contest in Vienna with the song “Heroes”, performed by Måns Zelmerlöw.
When you will come here to study, you will notice how important Eurovision is for Swedes. Currently, Stockholm is covered by Eurovision flags, the whole atmosphere is about Eurovision, every corner is getting prepared for Eurovision and even traffic lights are playing the dance music while you are waiting at crosswalks.
While the atmosphere is taking you and putting in the mood of the World’s biggest music competition, I thought I would be fun to see the previous performances of Sweden in Eurovision. As mentioned above, Sweden has participated in the contest 55 times, which makes creating a list super hard. That’s why I have listed some best performances – and one the worst – here. If you are reading this post from a Eurovision country, leave a comment about your favorite song from your homelandJ
First year in Eurovision – 1958 – Alice Babs – Lilla Stjärna – 4th place among 11 countries*
1966 – Lill Lindfors and Svante Thuresson – Nygammal vals – 2nd place among 18 countries*
1974 – ABBA –Waterloo – 1st place among 21 countries*
1977 – Forbes – Beatles – 22nd among 22 countries*
1984 – Herreys – Diggi Loo Diggi Ley – 1st place among 24 countries*
1991 – Carola – Fångad av en stormvind – 1st place among 25 countries*
1999 – Charlotte Nilsson – Take Me to Your Heaven – 1st place 36 countries*
2012 – Loreen – Euphoria – 1st place among 51 countries*
2015 – Måns Zelmerlöw – Heroes – 1st place among 52 countries*
2016 – Fran – If I Were Sorry – ???
If you wonder my personal favourite song for Eurovision, I would not be neutral. Obviously, my favourite is Sertab Erener’s performance in 2003 from Turkey, which also won the competition in that year.
*Number of countries implies to number of eligible countries, not actually participated countries. Every year, some countries prefer not participating.