Rehearsal Roundup: 2016 Big 6

Our predictions for the Grand Final will need to wait until we have a full running order, but we wanted to write up the Big Six rehearsals now before the Song Contest begins in earnest.

As per usual with Sweden, not much has changed with Frans’ performance since Melodifestivalen. No, scratch that, Frans goes out on the catwalk now! Anyway, Chris is a bit tired of “If I Were Sorry,” but that’s more because we’ve lived with it so long. We figure it will appeal to a lot of people who are catching it for the first time on Saturday. Sweden may not defend its crown, but we think it will do well. (Of course, we said that about Austria last year, so take that statement with a grain of salt…)

Amir from France is a bundle of beaming, but unfocused energy. It’s been noted in the press center that he has a tendency to ignore the camera, leaving viewers with shots of his back. France may be high in the betting odds, but there is a possibility it will fall flat when the votes are tallied. Being in the first half of the draw may hinder it. Still, it could be worse.

Speaking of which, let’s talk about Spain. Barei seems to be inspired by the drunk aunt at the wedding who loves the Chicken Dance. One of our biggest regrets is that we did not predict France to finish last the year Twin Twin flopped. So when we say we’re getting a Twin Twin vibe when we watch Barei’s rehearsals, you can be sure that we’re not going to make the same mistake twice. With any luck, she will close the show.

Like a Melodifestivalen winner, Jamie-Lee has changed nothing about her performance of “Ghost” since she won Germany’s national final. She sounds great and she looks adorable and we can’t wait to see what she bakes on the next episode of Nerdy Nummies. We’re guessing something involving Hello Kitty.

And now is the time on Nerdy Nummies when we dance.

(Jamie-Lee Photo by Thomas Hanses, EBU. Nerdy Nummies screenshot by Eurovision Lemurs)

Meanwhile, Italy just does its thing. You know how Italian gardens have too many shiny orbs and statues and strings of lights–colorful, tacky, but also kind of cute? Italy has given us an Italian garden Eurovision staging. There’s a tree of life, balloons, hanging plants, wind chimes, and a backdrop with hand drawn clouds and stars. Chris says twee, Jen says adorable. Francesca Michielin is singing well, but she is not entirely engaging. We still figure it will all come together on Saturday night and Italy will finish with its customary top 15 finish.

Strange things continue to happen in the United Kingdom this year. Leicester City are the Premier League champions and the U.K. might just have the best act out of the Big Six. A song with a catchy melody, a vibrant performance from Joe and Jake, and a spot in the second half of the draw on Saturday night… It’s all coming together for the Brits. We won’t say they can win because we are not completely insane, but the United Kingdom could be looking at its best finish in years.