Wiwi: Farid Mammadov brought his A-game to the arena this morning, unveiling innovative staging that transcends gimmick. Working with stage director Fokas Evangelinos—the brilliant mind behind Eurovision artists like Ani Lorak, Sakis Rouvas and Helena Paparizou—he’s dreamed up an act that is TV-friendly, original and definitely one of the stronger ones we’ve seen thus far in Malmö.
Farid wears grey velour—it’s both chic and sombre—and uses a glass box as a podium from which he sounds off on love lost. A woman in red represents his lost love, while a man inside the glass box embodies Farid’s inner torment. “The glass box symbolizes the logic in our lives,” Evangelinos says. “But, inside logic there’s a whole another world, full of passion, emotions, and love. When you’re in love, sometimes you may find your life and soul upside down.” The glass box is completely transparent, but also sturdy enough to support all of Farid’s muscle. “It is beautiful, smart and really suits the song,” he says. “Still the main focus for me is to show good vocals and share the strongest emotion of the song.”
This is the total package and, in my mind, totally justifies his high placing with the Wiwi Jury. Farid looks great, he can sing, and the staging should look amaze on TV.
Deban: Farid looks HOT! Sunkissed and muscular, this is immediately captivating. Sadly, there are many drawbacks for me in today’s rehearsal. The vocal warm-up was more backing vocals than Farid himself, thus giving his song ‘Hold Me’ a choir quality. Secondly, I simply can’t stand all that dramatisation in the background. It’s totally distracting and unnecessary. ESC needs to move in the direction of cleaner slates. Lorren vs Humperdinck, who wins? Farid, take my advice. Unbutton the shirt, crank up your microphone, and unveil your emotions through tasteful solo choreography on stage. Raw energy ALWAYS trumps gimmicks.
Photo Credit: Dennis Stachel (EBU)