JESC Wiwi Jury: Ireland’s Muireann McDonnell with “Súile Glasa”


Today the Wiwi Jury – our in-house panel of music unprofessionals – travelled to Dublin to search for four-leaf clovers and giggle at tweets from ex-members of former Irish boy bands. After our stomachs started to hurt from all the laughing, we decided to calm down by reviewing the entry for Ireland at Junior Eurovision 2017, “Súile Glasa” by Muireann McDonnell. Are we loving Muireann’s acoustic approach to the contest? Read on to find out…

Ireland’s Junior Eurovision 2017 song

“Súile Glasa” reviews

Deban: This beautiful pop-rock offering has a soundtrack quality. Its ear-worm  “uh-oh-oh-oh” refrain makes it stand out. Muireann McDonnell’s vocals and her easy-listening style could work well on the radio. It’s engaging, not interruptive and keeps growing in likability with repeat spins.

Score: 7/10

Jonathan: This is such a nice breath of fresh air in between all the big ballads and pop tunes of this year’s contest. Simple, yet effective, the song continues nicely without the “oo-woh-a-woh” refrain ever becoming too repetitive or annoying. Running order will have a big impact on this entry though, particularly as it’s likely to just be Muireann and her guitar on stage. However, if this comes in between two of the more hard-hitting songs, then people may latch onto its angelic quality, and Ireland could surprise a few people.

Score: 7/10

Luis: What a lovely tune, Ireland! Muireann’s voice sounds mature, yet she keeps a certain childish charm and innocence which pairs perfectly with this nice little song. “Súile Glasa” is like candy for your ears, you could have this on loop for a whole day and not get tired of it! It will be interesting to see how Muireann delivers in the big stage in Tbilisi: she fills completely the studio at TG4, but my only fear with this song is that she could get lost in the big stage. Hopefully she’ll shine in Georgia and improve last year’s result!

Score: 8.5/10

Renske: “Súile Glasa” radiates very good vibes, it’s simple and it’s cute, yet it’s very efficient. Muireann has an extreme likeability and very good stage presence which totally matches with her song. It makes “Súile Glasa” stand out from all other songs, not this year, but in Junior Eurovision history. That’s what makes this song very unique.

Score: 8.5/10

Robyn: Muireann McDonnell is following in Ireland’s tradition of sending folk singers to Eurovision. She brings both strength and fragility to the performance and a twist with her electric guitar. But “Súile Glasa” isn’t rooted in the past, and it even throws in a millennial whoop to root the song in the 21st century. But memo to TG4 — after three years of serious JESC entries, could we get something fun next year? I’m sure Jedward would be available to mentor!

Score: 6.5/10

William: It’s a folksy ditty with a Celtic identity, but Muireann’s song also has an indie pop vibe — it’s free-spirited, charming and falls very easily on the ears. That oh-oh-oh-oh makes me want to pull out a lighter and wave before picking flowers and putting them in my hair. In a contest where children tend to scream, it’s nice to hear something so sweet and kid-friendly. Well done!

Score: 9/10

Our jury for 2017 consists of 20 jurors, but we only have room for 6 reviews. The remaining 14 scores are listed below.

Angus: 6/10

Antony: 7/10

Antranig: 6.5/10

Bernardo: 7/10

Chris: 6/10

Cinan: 6/10

Jordi: 7.5/10

Josh: 6/10

Jovana: 9/10

Marek: 9.5/10

Mario: 8.5/10

Natalie: 8/10

Rezo: 7/10

Sebastian: 7/10








The highest and lowest scores are dropped prior to calculating the average score. This is to remove outliers and reduce potential bias. We have removed a low of 6 and a high of 9.5.