Like the other 25 non-first place finishers of the 2013 Eurovision Song Contest, Germany is struggling to come to terms with not winning. Natalie Horler—the front woman of the dance act Cascada—brought the house down with a glittery, skin-tone dress and a clubby dance extravaganza that was more than a little reminiscent of last year’s thumping winner “Euphoria”. Pundits thought that “Glorious” would live up to its name. Instead, Germany received votes from only 5 countries—Austria, Israel, Spain, Albania and Switzerland—and finished in 21st place.
Now Germans want an explanation, and public figures are diving into economics, politics and even sport in their search for answers.
Peter Urban, Germany’s commentator at Eurovision, struggled to explain the poor results to the German audience: “It was a great performance and a good dance song … Maybe it’s decided based on different criteria than we think.”
Could it be politically motivated anti-German backlash for the harsh fiscal austerity measures imposed in the euro zone? Thomas Schreiber, the TV coordinator of the main German broadcaster ARD, seemed to think so: “There’s obviously a political situation to keep in mind – I don’t want to say ‘this was 18 points for Angela Merkel’, but we all have to be aware that it wasn’t just Cascada up there on stage (being judged) but all of Germany.”
He failed to mention that Spain and Austria, both euro zone members, gave points to Germany.
In an interview on ZDF, Urban suggested that Cascada’s fumble may come down to jealousy related to Germany’s success on the football pitch. “There will be two German soccer teams in the Champions League final next week ,” he said, “and maybe people didn’t want Germany to win Eurovision too.” He may have been joking, but with humour there’s always a little bit of truth.
Hmm. It’s doubtful that there’s a great deal of overlap between Eurovision voters and Champions League viewers. (We can’t imagine someone downloading the karaoke version of “Satellite” and then guzzling beer with Bayern Munich fans in a parking lot.)
Natalie Horler tried to remain positive in a post-show interview: “The arena had fun, we had fun – you can’t explain it.”
Maybe Eurovision voters just thought one “Euphoria” was enough.
What did you think about Cascada’s performance and placement? What went wrong?