Valentina Monetta Crisalide Vola poll winner wiwibloggs

May 2012. Fresh from defeat, the people behind San Marino’s entry meet in the Eurovision Bunker. San Marino needs a new song, producer and artist to take Eurovision glory and prove the rest of Europe wrong.

Then someone has a better idea: send Valentina Monetta, again. With one year they can mould a one-woman weapon targeted at Malmö. A spot in the final will not elude the Sammarinese this time. Fast forward a year and Baku is forgotten. Europe will regret ever doubting La Repubblica.

But something goes catastrophically wrong. Despite being a fan favourite—and placing second with the 2013 Wiwi Jury—Valentina fails to qualify for the final. Only now does it dawn on the team from San Marino that returning an artist wasn’t that innovative an idea to begin with.

Each year, Eurovision is a case of out with the old and in with the new. The location and image change and a new group of artists gather, determined to win the Contest. But among the new, there are normally a few familiar faces. Artists may return to improve on their last performance, or perhaps to capitalize upon the popularity gained in their previous appearance. Most commonly, though, artists return because they have won once, and believe they can do so again, most famously Johnny Logan for Ireland in 1980 and 1987.

Sending an artist again can be an astute move, especially if they were successful without actually winning. Russia’s Dima Bilan in 2008 is an excellent example. His Second Place finish in 2006 was a set back, but he returned in 2008 with a stronger song, and more memorable staging to deliver victory for Russia. More recently Zeljko Joksimovic in 2012, Sakis Rouvas in 2009, and Chiara in 2005 all benefitted from previous appearances to achieve success. Sweden’s Carola must be among the best example of the merits of returning an artist, delivering one Winning Song and two Top Five entries.

Returning an artist can be a poisoned chalice, though. It’s quite telling that beyond Johnny Logan nobody has won the Contest twice. Lena in 2011 earned a respectable 10th Place finish, but Dana International also returned and received an ecstatic reception for ‘Ding Dong’, only to fail to qualify. Even qualifying for the final doesn’t ensure success, as Charlotte Perrelli and Niamh Kavanagh learned to their cost in 2008 and 2010.

Returning artists can also lose their appeal. Jedward’s 2011 success owed to the novelty factor more than vocal ability. In 2012, the Russian Grannies stole their novelty. Although they faired well in the televoting, the juries were bored, and left them in an unimpressive 19th Place. Chiara too suffered from Eurovision fatigue in 2009. Third time around the Maltese magic had worn off, landing her in 22nd place.

To win with a returning artist, the artist it seems cannot be a former winner. They need to have placed impressively on the scoreboard, won over viewers and (increasingly today) the juries. Crucially they must return with a better song and staging. With that in mind, who should re-enter?

Firstly, Yohanna for Iceland – unfairly overshadowed by the Rybak, her gorgeous vocals could take us all to Iceland for the first time. Secondly, Gaitana for Ukraine given a deeper song could return the Contest to Kiev. If Greece ever resolves its economy, Kalomoira would be an amazing choice – given another ethnic-dance hit. Lastly, after ‘Swedish Pop Voices’ Sweden should send Darin & Agnes as a duet. The Duo wowed the crowd in Malmö and it was the Swedes who wrote ‘Running Scared’ – when the Swedes are ready to host again, they should give these two a call!

Which artists do you want to see return to the Eurovision stage?

Photo: Sander Hesterman (EBU)

 

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[…] our north of England correspondent has pointed out previously, returning to Eurovision can be a curse–unless you show up with a good song. But we’re fairly confidant that she will. At her […]

Joey
Guest
Joey

to me, we cannot deny that LENA is a EUROVISION ICON now…..being seen in the eurovision lately…

royraniel
Guest
royraniel

I WANT CASCADA BACK!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Jordan Grice
Guest

I would love to see Ivi Adamou come back for Cyprus, I would also love to see Valentina Monetta return for San Marino and Elitsa Todorova and Stoyan Yankoulov return for Bulgaria.

Danutz
Guest
Danutz

I would loooove to see Ukraine’s Tina Karol and Ani Lorak again!

Sekar Wid
Guest
Sekar Wid

i would like to see Beauty Queens (Marija Šerifovi?’s backing vocalists), Maja Keu? and her backing vocalists (martina majerle, sandra feketija, ana bezjak, katja koren), Gréta Salóme, Željko Joksimovi?, Raphael Gualazzi, and Nina Žiži?

John P Lucas
Guest

I love seeing artists come back. The mix of new talent and familiar faces is part of the unique fabric of Eurovision for me. If they were fazed out it’d really lose something for me. I don’t think anyone gets ‘tired’ of the artists, so much as sometimes their return songs aren’t as good as the ones they won with. Dana International is an icon and a fabulous performer, but Ding Dong really wasn’t good enough. Similarly, Waterline wasn’t half the song Lipstick was. When they do come back with songs that are as good or better than their debut… Read more »

Jade
Guest
Jade

I would love Roberto Bellarosa to fly the flag for Belgium again. He was a delight.

PeR would be another group to try again. Here We Go, although I loved it, wasn’t their best song

Jaz
Guest

I agree with those who mentioned Sirusho. Bring her back! Qele qeleeeee, et cetera!!

I think Yohanna might have had her day. Her first NF entry since ‘Is It True?’ was good but the most recent one was TERRIBLE. Her voice is stunning, though.

And a sarcastic thanks goes to you for putting the idea of a Darin & Agnes duet into my head. It will never happen and now nothing Sweden sends will ever be good enough for me!! Man, that would be a pairing to make Ell & Nikki look like total amateurs.

Ciaran
Guest
Ciaran

Oh and bring back Alyona Lanskaya, all 3 of her songs have been great imo. All My Life, Rhythm of love, and the best of all Solayoh.

Ciaran
Guest
Ciaran

Bring back Lena, we can’t have a Eurovision without her.

2010 – she won
2011 – she came 10th
2012- she performed in the interval
2013- she gave the german votes
2014- ???

She could enter again!!!

Also I’d really like Jedward back.

SQFan
Guest
SQFan

Iceland hates Yohanna. Enough said. That being said, I preferred Sjonni 2011 > Yohanna 2011. She deserved to win either this year, or 2009.

Ian
Guest
Ian

Yohanna is a top idea – in fact she should have been there in 2011 – but Iceland let sentiment get in the way of making the correct decision. That year Yohanna sang Nott – it was brilliant http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xkSeEB2giYo – and stood a very good chance of a top 3 position. But I think a good artist will always have good appeal – provided they have a good song. Novelty songs are good – are part of Eurovision – but work once only.

Vlad
Guest
Vlad

I would like to see Nanne Gronvall for Sweden (represented the country in 1996), Maarja for Estonia and Eimear Quinn for Ireland. A better question would be: how do you want to finally win the national finals in their respective countries?

kalomira greece
Guest
kalomira greece

I want to see Kalomoira again back!! I love ger <3!!
My secret combination<3!! She was amazing i want her back!!
KALOMOIRA <33333

Alex
Guest
Alex

The only suggestion of yours with which I agree is Yohanna. All the other ones I’m not so thrilled about. Please keep Gaitana (and Mika Newton) as far away from the Eurovision stage as possible!!! By the way, you didn’t mention Dino Merlin, who managed to place really well in 2011, even drawing 2nd in the final. Also Kaliopi, who went from failure to qualify in that mysterious jury round way back when (the one that booted out Germany) to a very strong showing in 2012. I’d like to see Esma return with a song where the background music is… Read more »

Adrian Kavanagh
Guest

Sirusho for Armenia, Maja Keuc for Slovenia, Shiri Maimon for Israel…
Would like to see Sara Jovanovi? or any other of the Moje 3 girls back at Eurovision as solo artists at some stage over the coming years also.

Anthony Ko
Editor

If Valentina Monetta is hoping to make it third time lucky next year, then the odds are pretty much heavily stacked against her. It’s going to be an extremely difficult task of producing an entry to outdo this year’s masterpiece, which clearly deserves to be in the final at Malmö this year.

Priestess Cashmere
Guest
Priestess Cashmere

I was so disappointed for Valentina, I really wanted to see her make it to the final. I think it would be great if she came back. Third time’s the charm!

I’d also love to see Gaitana return, and Esma as a solo performer!

Deban Aderemi
Editor

I’m not a fan of returnees. Give it your best shot the first time, and let emerging talent take over the next time. It’s a real shame that Valentina Monetta didn’t qualify this year. She was robbed BIG TIME! I can’t wait for her new album to be launched.

Celioski
Guest

What about Slovenia’s Maja? she rocked Düsseldorf with “No One”. And also Sirusho would be a smart move for Armenia, since then all of their acts have been from meh to yuck in my opinion.

JulianaESC
Guest
JulianaESC

The Netherlands should bring back Hind and Sieneke. They should also bring Ralf Mackenbach to the adult contest. From this year, I want to see Malta bring back Gianluca as soon as possible- he had a great song and seemed so nice. Recent winners who could do well again are Marija Šerifovi? and of course Loreen.

Pablo Nava
Editor

Since Lena, at least one country is fixated in sending the same artist the next year.

Who would be next? Anouk? Who See?

Anthony Ko
Editor

I’m not really into Eurovision artists returning and having another go, as most of them have already suffered the Eurovision equivalent of “Second season syndrome”, after making a successful Eurovision debut. And you can now add Bulgaria’s Elitsa Todorova, Stoyan Yankulov to this category. Bulgaria’s best result so far with fifth in 2007 but failed to make it to the final this year.

Apparently, as much I wanted Yohanna to make a Eurovision return someday; she tried to represent Iceland twice via the Icelandic national selection show Söngvakeppni Sjónvarpsins, in 2011 and now in 2013 but to no avail.

trezza
Guest
trezza

Sigh, it was really a pity San Marino didn’t make it through to the finals this year. 🙁
Maybe Yohanna should try again. I preferred her song to Alexander Rybak’s.

Maaian
Guest
Maaian

Yep I agree about Darin & Agnes and the amazing Yohanna. ROBBED. I would love to see Ira Losco as well

Han Ess
Guest
Han Ess

Verka Serduchka def should come back. He was hilarious, and the song was infectious. Lena should also be back, she’s basically there in one form or another every year anyway lol

takecare
Guest
takecare

why not? i d like to see elena gheorghe from romania again, one day

Shane
Guest

Sure, why not? If it’s their passion to make the final.

Just, I think Europe will get sick of them always representing the same nation too.

So it has problems too.

Tiggeh
Guest
Tiggeh

Bring back Cliff Richard! lol

Seriously though, there are too many to really mention.