No matter what we Bulgarians send to Eurovision, it seems like it’s doomed to crash in the semi-finals. Even pop star Miro, P!nk-wannabe Poli, chalga queen Sofi, and our most successful contestants, Elitsa & Stoyan, haven’t been able to reprise their Thursday night performance on Saturday. But for next year’s Eurovision, Bulgaria may have a totally different idea.
According to Bulgarian news site Ne! Novinite, musicians and bands participating in Bulgarian government protests are currently the public’s favorite to represent Bulgaria next year. For those that don’t know, there is a lot of political turmoil in Sofia right now. It hasn’t been widely reported in the international media because of the more violent protests taking place in Brazil and Turkey, but it’s a big deal in Bulgaria.
When electricity prices rose to more than the average Bulgarian salary earlier this year, thousands of Bulgarians took to the streets to protest. Chaos ensued which eventually led to prime minister Boyko Borisov resigning from his position. Now, the Communist Party has gained a lot of power in Parliament, which has fueled even more protests. Each night the center of Sofia is pack-full of protesters, which includes singers, musicians and bands playing patriotic music, making sounds and dropping beats, or singing chants against the government. These protesting musicians happen to be a popular choice from both the public and BNT (Bulgarian National Television) to represent Bulgaria next year!
Will this actually happen, or is the article just BS speculation? Well, protest songs are possible in Eurovision– look no further than Ukraine’s “Razom Nas Bahato” (GreenJolly) and Portugal’s “A luta e algeria” (Homens da Luta). But just because the idea is feasible doesn’t mean it’s good! Both GreenJolly and Homens da Luta crashed out of Eurovision, and considering Bulgaria’s track-record in the contest, a protest song would be guaranteed to fail in the semi-final. But that’s not stopping Bulgarians from wanting to send a protest group to Denmark. After all, they want their voice to be heard so they can leave an impression on the vast European audience.
The article quotes protest organizers: “Their singing is not worse than Miro, they are good at making their own choreographies, and we have relatives in Europe who would furiously send SMS-es (texts) for them.”
While I support the protest itself, I don’t want a protest song to represent Bulgaria next year. I’m tired of our country failing year after year in the contest and would like to see an act that actually has a chance! Is there really any point in signing up for an expensive song contest if we’re just going to fail with some “iffy” entry year after year?
Yes, I do have someone in mind who would have a chance at Eurovision: Anelia. She’s a popular Bulgarian singer who has recently released a lot of hits, including last week’s “Iskam te, poludyavam”, “Az i ti”, and a whole slew of others. Most of her songs have been Bulgarian “pop-folk”/chalga style (like Sofi Marinova), but more and more she is straying away from from that. She even released a powerful duet with 2010 representative Miro, which became one of the most popular ballads in Bulgaria. She’s also good-looking and has modeled for fashion boutiques, which, like it or not, does help in this contest. Perhaps a contender for Eurovision’s Next Top Model here on WiwiBloggs.com?
Anyways, it’ll be interesting to see what Bulgaria will do for 2014. I really can’t think of any Bulgarian musician who stands a chance at Eurovision besides Anelia. I deeply appreciate what the protesters are doing from a political standpoint, but sending them to Eurovision is just a bad idea.
Of course, this all assumes that Bulgaria will even be taking part next year. Government reforms are inevitable, and similar to Greece, potential broadcaster cuts may force Bulgaria to withdraw from Eurovision–especially considering our recent results have been quite poor. I guess we’ll have to wait and see.
Alexander Green is a Bulgarian-American correspondent who contributed this post from Bulgaria. Follow him here. Then follow the team from wiwibloggs.com at @wiwibloggs and keep up with the latest Eurovision news and gossip by liking our Facebook page.
Photo: Sander Hesterman (EBU)