Over the past week we’ve been drip feeding you insights about Eurovision 2014 from Jan Lagermand Lundme, DR’s Head of Show. In this final installment he gives us freshly squeezed juice about standing next to the stage, the TV experience, and the arena.
Standing in the Arena
Jan is the man who will decide whether the audience in front of the stage will be standing, as in Malmö, or seated, as in Baku. He told me that it “was very nice to see that the audience stand in front of the stage” in Sweden. But he then added “I can’t say 100% for sure.” We just have to wait until he locks everything down, but we can be hopeful.
Jan and his team are still deciding what exactly they are going to do for the arena itself and everything around it. He is hopeful they will lock down all these decisions “in about two months”. That’s just in time for Christmas, y’all. This time scale will limit what they can actually do because it will leave them just 4 months for actual construction work. They’re not building an arena like Azerbaijan did, and there’s a lot to do to make this a killer arena, like removing some old cars from inside (see photo at top). It’s going to be tight pulling this together!
The arena will become the focal point of the island with “all the energy of the whole of Europe going to that stage.” Jan repeated several times that the island will be centered on the Arena. This is a big focus.
The arena will hold about 10,000 people. So we’re looking at a similar audience size as in Malmö, which I think is the perfect size for Eurovision (as long as among those 10,000, there’s a place for me – otherwise it’s definitely too few).
The TV Experience
Watching the event live is very different from watching it on TV. The energy of the audience, and a lot of that is the sound they make, makes for a much more exhilirating experience. When I watched the DVD of the Malmö show later, it was very different because the audio during the song was just the performer. The audience was visible, but silent.
They will do the same. You will hear the audience before and after, but during the song you will only hear the act (as in Malmö). Jan views this as very important – that people hear only the act and there is no sound from the audience to distract from it. Gotta have a fait vote, y’all.
They have also already had some very good audio people in the building and they say the audio should be excellent, both for the live audience and for the TV audience. It’s good to see they’re focusing on it this early and it clearly is viewed as critical by them.
The main impression I had of Jan throughout the conversation is a complete focus on making the entire two week event as extraordinary as possible. There’s a lot that goes in to how well it all turns out, but having the head of the program totally focused on the event is key. And it looks like we have that.
Best Eurovision Ever?
I closed out by asking if this will be the best Eurovision ever. Jan’s reply? “Yes it will. Absolutely.”
You can listen to the interview here:
David T is a Colorado-based correspondent for wiwibloggs.com. You can keep up-to-date on the latest Eurovision news and gossip by following the team on Twitter @wiwibloggs and by liking our Facebook page.
Photos: Courtesy of DR