Just days ago, Barei emerged as the winner of Objetivo Eurovisión, Spain’s national selection for the Eurovision Song Contest 2016. Media, academics and politicians have reacted to the Spanish choice for Stockholm, and almost a week after the gala… we can’t exactly say how has Spain reacted to “Say Yay!” Reactions have been mixed, to say the least.

In fact, the country is a bit like this…

Nevena bored gif

So in order to clarify Spain’s feelings, we’ve divided the reactions into blocks. Let’s do this!

The “who the f*** is Barei?”

As you may know, our girl was pretty much unknown in Spain prior to Objetivo Eurovisión. She might have won the Festival de Benidorm 15 years ago, and she might have sung Atresmedia’s song for the Champions League, but for the vast majority of Spaniards, this was the first time that Barei appeared on their TV:

Barei – Say Yay! – Live at Objetivo Eurovisión

Once Barei was crowned as Spain’s next Eurovision queen, mass media hurried to find out about the girl going to Stockholm. Many of them found that Barei’s real name is Bárbara Reyzábal (she’s done a J.Lo to get her stage name) and that she hails from one of Spain’s wealthiest families.

For instance, El Español pointed out that her family has made a fortune out of producing films, owning movie theatres and that they were the owners of the landmark Windsor building in Madrid, which was razed by fire in 2005.

MD68. MADRID, 14.02.05.- Vista tomada hoy desde el Ministerio de Fomento, del rascacielos Windsor, todavía humeante tras el incendio del pasado sábado. El edificio Windsor, de 106 metros de altura, será derruido ya que ha sufrido daños irreversibles.- EFE/Pedro López
This was Barei’s family’s building… or María Isabel’s feelings after the gala.

El Mundo dug a bit more in our girl’s musical artistry. They pointed out that Barei has performed as a supporting act for no less than Lenny Kravitz, last year in Marbella’s Starlite festival. That’s class, y’all!

Out of Spain’s mass media, it’s been ABC who has paid the most attention to Barei. Days before Objetivo Eurovisión, Barei gave an interview where she complained about having to compete against other acts, saying that mainstream radio stations wouldn’t want to play her music.

After her victory at Objetivo Eurovisión, ABC also threw the mandatory “who is that Eurovision girl?” article, and they also pointed out how controversial Barei’s victory at Festival de Benidorm was. She and her co-performer originally placed second, but after the winner was disqualified, the gold went to Barei’s act, Dos Puntos. Barei said the partnership “didn’t end very well”. Drama all over.

The “Say Nay”

Now that everybody knows who is Barei, we’ll move on to the melodramatic reactions. Because yes, after Spain chooses a song featuring any little part of English, the ultra-Spanish nationalist cavemen will scream blue murder about how sad is that Spain is forgetting their language.

gif-odious-little-man

This was the case of José María Merino, one of the academics in the Real Academia Española de la Lengua (RAE), Spain’s organisation for the defence of the Spanish language. Mr. Merino said that it was “an absurdity” that Spain sang in English. His reaction was this (translated into English, of course):

It seems that there are lots of Spaniards who consider that the most appropriated language to represent us outside our borders is English. To me, that’s an absurdity. If Spain was a country with a little-spoken language, that needed to communicate in a major language, I’d understand it, but the thing is that we have a language spoken by 500 million people. I can’t take that in.

A public organisation like RTVE should have a code which said that ‘morally and culturally’, in these kind of representations outside Spain, they couldn’t use a language other than Spanish.

andriusgif

Clearly, our lovely curmudgeon hasn’t even realised that there are more languages in Spain other than Spanish, but don’t get me started on that.

Wiwibloggs’ reaction to Barei’s election

In any event, Barei’s decision to ditch Spanish in “Say Yay!” has been quite controversial. While for many countries the strange decision would be singing in their national language (hej Sweden, hej Denmark). Singing in English is a relatively new thing for Spain — so new that it has made the headlines in UK media, such as the BBC and the Telegraph.

RTVE had been threatening to sing entirely in English for some years, while RAE has criticised any Spanish Eurovision songs with English lyrics. Ruth Lorenzo was the last to suffer it, and we’re sure more artists after Barei will have to deal with a grumpy RAE academic. But who cares?

Sanna Neilsen Sweden 2014 Reaction

The “Say Yay!”

On the other hand, many people thought the newly elected Spanish representative was a great choice. Apart from the fans, the song has received very positive feedback from the media. Barei has stormed the news and lots of newspapers and websites are interviewing her, from news agency Europa Press, to specialist blog Je Ne Sais Pop.

Spain’s next Euro star reveals a bit more about herself in each of the interviews. She says she’ll keep her sneakers on in Stockholm because she wants her look to be “comfortable yet sophisticated”. Or, as we say in Spanish, “arreglá pero informal“.

Wiwibloggs interviews Barei part 1

And of course, now our girl can’t complain: “Say Yay!” is regularly heard on radio and TV. In fact, Spain’s most listened radio station, Cadena SER, has used her song in the adverts for the Copa del Rey’s semifinals which happened this week. That’s big, y’all!

Wiwibloggs interviews Barei part 2

So while Spain can’t decide if they love Barei or not, we at team wiwibloggs do, and we’ll be screaming yayayayay until May. What about you? What do you think of the English-language drama? Tell us below!

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james
Guest
james

OMG, I thought that Spain had chances to win but after watching Barei and the group of “boring” vocals, and choreography in general, I was surprised and very disappointed. It was pathetic.

Giorgio
Guest
Giorgio

Is this article seriously trying to claim that the Spanish fans aren’t supporting “Say Yay”? Most of them think they can win with that song, the delusion.

Caroban
Guest
Caroban

Spain is passionate and may extremist. In Spain 90% of the time it only speaks to criticize and create controversy. Say Yay is not Euphoria, but it’s a good song in English I believe. (One man’s meat is another man’s poison) By leading a decent and current song in English, nothing would happen, but Spain has many complex; or you are a patriotic man of caves or you’re a liberal revolutionary believed cool. We can’t expect Spain to complain sing in English if 95% of the remaining countries don’t sing in their official language. You should return the standard language?… Read more »

paco
Guest

Que pena que malgates en este blogg, tu talento de adivino, deverias aprovechar tu tiempo en algo mas productivo .y montarte un negocio de adivinador y pitoniso.Te auguro un futuro de mucho exito…no lo has pensado?.De verdad es una lastima ese talento tuyo desaprovechado.

John Christian
Guest
John Christian

Douwe Bob, Serhat, Barei, and Iveta Mukuchyan. Four names of weak artists who will never win in Stockholm, like Donald Trump who will never win in the White House!? So to Douwe Bob, Serhat, Barei, and Iveta Mukuchyan, I have one word to say to all of you: WITHDRAW!?

Pastora Soler haha!
Guest
Pastora Soler haha!

I’m sick and tired when i hear that my language is spoken by 500,000,000 bla bla… yep but NOT IN EUROPE.

Mexico, Colombia, Venezuela, Chile, Argentina… can’t vote in eurovision song contest.

So please, stop with that stupid argument.

We are in an international contest and if the song is good in English, let’s go with it!

I think is not a problem of languages, is the song. Quédate conmigo is magic in Spanish and Dancing in the rain horrible in Spanish…

So it depends on the song. Say yay must be in English!

Racal
Guest
Racal

@Anis: Your list is another fallacy, please read my comment here below. Singing in your national language is not the opposite of being successful in Eurovision. “What you guys are doing is called a fallacy: because a lot of English songs have won in recent years, you assume that only English songs can win. Let me tell you something: – 95% of the countries now sing in English, so of course the chance that the winner will be an English song is way bigger. – Since 2000, the song that finished last in the contest has been an English song… Read more »

paco
Guest

Jhon christian…como te ateves llamar una persona esgoista sin conocerla, chico estas muy mal del la cabeza, vas por la vida juzgando y presjuzgando a la gente, quien te crees que eres DIOS.Barie no ganara ESC 2016…pero TU nunca seras feliz, en tu miserable vida.INFELIZ

John Christian
Guest
John Christian

NOOOOOO and MGR, I agree. Maria Isabel should have won instead of egotistical Barei. The Spanish public are now fell into her trap, claiming that her song had reached #1 in iTunes prior to Objetivo Eurovision. It is a disgrace. Douwe Bob, Serhat, Barei, and Iveta Mukuchyan are very weak and will never win Eurovision because what Ted Cruz said that the nominee for President “will be chosen by the people” and those four artists were chosen by the lobbyists and the media, and they will be like Donald Trump, arrogrant and determined to win, but in reality, they will… Read more »

Thiefo
Guest

I don’t mind her singing in english, I don’t mind Spain sending songs entirely in english. The rules state there’s not a language limitation so a) is not against the rules and b) ultimately is their decision and should be respected.

That being said, I do wish more people dared to send songs in their native languages, I would prefer a more diversified ESC with different sounds, languages and rhythms, instead of almost every country sending songs in english with very similar styles.

MGR
Guest
MGR

At least Maria Isabel was clearly better than Barei and she should represent Spain as Alexey Gross should represent Belarus and Besa Krasniqi should represent Albania. Do you remember them? If not, this is so sad and disgraceful. Of course Albania and Belarus are still better than Spain, Ireland and France.

Anis
Guest
Anis

FFS, singing in English in a singing competition isn’t going to threaten the Spanish language!!! It’s Eurovision!! Most of the 500 million Spanish speakers live across the Atlantic, NOT in Europe.
For the past couple years, most of the top 10 Places were all sung in English. English is the 2nd Language for most people in the world it’s the hard truth. Are people THAT full of pride?

Let’s look at the top 10 in 2015:
1) Sweden; English
2) Russia; English
3) Italy: Italian
4) Belgium; English
5) Australia: English
6) Lativa: English
7) Estonia: English
8) Norway: Engish
9) Israel; English
10) Serbia: English

Álex, from Spain
Guest
Álex, from Spain

There are lots of Eurovision fans in Spain, but most of the population is not really into Eurovision, so they find these insignificant stuff more interesting to talk about at the shopping queue, and that’s why the newspapers only mention ESC to talk about bad results, quaint dresses, polemic facts, and so on. Everything but music. So, Wiwibloggs, don’t follow that style. When I read your articles I sort of get away from the stupidity I am used to in my complexed country.

Mar
Guest
Mar

I have to say, as non-spanish native castillian speaker, I was frankly disgusted when Barei said all proud how her song didn’t have a single word in spanish during Objetivo. I was half waiting for the gentlemen of the RAE to start citing their latin american peers who “expressed their concern” about Spain singing in english like they did in 2014 (which was absolute bs they made up) Regarding this particular case, it saddens me I won’t get to hear a single word of my language at ESC, but I can live with it for one year as long as… Read more »

Joselito
Guest
Joselito

I am Spanish and I do not have any problem with Barei singing in English or any other language, if that language is not catalan, basque or gallego. And that is mainly because if the song is in English or Spanish the situation is legally the same for all Spaniards (in the case of English, nobody legally in Spain MUST know it, and although everybody in Spain is entitled to use English, there is no specific right that assist spaniards in terms of using English). For Spanish is just the opposite, we ALL must know it and have the right… Read more »

Herr Freitag
Guest
Herr Freitag

The language is not very important – the song is the most important 🙂 She can perform and sing and have a song that stucks in your head 🙂 The language is not important, the song and artist are the most important with the staging/performance 🙂
I love Spain in 2014 with a mix of English-Spanish, love Spain in 2015 in Spanish and love Spain in 2016 in English because I love the songs 🙂
Also in the current charts you can see how every language has a chance for example Louane with ”Avenier” 😀

Anfrers
Guest

I’m a spaniard, and i’m honestly ashamed of how the people in my country thinks about almost everything, first of all, we have the ones that feel ashamed of our own culture, and now we have this? FFS.

NOOOOOO
Guest
NOOOOOO

Will they change the song and the singer????? Or they might change the laguage of the songg, pleaaasee i want someone answer me

paco
Guest

Vamos a ver Marie.Los Españoles somos apasionados pero no tontos, sabemos que Barei no va a ganar ESC 2016, por desgracia en ESC el voto vecinal es el mas importante, asi lo dice la historia…yo te hago a ti una pregunta que cancion te gusto mas, en ESC 2012 la de España o la de Rusia…y ahora te hago otra pregunta cual de las dos canciones citadas tenia mas calidad?

Maria
Guest
Maria

The RAE says that a song in English will kill Spanish language? What have they been doing for ages with Galician, Catalan or Basque? and those are official languages. Why if we sang in German, French or Greek? Would they still say the same? Most of the music in our radio shows is in English. I would worry more for countries like Germany or Sweden that rarely use their own language.

marie
Guest
marie

I hope Barei will have a good result in Stockholm with this song in English.
If not I think there will be an eurodrama in Spain.The Spanish are passionate, so if she is between the last.everybody will say it’s because they don’t want us to sing in English instead of thinking that may be the song was not good enough.
personally I don’t like the song (the language I don’t care even if I like spanish language).

paco
Guest

TU mismo lo estas diciendo ESC …Solo es un programa de TV.solamente esta en juego el microfono de cristal?.O el prestigio de los artistas?… Calma, amor y luz para todos.Se podra juzgar a las canciones cuando estas esten en igualdad de condiciones, para hacer una comparativa o sea cuando se sepa que cancion lleva cada pais…lo demas son solo conjeturas y estrategias.Solamente eso.

L
Guest
L

The problem is not that Barei sings in English, the problem is that I’m sure that if she sang in Basque or Catalan she would also have many critics, and those are official languages in Spain. It seems that it’s either Spanish or nothing. It’s just a television show, people. Calm down. I personally don’t care about the language as long as the song is ok. Say Yai! is not a good song, but it was the best option of the 6. End of the story.

paco
Guest

Sñor Christian, quien le paga a usted para que repita siempre el mismo dicurso, quizas Donal Trump? La publicidad positiva o negativa es publicidad …al fin y al cabo .y eso cuesta mucho dinero.Tenga mucho cuidado con su salud …por que estamos en Febrero y ESC es el 14 de Mayo, va usted a llegar cansado, agotado, desfallecido, frustrado…etc haga el favor ,de controlar tanta pasion por el microfono de cristal.

Freyah
Guest
Freyah

I’d prefer more of it to be in Spanish. I feel like she’ll do an Ann Sophie in Stockholm, because she screeched on that stage. It may have mostly been the studio acoustics etc. but it didn’t sound good (though none of them did to be fair).

rebel
Guest
rebel

I also like my country to sing in spanish, i’m very proud of my language and i think that, if any language aside from english can win eurovision,that’s spanish. But I also LOVE say yay and barei, and this is a song that wouldn’t work in spanish, that’s the main reason why I’m ok with spain singing in english for once. Both song and singer are worth the sacrifice.

mocosuburbian
Guest
mocosuburbian

” ultra-Spanish nationalist cavemen ” is a bit harsh
maybe they just have different opinions than you?
the song is just alright, with a little bit of Spanish it might have been unique

EUROFAN MEXICO
Guest

POR FAVOR VAN 60 AÑOS DEMOSTRANDO QUE NUESTRO ESPAÑOL ES UNA LENGUA MARAVILLOSA, NO PASA NADA QUE UN AÑO CANTEN EN INGLES, VEAMOS QUE PASA, SI EUROPA LA RECIBIÓ GENIAL, saludos desde México.

Racal
Guest
Racal

@Franck: Showing your culture is not the opposite of winning! What you guys are doing is called a fallacy: because a lot of English songs have win in recent years, you assume that only English songs can win. Let me tell you something: – 95% of the countries now sing in English, so of course the chance that the winner will be an English song is way bigger. – Since 2000, the song that finished last in the contest has been an English song in 14 out of 16 contests. According to your way of thinking, it would mean that… Read more »

Franck
Guest
Franck

I’m less concerned about Spain singing in English once than almost all the other countries sending systematically entries in English.
There are countries where people think it’s more important to win than to show your culture.
It’s a choice, a sad one but still a choice.

Lawrence Gibb
Guest
Lawrence Gibb

How I love these comments.Nobody can accuse ESC fans (at least the ones here) of lacking passion, even if at times the comments are vituperative. I particularly admire forging a comparison with the race to the White House. Be careful John Christian, never underestimate people’s ability to elect the seemingly unelectable nor that of ESC viewers to pick a song nobody expects to trouble the left hand side of the scoreboard. Regarding Barei; singing in Spanish hasn’t enhanced Spain’s chances of victory, perhaps because none of the 500 million Spanish speakers can vote for Spain. But then singing in Italian… Read more »

Racal
Guest
Racal

I am not from Spain, and I do think it’s sad that Spain will sing in English. It’s very nice to know that, according to this (very prejudiced and very one-sided) article, that makes me a “ultra-Spanish nationalist cavemen”. Europe is one of the most diverse continents, with dozens (if not hundreds) of spoken languages and extremely rich cultures. I do think it is quite boring that this diversity ends up being butchered by Eurovision, with 95% of songs in English. I am very appreciative of countries like France, Portugal or Spain who make it a point to still sing… Read more »

@EugeneESCUK
Guest

It’s about understanding THIS contest; José María Merino clearly does not understand the ESC in 2016, simple as that. The rest we have discussed many times before. Singing in English alone does not guarantee success, finding a top contemporary song has been Spain’s biggest problem. How well have they done singing in Spanish? Either you want to do well or you just want to take part? Give the ESC public what they want, it’s very simple. They will not change the song or language, Spain has finally worked it out, (better late than never.) Plenty of other things to worry… Read more »

raulescfan
Guest
raulescfan

Let’s let them talk! That’s what always happens in my country. No one wants no change. As you rightly said in the article there are so many cavemen in our country. And Barei has no ears for them, she confidently said on an interview that she’d no way put Spanish in her song, because people voted for her after listening the whole English version on the show, so it makes no sense to introduce Spanish now, it wouldn’t be fair. And let me say something: when an artist is selected, it’s not chosen to represent a television, it’s chosen to… Read more »

MarioMario
Guest

You guys are so negative towards the best song so far. Barei is a great artist with a song with lots of true potential.

John Christian
Guest
John Christian

@steve, I agree. Barei now joins Douwe Bob, Serhat, and Iveta Mukuchyan. Weak artists who will never win in Stockholm, like Donald Trump who will never win in the White House! Barei lovers are Trump supporters and these four artists will eventually FAIL!

Hugh
Guest
Hugh

1) Great wrap-up of the reaction 🙂 2) I throw my hand at Spanish, and I’m conversationally pretty much there at least with the Argentinean version/accent, but I always struggle to understand songs sung in anything other than English. I *love* songs sung in LOTEs at Eurovision, but English is by far the most accessible language. Many listeners might only pick up every second or third word in English, but that’s a lot better than maybe one in 100 in Spanish for someone with grade 6 English and almost no exposure to Spanish from, say, Poland. That said they could… Read more »

Rhys
Guest
Rhys

Spain: The country that nearly always gets loads of pre-show hype and is everyone’s favourite and then BAM! they fail. Barei: The artist who is next in line to suffer from Spain’s curse. Basically everyone – including me – loves it now so, like basically every Spanish entry from roughly 2011 onward it will do worse than people expect. You can use the argument of their 2012 and 2014 results but people still expected Spain to finish higher in those years, regardless of their eventual good placings. Then you have the entries which really justify my point (*cough* Amanecer *cough*).… Read more »

Jo Mercado
Guest
Jo Mercado

Well, the public itself voted for an all-English song because it was the best of the bunch.

The uber-nationalistic Spaniards can stay salty.

ZoESCesp
Guest
ZoESCesp

I’m done with such inept people. Spanish is spoken as official language in 21 countries, only 1 of them is European (Spain) and we can’t vote for ourselves, now tell me the sense of singing in Spanish!! I’m really happy with Barei, everyone will understand the message of our song. My country hasn’t won for 47 years and of the 17 winning songs from 1999, only 1 wasn’t sung in english (Molitva), yet there are people who think Spanish can bring us that awaited victory… ridiculous… I’m one of those Spaniards who’s realistic and wants english to represent us because… Read more »

paco
Guest

Soy Espaol y me encanta mi idioma, pero tambien me gusta el Frances, Italiano,el Portuges…etce.A los mienbros de la RAE ,me gustaria preguntarles y si reaccionaría de la misma manera si Barei cantara en ESC,en Euskera, Catalan, Galego…ellos los puristas del Español, deverian criticar la imagen bochornosa y casposa de los politicos de mi pais, cuando dicen frases como “un coffe cup in plaza mallor” en casos como esté no se manifiestan y hablan, que les importara a ellos como y en que idioma se expresa una artista, nunca me senti tan orgulloso de ser Español que al ver, nuestra… Read more »

paco
Guest

Soy Espaol y me encanta mi idioma, pero tambien me gusta el Frances, Italiano,el Portuges…etce.A los mienbros de la RAE ,me gustaria preguntarles y si reaccionaría de la misma manera si Barei cantara en ESC,en Euskera, Catalan, Galego…ellos los puristas del Español, deverian criticar la imagen bochornosa y casposa de los politicos de mi pais, cuando dicen frases como “un coffe cup in plaza mallor” en casos como esté no se manifiestan y hablan, que les importara a ellos como y en que idioma se expresa una artista, nunca me senti tan orgulloso de ser Español que al ver, nuestra… Read more »

Alexander
Guest
Alexander

I was so relieved when Spain chose this act – it’s the sort of thing that might actually take Eurovision back to Spain after all these years. At the end of the day, countries want to win this, do they not? So if that involves an English language so be it

Bronson
Guest
Bronson

Yes, Barei is not singing in Spanish. Yes, that may be a problem for some people. But they need to get over themselves, Barei is not going to change her song because a few people are unhappy. The same thing happened with Ruth in 2014. Spain just needs to be grateful it’s a decent song in English, and not a crap song in Spanish because I guarantee you, if something like Spain 2008 had entered the NS and won, the complaints would be ever larger.

steve
Guest
steve

She will flop big style!

MTD
Guest
MTD

But really, who the f*ck knew her before this? No one.
And who the f*ck really cares in Spain about ESC? Only the gay audience.

So, Barei was their pick. And oh, the so much drama will happen when she’ll flop in Stockholm. Hahahah