festival da cançao

Olá Portugal!  In a flurry of big notes and power ballads, the first semi-final of Festival da Canção came to an end late on Sunday evening. When the smoke cleared Viva la diva, Salvador Sobral, Fernando Daniel and Deolinda Kinzimba emerged as the qualifiers. We’ll see them on March 5, in the final in the Colosseum of Lisbon.

After a year off, Portugal has said goodbye to the saudade and what we’ve seen tonight is a major step forward from the last editions of Festival da Canção. A much shorter show with slick graphics and fancy postcards, Festival da Cançao has arrived in the 2010s (though which end of the decade is a matter for you to decide). But enough about that. It’s all about our four qualifiers…

First to announce the points was the jury. They gave their 12 points to Salvador Sobral, 10 to Viva La Diva, 8 to Deolinda Kinzimba and 7 to Fernando Daniel.

festival da cançao

As for the public vote, the 7 points went to Lisa Garden, the 8 points went to Salvador Sobral, the 10 were for Fernando Daniel and the 12 went to Viva La Diva.

festival da cançao

So that means that the four finalists are Viva La Diva, with “Nova Glória” (22 points); Salvador Sobral, with “Amor pelos dois” (20 points); Fernando Daniel, with “Poema a dois” (17 points) and Deolinda Kinzimba, with “O que eu vi nos meus sonhos” (12 points).

It’s interesting to see that Fernando and Deolinda — both winners of The Voice — find themselves as the underdogs following tonight’s overall results. Can they improve their stage shows and jump into the lead when the final rolls around?

Eurovision fans will note that Rui Drummond — himself a winner of The Voice and the country’s Eurovision 2005 singer — failed to make it through.

festival da cançao

1. Viva la diva with “Nova Glória”

2. Salvador Sobral with “Amor pelos dois”

3. Fernando Daniel with “Poema a dois”

4. Deolinda Kinzimba with “O que eu vi nos meus sonhos”

Festival da Cançao – 1st semi-final running order

  1. Márcia – ‘Agora’
  2. Golden Slumbers – ‘Para Perto’
  3. Fernando Daniel – ‘Poema A Dois’
  4. Deolinda Kinzimba – ‘O Que Vi Nos Meus Sonhos’
  5. Rui Drumond – ‘O Teu Melhor’
  6. Lisa Garden – ‘Without You’
  7. Salvador Sobral – ‘Amar Pelos Dois’
  8. Viva La Diva – ‘Nova Glória’

RTP is clearly keen to get back to the Eurovision final. The broadcaster invited some of the country’s top composers to write songs and dropped the oppressive Portuguese language rule. Even so, we only saw one song in English tonight, suggesting the acts want to keep the tradition of singing in their native tongue at Eurovision very much alive.

Tonight’s four qualifiers will join the qualifiers from next week’s second semi-final in the grand final on March 5. The final will be held at Coliseu dos Recreios in Lisbon, and will be hosted by Sílvia Alberto and Catarina Furtado.

Who was your favourite tonight? Did you like the qualifiers? Who should have made it? Let us know in the comment section, and don’t forget to share your video reactions via our app!

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Elza
Guest
Elza

Salvador Sobral – Amar pelos Dois – a truly wonderful song, a very touching performance. Outstanding Winner.

Alexandre
Guest
Alexandre

Salvador Sobral – Amar Pelos Dois . Portugal must be proud.
What an outstanding composition and interpretation.
An intemporal, stylish and sophisticated song.
I’m sorry haters but your anger and annoyance is not related to passion for music.
About the other finalists: average with or without circus on the stage.

Alexandre
Guest
Alexandre

Salvador Sobral – Amar Pelos Dois . Portugal must be proud.
What an outstanding composition and interpretation.
An intemporal, stylish and sophisticated song.
I’m sorry haters but your anger and annoyance is not related to passion for music.

callmemaybe
Guest
callmemaybe

Among these four finalists, Viva La Diva is the best choice to represent Portugal in Kiev. Why? They’ve got a powerful and strong voice than the others, their proposal is good and different than all of those songs that Portugal have sent in the past. Portugal needs a strong music in ESC – remember, last time they went to the final was 7 years ago!! – and I think “Nova Gloria” is capable of change things… C’mon, will you guys tell me this songs doesn’t make you any good emotion? Of course they’re not Il Volo, but if they improve… Read more »

the darkness of USA
Guest
the darkness of USA

Italy in 2015 was beautiful, but viva la diva is horrific??? Please haters, slow down… #vivaladivaforPortugal

Colin
Guest
Colin

Well, obviously all 4 are very old-fashioned. Viva la Diva: Nova Gloria – As someone described, it’s a car-crash. All 3 shouting at the same time just doesn’t work. Salvador Sobral: Amor Pelos Dois: Sounds very calming, but kind of too monotone. Fernando Daniel: Poema a Dois: Sounds nice, but no real hook at first, although the tempo is the best out of these songs. Deolinda Kinzimba: O Que Eu Vi Nos Meus Sonhos – She has such a beautiful voice, but I also miss the real hook. It might be that they all sound very similar when listening to… Read more »

EUROFAN MEXICO
Guest
EUROFAN MEXICO

i think that protugal are deadlocked in sad songs always old style

oli
Guest
oli

I LOVE Portugal in ESC and I love all these songs. They are so personal and sound very portugiese and somehow melancholic and intriguing. Good job Portugal <3

an esc fan
Guest
an esc fan

Have you seen the movie ”Woman on top” with Penelope Cruz?
The main song is brasilian, but, of course, the language is portuguese, because brasilian language does not exist.
I’ve been obsessed with this song : Sonho meu (My dream)
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Kg9w0yKHjb0

Purple Mask
Guest
Purple Mask

@an esc fan: Yeah I agree with that. It’s a pity most music critics can’t respect the history and traditions of Portuguese cancao. That being said, my own reviews have been critical, so I’m just as guilty… I think the backlash might be because we were expecting a modernist revolution at the Festival, and it hasn’t yet happened.

an esc fan
Guest
an esc fan

Portugal is the most misunderstood country. Hungary sends Origo, that sounds like 99% of the gypsy songs from Hungary, and Europe is in awe, but Portugal that has its slow sounds, that are traditional too, is criticized.

James
Guest
James

@nordlandspils

Good to know I’m not the only one.

MTD
Guest
MTD

What was that?

Oh, that was the Portuguese time machine, rolling us back to 1960’s. LOL

I only need that margarita by the Rio beach.

Hebbuzz
Guest
Hebbuzz

1. VIVA LA DIVA WITH “NOVA GLÓRIA” Please withdraw this horrific entry. It’s so not working for me. 2. SALVADOR SOBRAL WITH “AMOR PELOS DOIS” ’40/’50 ‘s kinda songbook song. Sung by an contact impaired / autistic guy. But it’s beautifull !! Muy obrigado! 3. FERNANDO DANIEL WITH “POEMA A DOIS” Nice song, no chorus, but the nice meldoy on repeat, with more and more orchestration. Little bit over-arranged. Complete mismatch of singer and song. Please change the singer. Vania Ferandez should sing this! 4. DEOLINDA KINZIMBA WITH “O QUE EU VI NOS MEUS SONHOS” I liked this oldfashioned song,… Read more »

Hebbuzz
Guest
Hebbuzz

With ‘Nova gloria’ Portugal would be heading for another carcrash!!!

Other 3 chosen finalists are pretty much OK, though I hope in the end the winner of Festival do Cancao will be a song from the second semi final!

Show as a whole was so relaxed, that I longed for some spice, but if I were to choose between the Spanish or Portuguese preselction i would always say Portugal!

Zzzzz
Guest
Zzzzz

Is this channel RTP only for old people watching ? the viva la diva one remind me of 2009ESC Bulgaria’s song. and i already forget other song because i fall a sleep and i dont want remember again. The only two perfomence i like are Salvador and Lisa Garden . Salvador’s perfomence very touching l felt minimalism vintage fashion maision margiela . And i really enjoy the way Lisa Garden’ s dancers dancing with the music tempo it something new i havent see before to me.

AngieP
Guest
AngieP

I didn’t have the chance to watch the semi live, so I just listened to the songs that qualified. First of all, I thought I was watching the Festival da cancao of 1980’s or sth. I’d like to comment on each song and share with you my reaction: Viva La Diva – ‘Nova Glória’: this song is so weird, at first I thought it was the woman alone singing, but then the other two men came out. I didn’t like it, I was bored in the middle of the song. Salvador Sobral – ‘Amar Pelos Dois’: during the intro, I… Read more »

4li3n
Guest
4li3n

Unfortunately the voice of english song wasn’t a good choice! Maybe if Isaura is the singer the song it could sound better.
Nova Gloria could result better if the singer was Sónia Tavares.
Salvador Sobral was a surprise, sounds vintage but at least it’s good!
I never like Fernando Daniel, and I don’t like his song, I’m happy because he didn’t make 1st on televote.
I’m so sad for that disappointment. :”
I’m waiting for 2nd semfinal, 2 english songs both non-balads.

nordlandspils
Guest
nordlandspils

@James
“It’s quite interesting to observe that while people like some countries’ songs for going the traditional route, the same cannot be said for others like Portugal and Spain.”

sharing this sentiment.

Kermit
Guest
Kermit

Sorry….but very disappointing! The songs ALL sounded dated….like cliched pompous euroballads of the 80s and 70s. ONE of them stood out, as a fresh breath of air. Lisa Garden. Modern, uptempo, international….veryyGOOD! But voted out?? WHY?? Once again, gret modern and original songs are ignored in Portugal! In 2015 they had Danca Joanna. Great modern soul / rnb, like bruno Mars…But voted out already in the semi. Same happened with similar songs before Portugal shoots themsvles in the footb…they need something modern to stand a chance To be honesyt…I don’t think ANY of those songs can take them further in… Read more »

Erdi
Guest
Erdi

I hope Salvador goes to Kiev. I know it’s not french but his song reminds me of french movie soundtracks, like in ratatouille or something. It’s beautiful, emotional and classy; and the word is not dated but timeless guys, come on.

an esc fan
Guest
an esc fan

Look at this video to see how Portugal is treated because is a country that dares not to buy songs from Sweden.
This is from a tv show in Sweden, a country that will bully you if you don’t buy songs from them.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=597IZmmjf2k

James
Guest
James

It’s quite interesting to observe that while people like some countries’ songs for going the traditional route, the same cannot be said for others like Portugal and Spain.

...
Guest
...

Ah, Portugal… Gostaria muito de vê-los na final, mas com essas canções fica realmente difícil…????????

Frau Von Storch
Guest
Frau Von Storch

SHOCKING: during the show some jury members claimed that Portugal performed poorly over the years due to POLITICS. They refused to accept that they fail and flop every year because their songs are tasteless and atrocious. I can already predict that a spot in the final is out of the question. Viva La Diva, the winners of the televote, are absolutely horrendous (one of the worst songs I’ve heard recently). Qualification to the final = officially cancelled. Shame on RTP!

Purple Mask
Guest
Purple Mask

I loved this. It’s wonderfully orchestral, and it has really interesting songwriting dating back almost over 100 years in style in some cases. All of the qualifiers stood out to me in different ways. Here is my feedback in the qualification order above: 1. Viva La Diva is all about the novelty concept – the high-harmony backing singers are men singing in falsetto, while the woman takes the lower lead part. On paper this is insane, but the group is talented enough to make this work. At ESC this might get votes from the public who like that sort of… Read more »

Daniel_2017
Guest
Daniel_2017

This is the first time I ever watched Festival de Cancao and…you call this a step forward?!?!? All these songs make Leonor Andrade look like cutting edge!!! (and, by the way, I loooved Leonor!!!). It was like watching a 80s show, at best! And, excuse me, I don’t mean to be rude, but what was the average age of the jury members?!

Nickc
Guest
Nickc

I am an old Fart, but yeah, I enjoyed the qualified songs. They are different. And diversity is the spice of life. Do not be surprised if Salvador pulls a Rafael gulazzi.

blondboybc
Guest
blondboybc

I’m sorry, but most of these are dated ballads…is this really the best Portuguese writers could come up with? Where’s the variety? Where’re the other genres? Pop? Rock? Country? Eurodance? Anything else??
I can see that Fernando’s song is not for him….something more modern, fresh and upbeat, perhaps? The songs need not be in English (too many of those in ESC), just get beyond these retro ballads for heaven’s sake! Not holding my breath on the 2nd semi. I really miss Suzy! Bring her back!!

Zzzzzz???
Guest
Zzzzzz???

I think I expect too much about this show .zzzzzzzzzzz
both Salvador and Lisa Garden’s perfomence are my favorit

Charles
Guest
Charles

@Anne Archer: I know one Lys Assia who would love Salvador’s song! The song mirrors so perfectly the 50s and 60s jazzy sounding songs that we once used to hear in Eurovision, she will relate to it in no time. The problem is … Lys Assia does not represent neither the televoters much less the LGBT fans and the song sadly in Eurovision fandom bubble fashion is out of sync with 2017. Portuguese fans like literally fans worldwide want uptempo current male dancers and gimmicks … a drag queen or a gorilla seem to work. Portugal has none of that… Read more »

Charles
Guest
Charles

An old fashioned 90s-esque ballad sung by one powerhouse vocalist alongside two countertenor queens calling themselves Viva La Diva? Why not calling themselves Viva Victoria? Or Afrodita? Apparently transsexual winning dance tunes serve as inspiration for names of vocal groups 19 years later … despite the song sounding extremely dated and lacking any emotion to believe in … but hey if this what the Portuguese fans and televoters so much want … at least it’s not another Rihanna-esque crappy song nor a bs zoo animal gimmick. But nah … I can’t see this in the final.

Anne Archer
Guest
Anne Archer

I don’t care if this is not POP or mainstream enough for Eurovision, but even tho I didn’t clearly understand the lyrics, Salvador Sobral performance left me instantly in tears with the soul and it’s composition… just outta of this world.

And I think it’s fair to say that this represents pretty much represents the passion and kindness of Portugal, really good hearted people. I fell in love when I visited Porto last year.

The rest didn’t sound as good or fun in my opinion… just really pale.

Can’t wait to see him in Kiev soon.

Charles
Guest
Charles

Portugal … why is this country still being part of something they clearly refuse to have any understanding of? RTP and the whole Portuguese musical mentality will never embrace the pop commercial mainstream sounds that we find a bit everywhere in all the other national finals … and …. much less will they ever follow Sweden’s popularity footsteps … that would be offensive to their own conservative music ego. The ballads lack emotion and contemporaneity and it’s all again about singing in Portuguese for the sake of the national pride bla bla bla … in other words, they are repeating… Read more »

D
Guest
D

Danish songs are here https://www.youtube.com/user/NeoLuma110/videos

Anja’s song is the only one that hasn’t been uploaded, but it’s in the channel’s recap video

mocosuburbian
Guest
mocosuburbian

in RTP’s defense Lisa Garden was very 2017
she didn’t make it to the final tho

Unofficial Mansters Association
Guest
Unofficial Mansters Association

I was hoping for some modern songs to be in this semi-final, but after watching and listening to all these songs, I realize that they’re all ballads, which kind of makes me feel a bit underwhelmed. I think the only ones that I enjoy so far is Fernando Daniel (who I’ve been excited for since the beginning) and Salvador Sobral. If the second semi-final’s songs are better than the songs from this semi-final, I may have hope that Portugal can qualify this year to the final.

Griffin
Guest
Griffin

Oh God even Fernando Daniel’s voice can’t save the song…. it’s like watching a tv show in 70s

malter
Guest
malter

The only problem with FdC this year was the draw. Literally all the ballads ended up on Semi Final 1.
Viva La Diva, Salvador Sobral, Márcia and Lisa were my favorites. Fernando’s song didn’t live to the expectations, and the rest… not much to say. Ballad after ballad, it didn’t help much.
But I think it was an improvement over what we had seen from the last 7/8 years.

David
Guest
David

I’m in love with Salvador’s song. The music has a cool vintage vibe, good harmonies, great arrangement and the performer is very cute and has a very particular, beautiful and sweet voice! I’d love to see him in Kiev!

Tomas Patrick Davitt
Guest
Tomas Patrick Davitt

#facepalm

cheesecake
Guest
cheesecake

I can’t believe how dated these songs sound, I really can’t. None of these are from the 21st century. Even the dresses were old-fashioned. Moldova’s and Belarus’ NF’s look futuristic compared to Festival da Cancao.
My hopes were high… now I’m shattered.

James
Guest
James

Fernando and Deolinda are the best ones for me.

Real@Winner
Guest

Seriously Portugal, remind us why are you back in the contest if nothing’s changed? Same dated horrible songs? Horrific, just horrific.

PePeMartnz
Guest
PePeMartnz

Once again cheated by the Festival da cancao… When I read that Portugal was going to take a year break in order to come with new perspectives and energies to finally get her first win in Eurovision, I felt happy… but since the beginning of the show, it was literally crap! All the songs were hideous and very 80 and 90’s dated… sorry but we are in 2017! it was ballad after ballad with the same structure and production from at least, ten years ago till now… I think the biggest problem is the fact that RTP is inviting to… Read more »

Andre
Guest
Andre

I had listened to Fernandos song by accident 2 weeks ago and i know the guy who wrote it and i already knew that people would be dissapointed in what he did tonight, its so 2009, whatever he is not going to win. I really hope Salvador wins though. RTP really made an effort, maybe the problem here was them not having a hand on the producers and telling that not many should write ballads? Well lets hope for a second semi final. And to be honest, me as a portuguese last years was good because i didnt have to… Read more »

Alex
Guest
Alex

Come on RTP… what’s with the bad audio quality? That buzzing from what sounds like clipping is obnoxious…

Salvador was spectacular. Song is obviously very old-styled, but of the four qualifiers, his is the best entry. Fernando also had an impeccable vocal performance. Viva La Diva shouldn’t really be first place here, but their draw probably helped them.

Pedro
Guest
Pedro

For the non-portuguese people xD Do you really enjoy Salvador Sobral’s song???

ThirtyOne
Guest
ThirtyOne

All songs are dated. Only one has good quality – Salvador’s. It has the chance of standing out in a contest full of electro pop. Plus his quirky stage presence is endearing and makes the performance memorable.

walter
Guest
walter

Erm, we portuguese fans do appreciate the good will on hyping our national selection but let’s not be delusional. RTP made an effort but the songs just didn’t live up to the expectations.

The only exception is maybe Salvador’s song – It is a proper song that doesn’t sound like trash and that could potentially do well (maybe with english lyrics). I was perched at every word and the melody is beautiful. I understand it’s a marmite song though and many will disagree, but definitely a highlight for me. I’m glad it went through.