Wiwibloggs continues our series looking at the countries currently competing in the Eurovision Song Contest and why we love them — for reasons right, wrong or in between. Today we will be looking at fjord-laden Scandinavian paradise, Norway.

Norway first appeared at Eurovision in 1960 and boy it has been a rollercoaster ride of highs, lows and violins. They have brought so much to the table that ten reasons may not be enough to cover all that encompasses their greatness. Nevertheless, let’s take a look at 10 reasons why we love Norway at the Eurovision Song Contest!

1. A record-breaking history

There is no country with a Eurovision track record quite like Norway’s. They not only have the most last-place finishes with 11, but also the most nil points with a surprising four. At the other end of the spectrum, they have finished in the top five eleven times, won three editions — and one of those wins set records.

2. A great spirit

Despite a record that would make even the most determined countries have second thoughts about returning, Norway has never quit. They have only missed the contest twice — once in 1970, as part of a large boycott over the controversial four-way first-place tie the year before, and again in 2002 as they were relegated. Results were never part of the question. Norway knows that regardless of placings, they will keep their head up high and keep singing.

3. An almost wordless win

The 1995 victors, Secret Garden, are without a doubt one of the most unique and remembered winners of all time. Their entry, “Nocturne”, was almost entirely instrumental, with just two short verses totalling 25 words. Some consider “Nocturne” as being sort of a protest at the language limitations in the contest at the time and how English-speaking countries (especially Ireland) seemed to be more favoured in results because of accessibility.

4. Symbolically continuing the Irish winning streak

Speaking of Ireland, while Secret Garden entered for Norway, it was a half-Irish half-Norwegian act, with the duo’s violinist, Fionnuala Sherry, being Irish. This means that — unofficially, at least — Ireland had a five-year winning streak thanks to their Nordic friend.

5. Introducing Africa

Norway has not been afraid to recruit singers from every walk of life and different musical styles. In 2011, they created a watershed moment when Stella Mwangi sang part of the fan favourite “Haba Haba” in Swahili. This was the first time a language originating from the African continent ever graced the contest. Despite not making the final, Eurovision fans can still be heard singing “Haba haba, Hujaza Kibaba!”

6. How extra Melodi Grand Prix is

One fact is certain: Norway does not do it by halves. Melodi Grand Prix is likely the largest-scale national final of all when fully realised artistic concepts and staging is concerned. With not much regard to sticking to Eurovision rules, the MGP stage has seen an unprecedented amount of singers, dancers and props for every entry. Probably the peak of this statement can be seen in 2016, with the iconic “Laika”, complete with a 15-strong crew, mirrors for days, and a real car being driven across the stage.

7. Unforgettable staging moments

Norway does not save their notability just for MGP — they make sure their Eurovision entries also get the fans talking. From Guri Schanke‘s double reveal, to Wig-Wam bringing glam rock back at its purest state and Margaret Berger wearing the tightest, most curve-enhancing dress in the history of the contest, Norway knows how to take our breath away and feed us amazing moments.

8. They know how to be favourites

Norwegian artists know how to establish themselves. On one hand, they can be the favourites to win it all — as were Carl Espen and Mørland & Debrah Scarlett in their years. But on the other hand, Norway’s charismatic and friendly personalities make everyone in the press centre want to root for them regardless of favouritism. Everyone commended Agnete on her courage to speak out and strength to advance through struggle, and they remember the fun that JOWST brought to the environment.

9. Jon Ola Sand

The hardest working man in the Eurovision circle right now was brought to us by Norway: Jon Ola Sand, the man upstairs. Taking the Executive Supervisor seat since 2011, Sand has the last call with regards to the Contest’s production and is the voice with the largest authority for current affairs and future plans. He is also responsible for the organization of the voting system, so once everyone is checked by him, Jon lets us know when to “take it away!”

10. The legend of Rybak

We saved the best for last: the myth, the legend, the Fairytale. Almost ten years ago, a young singer known as Alexander Rybak wielded his violin, took the stage in Moscow and the rest is history. “Fairytale” became the winner by the largest margin in the history of the contest and it’s regarded as the ultimate Eurovision winner, with an influence on the contest today as strong as it was when he was the reigning champion. Despite the mixed reception that “That’s How You Write a Song” had in Lisbon, his name was always in consideration for victory, and regardless of the actual result, Alexander Rybak is and will always be a heavyweight name in the lore of the Eurovision Song Contest.

What do you think? What are the moments that make you fall in love with this Norwegian fairytale? Let us know in the comments below!

Read more Norway Eurovision news here

Total
148
Shares
newest oldest most voted
Notify of
Kris
Guest
Kris

This , I can say with aplomb: Norway has been my favorite country in the years I’ve watched ESC with all of their entries from 2014-17 being in my Top 10 and all except 2016 actually placing there.
2018 was a dud for me. But I really appreciate the NF songs.

AngieP
Guest
AngieP

Norway has this weird record. They have the most last place finishes but at the same time their most recent win was with the record number of points, 387 (before the 2016 system). How awesome is that?

Also, “Nocturne” is one of the most beautiful, magical moments of Eurovision! This song is a masterpiece!

Another reason I love Norway is of course “Fairytale”. One of my all time favourite winning songs!

Denis
Guest
Denis

Jon Ola Sand’s pregnancy glow every time he says “take it away ” is reason enough to love Norway!

Cesar's salad
Guest
Cesar's salad

Norway was a major disappointment this year, but they gave me my most beloved winner of all time: Nocturne by Secret Garden. Calming, soothing, mesmerizing.

Roelof Meesters
Guest
Roelof Meesters

Again a great country in the contest. I love their entries from 2014 to now, and their 2011, 2009 and 2008 were also really good. Fairytale was so amazing and I personally also love That’s How You Write A Song. Overall a veeeeeeeery solid ESC country. The 2010 stage was really bad tho, idk how such a rich country gave us such a weak stage.

Ana
Guest
Ana

Norway means a lot for me, not only for musical reasons. That’s why I always wish them all the best in the competion. Here are the reasons why I love them at ESC (apart from generally good music): 1. All their 3 winners. Fantastic songs & performances. Nocturne – one of the best winners ever, if not the best. Music in its clearest form. 2. VIOLIN. And, what is connected to it, Alexander. I love so many songs of him. I adore his intepretation of another stunning Norwegian entry: Adieu by Jahn Teigen <3 3. Those ballads. Silent storm, A… Read more »

pp77
Guest
pp77

My TOP 5 song from Norway
1.1988
2.1984 (better than winner Sweden and 4 th place Denmark)
3.2013
4.1996
5.2015
Unerrated in 1984,1989,1990,1991,2001,2004,2006
Overrated in 2003,2009,2014,2017

Jonas
Guest
Jonas

Ingvild Bryn! Bobbysocks! Silje Vrige! Charmed! The little old lady who sang “diddle dee diddle day doh” at the top of a cliff!

Joe
Guest
Joe

Norway will always have a special place in my heart at Eurovision. Not only do I admire their rise then fall then rise again, they’re also responsible for Nocturne, my favorite Eurovision song of all time. It’s beautiful and unique, everything I want in a winner. Whenever I want to prove to people how Eurovision can be legit, that’s the song I play, and they usually agree. Plus, it led to Oslo 96, for my money the best Eurovision year ever. Beyond that, I’ll also single out 2015 (another all-time favorite), basically all their entries from 93-96 (besides Nocturne), 2009… Read more »

Jonas
Guest
Jonas

Nocturne is one of the best for sure! So nice that Fionnuala and Rolf actually met at the contest one year before, when she was playing with the orchestra, and then to come back a year later and win the whole thing. Amazing!

James
Guest
James

I only found out recently that Secret Garden was behind “You Raise Me Up”. That makes me appreciate Norway even more. 🙂

Jonas
Guest
Jonas

Yeah, Rolf Lovland composed the music, and Brendan Graham (The Voice, Rock ‘n’ Roll Kids) wrote the lyrics, so between them they have four Eurovision wins.

Joe
Guest
Joe

I forgot Brendan Graham wrote it! And then Johnny Logan and Alexander Rybak covered it. So one song technically encompasses eight winners. And Josh Groban.

Jo.
Guest
Jo.

The trilogy:
2013-2014-2015.

pp77
Guest
pp77

Wiht LInea Dale and song High Hopes that wili be fantastic trilogy. In 2014,2016 tthey made mistake in MGP , better was Liena than Karl and Laila was best in 2016.

Roy Moreno
Guest
Roy Moreno

Swahili is not quite the first African language in Eurovision.
What about Morroco 1980?
Nothing about their win in 1985? Or just Elizabeth (if that’s her name) who represented Norway more times including being a runner up in 1996!

James
Guest
James

From land to Ola Sand.

Eastman
Guest
Eastman

11. The “plot twist” ending of A Monster Like Me. Subverting the audiences expectations since 2015.

ESCFan2009 (male, 22, German)
Guest
ESCFan2009 (male, 22, German)

The Norwegians do exactly what Rybak says: When they fall, they believe (Step 1) and they roll (Step 2) until they are on the top again! Great passion and strength!
Tooji was too hot for his bad placement <3
And Jon Ola: "Take It Away!" is legendary!

Fredrik
Guest
Fredrik

I like this series. Norway has the best interval in 2010 with flashmobs with Swedens 2016 with peace love and of course Irelands Riverdance in 1994. Didrik Solli-Tangen with My Heart Is Yours is one of my favourites and 20th was to low.

fugu
Guest
fugu

Didrik Solli-Tangen was wonderful but the staging was just dull. Though I don’t know how you could have made that song ‘sparkle’. Watching other things he’s done, he has a lot of spark in him and could have pulled it off. Give him some pop opera with a little playfulness and he rules the day.

Reality Checker
Guest
Reality Checker

Norway is almost always hit or miss for me personally. They brought gems which I LOVE in recent years. Margaret Berger and Morland/Debrah should have won imo. Won! Even second place would have been unjust. On the other hand, 2011, 2012 and 2018 were abysmal for me. Their national finals are always worth watching, though. Best production of all NFs! Ignoring the fact that he isn’t responsible for any of the competing acts, I am still not sure if Sand is a positive for Norway. I don’t have enough behind-the-scenes information to be objective but people in the highest position… Read more »

Gus and me
Guest
Gus and me

Take it away = the most important moment of the year

Sal
Guest
Sal

Fionnuala Sherry was the violinist, not the vocalist, for Norway’s 1995 entry. Technically, the duo did not have a vocalist at all, one was just added for the contest to adhere to the rules.

Eee Pee
Guest
Eee Pee

Norway has the worst luck. Rybak won his semifinal then crashed out in 15th in the grand final. Tooji came last with Stay which was a total bop but ppl say it was too much like Popular. Queen Margaret Berger was my fav to win in 2013!!

Eee Pee
Guest
Eee Pee

My gran would love you, she is a Jahn Teigen fangirl!!!! Justice for Jahn!