The 2020s are fast approaching. But when it comes to Eurovision the decade has already ended. It’s been ten years of change, with one of the biggest shakeups coming courtesy of Australia.
The Antipodeans had been watching the contest continuously since 1983 when they were given a special invite to take part in 2015. Their arrival coincided with Eurovision’s 60th-anniversary celebrations.
But the Aussies got on so well that they’ve yet to leave. In fact, their participation is secured up until at least 2023.
Australia’s qualification rate is 100%. With a record like that, it’s clear that the country has had plenty of hights. But which of its entries did best and which did worst? Wonder no more as we’ve compiled a definitive ranking of Australia’s Eurovision entries in the 2010s.
For the purposes of this ranking, we’re going off the percentage of maximum possible points which each entry received at Eurovision.
For example, a finalist in 2019 could only receive a maximum of 960 points i.e. 24 points from each of the other 40 countries voting. If an act finished with 200 points, they would have received 20.83% of the points available to them.
This is not to be confused with the percentage of all votes cast.
5. Jessica Mauboy “We Got Love” (2018)
Result: 20th in the grand final with 99 points — 9.82% of maximum possible points
Australia chose a returning name of sorts in 2018. Jessica Mauboy had previously performed “Sea Of Flags” during the semi-final two interval in 2014. Four years later, she was internally selected by SBS to experience the Eurovision madness all over again, but with an added competitive element. And “We Got Love” was among the early favourites. Alas, things didn’t quite come together in Lisbon. The entry finished last with televoters in the grand final and 20th overall — Australia’s worst placing to date.
4. Isaiah “Don’t Come Easy” (2017)
Result: 9th in the grand final with 173 points — 17.58% of maximum possible points
Australia typically tends to do better with the juries than with the public. And it was in 2017 that the difference became most pronounced. Teen X Factor winner Isaiah Firebrace was internally selected to sing “Don’t Come Easy” in Kyiv. And while the jury support came relatively easy, the same could not be said for the public. In the final he only received two points from viewers at home, compared to 171 points from the musical experts. In fact, if the power lay with televoters alone, Isaiah would have stayed in the semi-final. Nonetheless, Australia still managed to secure a third consecutive top ten finish.
3. Kate Miller-Heidke “Zero Gravity” (2019)
Result: 9th in the grand final with 284 points — 29.58% of maximum possible points
Australia came of age in 2019. For the first time, it did like many of its counterparts and held a national final. Eurovision – Australia Decides was a ten song spectacular, featuring acclaimed names like Sheppard, Courtney Act and Electric Fields. But it was Kate Miller-Heidke who emerged victorious with “Zero Gravity”. Combined with spectacular staging and pristine vocals, the autobiographical classical-pop crossover saw Australia return to the top ten once more — winning the first semi along the way.
2. Guy Sebastian “Tonight Again” (2015)
Result: 5th in the grand final with 196 points — 41.88% of maximum possible points
For its debut entry, Australia started as it meant to continue by selecting a current artist with a proven track record. And short of choosing someone like Kylie Minogue, it couldn’t have gone much bigger than Idol winner and X Factor judge Guy Sebastian. Thanks to its special guest status, Australia got to skip the semis completely. But the fast-track didn’t harm “Tonight Again” at all. The entry rode the funk-pop wave of the time all the way to the top five.
1. Dami Im “Sound Of Silence” (2016)
Result: 2nd in the grand final with 511 points — 51.93% of maximum possible points
Australia came painfully close to pulling a Ukraine and winning on its second attempt. Alas, it was Ukraine that stopped Dami Im from taking the Eurovision crown. Despite winning its semi, “Sound Of Silence” had to make do with silver. But Dami’s vocal prowess impressed the juries so much that they placed her first. Had the pre-2016 voting rules been in place, Australia would have won the contest.
Do you agree with the list? What are your rankings? Which is your favourite Australian entry of the 2010s? Let us know in the comments.