Australia has quickly become a powerhouse of the Eurovision Song Contest. And now SBS has crowned its 2020 queen to lead them into battle in Rotterdam. Montaigne has won Eurovision: Australia Decides and will represent Australia at ESC 2020!
It was a night of bright lights, but Montaigne shined brightest with “Don’t Break Me” — a song that asks the question, “Are we really breaking up?” Montaigne’s protagonist knows she’s with Mister Wrong, but she struggles to walk away and make it right. The performance was quirky and eccentric, but the song is mainstream and radio-ready.
Australia Decides 2020 Jury and Televote results
54 points Montaigne
42 points Vanessa Amorosi
40 points Casey Donovan
39 points Didirri
24 points Diana Rouvas
24 points Mitch Tambo
19 points iOTA
19 points Jack Vidgen
18 points Jaguar Jonze
11 points Jordan-Ravi
60 points Casey Donovan
53 points Montaigne
40 points Vanessa Amorosi
33 points Mitch Tambo
28 points Jaguar Jonze
24 points Didirri
18 points Diana Rouvas
15 points Jack Vidgen
13 points iOTA
12 points Jordan-Ravi
Review of Australia Decides 2020
Montaigne had to beat some stuff competition. Singer and performance artist iOTA opened the show with “Life” — an out-of-the-box song with an equally outré performance. He bent his back like he was doing an Ina Bauer on the ice, all accompanied by two instrumentalists being lowered from the ceiling. Jordan Ravi followed in the dreaded number two spot with “Pushing Stars”. The America’s Got Talent alum pushed beaucoup de talent in front of a digital starscape. Those stars leaned a bit more Sesame Street than Star Wars, but it was still charming if somewhat juvenile.
Then came Jaguar Jonze, whose edgy song “Rabbit Hole” told the story of her own struggles with PTSD. She literally tore down the walls of a mini stage, eventually revealing the grand scene around her. The fan favourite merged pop and edge perhaps better than anyone. This felt less glossy Marie Claire and more avant-garde Vogue Italia.
The Voice star Jack Vidgen sang fourth. “I Am King I am Queen” is all about telling your own story and not letting other people tell it for you. “I think music brings out emotions in you that you may not even know are happening,” he said in his voiceover. Our guy definitely let it all out!
Award-winning singer songwriter Vanessa Amorosi started splayed out on the floor on her back, having survived a car accident — with the car at stage left. It was a somewhat apocalyptic scene. She eventually stood up to deliver “Lessons of Love”. The power was clear, but at times she seemed to be singing straight from her nose. But she definitely brought it home at the end. Diana Rouvas, who was mentored by Boy George, stood before a digital circle and belted it out on loop. It was loud, but controlled.
“Together” singer Mitch Tambo wore feathers — and a lot of fringe — to portray the emu. The song had a Disney quality and the chorus was very Phil Collins Tarzan. Shout out to Mitch for singing in his native language, which really fit the rhythm and flow of the verses.
Casey Donovan smashed the vocals. She proved that with powerful vocals you can fill a stage — even if all you have is a mirror behind you and some mobile phone lights in the audience. Perhaps the vocal of the night. The penultimate went to Montaigne, who messed with the idea of a woman playing the clown. While her costume may have raised eyebrows — she seemed to have a luffa around her neck — the joke is on you if you question her talent. It needs some polishing, but it was contemporary, fresh and original. Lastly came Didirri with “Raw Stuff”. An appropriate title for a song so pared back.