Especially during this time marked by tragedies and hard fates, one fact was more than clearly underlined tonight. Music is one of the most beautiful kinds of art, entertainment, and communication. It reaches people’s hearts, unites, and sets bold signs. As for almost 70 years, this was reflected again tonight at the world’s largest TV event, the ESC 2022, where the KALUSH ORCHESTRA from Ukraine achieved a glorious victory.
ITALY & THE SOUND OF BEAUTY
Admittedly, if you think about what is currently happening in Eastern Europe, you have to admit that the motto of the ESC 2022, The Sound of Beauty, seemed a bit one-dimensional. Especially, when we compare the beautiful pictures of Turin with the new video of the KALUSH ORCHESTRA. Read more about it later.
Howsoever, we also missed the clips in which the musicians introduce themselves and their country. Instead, Italy uses the ESC as a platform to promote the country with amazing flying drone pictures. However, this is excusable because a drone flight in Ukraine currently has different, dark backgrounds and shows the opposite of beauty. Moreover, Italy – with all its facets – is a really beautiful country and, therefore, always worth seeing.
THE ESC 2022 & THE SUPPORT FOR UKRAINE
Nevertheless, it is about the artists and their music. And this year it was not only as multifaceted as beautiful Italy itself but also accompanied by political statements, even if these were not actually allowed on the ESC 2022 stage.
Because, as with major sporting events, the organizer of the ESC does not want the stage to become a platform for political, social, cultural, or other discrepancies. However, the artists proved that this neutrality does not work in these times. They showed their support for Ukraine in many ways. The organizer finally accepted this.
THE FAVORITES OF THE ESC 2022
The expert juries also had to accept this. Because these juries, consisting of music experts, which choose the 10 best songs for each participating country, mostly voted for Sam Ryder from the United Kingdom. His song Space Man was also very well popular with the audience.
Also very successful was Chanel from Spain. Her song SloMo (actually an abbreviation for Slow-Motion) was anything but slow.
With a lot of glamor and sex appeal, she brought the Spanish joie de vivre and energy to the ESC 2022 stage.
Sweden was also a hot contender for victory at ESC 2022. Barfoot asked Cornelia Jakobs Hold Me Closer.
KALUSH ORCHESTRA FROM UKRAINE
However, all the musicians showed a strong sympathy for the Ukrainian contribution. The strongest sympathy finally came from the audience, who almost unanimously voted for the KALUSH ORCHESTRA with their song Stefania. It was calculated that – this is a historic result – almost each of the 40 participating countries awarded full marks to the Ukrainian band.
A mix of rap verses, folk chorus, and hip-hop beats, the song represents so much more than just music. It has become the mouthpiece for an entire nation:
We are grateful for the support of all Europeans. This victory is not for us, but for all brave people in Ukraine who are fighting for our freedom right now. You all stood with us on stage at that moment and gave us strength. We will welcome Europe and the Eurovision Song Contest 2023 to a new and happy Ukraine. – Oleh Psiuk
OFFICIAL MUSIC VIDEO RELEASED TODAY
The music video for the song was released today. It was filmed in Bucha, Irpin, Borodyanka, and Hostomel, cities near Kyiv that have suffered the horrors of Russian occupation. KALUSH ORCHESTRA dedicates this video to brave Ukrainians – all mothers who protect their children and all who gave their lives for our peace. Every man, every woman, every innocent child.
OTHER GREAT ACTS OF THE ESC 2022
In addition to some banging rock and glamor gigs, many songs showed calmness and deep emotions. Our other favorites came from…
ISLAND – SYSTUR – MEÐ HÆKKANDI SÓL
The three sisters on guitars and bass and their brother on drums gave us a beautiful musical picture of green meadows, radiant glaciers, and bubbling geysers of their enchanting island. Even if they got not so many points, Systur’s performance and song were great.
GREECE – AMANDA TENFJORD – DIE TOGETHER
Beautiful Amanda, born in Norway, worked in the medical field during the pandemic. Maybe her song was shaped by the experiences she had to make during this time. In any case, it’s a strong ballad, presented by a great voice and beautiful artists.
THE NETHERLANDS – S10 – DE DIEPTE
We think her song De Diepte is simply great. Moreover, we are sure that we will hear and see a lot more from the young Dutch artist.
With her music, the pretty Stien den Hollander follows a similar path as Billie Eilish. She wrapped modern and atmospheric tunes around deep emotions and tells about depression and fears.
THE SEMI-FINALS OF THE ESC 2022
It is also worth taking a look at the ESC 2022 website, because there were already strong performances in the semi-finals, for example from Reddi from Denmark. Her rock song The Show expresses a lot of power and fun.
Also, the gorgeous singers Emma Muscat from Malta, and Andromache from Cyprus presented great songs and performances.
Слава Україні! – Glory to Ukraine! Good Luck to the KALUSH ORCHESTRA
Now that the 66th Eurovision Song Contest is history, we hope it reflects the future of Europe in which a free and prosperous Ukraine presents ESC 2023. A time in that Europe and the whole world experience unity, peace, and love.
Congratulations to the KALUSH ORCHESTRA, Слава Україні! – Glory to Ukraine!
Text Marco Kokkot
Photos: EBU. All rights reserved.
Videos: ESC 2022