Editorial written by Nisay SAMRETH, Editor-in-chief and Community Manager for Eurovision-FR.net
Version française de l'éditorial
On Friday, March 10th in the afternoon French young media Melty broadcast an extract of the Eurovision version of « Requiem », the contribution of France for the 2017 Eurovision Song Contest sung by Alma. In this 30 seconds extract, the chorus is marked with higher EDM sonorities and English lyrics melted with French ones.
The following day in the afternoon, the official Eurovision version video clip of « Requiem » by Alma was put online by the official Eurovision YouTube channel. This new version, orchestrated by We Are IV, gets richer with piano notes, chords and choirs especially at the end of the song. The bridge was modificated. The biggest change is the presence of English language in the chorus and at the end of the track.
The first reactions were immediately posted on comments sections of Internet websites, generalistic and Eurovision specialized, and on social networks, including our own forum, Facebook and Twitter : many readers complain about the English parts. Opinions are sometimes made, as it’s usually the case in France, without concession, very raw, in the only one way to destroy the reputation of the Contest and of our singer.
Our website perfectly understands criticisms about the double language, the new orchestration was pretty well-welcomed.
For us, the most important, apart of the final result, is that Alma, the French Delegation at the Eurovision Song Contest, France Télévisions, Edoardo Grassi (French Head Of Delegation at the Contest), Nazim and We Are IV are plenty satisfied of the Eurovision version of « Requiem ».
Moreover, it is essential that Alma must be comfortable, vocally and in the staging, in the interpretation of this new version of « Requiem » and that she agrees with it for the Contest.
Behind this new version hides the stage performance which will be revealed in Kiev for the Contest, with a visual universe and stage elements which must be undertaken. All this synopsis and its parts (video background, stage occupation, camera axes,…) must be given with the song itself and the video clip during the Head Of Delegations meeting this week, so that the production team has to work on the French live performance in 2 months.
A trend this year, more than the previous editions of the Contest, is the way how the most hardcore Eurovision fans, the EuroFans, get very closed opinions, without looking after the negative impact their talks have on the participant delegations, made with more than 10 collaborators, working behind closed doors, for days and hours, to offer to a large mainstream audience only 3 little minutes of entertainment in their lifes.
EuroFans have not the ability to plenty judge of a singer or of a song for such an event as the Eurovision Song Contest. Their actual obsession to analyze every tiny thing, to look after any error or similarity, as small as it is, to emit any killing critic (without any argument and very short is possible as the EuroFan hasn’t any time to take a step back), to « bitch » every time as a good gay queer … is bad for the Contest rather improving it.
OK, their initiatives didn’t mean to hurt intentionally. But, without taking conscience, EuroFans literally destroy the initiatives of the singers and of the delegations who work 24/7 for the Contest. Their thoughts and their huge and natural proportion for "EuroDrama" are sadly taken as the true truth, as the most important value, including for serious/generalistic medias and professional journalists.
As the Editor-in-chief and the Community manager of Eurovision-Fr.net, I don’t think our website has to dictate you your opinion and your way to think. It’s the reader to make his/her own opinion according to artistic sensitivities, own feelings and personality. But what we require you, is that you have to put the angles, to be open-minded, and to be indulgent anytime, anywhere. Don’t make any comments as in many websites (Eurovision-specialized or generalist ones) without any construction which will make poorer the debate, posted at the minute without reflexion, and which are not the reflect of what your are really are/ of what you really think, in the bottom of your heart. Trolling and fake news are the actual plague for mass-media, Internet and social networks, in an important period for France in the 1st semester of 2017, and which had negative impact on the United Kingdom and the United States during the latest elections.
As far as I’m concerned, I like the Eurovision a lot, without being a « hardcore fan », because I appreciate the diversity of music and cultures during this TV show, while getting interested in the motivation of people (artists, Heads of Delegation, Press contacts, journalists, fans,…) to take part at the Contest. It’s hard for mainstream audience, especially in France, to understand why an artist wants to do the Eurovision Song Contest so much, more/as equal as a contest for the Music Conservatory or for an award ceremony in which this artist wants to be nominated so hard.
I’m nearly 35 years old, I really get interested in the Contest only since 2006 with Lordi, as I’m after all (and still) a hard rock/metal fan : it’s a kind of music which touches me more than rap or opera for example, which owns a great diversity and a palette of artistic universes I found out back at the Eurovision Song Contest.
I recognize I’m too young to take a step back at the Contest’s past. I don’t really like the wet and openly gay-friendly atmosphere of Eurovision parties, who don’t hesitate to exclude women and the youngest of us. In love, I’m only attracted on women.
I would like that the structures nearly or far linked with the Eurovision Song Contest to be wide-opened to everybody, whatever your age, sex, religion, origin or musical style, not necessary somebody who openly and provocatively behave as a woman he is not ; to be frank with you, this kind of person/behaviour makes me a little bit uncomfortable.
My first years as a member of OGAE France, from 2010 to 2013, didn’t go so well. I didn’t have the feeling to be warmly welcomed in this association, with a narrow-minded board in their principles and to wanted their members to dictate their behaviour, their thoughts and their very Parisian way of life, from Le Marais. Since 2014, with a totally renewed Board/Council of Administration I belong to today, our association does all the possible to integrate perfectly any new member or person who is interested in the Contest, even since from Amir, for example.
It’s the same philosophy on our website : we are ready to permit to anybody to live and share his/her passion for the Eurovision Song Contest at 100%, with his/her way, without any judgement. This year, we permitted to our Forum members to get a press accreditation for national events or selections (MelodiFestivalen in Sweden, Eesti Laul in Estonia, Eurovision In Concert in the Netherlands, …) so that they can see and feel what’s going on backstage, when cameras are lit off and aren’t live, with rehearsals and press conferences.
Enough talking about me and our website, let’s get back to Alma and to the French Delegation at the Eurovision Song Contest.
Here, we can make a parallel between Alma for france and Blanche from Belgium, both are very appreciated by our readers..
Even if there is a gap of 10 years between these 2 young artists, as Blanche, Alma frankly enters into a mass-media and music storm this year. Both are learning their job of professional musician and to assimilate the codes of music business.
In the good and bad moments, Alma and Blanche can trust into their relatives, their family, members of their delegation and skilled musicians in their side for the Eurovision adventure and the making of their respective album/EP (Nazim for Alma, and Pierre Dumoulin for Blanche). They must receive pieces of advice and take strategic decisions only from their closed circle (so we look back at the opinions of the EuroFans who believe to know everything about the Eurovision Song Contest and, of course, know better than anybody how the music business works today !).
Alma (as Blanche) will get in 2017 successes, but also failures. As any artist in the world, who is after all (and we forget it behind our TV screens, our smartphones and our computer keyboards) a human being, with feelings, emotions and heartbeats, who get qualities and defaults. We cannot be perfect, we try to become it, but it is impossible.
We are not born as an artist, a microphone from of your month already as a womb with spotlights up to your head and cameras front of your face, we become an artist, after long hours of work and sacrifices on your private life. Obviously even worldwide pop stars as Beyoncé, Lady GaGa, Katy Perry or Taylor Swift know periods of doubt while wondering for the rest of their career, even if they are successful and get the attention of the mass-media, as for today.
Anyway, any initiative taken by the French delegation and our representative would have been the object of quick criticism. We can’t realize progress while staying in a status quo. You have to take risks to goal your aims. We would have been reproached to have done nothing, to have kept the original version without any changes.
We have to let Alma and the French Delegation work with serenity, taking part in the Eurovision pre-events (OGAE France Previews Meeting, events in London, Tel Aviv, Amsterdam and Madrid, media coaching, rehearsals,…) and preparing as planned the relase of Alma’s first album on May 5th.
For Alma, whatever the final result after May 13th, the Eurovision Song Contest must made her blossom as a human being and in her artistic career, to comfort her into the way/the voice she decided to choose.
Whatever the final result, we mustn’t be ashamed of Alma’s contribution. She is a talented and shinny representative, who perfectly defends, in her way, France. We have to salute the huge work made by France 2 since 2015, and the tasks undertaken by Edoardo Grassi since last year.
We finish this editorial with 2 quotes. The first one, an important one for Nathalie André, former Head Of Entertainment for France 2, from Nelson Mandela : « None of us, while acting alone, can’t reach success ». And the last one, from our Head Of Delegation Edoardo Grassi, on Twitter : « Get a life! ». Yes, there is a life apart of the Eurovision Song Contest. Concretely, for an artist, it’s only 3 minutes, which can change his/her life forever. « But it’s only TV ! ». Finally, this editorial concludes to a quote from French TV host Cyril Hanouna.
You can find on our website a complete article (in French) about the Eurovision version of Requiem (video clip, international promotion, exclusive interview with Alma,...)