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    So last night, locally here in Malta, we had the Malta Eurovision Song Contest. It’s the yearly competition that gives Maltese music performing talent the opportunity to strut their stuff. And for which the grand prize is the opportunity to represent Malta on the international stage at the Eurovision Song Contest. A pretty big deal for local singers and it seems, locally, to have a massive following. Yesterday’s edition was held at the MFCC pavilion and was hosted by a talent in his own right, and my old friend Colin Fitz.

    First of all I think it’s only fair to congratulate this years winner Christabelle Borg. She was a clear winner on the night, and thoroughly deserves her chance on the international stage. She will be heading off to Portugal in May to compete at the Eurovision Song Contest. However, in this case, it’s not just the song that deserves our plaudits. It is also what the song represents.


    Photo taken by Mark Zammit Cordina

    Aptly named, Taboo, is intended to raise awareness for mental health. This, coincidentally, just happens to be an area very close to my own heart and struggles. You see, I have been battling against my own mental health problems for over 25 years. And I can assure you it has been a difficult struggle. A fight which on many occasions I was very close to losing. Thankfully, it seems I have finally turned the corner and am winning the war. However, back on point, for me, anyone who is willing to take a stand and help people understand the stigma that is mental health, deserves great credit. And I think putting her victory aside, Christabelle deserves great credit for trying to shine a light on an area of health that still not fully understood nor accepted.

    Now, let’s get into the point of me writing this article. Once the dust settles on last nights competition, the build up to this years Eurovision will begin. As is always the case, Maltese expectations will be high and the nation will be hopeful. But my question to those who join in the furore is, why? Knowing what we know about Eurovision and experiencing what we’ve experienced, why would anybody in their right mind have any expectations of winning the thing?

    Don’t get me wrong here, I can understand why the people of a small nation like ours would embrace the opportunity to compete on the international stage. Very rare are these opportunities, and in most cases, more often than not it ends in extreme disappointment and highlights an obvious lack of the ability to truly compete. So one would think the Eurovision would finally provide an equal playing field for Malta to show case it’s talent and provide a real opportunity for success. But ask yourself this question, is that what the Eurovision Song Contest provides?

    The fact of the matter is, and I will not sugar coat my opinions here, the Eurovision Song Contest is an absolute joke. A complete farce. For such a big, and nowadays global, competition, I have never seen anything so poorly presented. I like to refer to the show as “cheap Euro trash”. But beyond that, the song competition itself is even more of a joke. More often than not nowadays, it is not the  most competently composed piece of music nor the best delivered performance that wins the show. Instead it seems to be either the biggest freak show, or example of extreme choreography that wins the day. What kind of song contest is that?


    An example of first class, Eurovision choreography. NOT.
    And then, of course, there is the voting system. Every time I have had to sit through this “so called” voting system in the past it has made me want to go at my own testicles with a sledge hammer. That is how frustrating it is. The voting, as it is today, works like this. After all songs have been performed, each country will give two sets of 1 to 8, 10 and 12 points. One set given by a jury of five music industry professionals, and one set given by viewers at home. Viewers can vote by telephone, SMS and through the official app. To keep things fair, you cannot vote for your own country. “To keep things fair”… hahahahaha. That line had me in fits.

    Quite simply, we have all seen over the course of the years that this voting system is anything but fair. First of all, for it to be a “fair” competition as they call it, in no way should viewer voting be allowed. Even if you could trust people to vote for what they judge to be the best song, what basis or experience do they have to judge such a song? Also, and for me the most frustrating element of the competition as a whole, is a trend which I can only refer to as “neighbor voting”.

    This form of voting sees countries giving the highest scoring votes to their neighboring countries. It happens especially with the Eastern European and Scandinavian Countries. And it leaves several nations, Malta included, at a very distinct disadvantage. In my opinion, this should render the whole voting process null and void. Shamefully despite the obviousness of this trend, nothing has been done over the years to stamp it out. As I stated earlier on, A COMPLETE JOKE!

    For the record, I will be watching this years edition of the Eurovision Song Contest. But let me be clear, I am only doing so to support Christabelle and her message on mental health. If it were not for that, there would be no way I would subject myself to that dire rubbish. For anyone who will be keenly watching this years event may I offer some words of wisdom. Do it only to support Christabelle as a proud Maltese nation and to give her support. DO NOT DO it with hopes of of glory and victory as with always in this SHAM of a competition you will be left severely disappointed. Don’t bother setting yourself up for that fall. It’s not worth it.

    ** Now watch. Seeing as now I have written and published this article, a anomaly will happen. Christabelle will win and I will have to make a huge retraction. YEAH…… NOT F***KING LIKELY. 🙂





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