Bread and circuses Eurovision

“Hosting Eurovision means the Azerbaijani government can showcase Baku
to thousands of visitors and millions of television viewers. However,
the event is overshadowed by the illegal evictions, expropriations, and
demolitions for hundreds of local residents forced out of their homes.”


That is how they managed to build the shiny concert hall for this telecast in only seven months.



Before winning, Sweden’s Loreen even met with some activists, Reuters reports. Reuters says the opposition newspaper Azadliq quoted Loreen after her meeting:

“Human rights are violated in Azerbaijan every day. One should not be silent about such things.”


‘Launched as a symbol of international harmony and exchange in 1956 – but soon overshadowed in that first year by the Suez crisis – Eurovision has always been a tempting metaphor for the tensions of other European relationships: most recently, the single European currency. But the most pressing comparison offered by this year’s contest was with major international football tournaments.

 A swell of advance publicity and patriotic optimism suggested that[UK] had finally found the right lineup and tactics to end decades of defeat. But the daring game-plan – picking the 76-year-old Leicester crooner with a stage name lifted from a 19th-century German romantic composer – ultimately failed to avoid the usual result. Humperdinck’s finish in penultimate place, saved from the basement only by Norway, was an undeserved humiliation for a likeable showbiz trouper and will surely make recognised talent even warier in future years of accepting the poisoned microphone.’


these toe-dancing babushkas were second place winners. The link to Daily Mail article is the most illuminating about the contest’s continuing utility to the famous and plebians alike.  Like football, it’s becoming ever more usual for these bread-and-circus events and hopefully they will soon obviate the need for wars and mass epidemics to keep the species viable.


via Healing lines


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