Serbia’s back in Eurovision! Although last year’s show in Copenhagen was fantastic, Serbia’s presence was missed. The country took a year off, citing financial difficulties, though failing to qualify for the final in 2013 may have also forced the country to take a step back and regroup.
The time off served Serbia well, as I adore their selection “Ceo svet je moj” (The World is Mine) by Bojana Stamenov. Take a listen:
One of the reasons I love Serbia in the Eurovision Song Contest is because they know how to play the game. The song starts out with all the earmarks of a “Eurovision” song: mid-tempo ballad, an LED dress, the singer standing center stage with a straightforward delivery. Although these elements are cliché, Serbia executes at the highest level. Stamenov has a powerful voice and a charisma about her that is needed to elevate an entry from a good song to a contender. Also, a well-executed tempo change is my Eurovision catnip1 and this track accomplishes the feat with gusto.
Another reason I respect Serbia: they always compete in Serbian.2 Although English would make it easier for the bulk of the audience to understand the song, Serbia’s entries are able to convey the emotion and story of the song despite the language barrier. That, to me, is part of the point of the Contest and it should be rewarded when it happens.
Checking the odds at this point, Serbia is the top favorite of countries that have presented both song and artist. We still have a lot of entries to encounter between now and the real prognostication phase, but I suspect Serbia will be bouncing back from 2013.