Song Title: “Time to Shine”
Artist: Melanie Rene
Semi-Final: Second, Position 14
Last year’s entry: “Hunter of Stars” – SeBAlter (13th Place)
For a country with four official languages and prime real estate in Western Europe (read: lots of neighbors), Switzerland should have a much stronger track record in the Eurovision Song Contest. Instead, since the introduction of the modern semi-final format in 2004, the Swiss have qualified for the final only four times (finishing in last place in 2012) and finished in absolute last place twice.1 The country managed to finish middle of the pack last year after qualifying for the final—can “Time to Shine” by Melanie Rene make it two-in-a-row?
This will be a tough one to call. “Time to Shine” almost achieves Eurovision Yahtzee:
- Perpetual building up of emotion
- A song with “Shine” in the title
- Female power ballad
- Random electric guitar snippet
As such, the track record of songs like this is spotty at best. Slovenia’s entry last year was of this type, but they managed to qualify. However, so was Israel’s and they received no love. This year, Melanie Rene will need to contend with “Warrior”, both from Georgia and Malta, and the esoteric qualities of Latvia‘s entry. Plus, Switzerland will be performing in the wake of Sweden‘s powerhouse entry, which is not prime positioning.
I don’t think all hope is lost. The above video suggests that Melanie Rene and company are mindful of the importance of imagery and staging. The song as it is currently does lend itself to a strong stage presence, which Switzerland will need in the semi-final. A say the “song as it is currently” because I am concerned about the level of production already present in the track. I believe Slovenia under-performed at last year’s Contest because the final version of the song was overproduced and it showed. “Time to Shine” is a hair away from crossing the line and if Switzerland is tempted to do any more tinkering, it should look in the mirror and remove an accessory rather than add anything else.
I don’t think 2015 will be the “Time to Shine” for Switzerland, but with a certain degree of care, I could see Melanie Rene getting off the bubble and sneaking her way into the Eurovision final.
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- Nil points in 2004. In a semi-final. That feat is almost worthy of a prize in itself. ↵