Elhaida Dani’s “I’m Alive” is giving Albania life in this year’s Eurovision Song Contest. Will the song pull the country out of its slump?
Song Title: “I’m Alive”
Artist: Elhaida Dani
Semi-Final: First, Position 14
Last year’s entry: “One Night’s Anger” – Hersi Matmuja (Did Not Qualify – 15th Place, First Semi-Final)
Albania is another country I always find myself rooting for in the Eurovision Song Contest, even though it doesn’t always carry much clout when it comes to tallying up points. Although I have enjoyed all of its entries in the last several years, the country has hit a slump since its best-ever finish in 2012.1 I am happy to report that the buzz around this year’s entry, “I’m Alive” by Elhaida Dani, has been getting a lot of positive buzz and even the bookmakers are optimistic. Take a listen:
First, THANK YOU for changing the song, Albania. Although Eurovision has decided to explore other tropes this year, avoiding the overly-emotive American Idol power ballad has made this year’s field rather refreshing. Yes, “I’m Alive” is another entry in the Female Empower-pop genre/trope, but Elhaida Dani’s approach is rather pleasing to the ears. Following Conchita’s win last year, one can understand the temptation to make an aggressive Empower-pop song (I’m looking at you, Georgia) or one that short-circuits the emotional build to make such a song effective (no shade, Iceland). “I’m Alive” starts from a quiet place and builds a thesis, and does so in a way that should be rewarded.
I cannot wait to see how Albania stages this entry. Because it isn’t a power ballad, I can’t imagine this will feature Elhaida Dani in a gorgeous gown standing in a spotlight. The video also suggests that we could be the audience for some powerful imagery or multimedia messaging. Staging has not been Albania’s strong suit, relying heavily on pyrotechnics which will not work with this song.
I think “I’m Alive” can qualify on the merits of the song alone, but a strong presentation could make Albania a Eurovision contender once again.
Eurovision MiniPop Icons created by Ben Morris – See all 40 MiniPops here! You can also find his icons on t-shirts, phone cases, and mugs!
- Say what you will about “Suus”, but Rona Nishliu sang the hell out of that song and this year’s entry from Italy is the first to attempt the same level of difficulty since then. #Flawless ↵