February is a big one in terms of national selections in 2016 and we kick off today, on the first, with the Iberian nation of Spain choosing their representative for Stockholm.

We will provide translation, analysis and commentary in the live blog below tonight.

The running order for tonight’s show is as follows:
1 – Maverick: “Un mundo más feliz”
2 – Barei: “Say Yay!”
3 – Xuso Jones: “Victorious”
4 – Salvador Beltrán: “Días de alegría”
5 – María Isabel: “La vida sólo es una”
6 – Electric Nana: “Now”


Nathan Waddell
February 1, 20169:16 pm

We begin tonight’s show with all six contenders singing the Eurovision theme acapella! How kitsch!


Nathan Waddell
February 1, 20169:18 pm

Plus a look through at some famous entries including “Congratulations” by Cliff Richard, “Waterloo” by ABBA and “Making Your Mind Up” by Bucks Fizz. Oh and there’s some Dana International too, “Diva” of course! We finish up with Lordi’s “Hard Rock Hallelujah” and Loreen with “Euphoria”.


Peter Dunwoody
February 1, 20169:18 pm

Evening all. We start off with the six contestants singing an a capella Eurovision theme like pricks from Glee, and then people dressed like classic Eurovision acts “in their living room”…not really feeling this.


Nathan Waddell
February 1, 20169:18 pm

Of course, tonight’s juror Loreen is singing her winner “Euphoria”.


Peter Dunwoody
February 1, 20169:19 pm

Now Loreen properly opens the show, singing Euphoria and no doubt hating every minute.


Rodrigo Romero Hidalgo
February 1, 20169:19 pm

I, on the other hand, loved the opening sequence… Thought it was charming and a nice kick off to the evening


Peter Dunwoody
February 1, 20169:20 pm

Oh hi Rodrigo!! <3


Peter Dunwoody
February 1, 20169:21 pm

Euphoria came on at my local gay joint last weekend. The assembled drunken Belfast homosexuals at 2am were more faithful to the melody than Loreen is tonight.


Rodrigo Romero Hidalgo
February 1, 20169:22 pm

And it’s ANNE IGARTIBURU!!! Not sure I should be this excited!!


Nathan Waddell
February 1, 20169:22 pm

We switch into English now for this opening conversation with Loreen.


Nathan Waddell
February 1, 20169:23 pm

Rodrigo, who exactly is Anne Igartiburu? What else does she do?


Nathan Waddell
February 1, 20169:24 pm

There’s a mob of people backstage. Even our green-room hostess got caught up in the mayhem. If this is how tonight is going to continue, I’m well onboard.


Rodrigo Romero Hidalgo
February 1, 20169:24 pm

I think she may be God and what she does is give meaning to my life


Nathan Waddell
February 1, 20169:25 pm

Oh here we go, they’re periscoping live from backstage. Because obviously viewers at home don’t want to watch what’s actually going on on-stage.


Nathan Waddell
February 1, 20169:26 pm

Our contenders enter the stage singing/lip-synching a portion of their song!


Nathan Waddell
February 1, 20169:27 pm

Can I just disclaim right now that I love three of tonight’s entries… try and work out which they are!


Peter Dunwoody
February 1, 20169:29 pm

So I’m hoping the voters and juries tonight Say Yay to Barei.

Ever the pessimist however, I’m calling a Xuso win.


Rodrigo Romero Hidalgo
February 1, 20169:29 pm

I’m glad that all of these will actually sing live today, because lip synching ins definitely not their thing! All of them are TERRIBLE at it!


Peter Dunwoody
February 1, 20169:31 pm

When did Sanna learn Spanish?


Peter Dunwoody
February 1, 20169:31 pm

(and age 20 years)


Nathan Waddell
February 1, 20169:31 pm

Whilst we’re waiting for the live performances to begin, I’ll just quickly point out that Xuso is a former participant on Tu cara me suena, Maverick on The Voice and María Isabel on Junior Eurovision. So there’s a lot of potential great performers here.


Nathan Waddell
February 1, 20169:32 pm

Peter Dunwoody
February 1, 20169:32 pm

Edurne and Loreen are in the “studio jury” and their votes will each be worth 10%. Both of them have worked with Peter Bostrom, who co-wrote “Victorious”. Not that that has anything to do with anything.


Peter Dunwoody
February 1, 20169:35 pm

We’re now getting the 2nd recap before we’ve actually seen the performances. I’m assuming from this that the lines are open from the start, which should hopefully help Barei A LITTLE.


Peter Dunwoody
February 1, 20169:35 pm

Sounds like Say Yay has been given a bit of a revamp too.


Nathan Waddell
February 1, 20169:36 pm

Although that recap, Peter, is of them all badly lip synching… so that basically destroys any idea of the fact we’re voting for a live performer.


Peter Dunwoody
February 1, 20169:38 pm

So the voting tonight will be as follows:

40% televoting
30% international juries (Italy, France, UK, Sweden)
30% studio jury (Edurne, Loreen and the Spaniard from Il Divo)


Nathan Waddell
February 1, 20169:38 pm

highlight of the night already, an audible sigh from Maverick after just one line in his song. brilliant ad-lib. he’s won my vote already.


Peter Dunwoody
February 1, 20169:39 pm

OK this first song was my least favourite, but I didn’t realise what a cutie Maverick was…also he is “un Eurofan”

So sod it, he can win if he wants (he won’t).


Rodrigo Romero Hidalgo
February 1, 20169:39 pm

What the actual fuck is going on?! The dance routine is terrible at best, the vocals are weak and overall this seems like a school festival, not a professional performance


Peter Dunwoody
February 1, 20169:40 pm

OK we’re “voz en directo” now so hopefully dodgy vocals and shit studio mix will take out a couple.


Nathan Waddell
February 1, 20169:40 pm

Four backing dancers of which one is also a singer for Maverick’s “Un mundo más feliz”. I have to admit I really adore this song so much. It also helps that the lad is very easy on the eye!

For me this performance is a little plain but endearing. In fact, I could listen to this on repeat forever.


Nathan Waddell
February 1, 20169:41 pm

Can anyone confirm or deny if we can vote from Reino Unido because clearly if I don’t vote MAVE then nobody else will. sendhelp


Rodrigo Romero Hidalgo
February 1, 20169:41 pm

*ears bleeding*


Peter Dunwoody
February 1, 20169:41 pm

One Twitter opinion that caught my eye…

https://twitter.com/danielmihai121/status/694274106968117248

And that’s BAD.


Peter Dunwoody
February 1, 20169:42 pm

One Twitter opinion that caught my eye…

<blockquote class=”twitter-tweet” data-lang=”en-gb”><p lang=”en” dir=”ltr”>He s a bad version of Eric Saade 😒😔 <a href=”https://twitter.com/hashtag/ObjectivoEurovision?src=hash”>objectivoeurovision</a> <a href=”https://twitter.com/hashtag/Eurovision?src=hash”>eurovision</a></p>&mdash; Daniel Mihai (@danielmihai121) <a href=”https://twitter.com/danielmihai121/status/694274106968117248″>February 1, 2016</a></blockquote>

<script async src=”//platform.twitter.com/widgets.js” charset=”utf-8″></script>

And that’s BAD.


Nick van Lith
February 1, 20169:42 pm

I just came home and I saw Maverick performing his entry. Oh the joy.

It’s not that horrifying, but it’s boring. He’s fine vocally, but his performance and his song are just not good enough.

The worst bit? Maverick getting a girl from the audience. Oh so spontaneous. Not.

Peter Dunwoody
February 1, 20169:43 pm

Loreen, Eric Saade and Sanna Nielsen all in the one room. Who the fuck is actually in the Swedish jury? Dolly Style?


Nathan Waddell
February 1, 20169:43 pm

So three against, one for. Maverick loses our popular vote in the escXtra team. But it doesn’t matter what you all think (because you’re wrong) since we don’t have a vote tonight. Welcome to the blog, Nick!


Nathan Waddell
February 1, 20169:44 pm

Max gives us the words from Edurne… who clearly can’t talk about vocal ability.


Peter Dunwoody
February 1, 20169:45 pm

We’re very cutting edge with the selfie sticks and the periscope tonight…


Nathan Waddell
February 1, 20169:45 pm

Five backing singers here for Barei and some stray notes here too… perhaps the mic-levels aren’t great?


Nathan Waddell
February 1, 20169:46 pm

To be fair, she engages excellently with the camera.


Nathan Waddell
February 1, 20169:47 pm

Definitely just caught Electric Nana singing along on her chair to Barei’s song. Perhaps she wants to get up and join in for the last minute since her song doesn’t have a last minute.


Peter Dunwoody
February 1, 20169:48 pm

Fucking YAY!


Nick van Lith
February 1, 20169:48 pm

My colleagues here will probably kill me for this one, but this is reminding me of Ann Sophie on crack. Girl, this is not your reprise. Having fun on stage is good, but this is overdoing it. Say yay, hurray – the lyrics are no masterpiece. The song is good and she’s vocally over the top – shouting left, right and centre. She definitely leaves an impression. I had to smile watching this.


Nathan Waddell
February 1, 20169:49 pm

I do agree with Nick, there was definitely some moments that she went over the top but it’s a really catchy song and she performs like she’s leaving her heart on the stage. For me… this might not be enough to win it.


Rodrigo Romero Hidalgo
February 1, 20169:50 pm

The biggest problem in Barei’s act are the backing singers… They aren’t doing her any favours. Other than that, loved it


Nathan Waddell
February 1, 20169:51 pm

So other than Peter, who is only here for Barei, we’re on the fence about some elements of that performance. Perhaps Xuso up next will impress us more, because we’re certain he’s going to win the Spanish jury vote.


Nathan Waddell
February 1, 20169:52 pm

Also objetivoeurovision is the number one trend worldwide on Twitter. Is anyone surprised?


Nathan Waddell
February 1, 20169:52 pm

Nathan Waddell
February 1, 20169:53 pm

If Rodrigo thought Barei’s backing vocals were iffy, I’m completely unimpressed with Xuso’s. He’s also very static. Next please.


Nick van Lith
February 1, 20169:54 pm

Dire. Absolutely dire. Xuso isn’t hitting a single note and his blue suit does not match with a blue background. He looks as wide as me – and trust me, he isn’t. This has absolutely ruined its chances just now, but with such a Sweden inspired jury in here, I won’t be surprised if they praise this.


Nathan Waddell
February 1, 20169:54 pm

Actually, i upgrade my opinion to awful. This is the most generic, bland, boring, irritating, flat (vocally and visually) song and performance of the lot. Bye Xuso.


Rodrigo Romero Hidalgo
February 1, 20169:55 pm

Did something just happened… it was all so lacking in everything that it’s even hard to comment… very grey


Nathan Waddell
February 1, 20169:56 pm

Loreen says “nice song and that we’ve got the same songwriter, don’t we”. She thinks that the staging wasn’t quite great though, with Xuso replying “less is more sometimes” to which Loreen agrees but still… her opinion is true, it was just BLAND.


Nathan Waddell
February 1, 20169:58 pm

Crikey, this was never my favourite, in fact it’s the song I actually thought was the most bland. But this went one level lower. All of this will make Reina María Isabel stand out exceptionally. If you can’t tell, Salvador has entered the stage.


Rodrigo Romero Hidalgo
February 1, 20169:59 pm

Salva sort of attempts to be a Sanz/Alborán mix… except both of them are geniuses in their own right and so this comes across as a half baked attempt… I’d dance to this drunk at the beach, mind…


Nick van Lith
February 1, 201610:00 pm

After two performances where the songs really had zero opportunity to shine, Salva is just delivering. The song is nothing special, really, but Dias De Alegria – yeah it at least makes me smile. It’s a cheerful three minutes in the middle of winter here. After what I’ve seen so far, I quite liked this.


Rodrigo Romero Hidalgo
February 1, 201610:01 pm

ehm… is number 1 TT worldwide!


Nathan Waddell
February 1, 201610:02 pm

This is my number one moment of the whole note, María Isabel will take to the stage and hopefully destroy all opposition. I shall return with reaction if I survive the next three minutes.


Rodrigo Romero Hidalgo
February 1, 201610:05 pm

Oh dear Lord… it’s a shame that the talent didn’t grow at the same pace as the age… singing lessons urgently needed for Marisa!


Nick van Lith
February 1, 201610:06 pm

She’s 21, yet looks about as old as Mariah Carey. She’s slutting it out (pardon my French) like we haven’t seen before. She’s a mess vocally, but I didn’t really pay attention to those vocals… Spain, if you know what’s good for you, forget the four you’ve seen and just go for Maria Isabel. Unless Electric Nana surprises us.


Nathan Waddell
February 1, 201610:06 pm

A few wobbles when combining choreo with vocals but let’s be honest, no other artist has bothered trying full-on choreography tonight whilst singing. I’ll call it now, that’s the winner and if so, it’ll be on my iPhone for my walk to university tomorrow morning.


Nathan Waddell
February 1, 201610:11 pm

Electric Nana’s song took a minute to begin but she had an extra minute to give away given this song has a run time of 2:19. Do I sound bitter? I am. Give us an actual 3 minute song please. She also fumbled her own lyrics in the first chorus, which is hilarious given that she wrote it herself. She forgot her own words. Priceless. Backed by a band and some backing singers, she’s pretty static and this is also as bland as the other two earlier. Two horse race, I feel. Barei or María Isabel.


Nick van Lith
February 1, 201610:13 pm

Oh, oh, oh, oh I kinda like you now. Yep! There’s plenty of power in this entry and despite it only being 2:19, it feels quite complete. I really like this now. Nana is giving it the same power and attitude Shania Twain did on ‘That Don’t Impress Me Much’. I am very much a fan. Give this a good light show in Stockholm and we’ll have a good Spanish entry. I fear however that she doesn’t stand much of a chance.


Nathan Waddell
February 1, 201610:14 pm

Electric Nana says she’s “terribly excited” to hear comments from Loreen who comments on how amazing it is to see “strong females on stage” and that “we need more females like you who write their own stuff” and infers that she rocked it out on stage.


Nathan Waddell
February 1, 201610:16 pm

Definitely worth a mention though that every single performer tonight EXCEPT María Isabel had backing vocals.


Nathan Waddell
February 1, 201610:17 pm

Yassia, our colleague on our Twitter tonight, says she likes Xuso and Maverick.


Nick van Lith
February 1, 201610:18 pm

I normally think Yassia is quite spot on with her opinions, but I’d now place Xuso down at the bottom. Like Antarctica bottom.


Nick van Lith
February 1, 201610:19 pm

Wait. Is Flatto Jones actually in the lead there?


Nathan Waddell
February 1, 201610:19 pm

I have no idea, Nick, I was refilling my gin & tonic!


Rodrigo Romero Hidalgo
February 1, 201610:20 pm

Why is that worth a mention, Nathan. Fan-boying aside, she was not at all good. She didn’t need backup dancers to mess it up for her, she did it all by herself


Nick van Lith
February 1, 201610:20 pm

There was a graphic on stage saying Xuso on 21%, Barei on 19%, Maria I believe on 16%.


Nathan Waddell
February 1, 201610:21 pm

Let’s hope the juries resolve that for us, then, Nick. Plus, Rodrigo, make of it what you will – I was pointing out that only one artist opted to lead with their own vocal! Some would say brave, others would say unwise.


Nathan Waddell
February 1, 201610:23 pm

Oh. Well Xuso just motivated the Spanish audience to vote for him because his song “Victorious” should be the message that Spain gives to Europe this year so that they can win Eurovision. I wonder if someone’s told him/Spain that his song is the one that would put them bottom of the pile like Edurne. Maybe one year TVE will just go internal and pick someone that won’t put them bottom if the public can’t be trusted.


Nick van Lith
February 1, 201610:23 pm

And Nathan, about Maria opting to not use backings. She would’ve been better off using them as she was dire vocally.


Nathan Waddell
February 1, 201610:24 pm

To be entirely fair, none of them were good. Our Max, also running the Twitter tonight, has just informed me – Nick and our readers – that the earlier poll was only mentions on social media. Perhaps we were all bitching about how awful Xuso was?


Nick van Lith
February 1, 201610:26 pm

I honestly can’t make a choice tonight. Maverick was boring, Xuso was horrific, the other four all had their positives and negatives. My vote basically is ‘anyone but Xuso’.


Nathan Waddell
February 1, 201610:27 pm

Haha nice idea Nick, I’d like to say I agree with your sentiment but my love remains with Mava, Barei and María. One of those and I’ll be elated.


Nathan Waddell
February 1, 201610:28 pm

Both our tweeters tonight, Yassia (YN) and Max (MB) have agreed with us that none of the singers tonight were great. Max thinks María was best but only just.


Nick van Lith
February 1, 201610:30 pm

Nathan is forcing me to actually make a choice. I think Maria and Barei are both decent, but I kinda like you now – Electric Nana would be my final vote. If I have to.


Nathan Waddell
February 1, 201610:32 pm

If you’re going to force me into one decision, Nick, I’d like to spend the next few months singing my way through “La vida sólo es una”. So María Isabel please.


Peter Dunwoody
February 1, 201610:34 pm

Sorry peeps.

I heard but didn’t see the last 4. An interesting array of vocals. Maria sounded good but the song is filler, so Barei please. I don’t appreciate the slating of the CHEEK she has to actually put in an effort on stage.


Nathan Waddell
February 1, 201610:35 pm

TELEPHONE LINES ARE SHUT.


Nathan Waddell
February 1, 201610:36 pm

Okay so I’m multitasking season 7 of RuPaul’s Drag Race and this interval act, so forgive me for not updating you quite as often…


Nick van Lith
February 1, 201610:36 pm

lol. Brequette. Thought we got rid of her in 2014? Same for Jorge González. Is this just recycling their last NF?


Nick van Lith
February 1, 201610:37 pm

There’s Coral, being a diva. She’s doing Algo Pequenito. That must hurt, dear.


Nathan Waddell
February 1, 201610:38 pm

Coral Segovia has just entered to a shtick featuring UNO EL BRIKINDANS from everyone’s favourite 2008 entry.


Nick van Lith
February 1, 201610:39 pm

Oh there’s D’NASH. All in their 40s now, like a Take That comeback. They’re doing Lady Lady.


Nick van Lith
February 1, 201610:39 pm

Do we have to? Here’s Edurne and Amanecer.


Nathan Waddell
February 1, 201610:41 pm

She still hasn’t learned to sing in tune, which is delightful.


Nick van Lith
February 1, 201610:41 pm

Flat as a pancake as always. I have muted and am just watching her, much easier on the eyes and ears like this.


Nathan Waddell
February 1, 201610:43 pm

We’re definitely approaching results because there’s only a half an hour runtime left.


Peter Dunwoody
February 1, 201610:44 pm

By the way you are all aware that Maria is coming 22nd at Eurovision right?

Nice song, good performer, utterly forgettable. Next.


Peter Dunwoody
February 1, 201610:44 pm

We’re heading for 43 pieces of filler at this rate.


Nathan Waddell
February 1, 201610:45 pm

We definitely are, Peter. I definitely am aware of that too.

¡¡¡LLEGA EL MOMENTO DE CONOCER EL RESULTADO DE LAS VOTACIONES!!!

^^ if you can’t work it out from the excitable live text reporter that TVE have employed, it’s results time.


Nathan Waddell
February 1, 201610:46 pm

If there’s 43 pieces of filler, one of them has to win. That could be María/Spain as much as it could be the UK. So there’s hope. Somewhere.


Nathan Waddell
February 1, 201610:48 pm

15, 18, 21, 24, 30, 36 for the International Jury.

15 to Electric Nana
18 to María Isabel
21 to Maverick
24 to Xuso Jones
30 to Barei
So 36 go to Salvador Beltran


Nick van Lith
February 1, 201610:48 pm

international jury:
15: Electric Nana
18: Maria Isabel
21: Maverick
24: Xuso Jones
30: Barei
36: Salvador Beltrán

Well there’s a surprise.


Nathan Waddell
February 1, 201610:49 pm

So that’s 30% of the vote gone already.


Peter Dunwoody
February 1, 201610:49 pm

Hahaha! WELL THEN.

My two faves come top with the international juries.


Nathan Waddell
February 1, 201610:49 pm

The jury in the studio will give 5, 6, 7, 8, 10 and 12 points each.


Nick van Lith
February 1, 201610:50 pm

Edurne:

5: Salvador
6: Maverick
7: Maria Isabel
8: Electric Nana
10: Xuso Jones
12: Barei


Nathan Waddell
February 1, 201610:50 pm

Bare goes into the lead by just a point.


Nick van Lith
February 1, 201610:51 pm

Il Divo man:
5: Salva
6: Maria Isabel
7: Electric Nana
8: Maverick
10: Xuso Jones
12: Barei


Nathan Waddell
February 1, 201610:51 pm

Barei leads by 8.


Nick van Lith
February 1, 201610:52 pm

54 for Barei, 46 for Salva. Salva finished last in both Spanish jurors’ votes, but his top score from the international juries helps.


Nathan Waddell
February 1, 201610:53 pm

“This is just one step, this doesn’t define you” says Loreen, who of course famously only made Andra chansen the year before “Euphoria” destroyed everything in front of it.


Nick van Lith
February 1, 201610:53 pm

Loreen:

5: Salva
6: Maria Isabel
7: Maverick
8: Electric Nana
10: Xuso Jones
12: Barei


Nathan Waddell
February 1, 201610:53 pm

And finally, here goes Barei who clearly leads now.


Nathan Waddell
February 1, 201610:54 pm

Here comes the televote though with 40% of the weighting, so everything could still change.


Nathan Waddell
February 1, 201610:55 pm

Barei only leads by 12. The votes here are… 20, 24, 28, 32, 40, 48.


Nick van Lith
February 1, 201610:55 pm

Barei on 66, Xuso on 54, Salva on 52. It’s between those, I guess.


Nathan Waddell
February 1, 201610:56 pm

Or not Nick, as Salvador comes last in the public vote with just 20.


Nathan Waddell
February 1, 201610:56 pm

Maverick follows with 24.

Salva has 72, Mava 66.


Nick van Lith
February 1, 201610:56 pm

Televote:
20: Salvador Beltrán
24: Maverick
28: Electric Nana


Nathan Waddell
February 1, 201610:56 pm

Electric Nana receives 28 and has 66 too.


Nathan Waddell
February 1, 201610:57 pm

María Isabel gets 32 and has 68 points.


Nick van Lith
February 1, 201610:57 pm

32: Maria Isabel


Nathan Waddell
February 1, 201610:57 pm

AND THE WINNER IS BAREI!


Nick van Lith
February 1, 201610:57 pm

Barei has won. 40 for Xuso, 48 for Barei.


Peter Dunwoody
February 1, 201610:58 pm

Yay!


Nick van Lith
February 1, 201610:58 pm

It’s 114 points for Barei – Spain has said YAY! Second is Xuso (inexplicably) with 94.


Nathan Waddell
February 1, 201610:58 pm

Congratulations to Spain for an engaging vote, a good field of different genres and styles but also with competent composers and performers but also, finally, for discarding the cheap Swedish written song and going with one of your own. Barei’s song will feature the most English of any Spanish entry yet too!


Nick van Lith
February 1, 201611:00 pm

Spain has made a decent choice with this. Barei is having fun on stage and that is what Europe will notice too. Clean up that performance a bit and she’s going to show Ann Sophie how to be Ann Sophie, I guess. Nice one!


Nathan Waddell
February 1, 201611:02 pm

That is all from Spain tonight, thank you for joining us if you did. Goodnight!

Technical Lead: I am a huge pop music fan and I love Rihanna, Years & Years, Sia, Zara Larsson and Sam Smith. However, more importantly, I love Eurovision. Melodifestivalen is my favourite National Final and if things look out of place on the website, it's most definitely my fault.

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