Just 1 of 42 countries gave Australia points in the Eurovision Song Contest Final in the public televoting.
That was Denmark with a mere 2 points.
Every other country in Eurovision shunned Isaiah’s Don’t Come Easy in the televoting.
But we amassed 173 points (171 jury + 2 televoting) and finished #9th, sparing us complete humiliation.
We fared slightly better in the Semi Final in televoting:
3 Armenia, Slovenia
2 Cyprus, Sweden, Azerbaijan
1 Belgium, Albania, Montenegro
Thankfully the Juries, who comprise 50% of the vote, connected with the song, because the public sure didn’t. Compare 2 points for Isaiah with Dami Im’s 191 points last year.
So why the discrepancy between the experts and the masses? Is it just a matter of taste?
Juries vote at the Dress Rehearsals, meaning the Semi Final jury vote did not account for a vocal stumble Isaiah made in the Live Semi Final. But to his credit he made no error in the Final and yet still the gap was wide.
Or did Europe react negatively to a prankster draped in an Australian flag? His interruption took place towards the end of the Live voting period. Who knows how much it affected our votes, even though he turned out to be Ukrainian?
Or has Europe lost enthusiasm for us participating in the entire event? Aussie Anja Nissen only pulled 5 votes for Denmark in the televoting at her Semi Final. Graeme Norton once suggested, “I know some countries aren’t technically in Europe but, come on — Australia is on the other side of world.
“I just do not understand why they are in the Eurovision Song Contest. Get rid of Australia.”
Aside from the fact that SBS is an Associate Member of the European Broadcasting Union (Israel is also a member), executive supervisor Jon Ola Sand has said: “We strongly believe the Eurovision Song Contest has the potential to evolve organically into a truly global event. Australia’s continued participation is an exciting step in that direction.”
But the views of organisers may not be shared by ordinary viewers across the continent. The novelty of us competing with Guy Sebastian and Dami Im has worn off quickly and our place in the Final meant 16 other nations missed out -you’d really hope they weren’t bearing a grudge.
Or was the 2 points just a reflection that Don’t Come Easy was a pretty ordinary ballad amongst a sea of others?
SBS Managing Director Michael Ebeid said: “Isaiah has been such a fantastic ambassador for Australia at Eurovision, and we are incredibly proud of his performance in the Grand Final. Making the Grand Final every year that Australia has been in the contest is no small feat, and is a fantastic acknowledgement of our creative talents and passion and enthusiasm for the contest.”
Australian Head of Delegation Paul Clarke said: “Isaiah won a lot of hearts at Eurovision with his huge talent and his gracious spirit. It is a wonderful thing to be able to offer such a huge opportunity on the world stage to an artist so deserving, one who we know will go on to great things.”
Whatever the reason, at least we didn’t come dead last. Austria was lumbered with 0 in the televoting. Spain had 0 in the Jury votes and just 5 in the televoting.
So #9th place is a very good effort by Isaiah!