The Eurovision Song Contest 1990 was the 35th edition of the annual Eurovision Song Contest. It was held in Zagreb, SR Croatia, Yugoslavia,[a] following the country's victory at the 1989 contest with the song "Rock Me" by Riva. It was the only time Yugoslavia hosted the contest. Organised by the European Broadcasting Union (EBU) and host broadcasters Yugoslav Radio Television (JRT) and Radiotelevision Zagreb (RTZ), the contest was held at Vatroslav Lisinski Concert Hall on 5 May 1990 and was hosted by Croatian television presenters Helga Vlahović and Oliver Mlakar. It was the first Eurovision Song Contest held in the Balkans as well as the first contest held in a communist or socialist state.
|Eurovision Song Contest 1990|
|Final||5 May 1990|
|Venue||Vatroslav Lisinski Concert Hall|
Zagreb, SR Croatia, SFR Yugoslavia
|Musical director||Igor Kuljerić|
Stanko Selak (assistant)
|Directed by||Nenad Puhovski|
|Executive supervisor||Frank Naef|
|Executive producer||Goran Radman|
|Host broadcaster||Yugoslav Radio Television (JRT)|
Radiotelevision Zagreb (RTZ)
|Opening act||A short film "Zagreb: City of Music"|
|Interval act||Yugoslav Changes – a film about tourism in the country.|
|Number of entries||22|
|Voting system||Each country awarded 12, 10, 8-1 point(s) to their 10 favourite songs|
|Nul points in final||None|
|Winning song|| Italy|
Twenty-two countries took part in the contest, the same countries that had participated the previous year.
The winner was Italy with the song "Insieme: 1992" by Toto Cutugno. Cutugno was aged 46 years and 302 days at the time of his victory, making him the oldest winner of the contest to date, the first to be aged in their forties since 1958. He held the record until 2000. The 1990 contest also notably remains the last time that the five countries that would later become known as the "Big Five" – Italy, France, Spain, the United Kingdom and Germany – all placed in the top 10 (Italy won, France tied for second, Spain came fifth, the UK came sixth and Germany came ninth).
Zagreb, the capital of Croatia, was the second largest city in Yugoslavia. Vatroslav Lisinski Concert Hall was chosen to host the contest. The concert hall and convention center is named after Vatroslav Lisinski, a 19th-century Croatian composer. The building has a big hall with 1,841 seats and a small hall with 305 seats.
In order to host the 1990 contest, the venue underwent its first major renovation in 1989. In 1992, the hall's copper roof cover was completely replaced. Further reconstruction and redecoration work was done in 1999 and 2009.
The Eurovision Song Contest 1990 was the first to implement an age rule. The European Broadcasting Union (EBU) were forced to bring in a restriction rule after criticism arose over the ages of two performers at 1989 contest, being just 11 and 12 years old. From 1990, no artist under the age of 16 on the day of the contest could perform on stage. This rule meant that the record for the youngest ever winner at Eurovision could never be broken, as Sandra Kim, who won for Belgium at the 1986 competition, was just 13 years old.
The lyrics of several entries celebrated the revolution and democratisation that had occurred in central and eastern Europe in the preceding months, focusing especially on the fall of the Berlin Wall in November 1989, such as in the Norwegian and Austrian entries. However, the winning song was an even more sweeping evocation of European unity, in anticipation of the completion of the European single market, due at the end of 1992.
From a musical perspective both Spain's "Bandido" and France's "White and Black Blues" can be said to be the first entries to signal a new trend at Eurovision, with both songs fusing contemporary dance music with ethnic influences, from flamenco and calypso respectively.
The 1990 contest was the first year to feature an official mascot, Eurocat, created by Joško Marušić. This mischievous purple cat popped up during the 'postcards' of each of the 22 entries, which also included travelogues of the country about to perform, in conjunction with the European Year of Tourism 1990.
- Spain – Eduardo Leiva
- Greece – Michael Rozakis
- Belgium – Rony Brack
- Turkey – Ümit Eroğlu
- Netherlands – Harry van Hoof
- Luxembourg – Thierry Durbet
- United Kingdom – Alyn Ainsworth
- Iceland – Jon Kjell Seljeseth
- Norway – Pete Knutsen
- Israel – Rami Levin
- Denmark – Henrik Krogsgaard
- Switzerland – Bela Balint
- Germany – Rainer Pietsch
- France – Régis Dupré
- Yugoslavia – Stjepan Mihaljinec
- Portugal – Carlos Alberto Moniz
- Ireland – Noel Kelehan
- Sweden – Curt-Eric Holmquist
- Italy – Gianni Madonini
- Austria – Richard Oesterreicher
- Cyprus – Stanko Selak
- Finland – Olli Ahvenlahti
|Pepel in kri (backing vocalists)||Italy||1975 (for Yugoslavia)|
Participants and resultsEdit
|2||Greece||Christos Callow and Wave||"Horis skopo" (Χωρίς σκοπό)||Greek||11||19|
|5||Netherlands||Maywood||"Ik wil alles met je delen"||Dutch||25||15|
|6||Luxembourg||Céline Carzo||"Quand je te rêve"||French||38||13|
|7||United Kingdom||Emma||"Give a Little Love Back to the World"||English||87||6|
|8||Iceland||Stjórnin||"Eitt lag enn"||Icelandic||124||4|
|9||Norway||Ketil Stokkan||"Brandenburger Tor"||Norwegian||8||21|
|10||Israel||Rita||"Shara Barkhovot" (שרה ברחובות)||Hebrew||16||18|
|11||Denmark||Lonnie Devantier||"Hallo Hallo"||Danish||64||8|
|12||Switzerland||Egon Egemann||"Musik klingt in die Welt hinaus"||German||51||11|
|13||Germany||Chris Kempers and Daniel Kovac||"Frei zu leben"||German||60||9|
|14||France||Joëlle Ursull||"White and Black Blues"||French||132||2|
|15||Yugoslavia||Tajči||"Hajde da ludujemo" (Хајде да лудујемо)||Serbo-Croatian||81||7|
|16||Portugal||Nucha||"Há sempre alguém"||Portuguese||9||20|
|17||Ireland||Liam Reilly||"Somewhere in Europe"||English||132||2|
|18||Sweden||Edin-Ådahl||"Som en vind"||Swedish||24||16|
|19||Italy||Toto Cutugno||"Insieme: 1992"||Italian[b]||149||1|
|20||Austria||Simone||"Keine Mauern mehr"||German[c]||58||10|
|21||Cyprus||Haris Anastasiou||"Milas poli" (Μιλάς πολύ)||Greek||36||14|
Detailed voting resultsEdit
Below is a summary of all 12 points in the final:
|N.||Contestant||Nation(s) giving 12 points|
|6||France||Finland, Iceland, Netherlands, Norway, Switzerland, Yugoslavia|
|3||Italy||Cyprus, Ireland, Spain|
|2||Iceland||Portugal, United Kingdom|
This section needs additional citations for verification. (October 2021)
Each country announced their votes in the order of performance. The following is a list of spokespersons who announced the votes for their respective country.
- Spain – Matilde Jarrín
- Greece – Fotini Giannoulatou
- Belgium – Jacques Olivier
- Turkey – Korhan Abay
- Netherlands – Joop van Os
- Luxembourg – Jean-Luc Bertrand
- United Kingdom – Colin Berry
- Iceland – Árni Snævarr
- Norway – Sverre Christophersen
- Israel – Yitzhak Shim'oni
- Denmark – Bent Henius
- Switzerland – Michel Stocker
- Germany – Gabi Schnelle
- France – Valérie Maurice
- Yugoslavia – Drago Čulina
- Portugal – João Abel Fonseca
- Ireland – Eileen Dunne
- Sweden – Jan Ellerås
- Italy – Paolo Frajese
- Austria – Tilia Herold
- Cyprus – Anna Partelidou
- Finland – Solveig Herlin
This section needs additional citations for verification. (October 2021)
National broadcasters were able to send a commentary team to the contest, in order to provide coverage of the contest in their own native language. In addition to the participating countries, host Helga Vlahović mentioned several countries as among the non-participants broadcasting the contest (Bulgaria, Canada, China, Czechoslovakia, Hungary, Japan, Poland, Romania, South Korea and the Soviet Union were mentioned by Vlahović); however, no information is known about which broadcasters showed the contest and who, if anyone, provided commentary for each.
There was a slightly uncomfortable beginning to the rehearsal week when, offended by press comments concerning their ages (Vlahović being 45 at the time and Mlakar being 54), the two presenters quit the show. They were briefly replaced by Rene Medvešek and Dubravka Marković, who were much younger, but the misunderstandings were eventually allayed and Vlahović and Mlakar returned to the contest.
A notorious mishap occurred at the start of the first song, when a noticeably long delay caused by problems with the backing track (the sound engineer having forgotten to switch on the sound on the headphones of Spain's conductor Eduardo Leiva, who had to count in the orchestra playing the strings and brass along to the backing track) was followed by the Spanish singers Azúcar Moreno missing their cue. They walked off the stage in barely concealed annoyance and the audience was left in confusion for a moment, but the song was then restarted without any further problems.
Notes and referencesEdit
- Located in present-day Croatia.
- Repeats two words in English.
- Contains some phrases in English, French and Serbo-Croatian.
- The contest was broadcast on delay by 2 hours 20 minutes
- "Eurovision Song Contest 1990". EBU. Archived from the original on 2008-06-13. Retrieved 2008-09-19.
- O'Connor, John Kennedy. The Eurovision Song Contest - The Official Celebration. Carlton Books, 2015. ISBN 978-1-78097-638-9. Pages 32-33
- "Vatroslav Lisinski Concert Hall Celebrates 35 Years". Zagreb Tourist Board. Retrieved 2008-03-05.
- "Concert Hall 'Vatroslav Lisinski' Zagreb". Investinženjering. Archived from the original on 2007-10-29. Retrieved 2008-03-09.
- "Concert and Congress Hall Vatroslav Lisinski". Zagreb Convention Bureau. Retrieved 2008-03-09.
- "Lisinski AZtheBest otvara se 16. listopada". Radio101.hr (in Croatian). Radio 101. October 14, 2009. Retrieved 2009-10-20.
- "And the conductor is..." Retrieved 10 September 2020.
- Roxburgh, Gordon (2020). Songs For Europe - The United Kingdom at the Eurovision Song Contest. Volume Four: The 1990s. UK: Telos Publishing. pp. 34–46. ISBN 978-1-84583-163-9.
- "Eurovision Song Contest 1990". The Diggiloo Thrush. Retrieved 5 March 2012.
- "Eurovision Song Contest 1990". 4Lyrics.eu. Retrieved 16 September 2020.
- "Final of Zagreb 1990". European Broadcasting Union. Archived from the original on 17 April 2021. Retrieved 17 April 2021.
- "Results of the Final of Zagreb 1990". European Broadcasting Union. Archived from the original on 17 April 2021. Retrieved 17 April 2021.
- "Eurovision Song Contest 1990 – Scoreboard". European Broadcasting Union. Archived from the original on 24 September 2015. Retrieved 23 October 2021.
- "Victoire De La "Canzonetta": C'Est L'Histoire Du P'Tit Tot". Archives.lesoir.be. Retrieved 2012-08-10.
- Adriaens, Manu & Loeckx-Van Cauwenberge, Joken. Blijven kiken!. Lannoo, Belgium. 2003 ISBN 90-209-5274-9
- "Dagblaðið Vísir - DV, 03.05.1990". Timarit.is. Retrieved 2012-08-10.
- "Welkom op de site van Eurovision Artists". Eurovisionartists.nl. Retrieved 2012-08-10.
- "Neue Zürcher Zeitung, 5 May 1990".
- Eurovision Song Contest 1990 BBC Archives