You know they say it’s just the eighties coming back.
If you’re one of those Eurovision fans who miss the really kitschy costumes and the really schlagery songs, who miss having just a handful of participants and having all of the points read out instead of just the top three vote-getters, who miss amateurish performances that go off the rails and technical glitches as the votes are tallied… in short, if you miss the Eurovision Song Contest of the 1980s, then the Junior Eurovision Song Contest is for you.
We have not gotten into Junior Eurovision all that much. The main barrier for us in becoming fans is the selection of songs. It’s slightly less polished than Radio Disney and slightly more energetic. Not our cup of tea.
In the past, we could say that JESC probably passed the time well enough for anyone waiting for the national finals to get going. But with the picks for next May’s ESC beginning this Friday with Belarus, it’s hardly bridging any gaps at this point.
Nevertheless, for the second year in a row, we tuned in to see what the show had to offer. And one thing it offered was a low energy, slightly creepy male host who asked the kids to touch the glittery trophy during a break in the tallying. So that happened.
But it was an entertaining enough show, with two really polished performers in Anastasiya Petryk from Ukraine and Lerika from Russia, as well as the charming Compass Band from Armenia and the odd and therefore strangely compelling Funkids from Georgia. (But what do they mean by “Funky Lemonade?”)
Petryk in particular stood out, reminding us of a sort of Mini-Alyosha with a voice that sounded far older than her age of 11. Jen said she had a Shakira-like quality to her voice that really demanded attention. She won handily and deservedly.
But really, we’re ready for the adults to perform now.