Lehrstuhl für Amerikanistik und Anglistik
A Breath of Fresh Air for the European Song Contest
“Love, oh love...” has already been in everyone’s head in Germany for weeks, now it’s also in the head of all the 125 million viewers of the Eurovision Song Contest (ESC) 2010 in Oslo. Even children of the age of eight to ten can sing the chorus of Lena Meyer-Landrut’s song “Satellite” by heart. For 28 years, nobody has won the Grand Prix Eurovision for Germany, but this time Lena did it. Germany and a big part of Europe have gone “Lena-crazy”.
The German candidate won the European championship in singing – how Stefan Raab called it – with the second largest margin in the history of the ESC, even though she was not even one of the favorites right from the start. She convinced so many people with her voice and her performance that she got 246 out of 480 points. From nine European countries she even got the perfect score of 12 points. That’s really a huge progress for Germany in this competition, since the last 27 years have not been crowned by success of the German contestants. You only have to remember the No Angels with their 23rd place and the more than embarrassing striptease of Dita van Teese in 2009. What a shame!
Even if Lena’s weird Australian English accent leaves much to be desired, she obviously persuaded many people to vote for her. But what exactly lead to the fact that Lena orbits so many European TV viewers ‘like a satellite’ so that they called or text-messaged for her, the dainty German high-school graduate?
Lena is just a cutie without too much of anything. She is handsome and pretty, but also a little bit boyish. In her own sweet and crazy way, she has been taken into her fan’s hearts immediately. And her fans are not just young girls and teenagers – as it is usual, when somebody moves up the pop music ladder as fast as she did. Her fans are people in all ages, ranging from kids, over shrieking teenagers and men and women in their prime to grandparents. With her cheerfulness, charm and naturalness, the nevertheless authentic young lady has infected many hearts.
Compared to the last year’s winners, especially the Hard rock band Lordi in 2006, Lena had a very simple show. She just had three female background singers and she was wearing a little black dress. There were neither special effects nor did she need a neckline like the Armenian singer to win the competition. She just sang her song with no frills and stole the show. The simplicity of her show together with her nice personality and cute appearance laid the perfect foundations for her victory.
In addition to her perfect combination of appearance and show, Lena certainly owes part of her victory to Stefan Raab as well. This year, he once again staged the inner-German “primaries” for the Grand-Prix with the show called “Our Star for Oslo”, this time even working together with ARD and ZDF, and he did a really great job on that. There were many true talents in this show and it was also organized very well. The audience could vote for their favourites and that way, Stefan Raab managed it to suit the viewers’ taste. By this means, he avoided that Germany just sends any star or music group to the ESC without any feedback of the Germans. And no matter what you can say against Stefan Raab and his peculiar way of dealing with defeat in his TV show “Hit the Raab”, everything that he is touching in music is becoming famous.
You just have to look at Stefanie Heinzmann, the winner of Raab’s competing event to DSDS – Germany is looking for the Superstar. The show was called “SSDSSSWEMUGABRTLAD”, making fun of DSDS not allowing their winners to perform at PRO 7. Spelled in full, the name of the show means “Stefan searches the German Superstar who sings by him/herself and may also perform at RTL if he/she wants to”, which is actually pretty ridiculous but Stefanie Heinzmann is still attaining success in the German music industry. She has now even recorded a song together with the German Reggae musician Gentleman called “Roots to Grow”, which reached even position 56 in the Swiss single charts.
Also Max Mutzke gained public interest after he won Stefan Raab’s first show for the ESC in 2004. Max just reached the eighth rank in the singing competition, indeed, but he was way better than his colleagues, Roger Cicero (2007, 19th place) or even the once famous No Angels (2008, 23rd place).
Whatsoever one can argue against Stefan Raab being just an overambitious butcher who was only lucky and now earning way too much money for what he is doing, he just has a knack for music. This is reflected in Lena Meyer-Landrut’s victory in Oslo this year and to tell the truth, Stefan as her originator really deserves being part of this historic German triumph in the Grand Prix de la Chanson.
- Quote paper
- Katharina Hirmer (Author), 2010, Lena - A breath of fresh air for the European Song Contest, Munich, GRIN Verlag, https://www.grin.com/document/196037