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PostPosted: Sat May 13, 2017 10:40 pm 
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PORTUGAL!

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PostPosted: Sat May 13, 2017 10:55 pm 
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Portugal wins Eurovision for first time
13 May 2017

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Kiev (dpa) - Salvador Sobral has won the Eurovision Song Contest in the Ukrainian capital Kiev with the heartfelt jazz ballad "Amar Pelos Dois," marking the first time Portugal has won the competition.

Sobral's song topped the scoreboard with 758 points, narrowly beating out Bulgaria's Kristian Kostov with "Beautiful Mess" on 615 points. Moldova followed in third place, while Spain came last out of the 26 finalists with just five points, which were awarded by a professional jury and viewers at home.

After being declared winner, 27-year-old Sobral took to the stage once more to sing with his sister Luisa, who wrote the song for him. She had also represented him at rehearsals when he was too ill to perform.

"We live in a world of disposable music, fast-food music without any content and I think that this could be a victory for music with people that make music that actually means something," Sobral said. "Music is not fireworks, music is feeling, so let's try to change this," he continued.

He also praised his sister, lauding her as "the best composer in the country, in Europe!"

There were lots of colourful moments at this year's contest. Italy's entry, which had been the favourite going in, included a man dancing in a gorilla suit, while Romania was represented by a yodelling duo.

But Eurovision was also overshadowed by the ongoing conflict between Ukraine and Russia, with Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko cancelling his planned attendance after four people were killed in shelling in the country's east. he contest took place in Kiev, after Ukraine won it last year with "1944" by Jamala. The song about Soviet-era repression in Crimea sparked controversy at the time due to its political overtones. Political gestures are banned at the contest.

Russia boycotted this year's competition after Ukraine banned their entry, Julia Samoylova, from entering the country for having performed in Russia-annexed Crimea. An offer by Eurovision to allow her to perform via videolink was rejected by Moscow.

Source: dpa

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PostPosted: Sun May 14, 2017 5:43 pm 
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Eurovision winner greeted by ecstatic Portuguese nation
14 May 2017

LISBON (AP) -- Eurovision winner Salvador Sobral was greeted as a national hero upon his return home to Portugal on Sunday, a day after winning the song contest in Ukraine's capital.

The 27-year-old Sobral was a virtual unknown before his triumph in Kiev, but around 2,000 jubilant fans cheered his arrival at Lisbon's airport. "Without wanting to sound presumptuous, this win is very important for Portuguese culture," Sobral said. "But I'm not a hero. That's (local soccer star) Cristiano Ronaldo." A visibly tired Sobral added: "I'm exhausted and just want to rest. I know this won't last. I want to be known as a musician. Not as the Eurovision winner."

His gentle romantic ballad Amar Pelos Dois (Love For Both) conquered all in Saturday night's extravaganza, which was watched by millions of spectators around the world. "I'm happy my romantic song won, and I hope the gala stops being a popularity contest," Sobral said at a news conference, while thanking Brazilian musician Caetano Veloso for his support.

The weekend was a busy one in Portugal, with Pope Francis' visit to Fatima and Lisbon soccer team Benfica winning its fourth straight Portuguese league title, also on Saturday. But Sobral was the man of the hour on Sunday, after the Lisbon native with a heart condition put an end to the southern European country's long misery in the famed Eurovision contest, which he took in a landslide.

Sobral won easily, giving Portugal its first Eurovision win since it started competing in the international competition in 1964, and prompting congratulatory messages from the country's highest authorities. "When we are very good, we're the best of the best. Congratulations Salvador Sobral," President Marcelo Rebelo de Sousa wrote in a message Saturday night. Prime Minister Antonio Costa followed the lead with a tweet of his own. "A page of history has been written in Portuguese this evening at Eurovision. Bravo Salvador! Bravo Portugal," Costa said.

The previous best Portuguese Eurovision ranking was 6th place, back in 1996. Unlike the 25 other competitors who performed on a wide stage backed by flashing lights, bursts of flames and other special effects, Sobral sang from a small elevated circle in the middle of the crowd, an intimate contrast to others' bombast. "Music is not fireworks, music is feeling," he said while accepting the award.

The feeling was never more mutual than Sunday afternoon, when Sobral was embraced by his countrymen and women upon arrival, as hundreds physically swarmed him at the airport concourse, chanting his name while being escorted by police. Neighboring Spain, meanwhile, finished last after a poor performance by its representative, Manel Navarro.

With Portugal rallying around its new national musical hero, even recently-crowned soccer champion Benfica took the time to congratulate Sobral. "We aren't the only winners this evening...! Well done Salvador Sobral!" the team posted on its official Twitter account.

But one of the most surprising tweets came further north, from British novelist J.K. Rowling, author of the popular Harry Potter book series. "Yay Portugal!" Rowling wrote.

Sobral captured 758 points in the contest, 143 more than second-placed Kristian Kostov, from Bulgaria. His win ensured Portugal would host next year's Eurovision contest. "I hope to keep making music that means something and remain happy, playing it. Emotion always prevails," Sobral said. "The song was meant to be sung in Portuguese, but we need to feel whatever we are singing, no matter the language."

Source: AP

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PostPosted: Wed Jul 26, 2017 6:46 am 
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Eurovision Song Contest 2018 to be held in Lisbon
25 July 2017

Lisbon (dpa) - The Eurovision Song Contest 2018 will be held in Lisbon, Portuguese broadcaster RTP and the organizers said Tuesday.

The final will take place on May 12 in the Portuguese capital's Meo Arena on the banks of the Tagus River, with the semi-finals taking place on May 8 and 10. Portugal won the right to host the annual contest after singer Salvador Sobral took home the trophy from this year's competition in Kiev with the song, "Amar Pelos Dois."

The cities of Braga, Gondomar, Guimaraes and Santa Maria da Feira had also made bids to host the contest. "We are very pleased to announce that RTP will be hosting the 2018 Eurovision Song Contest in Lisbon," Jon Ola Sand, the contest's executive supervisor said. "The city has presented an exemplary proposal, and we look forward to working together to make Portugal’s first ever Eurovision the most exciting one yet."

Source: dpa

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