Likely Televote Appeal
Likely Jury Appeal
It is dangerous to underestimate their voting power and regional influence.
Russia has just presented their Eurovision 2019 entry from Sergey Lazarev, who along with the Dream Team, has unfinished business.
Judging by the response so far, the market and fans were expecting a typically saccharine Eurovision-by-numbers peace-ballad that would cruise to an easy Eurovision win. What Sergey delivered was an unexpectedly unconventional theatrical ballad. Yes it is calculating, but it is oh so daring. Scream feels like the Dream Team’s take on Loreen’s Statements, which was a terrible choice for Melodifestivalen, yet even I have to concede it would have done extremely well with Eurovision’s juries. Scream is calculating; it is structured to maximise on-stage storytelling and plays to the strengths of the Dream Team’s staging guru, Fokas Evangelinos. That dramatic middle-eight with the explosive drums leading into the rousing, climatic outro promises to be one of the highlights in Tel Aviv. History shows us that the name of the game is to be memorable, and as long as Russia reject their typically garish excesses and turn up with an artistic production, then I question what grounds there are for the juries to penalise them.
Russia has taken a different direction than what was expected by the fandom and gamblers and both groups are still coming to terms with it. Scream still has the feel of a top-5 entry. Depending on how other nations present their songs in May will decide where Russia eventually ends up. It is dangerous to underestimate their voting power and regional influence, so caution is advised given all of the top-10 songs in the market have question marks over them.