And so to Cyprus, a country famous for driving on the left and laundering Russian money. Like London, only warmer.
We used to go to Cyprus on holiday when I was a kid, and I was always badgering to go visit that haunting disused airport in Nicosia but instead we just seemed to visit pirate video shops to buy grainy copies of the Goonies than ran out before the e
It’s not cheap entering Eurovision you know. There’s the entry fee, flights, hotels, ridiculously overpriced souveniers, half a ton of cocaine, and flags for the delegation to be acquired – not to mention the ever present fear that you might win the thing and then be stiffed with shelling out on hosting it the year after.
So after their financial collapse and big banking bailout in the last decade, times were tough for the Cypriots, with their entries having to become ever more creative about the financials – they sent their singer on her own in 2013, they’ve found record companies to sponsor the entry, and when Eleni’s Fuego almost won the other year, state broadcaster CyBC had to do a deal with Fyffes – the fruit people with the funny little stickers – to afford the air fare. Oh look! There’s Eleni with a pineapple! Ooh er- there’s Eleni with a bunch of bananas! That sort of thing.
Now I like to think of myself as a fan of pop music – a keen one at that – but when the press release for this year’s entry says that “keen pop fans will know that Andromache’s star has been in the ascendancy across Europe for the past few years”, Cypriot broadcaster rik is talking right out of its γάιδαρος.
Having got kicked off The Voice Of Greece in week 2 of season 2 in 2014, “Na Soun Psema” became Andromache’s “big breakthrough hit” across radio and streaming platforms, “cementing her status as a pop star to watch”. In fact it failed to chart – probably because it sounds like the sort of thing you’d be forced to listen to while you’re waiting for your waiter to bring you Kleftiko, Ouzo and chips while some 19 year old tries to sell you a timeshare.
Her actual entry is little better – sounding exactly like the sort of thing you’d be forced to hum along to while you’re waiting for your appointment with an official at the British High Commission in Nicosia because your wallet and passports were nicked while you were at the waterpark that the timeshare rep took you to when he persuaded you to sign up for a timeshare on an apartment in Limassol that is unlikely ever to be built.