Eurovision 1996: Portugal’s Lúcia Moniz in focus

Portugal achieved the 6th place in 1996 with a 19-year-old singer Lúcia Moniz. This was the best position ranked by this country, following the victory of Salvador Sobral in 2017. Today, 25 years later, we are analysing the folklore song ‘O Meu Coração Não Tem Cor’ (My Heart Has No Colour) asking Eurovision for their opinions.

At the time, the score collected by Lúcia’s song at the Festival da Canção was 95 points. The participant Patrícia Antunes and the song Canto Em Português (I Sing In Portuguese) came in second place in the national selection with 91 points, a score very close to the victory (it was just 4 points away from winning).

In the Eurovision Song Contest, the sweet voice of the singer and the charming melody of the ukelele got the 6th place with 92 points. Until the year of 2017, this was the best that Portugal had ever achieved, until Salvador Sobral conquered the much desired and expected victory.

In 2021, at this year’s Festival da Canção, the artist was invited by RTP to perform the song that brought her to fame in 1996. Once again, it reminded us all why, until today, we have not yet forgotten it. It remains a very representative melody of the Portuguese spirit.

O Meu Coração Não Tem Cor – opinions from fans

In order to find out what Eurovision fans today think of this Portugal entry from 1996, we asked our Eurovision Fan Panel. It includes team members as well as fans from all over the world.

🇦🇺 Vivienne F. – This song is both interesting, and different in a quirky sort of way. It’s like she’s telling a story, and then there’s a bit of camaraderie, followed by the ukulele, it’s a great song in my opinion.

🇵🇹 Enio P. – O Meu Coração Não Tem Cor was for a long time, Portugal’s highest scoring entry in Eurovision. In my opinion it was the true winner of Eurovision 1996. It’s a great song, where the typical Portuguese folklore roots blend with a more modern beat, giving it a strange, yet appealing vibe. The reaction of the crowd says everything. It was a fan favourite. Listening to it, you have an urge to move yourself. I think Lucia had an outstanding performance, and it was a pity she missed the top 5. But those chords of Lucia’s “cavaquinho” will go down in Eurovision history.

🇧🇦 Nihad B. – I love this Portuguese entry. You can clearly see some sort of common theme in Portugal’s entries that we still see today… band… quirky… I love it.

🇩🇰 Charlotte J. – I like this song. It’s not a love, but I do like it. It’s nearly three minutes of constant singing though, and I miss a little break just with music. Can’t one just have 10-15 seconds to catch a breath and enjoy the music? Not on this song, and that disturbs me a little bit. She is however lovely to look at, always smiling, and it appears genuine. I like that.

🇵🇹 Inês M. – O Meu Coração Não Tem Cor is a song that represents the Portuguese traditions and culture at the fullest. It is a fun performance, full of rhythm. Lúcia’s voice is melodic and sweet. The instrumental with the ukele is the cherry on the top of the cake. I think this is one of the best Portugal entries.

🇳🇴 Steinar M. – I think it’s a very catchy, charming, authentic and nice ethnic song. Back in 1996, I saw Eurovision live in Oslo. The song obviously had a big impact on the audience. It was very nice to see Portugal getting their best result to date. One of my favourites from 1996, along with Austria, Sweden, UK etc. It was interesting to see her later in the classic movie Love Actually.

🇨🇴 🇫🇮 Alvaro S. This is an evergreen Eurovision songs and one of the best entries from Portugal. I just watched it performed at the Festival da Canção 2021, and it looked as great as 25 years ago!

🇮🇪 Paul K. For me this is a good song. It’s not something that I would normally listen to, but I don’t dislike this. It’s very likeable and sounds very nice. Unfortunately it was in the contest with Eimear Quinn so unfortunately it’s not the best of that year, but still good.

🇨🇿 Josef S. – This is very pleasant entry that fits Portugal pretty well. I like when I can recognise the country not only by the language but as well by the used music. Very catchy and well performed, I also give Portugal plus points for the backing vocalists and the use of instruments. It’s a song I wouldn’t mind listening again in the future.

🇬🇧 Michael O. This is definitely one of Portugal’s best ever entries, so good they sent again in 1998, but I’m sorry this is not as good as Gina G which it beat by two positions. Inoffensive and pretty catchy.

Enjoy Lúcia’s performance from the 1996 Eurovision Song Contest in the embedded video. Below the video, you can read more about her.

Lúcia Moniz – a mini biography

Lúcia Moniz was born on September 9, 1976, in Lisbon and, being the daughter of two artists, Carlos Alberto Moniz and Maria do Amparo, she was linked to the music and cinema world from an early age. In 1996, she represented Portugal at the Eurovision Song Contest with the song O Meu Coração Não Tem Cor, and scored a 6th place.

At the end of 2003 she joined the cast of the British film Love Actually, directed by Richard Curtis. Lúcia’s character, Aurélia, is Jamie’s (Colin Firth) love interet. She is paired in a strange relationship based on communication beyond languages. Aurélia only speaks Portuguese while Jamie only speaks in English.

In 2006 She participated in the musical “Música no Coração” by Filipe La Féria where her and singer Anabela alternately played the role of the main character, Maria.

Since then, Lúcia has done dozens of tv shows, films and plays.

Lúcia Moniz performing at the Festival da Canção 2021:

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