Portugal had its first rehearsal. Would it be one of those days for Filipa, or would we be pleasantly surprised by her first appearance in Oslo?
The Portuguese would dearly love to win the contest, and many of us like the sound of two weeks in Lisbon. Portugal’s last ballad in 2008 did them proud, so Filipa has a hard act to follow.
The song itself has changed a little. There is still the orchestral backing track, but they’ve really beefed-up the strings. These certainly enhance the song. The setting is predominently dark, with twinkling stars behind in varying shades of purple, pink and blue. Additionally, there is a large circular beaded curtain behind her. These large beads fluoresce the same colours, and make for an interesting effect. Filipa’s outfit is a floor-length off-white dress, akin to a wedding dress. She’s supported by three backing singers (two female, one male) and a pianist, whose piano has the large solitary candle that we saw in the Portuguese National Final. These four people are all dressed in basic black.
Filipa’s rehearsals weren’t the crispest we’d seen, and she was struggling to hit some of the soaring notes that this song demands. Having said that, her semi-final is still over a week away, so there’s plenty of time to polish what has the potential to be a very memorable performance. Will it qualify? I’d say it’s currently borderline, but we’ll see.