After a lengthy selection process, the song, Attention, was picked last week to represent Lithuania at the 2014 Eurovision Song Contest. This evening it was finally time to decide just which of the three finalist acts, Mia, Vaidas or Vilija, would get the ticket to Copenhagen.
Winning the right to representing the Baltic country Lithuania at the Eurovision Song Contest was not easy this year. The Lithuanian selection process started on the 14th of December with a special concert to celebrate the 20th anniversary for the debut of Lithuania at the Eurovision Song Contest where the twenty candidates were presented. Since then, the twenty hopefuls have been narrowed down to three after nine qualification heats.
Last week the song Attention was chosen to be this year’s Lithuanian entry among the sixteen candidate songs, but we still needed to know who was going to perform it in Copenhagen and only one act could be crowned winner of the Eurovizijos final.
Attention sounds very different depending on which of the three candidates is singing it, but it is still a pop song, very classy, which starts immediately with the extremely catchy chorus. The listener is attacked by the hook of the song from the beginning and it last for the entirety of the song.
1. Mia – Attention
She gave the song an elegant,
mature and sassy touch with her exuberant and aggressive vocals. Her
voice is incredibly versatile and she reached the higher notes without
the quality of her voice suffering too much. If the competition was
about the most powerful singing voice, Mia would be definitely the
winner. She showed her vocal power with the appropriate emotions shown
in her face and body movements. When she entered the stage we could hear a knock at every step she took. She had a great attitude being
accompanied by three male backing dancers dressed in black suits, white shirts and bow ties (their sneakers did not match the elegance of their clothes). She wore a long black dress with a huge black necklace. The images in the screens were red as well as the stage lighting.
2. Vaidas Baumila – Attention
He performed a
tasteful acoustic version of the song very relaxing and enjoyable to
listen to where his voice was well-controlled and never forced. The
delicate nuances of his voice seemed to be delivered straight from his
heart making the song both captivating and memorable and that could have turned out to be a
winning combination. He was alone in the center of the stage wearing a black vest and
trousers, a white shirt and a pink bow tie untied around his neck. The
stage lighting was dark with flickering images on the screens. The
three female backing singers had a big role here and also the orchestra
halfway through the song.
3. Vilija Matačiūnaitė – Attention
Vilija is a very talented artist who can sing wonderfully and dance gracefully at the same time with an absolutely stunning breath control. She has a bright and youthful quality in her voice that is full of power with an instantly recognizable tone. Because of her powerful voice, she is capable of being creative in her singing and no one of the other candidates hit the extremely high and low notes like she did. She also has an awesome expression when she sings which captures every viewer. She was joined by a male dancer whose movements were very well coordinated with Vilija’s and synchronized with the song in an extremely effective dance routine. However, the performance seemed to be focused too much on the dancing rather than the song. She was dressed all in black like the dancer who accompanied her. The stage was lit with dark blue with white flash lights.
The two-hour show started at 20:35 CET and it was broadcast live from LRT studios in the Lithuanian capital of Vilnius. It was hosted as usual by Arūnas Valinskas and Simona Nainė who welcomed us and introduced the three candidates who appeared on stage and sang together a version of the latest Eurovision winning entry, Denmark’s Only Teardrops. Mia wore a gorgeous red long dress, Vaidas was dressed all in white and Vilija wore an elegant maroon velvet dress.
The stage was the same we already know from all the previous heats, diamond-shaped with several screens in the background and the orchestra located to the right side of the stage. The members of the national and international jury were sitting at the end of the catwalk which was in front of the stage. They were Brand Stone, Valerij Prosvirov, Liselott Bjork, Sigutė Stonytė and Lauras Lučiūnas.
Besides Attention, the three remaining acts performed some other songs with each performance being preceded by a video with the artist who was the next up on stage speaking about their experience at Eurovizijos with images of the rehearsals and their previous performances during the past twelve weeks. Mia sang a beautiful piano version of Take A Look At Me Now, Vaidas Baumila sang John Legend’s song Ordinary People and Vilija Matačiūnaitė choose a ballad from Beyoncé called I Was Here. Right after their performances, each artist listened to the feedback from the jurors.
Later, the three candidates performed their own version of the song Attention. The hostess interviewed them from the green room from time to time and televoting results were shown occasionally with Vilija Matačiūnaitė topping the list throughout the show followed closely by Mia.
Monika Linkytė, one of these year’s candidates and the last to be
eliminated from the competition, performed during the interval act
singing It’s All About A Boy.
The show also featured the guest performance of Sebalter, who will be representing Switzerland this year at the Eurovision Song Contest. He performed his entry Hunter Of Stars. A group of four ladies also performed a version of Lady Gaga’s hit The Edge Of Glory.
The result was determined by combining points awarded from the national and international juries, and televoting. Since the expert juries and the audience have been giving different results in the previous heats, we could expect anything this evening.
The votes of the jury were as follows:
Valerij Prosvirov: 3 points – Mia; 2 points – Vilija; 1 point – Vaidas
Brand Stone: 3 points – Mia; 2 points – Vilija; 1 point – Vaidas
Liselott Bjork: 3 points – Vilija; 2 points – Mia; 1 point – Vaidas
Lauras Lučiūnas: 3 points – Vilija; 2 points – Mia; 1 point – Vaidas
Sigutė Stonytė: 3 points – Vilija; 2 points – Mia; 1 point – Vaidas
Which meant: Vilija – 13 points; Mia – 12 points; Vaidas 5 points
And televoting results were as follows:
Vilija Matačiūnaitė – 12 points
Mia – 10 points
Vaidas Baumila – 8 points
Thus, Vilija Matačiūnaitė will try to bring the country into the final of the Eurovision Song Contest for the fourth time in a row.
Lithuania at the Eurovision Song Contest:
After its debut twenty years ago, in 1994, Lithuania have participated a total of fourteen times but, aside from a much surprising 6th place in 2006, the country is not usually to be found at the top positions. Last year, Andrius Pojavis qualified to the final and finished 22nd in Malmö with the song Something.