Eurovision Song Contest 1958
The Eurovision Song Contest 1958 was the third edition of the annual Eurovision Song Contest. It took place in Hilversum, following Corry Brokken's win at the 1957 contest in Frankfurt-am-Main, West Germany, with the song "Net als toen"; this formed the convention that the winning country of the previous year's event would host the following year. The contest was held at the AVRO Studios on Wednesday 12 March 1958, was hosted by Hannie Lips. Ten countries participated in the contest. Sweden made its début; this withdrawal came. Failing to get an agreement from various artistic unions, the BBC withdrew their bid to host in the summer of 1957 and the United Kingdom did not enter for the second and last time to date, having missed the first contest two years earlier; the winner was France with the song "Dors, mon amour", performed by André Claveau, written by Pierre Delanoë and composed by Hubert Giraud. This was France's first victory in the contest. At 46 years and 76 days of age, Claveau became the oldest victor of the contest until 1990.
Along with 1956, it was the second contest that has not featured a single song in the English language. The 1958 contest continued with the policy implemented the year before where each country was limited to one song entry; this policy has been retained to date. Hilversum, a municipality and a town in the province of North Holland, is known as the "Media Capital" of the Netherlands. Hilversum had become the centre of broadcasting and radio in the Netherlands in the 1920s when Dutch radio company Nederlandse Seintoestellen Fabriek settled there, today the media sector stands as one of the top employers in the municipality of Hilversum. After the establishment of the Dutch Radio Company in Hilversum in the 1920s all other radio stations in the Netherlands followed suit with television following in the 1950s, thus making Hilversum at the end of the 1950s the best venue in the Netherlands to produce and broadcast such an international TV-transmitted event as the Eurovision Song Contest, while on the other hand TV was still a challenging advanced technology in general within Europe.
One such media network was the host of Nederlandse Televisie Stichting. The venue of the contest was the studio of AVRO, a building complex for the media's network among the media buildings within Hilversum, which belonged to the Dutch public broadcasting association operating within the framework of the Nederlandse Publieke Omroep system; the contest was held in one of the Avro studio halls. The hall contained a small stage to function as a higher stand for the singers, with the program being shot from the stage floor up. Outside of frame were the microphones' and other technical devices' wires which went through the studio's lower floor at the foot of the stage; the decorative emphasis was on the stage background, the stage front and the left side from the stage from the spectator's view where the orchestra and where the performers and host's stairway entrance were located. The rear of the stage had interchangeable backgrounds for each song to add context to each song's lyrics; the centre-front of the stage, the left area from the stage with the orchestra and stairway entrance were decorated with tulips, of which the Netherlands are known for.
The juries were not in the studio as in 1956. For the 1958 event, they remained in their own countries. Once the songs had all been sung, juries announced their results via telephone in reverse order of presentation, as in the previous year; the Italian entry was not picked up properly in some of the other countries, which meant that after all the other songs had been presented, Domenico Modugno had to perform his song again. It was the only year that the host country finished in last place until 57 years in 2015 and again in 2018, the first time more than one country was placed last; the interval act was music by the Metropole Orkest, under the direction of maestro Dolf van der Linden. There were two interval acts, one in the middle of the competing songs performances and one after all the rest of the competing performances were shown. Sweden, a country that would be one of the most successful in the contest, debuted this year; the United Kingdom decided to withdraw from the contest after planning to submit an entry.
After the contest, the Italian entry "Nel Blu Dipinto Di Blu" by Domenico Modugno went on to become a worldwide hit. During the 1st Grammy Awards, held on 4 May 1959 at Hollywood's Beverly Hilton Hotel, "Nel blu dipinto di blu" received two awards, for Record of the Year and Song of the Year; the song is the only foreign-language recording to achieve this honour, it is the only song to have competed in the Eurovision Song Contest and received a Grammy Award. The song reached the No.1 spot in the US-American Billboard Charts, making it one of the most successful Eurovision songs in the history of the contest. The song was voted the second best Eurovision entry of all time at the 50th anniversary show "Congratulations" in 2005; each performance had a conductor. Italy – Alberto Semprini Netherlands – Dolf van der Linden France – Franck Pourcel Luxembourg – Dolf van der Linden Sweden – Dolf van der Linden Denmark – Kai Mortensen Belgium – Dolf van der Linden Germany – Dolf van der Linden Austria – Willy Fantl Switzerland – Paul Burkhard Four artists who had participated in previous editions of the contest returned in 1958: Fud Leclerc, who represented Belgium in 1956.
Eurovision Song Contest 1969
The Eurovision Song Contest 1969 was the 14th in the series. Four countries won the contest, the first time a tie had occurred. However, there was no rule at the time to cover such an eventuality, so all four countries were declared joint winners. France's win was their fourth. France became the first country to win the contest four times; the Netherlands' win was their third. Spain and the United Kingdom each won for the second time, and it was the first time. This is so far the only occasion; the venue selected to host the 1969 contest was an opera house located in Madrid. The theatre reopened in 1966 as a concert theatre and the main concert venue of the Spanish National Orchestra and the RTVE Symphony Orchestra; the final featured an onstage metal sculpture created by surrealist Spanish artist, Salvador Dalí. The surrealist Spanish artist Salvador Dalí was responsible for designing the publicity material for the 1969 contest as well as the metal sculpture, used on stage, it was the first time that the contest resulted in a tie for first place, with four countries each gaining 18 votes.
Since there was at the time no rule to cover such an eventuality, all four countries were declared joint winners. This caused an unfortunate problem concerning the medals due to be distributed to the winners as there were not enough to go round, so that only the singers received their medals on the night: the songwriters, to some disgruntlement, were not awarded theirs until after the date of the contest. Had the tie-break rule been in place, the Netherlands would have won, having received 6 points from France. United Kingdom would have been runner up, having received 5 points from Sweden. On the other hand, with the present tie-break rule been in place, France would have been the overall winner, with Spain in 2nd place. Both countries received votes from 9 countries, but France received 4 points from 2 countries whereas Spain received 3 points as their highest vote. Austria was absent from the contest because they could not find a suitable representative, but it was rumoured that they refused to participate in a contest staged in Franco-ruled Spain.
Wales wanted to debut with Welsh language broadcaster BBC Cymru, made a national selection called Cân i Gymru, but in the end it was decided they would not participate in the competition – their participation was rejected because Wales is not a sovereign state. Only the BBC has the exclusive right to represent the United Kingdom; each performance had a conductor. These are listed below. Five artists returned in this year's contest. Louis Neefs for Belgium who last represented the nation in 1967. Romuald for Luxembourg who represented Monaco last time in 1964; the table below shows the order in which votes were cast during the 1969 contest along with the spokesperson, responsible for announcing the votes for their respective country. Each national broadcaster sent a commentator to the contest, in order to provide coverage of the contest in their own native language. Details of the commentators and the broadcasting stations they represented are included in the table below. Official website