54º Eurovision Song Contest
Fairytale (Alexander Rybak) - Norway
The 54th edition of the Eurovision Song Contest was held in Moscow, Russia, 42 countries entered this edition, one less than the previous year after Georgia withdrawal due to the political content of their entry's title. Again, two semi-finals were held to decide which 25 countries would be represented in the Final. Only 5 countries, the so called "big four" and Russia were automatically qualified for the final which took place on May 16th 2009. After an exciting voting in front of thousands of people in a fully packed Moscow Olimpisky Indoor Arena and millions of TV viewers all over Europe, it was finally Alexander Rybak from Norway who received the highest number of points from televoters and juries from the countries participating in this year's edition of Europe's favourite TV-show! Norway managed to gather 387 points altogether, a new record! Followed by Yohanna from Iceland with 218 points and Azerbaijan's AySel & Arash who collected 207 points.
This year, the European Broadcasting Union introduced changes in the voting of the Eurovision Song Contest Final as for the first time in years, the winner wasn't decided solely by tele-voting. Instead, a mixture of 50% televote and 50% jury was used. For this purpose, national juries consisting of five music industry professionals gathered in all 42 participating countries who ranked the songs in Eurovision Song Contest style, giving 12 points to their favourite song, 10 points to their second favourite, etc. The results of the five jury members were then added up and accounted for 50% of the country's votes. Those results were then combined with the tele-voting results.
The United Kingdom and France both did much better than in previous years, they were placed 5th and 8th respectively. France entry sang by Patricia Kaas was actually chosen the press favourite in a non-official pool. Spain did vey bad and placed second to last while Germany ended in the 20th place. Russia's intriguing and somehow eerie staging for its otherwise beautiful song ended 11th.