The Eurovision has become a very different contest to it was back when it first launched way back in 1956, with the traditional power ballads making way for some seriously varied performances down through the years.
From stuffed animals and bat-winged demons to people dressed up as pirates and wrestlers, there’s always a couple of absolutely bizarre acts at the annual Eurovision Song Contest, meaning that there’s always a few weird talking points to be had.
Here are a few of the most crazy moments so far…
Disclaimer, trying to rank these performances in terms of overall craziness is probably an act of madness in itself, so here they come in no particular order…
10. Lordi – Hard Rock Hallelujah (Finland, 2006)
When Finnish monster rockers Lordi took to the Eurovision stage in 2006 wearing their now iconic monster outfits, the word didn’t know what to expect, but pretty soon the people of Europe were rocking out to a tune which is remembered not only as a fabled Eurovision anthem, but also a modern heavy metal classic. While it may not have been a conventional Euro tune, it certainly hit a nerve, with Lordi and Finland running out clear winners with a mighty 292 points!
Why does that guy have bat wings and a battle axe? Sure, why not?!?!!?
9. Conchita Wurst – Rise Like A Phoenix (Austria, 2014)
Conchita Wurst, the ‘bearded lady’ alter ego of Thomas Neuwirth, became the unlikely darling of Europe in 2014 after her passionate rendition of Rise Like A Phoenix, a song which just feels as if it is destined to be on the soundtrack of a James Bond film some day. Conchita also rocked a beautiful golden dress on the night too, one which was very similar to the one worn by Ireland’s Kasey Smith… Who wore it better?
8. Buranovskiye Babushki – Party for Everybody (Russia, 2012)
It’s probably fair enough to say that a group of six elderly women was the last thing that people were expecting from the Russian entry but the ethno-pop group (whose name translates to Buranova Grannies) finished second with their fun tune ‘Party For Everybody’. The sweet dearies later vowed to donate any money raised by their performance to building a church in the village of Buranova. Whether or not they invited everybody to the church’s opening party remains a mystery…
7. Dustin The Turkey – Irlande Douze Points (Ireland, 2008)
Following a few years of disappointing results at the Eurovision, Team Ireland decided that it would be a good idea to try something completely different and send Dustin The Turkey as the representative of one of the most decorated Eurovision nations. Unfortunately, the rest of the continent didn’t see the funny side of Ireland sending a puppet to the Eurovision and voted accordingly, with Dustin failing to progress from the semi-finals. Speaking of progress, Dustin is the first puppet to compete at the Eurovision, so his participation is seen by some as a landmark in terms of equal opportunity.
6. Pirates Of The Sea – Wolves Of The Sea (Latvia, 2008)
The Pirates of the Caribbean movies were some of the most successful films of the ’00s as far as the box office was concerned, so Latvia felt it made sense to try and cash in on the popularity by sending Pirates of the Sea to perform their song… Wolves of the Sea. While the Pirates received a mid-table finish at the 2008 Song Contest, they gained many Irish admirers, getting the maximum 12 points from us (and a solid 10 from the UK too).
Pirates 12 – 0 Dustin.
5. Jedward – Lipstick (Ireland, 2011)
If Europe thought it had seen the last of Ireland’s thoroughly bizarre on-stage antics, then they were sorely mistaken, as we were at it again in 2011, sending over everyone’s favourite tall blonde haired twin brothers named John and Edward to fly the flag. Despite the fact that no one had any idea why two young men dressed as the Legion of Doom were singing about lipstick, Jedward finished in 8th place overall, making Lipstick one of the most successful Irish Eurovision entries of recent memory.
4. Teo – Cheesecake (Belarus. 2014)
I’m sure everyone can agree that singing about lipstick is one thing, but cheesecake? Hold up now, we have to draw the line somewhere! If there was some sort of memo, then Teo, Belarus’ 2014 entry, must have missed it. Apparently the song is about ending a relationship with a woman who wants you to be something you’re not. We’re not really getting that vibe…
3. Peter, Sue and Mark – Djambo Djambo (Switzerland, 1976)
Proving that bizarre Eurovision entries are not specifically a new thing, Switzerland’s entry in 1976 featured a really creepy looking clown in a full red tuxedo. What strikes as being so unusual about Djambo, Djambo is that the song itself is not all that strange, so the presence of a weird clown character is utterly random and a little bit scary…
2. Verka Serduchka – Dancing Lasha Tumbai (Ukraine, 2007)
If you were ever wondering about alternative uses for tin foil (outside of cooking, storing sandwiches in and preventing the government from reading your mind), Ukraine’s entry proved that you could use it to make an outfit! This brilliantly bonkers performance was like watching an old sci-fi movie from the ’50s, but with better choreography…
1. Epic Moldovan Sax Guy!
In 2010, Moldova sent a combination of a music group called the SunStroke Project along with singer Olia Tira. Everything seemed normal enough (in a Euro pop sort of way), until saxophonist Sergay Stepanov took centre stage and belted out one of the greatest sax solos of all time. In that beautiful moment, one of the internet’s most beloved meme’s was born. So popular is Sergay among the Eurovision faithful that Moldova brought him back for another shot at the title in Eurovision 2017!