a couple of weeks ago, some friends invited me over to watch the Eurovision Song Festival. it must have been more than ten years since i had last watched it. i did find it funny, though. at least in the beginning. the more the show progressed, the more songs i saw, the more i started to feel disgusted by the industry that promotes the creation of such empty, soulless, emotionless music, so devoid of creativity or originality. but i soon remembered not to be too much of a snob. it is true that i just do not really belong to the intended audience of that musical show, and that i watched it only because i had been asked to (and it was a fun evening, by the way). tastes differ.
but soon my thoughts again took a walk, and i could not shake off certain ideas. the Eurovision Song Festival is something which should unite the countries of Europe. nice idea, but is a competition really the way to do this? now, all we get is disgruntled not-winners and angry people because "country x will always vote for country y" (hey, didn't we know that in advance?)
aren't there better ways to 'unite' our European soul? if we consider the amount of money spent on this show, we must be aware that of the perversity of it. my country (Belgium) alone spent € 60000 on a dotation for our participant. thousands of euros more were spent on clothing, airplane tickets, etc etc etc. isn't that just a bit ridiculous to spend on a participant of a contest? i mean, only one of them wins, so that i don't know how many people go home empty-handed, but they have cost us A LOT of money. and the winner gets a lot of comments as well. we must be able to do something more constructive. how about a Eurosolidarity Show or something? i mean, if all the money now spent on each and every artist can be combined and added to the amount of money the hosting country would spend on a stage, commercials, light, the show, etc, we have a very strong basis to start with. if people all over Europe would then be prompted to donate money as well, we could do something useful with it, like divide that money over all countries and help poor people get along. there is still so much poverty in Europe, even in my own 'wealthy' country, that there is a lot of work to be done. and the money now spent on the Eurovision Song Festival could then be used to aid those in need. for all we have now is a contest which disappoints the participating countries, which leads in no way to a 'union' and which has poorer people feel completely left in the cold - and rightly so. if you receive a couple of hundreds euros every month through wellfare because you are too weak or too old to work, how sad and bitter it must make you to see hundreds of thousands of euros spent on something like this? i do not see the 'festival' of it all.