For the second time Australia has hosted a national final “Australia Decides” for the Eurovision Song Contest from the Gold Coast. Out of 10 participants Montaigne have received the highest votes from the jury and televoters. Even the Swedish ESC winner Måns Zelmerlöw appeared on stage and sang a duet with Dami Im, who brought the best placing for Australia so far (2nd in Stockholm, 2016 with “Sound Of Silence”). Montaigne could even beat Vanessa Amorosi, who is one of the most popular Australian singers.
Montaigne, whose original name is Jessica Alyssa Cerro was born Sydney 1995. Her father Gus Cerro was a football player in the National Soccer League in Malaysia and Australia. Montaigne also love to play football. Montaigne is a moniker of course and it refers to the French philosopher Michel de Montaigne. She also is a special person which can’t be put in draw of a cupboard. This can also be counted for her music style which is “art pop” and indie. Have a look at “I’m A Fantastic Wreck” or her first published single “I Am Not An End” . She release two studio albums “Glorious Heights”, which reached #4 in the Australian charts and “Complex”, #26.
Montaigne has won several awards and toured around the country, also as an opening act for singers like Cindy Lauper and Blondie. With her extraordinary outfits she always falls out of the ordinary and provokes. She also utilizes her position to open the eyes for environmental movements, etc.
The song “Don’t Break Me” is quite a melodic song compared to the songs, Montaigne is known for. The composers DNA - Anthony Egizii und David Musumeci – have also written the Australian entries 2016, 2017 and 2018. It’s about a right balanced relationship, one takes too much from the other and it breaks everything. Just listening to the song is a general pop song without any highlights or melodic interludes. Watching the performance with the clown outfit takes the seriousness out of the song.
Due to the cancellation of this year’s ESC, Montaigne has been chosen again by the Australian broadcaster SBS to represent Australia 2021. Let’s hope, Montaigne will start with a stronger song, which also suits to her indie art pop music style.
Chances for Top 10: 67%
Chances for Grand Final: 100%
This will be the sixth time for Australia participating in the Eurovision Song Contest. Unfortunately, the ESC has been cancelled due to the Corona virus pandemic. The 2020 singer Montaigne will have to start again in 2021 with a new song.
In 2015 it was announced that it should be a unique exception to have Australia on board. At that time nobody could have imagined positive echo and a great acceptance to have Australia as an official participating country in the ESC. It has now been granted that Australia is going to participate at least until 2022.
In the debut entry “Tonight Again” by Guy Sebastian, Australia could make a wonderful 5th place in the Grand Final. And in the following years Dami Im could even reach a 3rd place, even the juries voted here as number one, an unbelievable success for Australia and the 2017 entry “Don’t Come Easy” by Isaiah Firebrace, who made another Top 10 position (9th rank in the Grand Final). Last year Kate Miller-Heidke could surprise with a unique stage show, she won the Semi Final clearly and in the Grand Final she achieved a 9th place, many people who did have Australia on their list changed their minds. The brave stage show would have deserved a Top 3 placing.
Even if Australia does not belong to Europe geographically, there are strong bounds which have grown over centuries. A lot of Europeans live in Australia or have European ancestors and family and the ESC has always been very popular. The Australian broadcaster SBS has been transmitting the ESC since 1983. The only big disadvantage is the enormous time difference, nevertheless the show is normally broadcasted on the Sunday night. But nowadays, it is also being transmitted live on TV due to the televoting in a very early morning as well as on Sunday night as a reprise.
Nevertheless, there have already been some more or less well known Australians singing in the Eurovision Song Contest in the past as well: Olivia Newton-John born in 1948, who is originally from England, but moved with her family to Australia when she was five years old. In 1974, when ABBA could win the contest for Sweden, Olivia made a great 4th place in Brighton with “Long Live Love”.
There is Johnny Logan, a guy who has won the Eurovision Song Contest three times for Ireland two times as a singer and one time as a composer. Johnny Logan was born in Melbourne, Victoria, Australia in 1954 as a son of Irish immigrants. His songs “What’s Another Year” in 1980 and “Hold Me Now” in 1987 were very successful all over the world. “Why Me” was sung by Linda Martin in 1992, where Johnny acted as composer.
Gina G., who was born in Brisbane, Queensland, Australia in 1970, has represented the United Kingdom with the dance song “Ooh...Aah...Just A Little Bit”. This song came 8th in Oslo 1996.
Jane Camerford, who was born Newcastle, New South Wales, Australia in 1959. She has been representing Germany with the band Texas Lightening with “No No Never” in Athens 2006, where a 14th place could be made.
In 2014, Australia had a first guest appearance in the ESC in Copenhagen with this year’s singer Jessica Mauboy, who was born in Darwin, Northern Territory, Australia in 1989. She had the chance to represent Australia in the interval act of the Semi Final 2 with the song “Sea Of Flags”. In 2018 she could only reach the 20th place.
In the case of winning, what would happen to the ESC? Australia lays 10 time zones away, do all the participants have to travel to Australia? The biggest time difference so far could be noted in the ESC’s from Moscow and Baku with 3 hours’ time-delay. In this case there is a special rule. The Australian broadcaster SBS will be organizing the ESC in the following year, but the event has to stay in Europe. Hence SBS can collaborate with a European broadcaster of its choice. So it could be that the ESC will take place in Germany, but the organizer would be the Australian SBS.