Participant(s): The Toppers Song: Shine Writer(s): Gordon Heuckeroth Composer(s): Gordon Heuckeroth
The Netherlands are celebrating their 50th participation in the Eurovision Song Contest this year. They have participating since the first year in 1956 and missed some years out in between – due to the Queen’s birthday and so on. In this long history there are four victories: “Net als Toen” by Corry Brokken (1957), “Een beetje” by Teddy Scholten (1959), “De Troubadour” by Lenny Kuhr (1969)and “Ding-a-Dong” by Teach-In (1975). After the last success in 1975 – more than 30 years ago – no Dutch entry came really close to victory anymore. Even if there were so many outstanding songs and performances like “Vrede” by Ruth Jacott in 1993 (6th rank) and “Hemel en Aarde” in 1998 (4th rank). Many Dutch have been disappointed that all the new countries from Eastern Europe were falling in, so that the classical Eurovision nations don’t even have a chance anymore. Furthermore, the televoting system has been proofed as exciting, but not successful to get top positions anymore, and with the new semi final system the Netherlands only qualified once for the final in 2004. Luckily, the juries will be back this year at least for 50%.
The Toppers – one of the Netherlands’ most famous stars have been chosen to represent the Netherlands in Moscow. The Toppers actually changed the team, Gerald Joling, who has already participated with “Shangri-La” in 1988 (9th rank) is no longer singing with the Toppers. In a wonderful show the Toppers were singing six songs and the Dutch have chosen “Shine” – an optimistic and cheerful entry with high chances in Moscow. Unfortunately, the song has been gone under a complete makeover! It’s usual to revamp songs for Eurovision, but sometimes the original version is better. The new version, which can also been watched in the video clip has lost it’s quality. The rhythm has been turned on far too loud and aggressive. The melody has lost through that. We can just hope, that the Toppers will use the old version on stage. The Netherlands have a really good starting position (#19) in the second semi final. It would be a pity to gamble away this advantage.