A Swede who lives in Finland and who is lost in Euroland - the wonderful world of Eurovision
There is always some matter to discuss or just a song I want to share
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Saturday, January 3, 2015

Runner-up: Germany 1980

The year before, Ralph Siegel had finally managed to produce his first eurovision mega smash hit in the form of Dschinghis Khan. Now the witch doctor of modern schlager wished to show the world  he was able to win the whole contest.

In The Hague he had composed not only one but two entries: a youthful ditty about penguins, aimed at a younger audience, representing Luxembourg as well as an updated take on German cabaret tradition competing for his own country.

"Theater" showcases a whole lot of ideas that Siegel would later stretch far beyond reason but here they felt new, fresh and exciting.

There is the theme or idea that the whole song and performance is built around instead of just writing a straightforward song. There is the cheerful backing group. And also you'll note the presence of clowns - something Siegel would develop an almost unhealthy relationship to throughout the years.

It is a catchy little number but what really makes this whole package work is of course the almost electric presence of the magnificent Katja Ebstein, now representing Germany for the third time after ending in third place in both 1970 and 1971. Without her, this could easily have been reduced to a big pile of cheerful rubbish.

A deserved 2nd place?
Yes, thanks to Katja Ebstein. There were several better songs in the running this year, but few people know how to work the stage like she does.

Katja Ebstein - Theater (Germany 1980)

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