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Topless drummers and a leather-clad space vixen: it’s Eurovision

Topless drummers and a leather-clad space vixen: it’s Eurovision

From Ireland to Estonia, Eurovision hopefuls are wooing gay fans as they get ready for the first semi-final of the pan-European song contest.

The contestants and their faithful followers are all in Malmö, Sweden, ready to start the action. And tonight (14 May), for 16 of the countries represented, it will be first time they get to compete. The first semi-final will see them battle for 10 coveted places in the grand final on Saturday (18 May). A second semi on Thursday (16 May) will filter the remainder of the acts.

Here’s six of the hottest acts you should look out for in semi-final one:

Slovenia: Straight into Love

American born Hannah has the first disco number of the night. We asked Hannah why gay fans should vote for her. She replied: ‘Because you don’t have to be straight to love Straight Into Love!’

Ukraine: Gravity

The Ukrainians always like to put on a show and have one of the world’s tallest men, Igor Vovkovinskiy. At almost 8ft he carries singer Zlata Ognevich through the forest for her mystical number Gravity.

The Netherlands: Birds

The Dutch currently hold the record for the most consecutive years of non-qualification for the final.

The last time they made it through was in 2004. So, this year, have sent their most famous artist Anouk to try and break that spell with her haunting song Birds.

Montenegro: Igranka (Party)

Emerging from a smoke filled stage come two rapping astronauts followed by leather clad space vixen. It is definitely the most bizarre entry of the show by far.

Belarus: Solayah

Alyona Lanskaya was selected in 2012 by a public televote to represent Belarus. However the Belorussian president launched an investigation into the vote and found it had been rigged!

Alyona was denied the chance to represent her country but came storming back this year with her Latin sounding Solayoh.

She told us gay fans should vote for her: ‘Because I am a positive person and my song is a very positive song.’ To prove her gay credentials, she emerges on stage in a giant disco ball…

Ireland: Only love survives

Ireland’s opening has two semi-naked men, arms covered in tattoos banging drums. Behind them, little Ryan Dolan belts out his disco number but our eyes will be on the dancers and drummers!

Dolan told GSN: ‘I get a lot of support from the gay community and I really, really appreciate it. I’m having a good time and hope everybody enjoys my performance in the semi-final.’

Gay Star News were at the opening ceremony on Sunday (12 May) and asked two of the other contestants why their gay fans should vote for them.

Estonia’s Birgit said: ‘My song talks about new beginnings and I have my new beginnings and all gay people have their own new beginnings.

‘Gay people are so strong and confident people that you just have get to new beginnings all the time. My song is so positive and you are so positive also it really fits together.’

And Austria’s Natalia said: ‘My song is about when you fall down you get back up and move forward in life, even though you have dark times.

‘I think this one goes out not only to gay viewers but to everybody as everyone has these moments. Something you can connect to and that’s very important in music.’

Eurovision Semi-Final One starts at 2100 (CET) and is streamed live on the official Eurovision site here.