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Recalling the last win by Luxembourg in 1983

23 April 2014 at 03:01 CEST


Germany won the right to stage the 1983 competition, following their win the previous year, when Nicole had a runaway victory with the song Ein Biβchen Frieden.

The venue chosen by German broadcaster ARD was the Rudi-Sedlmayer-Halle, in Munich, a stadium that had been built to host the basketball events at the 1972 Olympic Games.  Since then it had hosted many concerts, and in 1975 was used as a location for the film Rollerball. 

21 countries initially registered for the contest, with the return of France, Italy and Greece to the line-up that has been present in 1982.  However, for the first time since entering in 1965, Irish broadcaster RTE pulled out of the contest due to financial constraints, leaving 20 countries for the Final in Munich.

Rehearsals commenced on Monday 18th April, with each country having 40 minutes allocated to them. Later in the week they would each have a second rehearsal of 20 minutes duration. 

The contest was due to last 165 minutes, however it severely overan to just over three hours in length, mainly due to presenter Marlene Charell having to repeat all her introductions, and the voting announcements in three languages.

The Participants

  1. France: Vivre sung by Guy Bonnet
  2. Norway: Do-Re-Mi sung by Jahn Teigen
  3. United Kingdom: I'm Never Giving Up sung by Sweet Dreams
  4. Sweden: Främling sung by Carola Häggkvist
  5. Italy: Perl Lucia sung by Riccardo Fogli
  6. Turkey: Opera sung by Çetin Alp and the Short Wave
  7. Spain: ¿Quien Manéja Mi Barca? sung by Remedios Amaya
  8. Switzerland: Io Cosi’ Non Ci Sto sung by Mariella Farré
  9. Finland: Fantasiaa sung by Ami Aspelund
  10. Greece: Mou Les sung by Christie Stassinopoulou.
  11. Netherlands: Sing Me A Song sung by Bernadette
  12. Yugoslavia: Džuli sung by Danijel
  13. Cyprus: I Agapi Akoma Zi sung by Stavros and Constantina
  14. Germany: Rücksicht sung by Hoffmann and Hoffmann
  15. Denmark: Kloden Drejer sung by Gry Johansen
  16. Israel: Hi sung by Ofra Haza
  17. Portugal: Esta Balada Que Te Dou sung by Armando Gama
  18. Austria: Hurricane sung by Westend
  19. Belgium: Rendez-Vous sung by Pas De Deux
  20. Luxembourg: Si La Vie Est Cadeau sung by Corinne Hermès

There were quite a few familiar names amongst the line-up. Guy Bonnet had previously sung for France in 1970; Jahn Teigen was rapidly becoming a regular participant for Norway, having infamously scored 'nul points' for them in 1978, and  had returned, with his partner Anita Skorgan, for the 1982 contest.

Future winner Carola Häggkvist made an impressive debut with a third place for Sweden; whilst the Swiss entrant Mariella Farré would return in 1985 for her country. 

The Israeli singer, Ofra Haza, had a very successful post contest career, with the single Im Nin'alu, in particular, becoming a big international hit. Haza died, at the tragically young age of 42, from an AIDS related pneumonia.

Watch Carola Häggkvist perform Främling

The Voting

Each jury awarded 12 points to their favourite song, 10 points to their second favourite, and then 8 points for the third, and then 7,6,5,4,3,2 and  down to 1 point for their tenth favourite song. The points were revealed  in ascending order, and the juries were called in the same order as the presentation of the songs.

It was a tight close run of voting, with Germany, Sweden, Yugoslavia and Israel all in touch with the eventual winners Luxembourg. It was only in the last few rounds of voting that Luxembourg pulled clear of its rivals, with Israel managing to move into second place in the final round of voting, finishing just six points behind the winners.

For the first time under the current voting system, two countries managed to obtain the dreaded 'nul points' with Turkey and Spain taking that particular distinction.

You can find a full breakdown of the voting on our 1983 history page.

At the time, for Luxembourg it was a record breaking fifth outright victory in the contest,  just managing to eclipse the record of France, who had also won the title five times, but had to share one of those victories (1969) with three other countries. 

Watch Corinne Hermès perform Si La Vie Est Cadeau

About the winner

Corinne Hermès was born Corinne Miller in November, 1961 and was a music student in Paris, and her first single in 1979 was released under her own name.

Following the contest,  Hermès continued to record and release singles and albums. mainly for the French speaking market.

In 2001 she announced the results of the French televote in the Eurovision Song Contest.