x

Music

Rome Band Brings Eurovision Back Where Song Contests Began

ROME (AP) — Italy woke up Sunday to news that a glam rock band who got their start busking on Rome’s main shopping drag had won the Eurovision Song Contest and was bringing next year’s competition back to the place where Europe's song contests began.

From the premier’s office on down, congratulations poured in Sunday from the Italian establishment for the rather anti-establishment group Maneskin, giving Italy a sorely needed boost after a dreadful year as one of the countries worst hit by the coronavirus.

The band was the bookmakers’ favorite going into the Eurovision finale and sealed the win early Sunday with the highest popular vote in the enormously entertaining, and incredibly kitsch, annual song festival.

“We are out of our minds!” Florence’s Uffizi Galleries tweeted, echoing Maneskin's winning song lyrics, along with an image of a Caravaggio Medusa and the hashtag #Uffizirock.

Maneskin, Danish for “moonlight" and a tribute to bass player Victoria De Angelis' Danish ancestry, won with a total of 529 points. France was second while Switzerland, which led after national juries had voted, finished third.

“Rock’n’roll never dies, tonight we made history. We love u,” the band tweeted before heading back home from Rotterdam, Netherlands, where this year's contest was held.

The band got its start performing on Via del Corso, the main commercial thoroughfare in downtown Rome. Their scrappy performances in front of a Geox store were a far cry from the over-the-top, flame-throwing extravaganza Saturday night that literally split lead singer Damiano David's pants.

David told a news conference this week that starting out on the street was embarrassing, since the group had to contend with other musicians vying for the same prized piece of sidewalk while neighbors complained about the noise.

“They were always calling the police," De Angelis said, laughing.

Maneskin’s win was only Italy’s third victory in the contest and the first since Toto Cutugno took the honor in 1990. The victory means Italy will host next year’s competition, with cities bidding for the honor.

Launched in 1956 to foster unity after World War II, Eurovision evolved over the years from a bland ballad-fest to a campy, feel-good extravaganza. It has grown from seven countries to include more than 40, including non-European nations such as Israel and far-away Australia.

Legend has it that Eurovision got its inspiration from Italy’s Sanremo Music Festival, which began in 1951 as a post-war effort to boost Italian culture and the economy of the Ligurian coastal city that has housed it ever since.

Perhaps best known for having launched the likes of Andrea Boccelli and one of Italy’s most famous songs “Nel blu, dipinto di blu” — popularly known as “Volare” — the Sanremo festival usually picks Italy’s official selection for the Eurovision contest.

Maneskin won Sanremo this year with the same song, “Zitti e Buoni” (“Quiet and good”) that it performed Saturday night in Rotterdam.

By NICOLE WINFIELD Associated Press

RELATED

NEW YORK — Meat Loaf, the rock superstar loved by millions for his “Bat Out of Hell” album and for such theatrical, dark-hearted anthems as “Paradise By the Dashboard Light,” “Two Out of Three Ain’t Bad,” and “I’d Do Anything for Love (But I Won’t Do That),” has died.

Top Stories

Church

BOSTON – The Holy Synod of the Patriarchate of Alexandria in its recent meeting dealt with the ecclesiastical coup perpetrated by the Patriarchate of Moscow in its canonical jurisdiction, calling it an “immoral invasion and intrusion.

Church

NEW YORK - Some 21 years after it was destroyed in the September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks in the United States that brought down the Twin Towers in New York City, the new St Nicholas Greek Orthodox Church rising in its place is among the most eagerly awaited architectural openings of 2022.

Events

STATEN ISLAND, NY – For yet another year, the community of Holy Trinity-St Nicholas in Staten Island honored couples celebrating 50+ years of marriage with a modest ceremony held at the church immediately following the Divine Liturgy on January 16.

Video

SNF’s Health Initiative Will Support Child and Adolescent Mental Health

ATHENS - When we think about childhood injuries, we usually think of scratches, a few stitches, maybe even a broken bone.

Enter your email address to subscribe

Provide your email address to subscribe. For e.g. abc@xyz.com

You may unsubscribe at any time using the link in our newsletter.