Can Ireland top the Euro charts?

By Ciara Quinn

YES, folks, it’s that time of year again. The 57th Eurovision Song Contest will be staged in Azerbaijan this weekend and the, ah, most talented twins in Ireland – Jedward – will be representing us for the second year in a row.

Hopes of our bringing the Eurovision crown back home were pretty much dashed when it was announced that Jedward were to ‘sing’ again  at the annual warble festival, but going by previous acts and some of their efforts, stranger things have happened.

With millions of viewers set to tune into Saturday’s show the Andersonstown News paid a visit to the Westwood Centre to see if shoppers were gearing up for a Eurovision party at home – or if they were heading out in their droves.

Poleglass resident Marian Pettigrew will be at a family christening on Saturday but won’t be missing out on the musical extravaganza, as she told us: “I’m definitely going to record the show. I grew up with the Eurovision Song Contest, it’s a bit of craic at the end of the day – vote for Jedward!”

“I’m working on Saturday night but my two boys Jordan and Cíarnan will be watching,” said Lagmore girl  Nicola O’Donnell.  “They just love Jedward and as they are representing us it should be a good competition. I usually do watch it as it’s a good laugh on the night.”

Further up the mall Gwen Hillis said: “I think the Eurovision has become very politicised now – especially in terms of the voting. It’s not about the music any more, there are so many stages, quarter and semi-finals.

“Now you have to get through before you even get to the final,” she added.

Marian Maguire, who was shopping with grandson Daíre, told us the song contest “wasn’t for her”.

“I’ll not be watching on Saturday night, it doesn’t interest me any more.  I used to watch it years ago but it’s not the same now.”

East Belfast man David Dickson agreed with Marian. “I’ll not be watching it either – it’s not for me. I’m more a fan of The Voice.”

Finally, Donna Hurley from Andersonstown said no too.

“No, I won’t be watching the show, it’s all too fixed now with all the neighbouring countries voting for each other. It’s not about the music any more – it’s not what it used to be years ago.”

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