Nadine suffers ESC fiasco

Nadine Beiler finished last Saturday’s Eurovision Song Contest (ESC) in a disappointing 18th place.The 20-year-old pop singer competed with the ballad “The secret is love” in the event held in the German city of Dusseldorf. Beiler had to go through the semi final last Tuesday before performing as 18th of 25 contenders on Saturday. She bagged only 64 points, leaving her in an underwhelming 18th place.Ell and Nikki sealed the first Azerbaijani victory in the ESC’s history by garnering 221 points with their song “Running scared.” Italy’s Raphael Gualazzi (“Follia d’amore”; 189 points) finished in second place ahead of Eric Saade from Sweden (“Popular”, 185).German singer Lena Meyer-Landrut, who won last year’s event, reached 10th place this time around with her song “Taken by a stranger” (107 points). Austria’s tabloid press tagged the ESC 2011 as a face-off between Meyer-Landrut and Beiler in the run-up of the event.Beiler was regarded as Austria’s next big pop star when she won the third edition of the country’s casting show “Starmania” in 2007. After failing to enter the charts, she withdrew from the spotlight to focus on her education before launching a comeback earlier this year.The singer, from the western province of Vorarlberg, won an Austrian-wide casting for the country’s ESC 2011 candidate, last February. Radio listeners and TV viewers were asked to pick their favourites, but the opinions of a jury formed by music industry representatives and producers were also taken into account.Asked whether she was disappointed about her ranking, she said today (Mon): “We went to Dusseldorf to reach the final and we achieved that. Of course, I also said that I wanted to make the top 10. But I have to accept how it went – and getting (the highest possible) 12 points from Germany felt great because the country is Europe’s most important music market.”Austria won the ESC only once in its 56-year history. Crooner Udo Jürgens charmed the masses with his ballad “Merci Cherie” in 1966.National broadcaster ORF decided not to put forward an entrant last year, after a series of poor shows by singers and bands representing the country’s colours.The station’s programme director, Wolfgang Lorenz, hit out at organisers of the ESC in 2009 by claiming that the event had been “ruined” by introducing a new modus featuring semi finals. “Participation would cost us 400,000 Euros. I would prefer to use the money for other programmes,” he said at that time.A few months before his attack, ORF entertainment programmes chief Edgar Böhm argued the event had become uninteresting with Eastern European (EE) countries supporting each other massively. He said: “I don’t want to complain, but when we lose, it happens with a certain lack of transparency.”