Eurovision Fan Spotlight: Philippines
After an overwhelming response we received from our article on the ‘Philippines' relationship with the Eurovision Song Contest’ for Philippines Independence Day on June 12, we thought we would get a deeper insight into the Filipino Eurovision fandom.
The Eurofandom from the Philippines is growing with popularity. 600+ members already make up The Philippine Eurovision Group on Facebook alone, along with many more groups around like EscPhilippines on Facebook, @theescphteam and @escphilippines on Twitter. We interviewed a handful of members from these groups for this article.
In this article we take a look into the Filipino Eurovision fandom through the eyes of the 10 Filipino Eurofans we interviewed, Cage, Elvis, Grazel, Ian, Jerome, Joseph, Katcy, Mike, Sofio, and Yue, who all share their insights and experiences with the Eurovision Song Contest, and which Filipino music stars they would love to see take the Eurovision stage one day.
Watching the Eurovision Song Contest
Filipino Eurofans have to wake up even earlier than their Australian counterparts so they can watch and experience the exciting Eurovision rollercoaster through sleep deprivation.
Many Filipino Eurofans watch the Contest live through the YouTube stream. Many told us they wake up as early as one o’clock in the early hours of the morning to get mentally prepared to watch the Contest which starts around 3am. So I guess us Aussies shouldn’t really complain watching it at 5am.
More recently many Filipino fans have organised viewing parties in order to share the excitement and experience with other fellow fans. (As pictured above at the start of the article, thank you to Ian for supplying the photo).
For those who can not watch the Contest live, just like some fans here in Australia they watch it on replay and avoid social media and the news to not have the results spoiled for them.
Perception of Eurovision in the Philippines
Overall most of the respondents stated that Eurovision is relatively under the radar in the Philippines, with the only way to increase visibility is to see more Filipino representation at Eurovision.
There is a lot of hope that the inclusion of Vincent Bueno representing Austria at Eurovision next year would give the Contest some well needed broader exposure.
There has been some exposure and hype around the Contest due to the Eurovision movie on Netflix, but here’s hoping Eurovision becomes as big if not bigger than the beauty pageants in the Philippines.
Suggestions to rule changes at Eurovision
When it comes to the interesting topic on which Eurovision rules should be changed, the responses were rather diverse. Each respondent was asked what one thing they could change at Eurovision.
The main suggestion was by two of the respondents, who would like to see a stop to political and bloc voting.
Some other suggestions include many common opinions shared by the rest of the fandom, from extending the song length from three minutes to three and a half minutes; which could benefit countries like Italy, to having more than six people on the Eurovision stage, seeing the return of the live orchestra and dropping the televoting sequence from 2019 so it isn’t as cruel to the artists.
Two respondents had some rather interesting opinions like to make it fairer for micro nations to qualify to the Grand Final and another more controversially, for that spot Australia has at Eurovision be reserved for the winner of a future ‘Eurovision Asia’ similar to a World Cup football qualification. Both very interesting concepts.
Filipino artists that we need to see on the Eurovision stage one day
Overall many of the respondents were excited by the prospect of the Philippines competing in ‘Eurovision Asia’ in the future.
They also would love to see Filipino artists perform on the Eurovision stage, preferably with songs sung in the Filipino language.
The respondents suggested an amazing array of artists from OPM (Original Pinoy Music) and the indie genre to one day grace the stage at Eurovision.
The most popular suggested artist was Sarah Geronimo suggested by half of the respondents with a desired song for Eurovision on par with the epic ‘Tala’!
Other suggested Filipino artists include:
Bella Santiago who is a Filipino-Romanian singer from Romania’s National Final 2018 and 2019. Last year she came third with ‘Army of Love’.
Ben&Ben, who are a indie folk, pop folk band, they have many hits under their belt including the popular ‘Kathang Isip’. This year they landed on the Billboard’s Top 50 Social chart.
IV OF SPADES who are a funk rock band from Metro Manila who are inspired by 70’s fashion. Suggested notable songs include ‘In My Prison’, 'Take That Man’ and ‘Come Inside of My Heart’. One respondent, Grazel mentioned she is a fellow Spader, what they call their fans.
No Rome who is a London based Filipino musician. They collaborated with the band The 1975 in 2018 with the track ‘Narcissist’. Their single ‘Talk Nice’ was noted as great example of their work to see at Eurovision.
beabadoobee who is a Filipino born British singer-songwriter who is well known for her song ‘Coffee’. Her track was sampled by Canadian rappers Powfu in ‘death bed (coffee for your head)’ which has become a huge hit, and reached No.5 on the Australian ARIA singles chart.
Morissette Amon known as Morissette who is a Filipina singer songwriter and television star. She is known for her pop, R&B, OPM style music. ‘Akin Ka Na Lang’ was recommended as a stand out release.
One Click Straight who are an alternative rock band consisting of three brothers and a close friend, their touching song ‘Paraiso’ was suggested as a stand out track.
These artists above were suggested only by a handful of Filipino Eurofans. There are many more great artists from the Philippines who could easily make a huge impact at Eurovision.
Filipino Eurovision fan groups
There are many Filipino Eurovision fan groups who are very welcoming where you are free to join, they include:
Eurovision PH Jury and Podcast Team on Twitter @theescphteam - who have been ranking Eurovision Contests featured in Eurovision Again and Junior Eurovision Contests
Eurovision with a Pinoy perspective on Twitter @escphilippines
We want to thank all the respondents who helped us out in this article. Please check out all the individual interviews here, and get to know these very dedicated and amazing fans of the Filipino fandom.