Norway: Melodi Grand Prix 2022 final preview and Aussievision team ranking
This weekend is the Grand Final of Norway's Melodi Grand Prix (MGP), where the nation will decide its representative for the Eurovision Song Contest 2022.
Over the past five weeks, four semi-finals and a two-part second chance round have seen the five winners join five pre-qualified songs to make ten acts who are battling it out for the ticket to Turin.
The voting results for MGP will be 100% determined by the Norwegian public.
Ahead of the event the Aussievision team ranked the 10 entries to decide our winner. The results are below:
The songs competing - ranked by the Aussievision team
Here are the artists and songs competing in the Grand Final, with the rankings from 18 members of the Aussievision team -
10. Anna-Lisa Kumoji - 'Queen Bees' (44 points)
High: 5 points from Josh
Low: 1 point from Mark, Hugo, Kyriakos, Dale and Mike
Anna-Lisa, 32, is of Ghanian/Norwegian heritage and is a musical theatre veteran having starred in 'The Book of Mormon', 'Flashdance' and 'West Side Story'. She got her breakthrough as a recording artist in MGP in 2019, finishing fourth in the final with her song 'Holla'. She was also a finalist that year in the tv show 'All Together Now'. Apart from her singing and theatre work, she is also a voice-over artist and lists Tina Turner and Bruno Mars as two of her biggest inspirations. Her song 'Queen Bees' was pre-qualfied for the final and she performed the song live during the 'Second Chance' final last weekend.
9. Christian Ingebrigtsen - 'Wonder of the World' (52 points)
High: 7 points from Josh and Estelle
Low: 1 point from Wade, Cooper, Craig, Tim, Steven, Laura and Guy
Christian Ingebrigtsen is a popular artist with a long spanning career both as a soloist and as a member of pop group A1. With A1, Ingebrigtsen achieved ten top 10 singles in the UK and sold over 10 million albums. The singer-songwriter has extensive experience writing National Final songs for both Norway and Finland with four of his tracks for other artists reaching the top two, including the fan favourite winner of MGP 2020 ‘Attention’ performed by Ulrikke. His Grand Final song 'Wonder of the World' was pre-qualified for the final and performed live during semi-final 2.
8. Frode Vassel - 'Black Flowers' (89 points)
High: 12 points from Estelle and Tim. 8 points from Steven
Low: 1 point from Josh and Emma
Fresh off the stage of 'The Voice - Norway 2021', Frode Vassel is stepping into the spotlight after being the backing singer for many of Norway's most recent Eurovision entries. Frode was on the Eurovision stage as a backing vocalist for JOWST in 2017, Alexander Rybak in 2018 and KEiiNO in 2019. His MGP entry, 'Black Flowers' is all about climate change and made it to the Grand Final after winning semi-final 1.
Comments from the team
"Black Flowers has it all, staging, vocals, stage presence, oomph. I was pumped listening to this and I’d love to see it on the Eurovision stage." ~ Estelle
"From the first listen, I’ve really enjoyed this song. It just has such a wonderful tone. The heavy bass is really prominent and it certainly adds to the song. Frode’s vocals are fantastic throughout it and has great charisma on stage. I know that there will probably be other songs that stand out but I think it’s got a chance." ~ Tim
7. Farida - 'Dangerous' (97 points)
High: 8 points from Mark, Cooper and Kyriakos
Low: 1 point from Liv
Farida began her career in 2016 and received positive attention from Billboard and MTV about her singles ‘Three Weeks’ and ‘Solo Ride’. She has experience playing many festivals across Norway, South by Southwest in the US and even touring with artist Dua Lipa. She received high praise for her 2020 single ‘Do About It’ from Norwegian radio station NRK and became a finalist in 'The John Lennon Songwriting Contest' in New York with the same song. 'Dangerous' earnt its place in the MGP Grand Final after winning semi-final 2.
6. NorthKid - 'Someone' (98 points)
Highs: 12 points from Wade, 10 points from Hayley
Low: 2 points from Kyriakos and Laura
Northern Norwegian boyband NorthKid were pre-qualified for the final and performed live in semi-final 3. The group's frontman Bilal Saab won the hearts of the nation when he won the singing show Stjernekamp (Battle of the Stars) back in 2019. Alongside Bilal is Helge Moen, Håkon Guttormsen, Sebastian Willassen and Vegard Olaussen. The group hopes their entry 'Someone' conveys the value of joy and acceptance during their time at Melodi Grand Prix.
Comments from the team
"NorthKid is Norway's answer to DMA's and they deliver the sleeper hit of the national finals season. It's a simple, but very pleasant song with a hugely universal concept. The production on this track is great, I also think it's the best live package of MGP, and the last 15 seconds cap off the performance memorably." ~ Wade
5. Maria Mohn - 'Fly' (100 points)
Highs: 10 points fom Liv and Fleur, 8 points from Emma, Hayley and Laura
Low: 1 point from Estelle
Maria Mohn is a 38-year-old artist, songwriter, entertainer, and vocal coach and a graduate of the Norwegian Academy of Music. She has sung in the prestigious award nominated vocal group PUST, the Norwegian Soloist Choir and been featured on Norwegian Idol. In 2020, she participated in MGP with the duet 'Fool for Love' together with Kim Wigaard, whom also competed at MGP this year. Maria has written this year's contribution, 'Fly', for her three children.
'Fly' became the last song to qualify for the Grand Final of MGP after Maria won the 'Second Chance' final last weekend. The song was originally defeated in the Gold Duel of semi-final 4 by Sofie Fjellvang's 'Made of Glass'.
4. Sofie Fjellvang - 'Made of Glass' (120 points)
Highs: 10 points from Mark, Estelle, Steven and Guy. 8 points from Josh, Hugo, Craig, Dale and Mike
Low: 1 point from Fleur
Sofie Fjellvang is a 21-year-old singer and songwriter and her big breakthrough came when she reached the final of The Voice in 2021. Fjellvang is currently working on her debut EP, collaborating with Kjetil Mørland who achieved 8th place with Debrah Scarlett for Norway at Eurovision in 2015 singing 'A Monster Like Me'. Kjetil and Sofie have written the song ‘Made Of Glass’ together and hope that it can reach the same level of success. Sofie earnt her ticket to the Grand Final of MGP after winning semi-final 4.
Comments from the team
"Really a lovely lovely song. Formulaic Scandi ballad in its production and structure, but my god Sofie brings it to life on stage with that vocal power! Not a song that would stand out at Eurovision, but a great national final song, definitely wouldn't surprise me if this made it deep at MGP." ~ Hugo
3. Oda Gondrosen - 'Hammer of Thor' (129 points)
Highs: 12 points from Mark, 10 points from Kyriakos, Craig, Dale, Tim, Laura and Mike, 8 points from Liv, Guy and Fleur
Low: 2 points from Josh and Estelle
Oda participated in both 'Idol' in 2014 and 'The Voice of Norway' in 2015 before deciding to put her music career on hold to become a nurse. In 2020, she returned to the 'Idol' stage, finishing in third place. Performing at Melodi Grand Prix is a dream for Oda and she will be competing with the song 'Hammer of Thor' which was co-written by fellow competitor Elsie Bay. Oda won semi-final 3, securing her place in the MGP Grand Final.
Comments from the team
"Honestly, I have issues with this. I think it’s missing something in the verses’ orchestration, the rhythm changes bizarrely throughout the song and there’s a juvenile quality to the lyrics. But… I think it’s the most impactful package. I love the sea shanty vibe, she’s got enough confidence to sink a pirate ship and all the pieces come together in the final minute. If successful, I think some neat tweaks between now and Turin could actually make this televote catnip." ~ Mark
"'Hammer of Thor' is delightfully camp and Oda Gondrosen is capable of landing some very tricky vocal runs - there is something to appeal to both juries and televoters here. Oda's charisma and stage presence really help to sell this song. I love it!" ~ Laura
2. Elsie Bay - 'Death Of Us' (136 points)
Highs: 12 points from Josh, Hugo, Hayley and Mike, 10 points from Cooper and Emma
Low: 2 points from Liv and Mark
Elsie entered the music scene at the age of 17 and has since had an incredible career full of accolades and an amazing discography. She wrote one of last year's MGP entries, 'Witch Woods' which made it to the Grand Final. 'Death Of Us' isn’t her only appearance in the 2022 final: she also co-wrote Oda Gondrosen's 'Hammer Of Thor'! Elsie was pre-qualified for the final and performed her song live during semi-final 1. She has the honour of closing out the MGP Grand Final for 2022.
Comments from the team
"A perfectly composed pop song that tells a story and has epic melodic up and downs. This is a potential Eurovision winner in my world. However, the live performance lacked energy, charisma and any semblance of an attempt at staging. If Elsie wants to win, which I believe she is more than deserving of, she better have revamped that staging. Otherwise, she unfortunately will be the death of her own chance at the Eurovision stage." ~ Josh
"OMG amazing! Exactly my type of music and done so well. This is paired back, haunting, beautiful and really high impact. I love Elsie's ethereal voice, and the production is just there to not overshadow the vocals but keep things moving at the right pace. Shades of Lana Del Rey, Billie Eilish and Victoria (Bulgaria 2021), and taking the best parts of each. Semi Final performance felt a little bit clinical, but they'll learn from it for the big dance and it will become a truly magic and atmospheric moment on stage. My winner for sure!" ~ Hugo
"This is a clear winner for me from the first listen (and yes I realise I am probably going completely against the grain of the rest of the team here!) It really reminds me of Lana Del Rey's 'Young and Beautiful'. Elsie sings with a soft tone of voice much like Victoria (Bulgaria 2020/21). If she can perform with some dreamy soft staging, she could really do well here!" ~ Hayley
"This just screams Norwegian ballad to me. It’s well written, we’ll performed and we’ll packaged. The composition is something that would appeal to jurors and although Elsie’s vocal tone may not be for everybody, she can sing the song very well. It doesn’t blow me away, but I see a solid Eurovision entry here." ~ Mike
1. Subwoolfer - 'Give That Wolf A Banana' (179 points)
Highs: 12 points from Liv, Cooper, Emma, Kyriakos, Craig, Dale, Steven, Laura, Guy and Fleur.
Low: 1 point from Hayley
Pre-qualified for the final, brothers Keith and Jim (better known as Subwoolfer) have had the Eurovision world talking since 'Give That Wolf A Banana' was released in mid January. The official YouTube video has already had over 300,000 views in just a few weeks and the pair have even released a romantic version of the song! The duo performed the song live in semi-final 4, just after recovering from COVID which pushed their performance back by a week.
Bookmakers have given them a 52% chance of winning MGP with odds as low as 1.2/1 and they are the overwhelming favourite of the Aussievision team with 10 members of our team giving them the maximum 12 points.
Many eagle-eyed fans speculate that this duo are actually comedy and one-time pop duo Ylvis, in disguise. The group had a bizarre and surprising global hit with ‘The Fox (What Does The Fox Say?)’ in 2013. The two acts share a little too many co-incidences, from their knack for writing about animals, being brothers and even sharing the same record label. Let’s see if their identities are revealed should they win MGP or will they keep up the mystery until after Eurovision?!
Comments from the team
"Certainly a big televote entry and I'm sure the juries will have a field day with. There is a full package here - catchy song, dance and memorable visuals. Please choose this Norway, we always need some fun entries at Eurovision and this is undoubtedly going to put a smile on faces (if it's your cup of tea)." ~ Liv
"Subwoolfer supremacy! This is the epitome of a fun dance song that doesn't take itself too seriously. There has been a lot of discussions on social media about this being a complete joke entry and will ruin the reputation that Eurovision has been building, but that is honestly not the case. 'Give That Wolf a Banana' is a fantastically produced entry, the lyrics are light hearted and fun but the melody is awesome. I won't stand for Subwoolfer slander and cannot wait to see this in Turin." ~ Cooper
"Subwoolfer stands out a mile from the other Norwegian entries this year. It builds well, has a current EDM sound and fantastic choreography that is harder than it looks! Throw in the mystery behind Jim & Keith's identity and questions over whether the song is actually a call to get vaccinated against COVID and you have all the elements of a song that could do really well at Eurovision (perhaps more so with televoters than juries). The stage concept in their live semi final performance seemed really well developed and wouldn't need too much tweaking. I really hope Norway decides to send Subwoolfer to Turin!" ~ Emma
"This is one of the best songs of the national final season by far!! What a great fun entry. THIS NEEDS TO GO TO EUROVISION!!! Love it!!" ~ Kyriakos
"'Give That Wolf A Banana' may have slightly silly lyrics (and, if you take the COVID references seriously, a very tortured lyrical metaphor), but this honestly doesn't matter. It's well-produced, enthusiastically performed on-stage and is very, very catchy. I fully expect it to storm the televote both in Norway and then in Turin in May. And goddammit, I want to know who is under those masks!" ~ Craig
"Yes there is a massive novelty aspect to the song with the character, the suits, the staging but it's also just a damn catchy song with some pretty funny lyrics. Not everything has to be super serious and I think this captures the fun that we are all ready to have again." ~ Dale
"I think this is the first time ever that I’ve given douze points to a gimmicky, “novelty” song featuring masked performers and bonkers lyrics, and that’s because this is a rare example of the genre actually being done well. The vocals are good, the lyrics (kinda) amusing, and the dance routine not (too) cringey. It’s a slick, Eurovision-ready package. Send this, Norway!" ~ Steven
"This song is so fun and silly! It has certainly received a lot of attention from Eurovision fans and deservedly so - it's eye-catching and stands out in a female-ballad-heavy lineup in this year's MGP final. 'Give That Wolf A Banana' has solid production behind it, the staging is excellent (love those yellow wolf costumes!), plus it's so memorable and catchy! Love it or hate it, it is the full package and you will be talking about it!" ~ Laura
"Everything about this has been done so well. The characters they have created, the choreography, they can perform it well live, and the lyrics are superb in their pure randomness and nonsense. Of all the novelty acts so far this season, this is the one I truly hope makes it through to Turin." ~ Guy
"This was my winner when I first heard it. Novelty done slick. I have suspicions on who are behind Keith and Jim - I am a huge fan. Could it win Eurovision? It would go close. Yes, the lyrics are silly but that's the fun of it and my golly is it an earworm. Start learning those dance moves kids." ~ Fleur
The Running Order
The running order for the Final is as follows:
Oda Gondrosen - 'Hammer Of Thor'
NorthKid - 'Someone'
Anna-Lisa Kumoji - 'Queen Bees'
Farida - 'Dangerous'
Sofie Fjellvang - 'Made Of Glass'
Frode - 'Black Flowers'
Christian Ingebrigtsen - 'Wonder Of The World'
Maria Mohn - 'Fly'
Subwoolfer - 'Give That Wolf A Banana'
Elsie Bay - 'Death Of Us'
Hosts, Venue, Crowd and Voting
The final of Melodi Grand Prix will be hosted by actor Mikkel Niva, television presenter Kåre Magnus Bergh and actress Annika Momrak who also hosted the Semi Finals and Second Chance final.
The production will be held in the H3 Arena located in the Fornebu region of Oslo, the Norwegian capital. The Semi Finals and the wild card round took place without an audience due to COVID-19 restrictions, however the final will be attended by an audience of 500 spectators.
Once all 10 songs have been performed, the Norwegian public will vote for their favourite four songs. Another public vote will narrow these down to a final two. One more public vote will then decide on the winning song which will become Norway's entry in to the 66th Eurovision Song Contest in Turin.
How To Watch
The Final of Melodi Grand Prix 2022 will take place on the morning of Sunday February 20 (Australian time) and can be watched via the NRK website. The show will begin at:
7:55pm, Sat Feb 19, Central European Time
4:55am AEST (QLD)
5:55am AEDT (ACT, NSW, TAS, VIC)
To keep updated and get all the latest Melodi Grand Prix news; find us @aussievisionnet!