19 March 2018

Funny Girl / Laura Rizzotto / Latvia | Review

Laura Rizzotto | Eurovision 2018 | Latvia
Laura Rizzotto: a tasty main in Lisbon?

If you remember, Latvia was very quick out of the starting gate when they joined the Eurovision clan – achieving a top three place on their debut and then celebrating victory merely two years later in 2002. However, their successful run took a dramatic dive after that, aside from a fifth place in 2005; their next top ten entry taking an entire decade, during which time they suffered six consecutive non-qualifications.

Flag Latvia
Their newly styled national final - Supernova was introduced in 2015 with a goal to discover Latvian entries with worldwide commercial prospects - quickly managed to bring the country in from the Eurovision wilderness with the unexpected success of Aminata, who achieved sixth place. However, the formula took a huge backward step in 2017 when Triana Park finished last in their semi-final. On the evidence of this year's winner however, the Latvian's may have redeemed themselves and raised their expectations with Laura Rizzotto's Funny Girl.

It is is a dramatic Bondesque self-penned electro-ballad, embellished with strings and featuring a powerful and capable vocal from Laura. In some ways, the striking lighting and camera work from the national final is a reminder of Aminata's potent staging, but without this in Lisbon, it's difficult to see how the song could make the same impact.

Perhaps it will be her vocals: her voice carries the composition well, although there is very little chorus or climax for her to wrap her larynx around. Nevertheless, she gives a compelling performance and, on a bigger stage in Portugal with the right camera angles, the whole package could make a lot of people sit up and take notice.

It might be a little too understated to bring Latvia back into the Top 10, although it is probably a borderline contender to give the country their third Grand Final appearance in four years. They are in a tough semi-final though, where they lack the presence of their Baltic allies, so it could be no laughing matter for Funny Girl.

Artist: Laura Rizzotto
Song: Funny Girl 
Semi-Final 2 | Second Half

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