Iceland has decided: it’s Jónsi and Gréta Salóme!
The highly-anticipated Final of Iceland’s National Selection, Söngvakeppni Sjónvarpsins (try saying that five times fast!), wrapped up this Saturday, with seven songs vying for the victory and the chance to represent the nation in Baku this May. Despite a number of strong performances, only one song could win…
After a 50/50 jury/televote split, Iceland has selected Gréta Salóme Stefánsdóttir and Jón Jósep Snæbjörnsson (better known to the ESC world as Jónsi) with the song “Mundu eftir mér (Remember Me)”.
Coming in the runner-up position was boy band Blár Ópal with “Stattu Upp“.
So it looks like Eurovision in Baku will have another familiar face, alongside Serbia’s Željko Joksimović. Like Željko, 34-year-old Jónsi is also an alum of the 2004 contest in Istanbul, where he sang “Heaven“, coming in 19th place that year. He returned to the Söngvakeppni Sjónvarpsins in 2007 with “Segðu mér“, but missed out on the ticket to Helsinki. Gréta Salóme, however, is a relative newcomer to the scene. The 24-year-old violinist composed two songs in this year’s Icelandic Final and was even originally planning on singing in both numbers. (She eventually pulled out of performing in “Aldrei sleppir mér“, focusing her energies on her duet with Jónsi.)
As for my opinion, I make it no secret that I’m a bit bummed out that Magni’s “Hugarró” didn’t make it through. But I do love the beautiful Nordic drama of “Mundu eftir mér”, and it easily climbs to the top of my 2012 rankings so far. Supposedly, an English version is in the works, which does break my heart a wee bit, but I should come to accept the fact that Iceland, much like Albania, is prone to switching languages. But, then again, I was sad to hear that “Aftur heim” last year was going to be translated, and I ended up loving “Coming Home“. We shall see what develops!