The Eurovision Song Contest doesn’t get a lot of attention in the United States, but on the Continent it’s long been seen as the perfect Euro-metaphor.
Years before the euro came along, it was the prototype pan-European institution, and predicated on the same assumptions. Eurovision took the national cultures that produced Mozart, Vivaldi and Debussy, and in return gave us “Boom-Bang-A-Bang” (winner, 1969), “Ding-Ding-A-Dong” (winner, 1975) and “Diggi-Loo-Diggi-Ley” (winner, 1984).
The euro took the mark, the lira and the franc, and merged them to create the “Boom-Bang-A-Bang” of currencies.
How will it all end? One recalls the 1990 Eurovision finals in Zagreb: “Yugoslavia is very much like an orchestra,” cooed the hostess, Helga Vlahovi?. “The string section and the wood section all sit together.”
Shortly thereafter, the wood section began ethnically cleansing the dressing rooms, while the string section rampaged through the brass section pillaging their instruments and severing their genitals. Indeed, the charming Miss Vlahovic herself was forced into a sudden career shift and spent the next few years as Croatian TV’s head of “war information” programming. Continue reading