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“The gala had an amateur halo on all sides”

On the night of Saturday, February 20, Televisión Española held a new installment of ‘Destination Eurovision’, after years of dispensing with this format as part of the Eurovision preselection. On this occasion, the gala was held in order to give the audience the opportunity to choose between the two candidate songs to be performed by Blas Cantó at the 2021 Eurovision Song Contest that will take place in May in the city of Rotterdam: « Memory « and » I’m going to stay.  » Although the musical event concluded with the victory of the second, to the joy of many Eurofans, the truth is that the gala left much to be desired and generated multiple complaints on social networks, as a result of its multiple failures, both technical and content level.

Tony Aguilar and Julia Varela announce the victory of « I’m going to stay » in ‘Destination Eurovision’

Even before its live broadcast, the Spanish Television format already aroused contrary opinions on social networks for the design of its logo, and even the stage was subject to criticism despite its resources and its large size, something that ended becoming a sad preview of what happened on Saturday night. Beyond the question that the vote was carried out to choose between only two songs, the beginning of the gala, with Blas Cantó interpreting both, was already the object of criticism among Eurovision fans. « Sing the two songs in the first fifteen minutes of the gala. And now that? Do we eat an hour and a half of filling?« protested a spectator, an opinion quite shared and to which bets were added that the gala was going to be very long due to the evident lack of emotion.

Far from maintaining a more or less linear, compact content, the gala presented a rundown in which performances were alternated with a brilliant Cantó and his multiple guests, sometimes performing some songs little related to the central theme of Eurovision, with moments in which that either the singer was the center of attention, or the European competition was. A medley that didn’t exactly help make the date more enjoyable for a large part of the audience. « There are no eggs to mix ‘Eurovision Objective’, the New Year’s Eve Gala, ‘Cachitos de Hierro y Cromo’ and ‘Chester’? RTVE: Sujétame el cubata », commented a follower of the program, before the mixture of approaches and content of the format.

The sound, failing once more

Another of the big mistakes that many of the spectators criticized were, once again, the continuous sound failures, even more so in the case of a program dedicated to music. Even Cantó himself was a victim of setbacks in this regard, since he had to make gestures to the technicians to hear better during some of his performances. In this way, despite the fact that there were many who praised Blas’s work, talent and effort, for a considerable part of the audience, the sum of the ingredients collected by ‘Eurovision Destination’ around the singer and the rest of the night’s guest artists, left much to be desired.

In fact, some Eurovision fans recalled that, that same night, other preselections were being held in countries such as Finland, Sweden, Portugal or Norway, appointments that further clouded the sloppiness that could be reflected in many aspects of the Spanish gala, regarding to the deployment that were carried out in other selection processes. « As long as TVE continues not taking Eurovision seriously, there is nothing to do, » bet one viewer, who even he compared the musical appointment to « a party night gala », something that was repeated among many of the followers, unhappy with a not very new format, contrary to what the public entity advanced. « That a chain that continues to live in 1996 is in charge of any musical space is a shame and a sound-visual attack, » said another viewer, and then bet that « any regional television can do something superior and better. »