Brian Singleton


July 1, 2010
The success of the German entry to the 2010 Eurovision Song Contest in Oslo was matched by stunning sales and chart positions in many countries throughout Europe. Having more Google hits than any of the contestants before the contest itself was a sure sign that the appeal of a German contest song was to a much broader European youth culture than a national boundary could contain. The song was produced by Stefan Raab, himself a former contest entrant as a writer, and now the producer of the German national contest. In a wrap-up event two days after Lena triumphed in Oslo, she guested on Raab’s night-time talk show which was frequently interrupted by the host (Raab) and guest (Lena) breaking into a football chant of ’Deutsch-e-land’ to celebrate only the second win for Germany in the 55 year history of the contest, a Cold War-era televisual phenomenon purporting to be apolitical and aiming for the promotion of a collective European identity. Also, in a succession of post-contest interviews it was strongly suggested by Raab that Lena should defend (verteidigen) her title, and thereby undeniably linking a song contest to a sporting contest, and in particular to the imminent World Cup soccer tournament in South Africa. In terms of the impact of popular culture, the World cup soccer tournament and the Eurovision Song Contest are the two biggest televisions shows in the world, both televisual spectacle for competitive and competing nationalisms. read more