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Swedish Eurovision fever cools

Peter Vinthagen Simpson · 12 Mar 2010, 15:03

Published: 12 Mar 2010 10:59 GMT+01:00
Updated: 12 Mar 2010 15:03 GMT+01:00

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2010 marks nine years since the Swedish "Melodifestivalen" was remade in its current format - with regional heats across the country building up to the Stockholm final and Eurovision qualifier, which takes place on Saturday.

The televised event is a phenomenon without comparison in Sweden, with nigh on half the nation tuning in for the annual festival.

But media attention on the event has declined by 40 percent this year in comparison with 2008, according to figures from media analysis firm Infopaq cited by the newspaper.

"Melodifestivalen has been the biggest for many years and still is. But the figures show that the phenomenon is losing force," Andreas Leifsson at Infopaq told the newspaper.

Infopaq has counted the number of articles in the Swedish media between February 1st to March 8th and compared them to the corresponding period of 2008.

Viewing figures have also declined by 10 percent over the the six week period of the regional heats, including last weekend's "second chance" semi-final. The spectacle attracted a combined total of 13.9 million viewers in comparison to 15.3 million in 2009, according to Sveriges Television (SVT) figures.

But Thomas Hall, who is responsible for the competition at SVT, explained the drop on this year's Olympic Games in Vancouver.

Story continues below…

Despite the apparent decline in interest, Melodifestivalen is set to be topped only by the summer royal wedding of Crown Princess Victoria and the Christmas Donald Duck special, as millions are set to tune in for Saturday's final in Stockholm's Globe Arena to select Sweden's Eurovision representative.

Sweden's choice for the Eurovision Song Contest, to be held this year in Oslo, has been narrowed down to eight acts - follow the link below to see what all the fuss is about.

Related links:

Peter Vinthagen Simpson (news@thelocal.se)

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Your comments about this article

12:18 March 12, 2010 by just a question
Wake up Swedes!

Stop being hypnotized!
12:26 March 12, 2010 by Hamish
Maybe it is because it suck´s?
12:40 March 12, 2010 by livinginsweden
who cares how many words or articles are written?

ha ha
13:08 March 12, 2010 by mnvikesfan
The songs are just plain bad and the same artist and writers are always in the top,just gets boring!
13:30 March 12, 2010 by xavidx
Yep it sux
14:03 March 12, 2010 by Tammybonny
14:05 March 12, 2010 by blåbär
13.9 million viewers? In a country with a population of 9 million? Nice reporting there. @@
14:22 March 12, 2010 by peropaco
Yeah, nice reporting. I guess people over at SVT skipped math all the way.
14:46 March 12, 2010 by bravedave
I could be wrong but the figures are calculated over the 6 week period with 'loca heats'. This means that at any one week the program had something like 2.5 million watching.

I am glad that the numbers are droping, they drag it out too much with 'second chance' and the 6 shows before, then they have 2 rehershals for the final and then the final. And THEN the real final. Such a waste of time and people are begining to see this.
15:02 March 12, 2010 by blåbär
bravedave, if that is true, then thank you for being a clearer writer than the original. Now I see how it can be read in both ways.
15:23 March 12, 2010 by peropaco
The numbers are dropping because people are becoming much more social. They are starting to go out more or have friends over for good mind staggering chats. "I HATE EUROVISION"
15:50 March 12, 2010 by Kooritze
I am amazed it has lasted so long............but putting cynical comments on eurovision aside. The age of innocence has lasted a lot longer here in the Swedish bubble and for all the frustration that foreigners like myself feel living here.........sure enough it is this innocence or sense of safety that keeps a lot of us here. In my country (UK) we are slowly loosing the plot on life, innocent fun and are on edge most of the time.......and cynical views emerge at an ever increasingly younger age.

I dont like eurovision, but did in the 70,s..........here people take joy in simpler things........eurovision, Bugg, Dansband, Midsommar parties......dont knock it.....we were also once this way. It,s a pity that a changing uncertain world will eventually overwhelm Sweden too.
15:53 March 12, 2010 by Luke35711
maybe people discovered that pop culture is just one little commercialised area of the global cultural heritage?

but I fear it's just facebook, online dating and posting comments on the The Local ;o))
17:57 March 12, 2010 by calebian22
I love the Melodifestival! What else is there to do in Småland in the winter?
22:59 March 14, 2010 by Shane_Heneghan
kooritze you said "sure enough it is this innocence or sense of safety that keeps a lot of us here. In my country (UK) we are slowly loosing the plot on life, innocent fun and are on edge most of the time.......and cynical views emerge at an ever increasingly younger age."

your country has its own nausiating innocent obsession with x factor.

At least at MF they sing original songs.
00:43 March 15, 2010 by Guru_g
So many negative stories on this website about Melodifestivalen. So many negative comments.

Melodifestivalen is a wonderful Swedish tradition. It's embraced in a uniquely Swedish way. It is part of their culture that should be cherised, not ripped to shreds by thelocal.se.

I hated the winner this year but love the whole contest. About 10 of us got together yesterday afternoon at a pub in Sydney, put up some Swedish flags and watched the final on their big screen television.

A wonderful experience.
16:12 March 19, 2010 by Taniia

I would have loved to have joined you. Melodifestivalen is iconic Swedish culture, love it or hate it. I have tried to watch it on-line since we moved back to Australia, but the quality is really not good enough to be worth it. Perhaps we can do something similar in Brisbane.
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