Sunday, 19 September 2010

Germany 1996

For the first time since 1992, a national final was held in Germany to select their entry for the Eurovision Song Contest.

The German national final for the 1996 Eurovision, organised by ARD, was held on March 1 at the Friedrich-Ebert-Halle in Hamburg, presented by Jens Riewa. 10 songs competed, and a public televote was held to select the winner: this was Leon with Planet of Blue, which received 37.9% of the vote.

Only the top three songs were announced during the show, however the placings of all the songs are known.


01. Planet of Blue - Leon, 37.9%
02. Jeanny wach auf - Andre Stade, 16.4%
03. Echos - Angela Wiedl & Dalila Cernatescu, 11.9%
04. Für dich mein kind - Anett Kölpin
05. Der liebe Gott ist ganz begeistert - Ibo
06. Surfen-multimedia - Euro-Cats
07. Ohne dich - Rendezvous
08. Immer nur du - Nina Falk
09. Ja das kann nur Liebe sein - Jacques van Eijck
10. Wo bist du - Enzo

The 1996 Contest implemented an audio-only pre-qualification round for all competing country (except for host country Norway). 22 songs, from the 29 competing, could join Norway in the live final on 16 May. Germany failed to progress from the pre-qualification round, leading to the first time that Germany failed to participate at Eurovision.

Leon (born Jürgen Göbel, 4 April 1969, Lippetal, North Rhine-Westphalia) is a German singer, best known for his participation in the 1996 Eurovision Song Contest, when he was controversially eliminated at the pre-selection stage.

Leon had taken part in the 1996 German Eurovision selection with the song Planet of Blue, which had gained a comprehensive victory in a public televote. It was a very contemporary, techno-influenced song which had been expected to do well in the contest. The 1996 Eurovision Song Contest was to take place in Oslo on 18 May. Hosts Norway were given an automatic place in the contest, but as 29 other countries were chasing the 22 remaining places, it was decided to hold an audio-only pre-qualifier on 20 March where a jury from each country would listen to all the songs and vote in the normal ESC manner, with the bottom seven songs being eliminated. To universal surprise, Planet of Blue finished 24th in the voting, and failed to qualify for the contest.

Undeterred by disappointment, Leon returned to the German Eurovision selection in 1997 with Schein (meine kleine Taschenlampe), which finished second. He remains active and continues to release new material.

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