Fair enough, the Netherlands have had a rough ride. But it's still the Dutch. San Marino provide the greater shock. Despite being an old country, they have a population of a mere 32,000 (according to sources) and have only been competing in Eurovision since 2008. Admittedly this is the same amount of time as Azerbaijan (winners, and last year's hosts), but they are a bigger, richer country. This is San Marino! The country which gave us the Social Network Song. Yes, remember that? Well the
The Social Network Song was wrong for all the right reasons. 'Crisalide (vola)' is right for all the right reasons. And guess who wrote Crisalide? Ralph Siegel. For those of you who don't know who Ralph Siegel is, just type his name into google. He is one of the biggest stars of Eurovision, composing songs since the 70's (that is 5 decades now!) but only has 1 win under his name - 1982 winner Nicole and 'Ein Bisschen Frieden', notably one of the greatest songs & winners in Eurovision history. Yes he did happen to pen the Social Network Song last year - and yes that did follow in a line of poor attempts - but he is back to strike again with Crisalide. Valentina is now acting her age, Siegel has screwed his head back on, and San Marino are ready to finally come to Eurovision with a decent song - and that has meant a decent chance.
It's hard to predict if they could win. If you listen to the song, you'll see why people like it and fans are voting for it in online polls. Without knowing the meaning in the lyrics, they are moving and emotive, and the composition really pulls this through. From a slow ballad to a modern beat/melody, a song like this has potential to branch into acapella/acoustic and become a club smash hit. The key word there is 'potential'. Crisalide is a song to be remembered - even if it underperforms, fans will remember it as an upset. But that's not why this will be remembered. It's Valentina Monetta transforming from a Social Network disaster to a Crisalide masterpiece. It's Ralph Siegel restoring his old Eurovision power. It's San Marino putting themselves on the map.
By the way, San Marino is situated in the North of Italy.