Eurovision Song Contest 2014 – 10

Karin Ott

To understand the venue for the European Song Contest, you have to bear in mind that a year ago B&W Hallen was just a gigantic empty shell, tall enough to cover The Round Tower, one of our famous Copenhagen land marks.

I’m obviously impressed with the stage itself but I’m also utterly fascinated with what they’ve done with the space, mostly using lighting. Above is one example and below are a few more, all from the foyer. The last one was taken before the stalls and rainbow lamps were in place showing the under belly of the seating.

Karin Ott

Karin Ott

Karin Ott

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Eurovision Song Contest 2014 – 5

Karin Ott

My reason for going to the venue today was to capture an image of this young man, Basim. He is representing Denmark with a very catchy pop song that most of us can sing along to by now. I have no doubt the people in charge of the National Danish Radio hopes he doesn’t win. It is horribly expensive to host the international event – a task that falls to the winning nation.

The press was not allowed inside the hall today but I have a few images from the other days I want to share. I found myself immensely fascinated with all the heavy equipment around the stage. This is what it looks like in front rather than on the stage during rehearsals.

Karin Ott

And if you look at the stage but not at the singers, you might see this sight…

Karin Ott

Eurovision Song Contest 2014 – 4

Karin Ott

My posts are longer than my usual ‘one photo a day’ during the Eurovision Song Contest as I am in this unique position. I hope you’ll either bear with me or enjoy it 🙂

The EU Song Contest is not meant to be taken too serious. It’s grand show with glittering dresses, eomotional ballads, colourful pop songs – all perfect for bringing out your inner diva. Humour – voluntary or not – is large part of the tradition too as well as plenty of space for people who are a little out of the ordinary.

Above is the Polish entry. Yes, that is an overblown cleavage in the background. You should see what the young women are doing to the laundry and the butter churner. I must say they are very thorough.

Karin Ott

Karin Ott

The Austrian entry calls for different emotions. But there’s a bit more to it than just a diva dress. Conchita Wurst wears the dress with long hair as well as a well trimmed beard.

Karin Ott

Not your average song contest…

A little tech stuff at the end. I always like to read the ‘what’s in the bag’ section on photographers websites. So what’s in mine for this event?

Karin Ott

Wel, certainly not this lens! I have very little to work with. This is part convenience and part economy. Okay, muscle strength as well…

I’m a ‘one camera, one lens’ kind of gal. I have a Nikon D5100 (a midrange DX) and I take most of these images with a 50 mm 1.8 prime lens. That’s it. I do plan to experiment with my 55-200 mm next time but the prime is a better lens and the zoom needs more light – not readily available. I combine my preferred lens with 2500 ISO and a single focus point.

Eurovision Song Contest 2014 – 3

Karin Ott

Today was the first day the press was allowed inside the venue hall during the rehearsals. The stage as well as the 10,000 seats have been built especially for this year’s Eurovision Song Contest.

The site once housed a shipyard and the hall is gigantic but it doesn’t feel huge. It feels magical. I have never seen a space this amazing with so many dimensions to light and colour. I tried my best and I’ll keep trying but it’s impossible to capture.

First image is the Armenian contestant, Aram MP3 (not kidding).

Karin Ott

Also from the Armenian rehearsal, discussing some of the details.

Karin Ott

Latvia, Aarzemnieki, rehearsing.

Eurovision Song Contest 2014 – 2

Karin Ott

I feel very privileged in having press accreditation to the Eurovision Song Contest. The only taker for my photos (and words for a change) is a small, monthly local paper. So I can do what I want – no agenda. Which brings me back to why I applied in the first case. I love stories!

10,000 people with accreditation. 1,600 press people from 80 countries. 90,000 people attending 9 shows, 180 mill. watching on television… Every single part of me was itching to get to experience, and document, this huge event from the inside. To go where I would not normally be able to go and take pictures. My idea is to show what goes on behind the actual show though of course it is impossible for me to resist great lines and colour. Todays image fulfill both these desires. The pavilion is part of the press area and the large building looming in the background contains the stage. Tomorrow I get to go in.