Edition 1445
14 October 2017
Edition: 1445

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Eurovision winner Salvador Sobral takes world by storm - and brings Contest to Portugal in the process

by Carrie-Marie Bratley, in News · 18-05-2017 14:53:00 · 0 Comments

It seems planet earth has become quite taken with Portugal’s non-assuming winner of the Eurovision Song Contest 2017, Salvador Sobral, who is undoubtedly on the fast-track to becoming not only a superstar, but indeed something of a global phenomenon.

Eurovision winner Salvador Sobral takes world by storm - and brings Contest to Portugal in the process

Within 48 hours of his win at Eurovision 2017 – a first for Portugal – he, and the simple song composed by his sister Luísa, had grabbed headlines around the world.
Here in Portugal, the 27-year-old, who appeared completely unruffled throughout the entire event, has been singlehandedly held responsible for making Eurovision ‘cool’ again and restoring Portugal’s musical credibility at the event.
Reports ran from Hawaii – whose Hawaii News Now proclaimed “Portugal’s Sobral wins Eurovision contest with tender ballad” – to Australia, Japan and the USA.
According to media intelligence consultancy firm, Cision, in just three days, Salvador had been the subject of 1,641 online news reports around the world, not counting articles published here in his homeland.
Beyond Portugal, Germany and Spain were the countries that made the biggest fuss of the Portuguese Eurovision representative, publishing hundreds of reports each.
Sweden was the third country where the Portuguese contestant garnered most mentions, but his win was also ‘trending’ in many othere countries.
According to Cision’s research, the Americans mostly highlighted Salvador’s “pitch perfect tuning” and the simplicity of Portugal’s performance, in a contest that is “better known for the extravagant costumes than for the vocal skills” of the
contestants.
Reports in Australia, Eurovision’s regular ‘guest country’, leading up to the big event had also pinned Salvador Sobral as one of the main candidates to win in Saturday’s final.
As much of the world’s media fawned over the simplicity ofPortugal’s bid for gold, as well as the gentleness and vocal talents of its deliverer, others opted to explore other aspects about the singer, such as his reported heart health problems, and his veiled messages at press conferences, such as when he appeared wearing an ‘S.O.S Refugees’ t-shirt.
Salvador is said to suffer from an irregular heartbeat, a problem that affects some 380,000 people in Portugal and, in worst-case scenarios, sees patients require a heart transplant.
Here in Portugal, Salvador – whose name literally translates as ‘Saviour’ – has dominated headlines, especially after scooping the victory on the same day as the Pope visited Portugal to canonise the shepherd children, and Benfica took the Portuguese Liga title, becoming champions for a fourth consecutive year, hence rounding off a hat-trick of major celebrations for this country.
He was given a hero’s welcome upon arriving back in Portugal from Kiev, with thousands of fans awaiting his arrival at Lisbon airport.
Salvador’s victory seems set to change the laid-back Lisbon-born musician’s life, with a string of upcoming performances since having sold out, his first-ever album ‘Excuse Me’ flying off the shelves, and an ever-growing cachet that looks nowhere near ready to start slowing down.
And whilst not everyone may be in agreement as to whether the winning song itself was fitting of Eurovision victory, it seems Salvador’s quirky yet cool demeanour, needle-sharp quips and to-the-point observations have only fuelled his meteoric rise to stardom.
Meanwhile, and with a Eurovision to stage next year, Portugal is now on the hunt for a venue.
While early reports were quick to suggest Lisbon, namely the MEO arena, as the likely venue of choice, other locations are also said to be in the running for the glitzy event.
National broadcaster, RTP, which exclusively transmits the contest, said it does not yet know where the competition will be staged in 2018, and it is surveying a number of possible, covered venues capable of hosting the event, bearing costs, infrastructure and hotel availability in mind.

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Edition 1445
14 October 2017
Edition: 1445

Read this week's issue online exactly as it appears in print.

Twitter