|North Vision Song Contest|
Logo used since the eighteenth edition.
|Created by||James Davenport|
|Country of origin||Hungary|
|Original language(s)||English and French|
|Running time||Various (about two months)|
|Original run||19 March 2013 – present|
North Vision in Concert|
Junior North Vision Song Contest
The North Vision Song Contest, often shortened to NVSC, or Northvision, is a song contest on Youtube held among the members of the North Broadcasting Union since March 2013. The competition was based upon the existing Eurovision Song Contest held among the member countries of the European Broadcasting Union (EBU) since 1956. The current and official executive supervisor is Jan Simonis.
Each country's head of delegation gets to select an entry for each edition either by internal or national selection. Then the countries get to vote for each show (pre-qualifying round, semi-final or final) to determine the qualifiers and the winner of the edition. The contest has also been broadcast outside Europe to several countries that do not compete, such as the United States, Canada, New Zealand, and China. An exception was made in the twentieth edition, when an associate member, Hong Kong, was allowed to take part in the anniversary edition. This timespan was extended for one more edition, as Hong Kong became part of the Big 6 after their third place in the previous edition.
So far, sixteen different countries have won the competition and therefore hosted the contest. Apart from Hungary, who hosted due to being the organizer of the contest, Iceland, Switzerland, Sweden, Denmark, Lebanon, the United Kingdom, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Norway, Ukraine, Israel, Kazakhstan, Belgium, Italy, Albania, the Czech Republic and Bulgaria have all been winners and hosts of the contest. Denmark has won the contest three times while Norway, Israel, Switzerland and Sweden won the contest twice, with Norway being the first to win two times in a row and Denmark winning two times with the same band. The highest scoring winner, is Czech Republic's Lenny who won the twentieth edition with her song "Hell.o" which got 462 points, 50 points ahead the runner-up.
The first ever North Vision Song Contest started on 24th April 2013. It was held in the capital city of Hungary which also was the first ever country to host the North Vision Song Contest and also the first ever direct qualifier for the final. Forty-one nations took part in the first edition each submitting one entry to the contest. Each country awarded 12 points to their favorite, 10 points to their second favourite and then 8 points to 1 point for the rest. Each country is free to either hold a Televote only, a Jury Voting only or both at the same time which combined make up the voting they will submit. The voting procedure has not changed since then.
Iceland was the first ever country to win the contest. The winner is traditionally set to be the host of the following North Vision edition.
Currently, the NBU Council has the control over the contest, and its members work in different terms of the contest, like recaps, staging, results videos and websites.
Logo and theme
The general logo, which was created by a Swedish team, was introduced in the fourth edition. The logo featured the name of the contest and below of it, the name of the host city appeared along with the number of the edition. The word "Northvision" was formed in a calligraphic font while the letter "V" was replaced by a heart where the flag of the host appeared. During the sixth edition, the Icelandic team sent a logo that was proposed to be used since that edition. The proposed logo did not have much difference from the originally created logo; the font of the word "Northvision" was written in different font while the other elements were the same. The logo was generally received positively by both the press and the fans. However, it was later revealed that the logo was rejected by the North Broadcasting Union for unpublished reasons.
For the eleventh edition, as the second decade of the contest started, it was decided that the logo would be revamped. The logo had a minor change: the heart that represented the letter "V" in "Northvision" was revamped. The logo was used for the first time in the eleventh edition until the seventeenth edition.
During the seventeenth edition, a new revamped version of the logo was revealed in a press conference in Denmark. The new logo was created by a Danish design team with the fonts of the word "Northvision" as well as the fonts of "Song Contest" and the host city were changed. The logo was first used in the eighteenth edition.
Since the first edition already, slogans were used for the contest. In each edition, the host broadcaster was in charge to decide the slogan of the edition and based on it, develope the contest's theme and visual design.
|#01||Budapest||"Music is in the Air"|
|#02||Reykjavik||"Let the Summer Begin!"|
|#03||Winterthur||"Live Your Dream!"|
|#04||Gothenburg||"Let the Music Win!"|
|#05||Aarhus||"Rise to the Top"|
|#06||Beirut||"Keep On Dreaming"|
|#07||Liverpool||"Be the Nature, Be Yourself!"|
|#08||Sarajevo||"Build Your Universe!"|
|#10||Bergen||"Feel the Passion!"|
|#11||Lviv||"Tell Your Story!"|
|#19||Italy||"Be Your Own Hero!"|
|#20||Tirana||"Dare to Dream!"|
|#22||Sofia||"Connected As One"|
|#25||Casablanca||"Find YOUR Path!"|
ParticipationAny full member of the NBU is allowed to send a song for the North Vision Song Contest. Countries that are not full members can apply for becoming one. The North Broadcasting Union has already accepted some countries that were not full members of the NBU at the beginnings of the NVSC. However, the NBU has also already declined a lot of nations and states that wanted to become a full member - and to participate in the North Vision Song Contest.
Each full member has got a certain broadcaster that is responsible for the choice of the artists and songs the country is sending for each edition. Fifty-five countries have participated at least once. These are listed here alongside the edition in which they made their debut:
|Edn.||Country making its debut|
|#02||Armenia, Bulgaria, Israel, Malta, Moldova, Slovakia, Slovenia|
The contest's format was the same during the first editions; two semi-finals and a final were held. The top ten scored countries from each semi-final advanced to the final. In the first edition, there was a big 3 that were the sponsors for the start of the contest and were automatic qualifiers; Austria, Hungary and Sweden. However, for the next editions, the big 3 would change to big 5 and the top 5 from each edition will be a part of the big 5.
As more countries joined the contest, the more changes the NBU made to the contest. In the eighth edition the pre-qualification round was introduced in order to minimize the number of the participants in the semi-finals and maximize the chances of qualification from the final. The pre-qualification round included the bottom 5 from each semi-final of the last edition, making it a total of ten countries competing. The countries had to submit a song for the round and the top countries would qualify to the contest with the selected song. The amount of qualifiers always depends on the number of participants in the respective edition.
Since the very first edition the winning country of each edition is automatically chosen to be the host of the next edition. As the host broadcaster, the heads of delegation can decide how and when they want to host the competition, present the logo, make a theme song and other things. However if a broadcaster cannot afford to host the competition, the runner-up or the NBU council will help out. The show would still be hosted in the winning country.
The "Big 3" / "Big 5" / "Big 6"
In the first edition, it was already decided that certain countries would be members of the "group" called "Big 3". The Hungarian broadcaster, the organizers of the first edition, announced that Austria, Sweden and Hungary would be the members of the first Big 3 saying that the first two countries contributed in the organization of the contest. However, as with this statement most of the broadcasters complained, the organizers decided that the Big 3, later renamed to Big 5, would be chosen according the public which led them to change the Big 5 members to the top 5 placed countries of the previous edition indicating a different Big 5 in each edition. During the thirteenth edition, the "Big 5" was changed to a "Big 6" where an additional country, the 6th placed country of the previous edition, will join the other five countries. The NBU said that the decision was taken in order to ensure a semi-final spot for a PQR qualifier. The Big 6 was officially introduced in the fourteenth edition.
Members of the Big 6 through the editions have been several, including Denmark, France, Norway, Sweden, Ukraine and the United Kingdom that have been in the Big 6 for more than four editions with Sweden currently holding the record of being in the Big 6 eight times. Ukraine holds the record for being a member of the Big 6 for six editions in a row. The best place for a Big 6 member was the first place, achieved by Norway in the ninth edition with their first place.
RulesThere are several rules of the contest in order to enter. Main rule of the contest is that the country has to officially join the NBU with a certain broadcaster before applying to enter the contest. Regarding the broadcaster, any broadcaster can be accepted by the NBU if it consists the qualifications of it. The head of delegation of the certain country must be at the position for at least three editions. If the head of delegation is not satisfied with the country, one can swap the countries with other users. There are also rules regarding the entries, such as that Eurovision Song Contest songs and cover songs are not allowed to compete in the contest or that the singer must be over the age of 16.
North Vision season
North Vision season is a term often used to refer to the days "around" the contest. It usually lasts one or two months and the most national selections are held that time. Also, various events are hosted during the season like parties or press conferences.
North Vision in ConcertThe North Vision in Concert, the concert created by the ex-Head of Delegation of Spain and current Lebanese HoD, Selvin Reyes, is an event held during the North Vision season. Every nation that is participating in the current has the right to take part unless their entry is not selected before the deadline which is decided by the host of the concert. The host was since the second concert selected through a poll. Since the introduction of the pre-qualification round, however, this concept has been retired (with the exception of the 9th edition).
Rehearsals and press conferences
Each country has two rehearsals before the contest. The rehearsals start with the semi-final countries nine days before the first semi-final. During the first two days, the rehersals for the first semi-final countries take place while during the next two days the rehearsals for the second semi-final countries take place. The second rehearsals for each country take place on the fifth and sixth days. On the seventh day, the big 5 countries have their first rehearsal taken. On the ninth day, the big 5 have their second rehearsal taken. Apart from the regular rehearsals, there are also three dress rehearsals for each show where the full show is rehearsed. The dress rehearsals for the semi-finals and the final take place in two days: twice on the day before the show (one in the afternoon and the other in the evening) and once on the day of the show. The third dress rehearsal, the one before the contest, is the show that is taken place for the jury, which means that the 50% of the result is decided before the live contest. The table below shows the schedule that is used for every edition with some adjustments made for each edition.
|First rehearsal||Second rehearsal||Dress rehearsal||●||Show|
|Semi-final and final rehearsal schedule|
After the rehearsals, the delegations of each country meets with the artistic director of the edition to preview the performance of the country. They watch the footage of the country's rehearsal, discussing about possible changes in stuff such as camera angles, lighting and choreography. Also, the Head of Delegation is able to know what special effects the performance would require and requests them from the host broadcaster. Right after this meeting, the delegation has a press conference held where members of the accredited press ask them question. The conferences are held at the same time with the rehearsals and while the first country is in the press room, the second country is already rehearsing. A printed summary of the questions and answers which emerge from the press conferences is produced by the host press office, and distributed to journalists' pigeon-holes.
Sneak peeks and betting oddsAproximately two weeks before the semi-finals, the host broadcaster uploads six or seven sneak peeks. The countries used to be divided according their geographical place like the pots for the semi-final allocation draw. However, they are now divided by the order of announcing their entries. Most of the participating nations open a poll on the broadcaster's site and let people vote for their favorite in each sneak peek.
The betting odds are mostly based on the nations' average result for each sneak peek. The betting odds were introduced in the fourth edition and has predicted several winners right, including Denmark in the fourth and fourteenth editions as well as Ukraine in the tenth edition. Most of the betting odds' top 10–15 had similar result in the contest. However, there were several occasions where the favorites of the betting odds did not manage to do well, such as Turkey in the twelfth edition or where the non-favorites of the edition did better than expected, most notably Israel in the twelfth edition.
North Vision AwardsThe North Vision Awards are music awards of the contest that honor songs or singers of the edition on certain categories. They were first introduced as the After-show awards and were unofficially held in the fourth edition and officially in the fifth edition. They were held in the seventh edition as the North Vision Awards with new and more categories.
The first voting system was in use between the first and third editions. Countries award a set of points from 1 to 8, then 10 and finally 12 to other songs in the competition — with the favourite song being awarded 12 points. Up to the third edition, only public votes were used to determine each country's top ten. In the fourth edition the broadcaster could pick between voting only with televoting or with a mixed public-jury voting. Since the fifth edition, it was mandatory for all the countries to use the mixed jury-public voting. In case of the country not being able to deliver a part of the voting, back-up juries were used to replace the missing part, which was usually the case with televoting for small countries such as Andorra or San Marino.
It was announced that since the nineteenth edition a new voting system would be used. Instead of combining the votes of the public and jury of each country, the countries would now send two separate sets of 1-8, 10 and 12; one from their professional juries and one from their public voting.
|01–03||One set of 12, 10 and 8-1 points||All countries should use telephone voting to decide which songs would receive points. Wherever televoting was not possible at all, a jury was used.|
|04||Every broadcaster was free to make a choice between the full televoting system and the mixed 50–50 system to decide which songs would receive points.|
|05–18||All countries used televoting and/or SMS-voting (50%) and juries (50%) which were then combined to get the country's top ten. In the event of a tie, the televote score takes precedence.|
|Two sets of 12, 10 and 8-1 points||All countries used televoting and/or SMS-voting and juries with each ranking representing a set of 12, 10 and 8-1 points.|
Since the first edition the voting has been presided over by the NBU scrutineer, who is responsible for ensuring that all points are allocated correctly and in turn. The following are the scrutineers and Executive Supervisors of the North Vision Song Contest appointed by the NBU;
- James Davenport (01–03)
- Vaios Koravos (09–20)
- Jan Simonis (04–present)
- Dimitris Ioannou (05–present)
- Dennis Sinn (24)
Presentation of votes
Since the first edition, all the participating countries have been voting in the final, including the countries that failed to qualify from the semi-finals. Since the introduction of the pre-qualification round in the eighth edition, the countries that failed to make it to the semi-finals of the edition were not allowed to vote in the final. However, this changed in the eleventh edition; it was decided that since that edition all the participating countries would be allowed to vote in the final, including the countries that were eliminated in the pre-qualification round.
The order of the voting nations are often randomly. After the interval act is over, when all the points have been calculated, the presenter(s) of the show call upon each voting country in turn to invite them to announce the results of their vote. Often the opportunity is taken by each country to show their spokesperson standing in front of a backdrop which includes a famous place in that country. Traditionally, the results were made in a Scorewiz–themed scoreboard with the countries announcing one by one point. Since the fourth edition, the scoreboard has taken a different format. Firstly, the points 1–7 are shown together and the spokesperson continues with the high points, the top 3; 8, 10 and 12. The song which receives the 12 from the country is usually played along with a bar below showing the top 3 at that moment.
Due to the voting system change in the nineteenth edition, the presentation of votes also changed. The spokesperson of each country now announced only the twelve points of the jury voting while the televoting scores from all the countries were combined and presented by the presenters starting from the country that received the lowest score from the public and going up to the country that received the highest points.
Nul points and ties
Although it is almost impossible for a country to receive nul points, there has so far been one entry that received no points from any country. The only entry so far to receive nul points is the Israeli entry in the eighth edition.
There have been several ties during the contest. In case of a tie between two or more countries, the country that received points from the most countries wins the tie. However, if the countries received points from the same number of countries, the number of 12 points is counted and if they are still tied it goes on until the tie breaks. The most notable and controversial tie in the contest was the tie for the first place between Israel and Finland in the twelfth edition; both countries had 158 points but due to tie-breaking rules, Israel won the edition. Other notable ties include the one between Slovenia and Cyprus in the fifth edition where Cyprus came 10th and Slovenia 11th making only the first to qualify and also the tie between Ukraine and Croatia in the eleventh edition where both countries had 159 points but Ukraine took the fifth place and Croatia took the sixth place leading Ukraine to their sixth big 5 entrance.
WinnersThe contest has so far fourteen different winning countries with four of them being Nordic countries (Denmark, Iceland, Norway and Sweden). Most of the winners have so far been female artists except from the winner of the tenth edition that has been a female-male duet, the fifteenth edition which has been a male duo featuring a female singer, as well as the winners of the second, fourth, eleventh and thirteenth and fourteenth editions which were bands.
France is the country with the most second places so far with the country ending up as the runner-up in the third, fourth, fifth and eleventh editions. In the tenth edition, Norway won the edition setting a new record for the host country's place, previously held by the United Kingdom with the second place. Albania's winning entry currently holds the record for the highest scoring winner while Denmark's third winning entry holds the record for the biggest margin between the winner and the runner-up. Denmark also became the first country to win three times while Amaranthe became the first artist to win the contest twice.
A number of spin-offs and imitators of the North Vision Song Contest have been produced, some national and other international.
Similar competitions that are still held, include:
- Junior North Vision Song Contest (2013–present), for European artists under the age of 16.
- East Vision Song Contest (2013–present), for Asian and Oceanian countries.
- Africa Vision Song Contest (2013–present), for African countries.
- Nordisk Melodi Grand Prix (2014–present), for Nordic countries.
- Arabic Vision Song Contest (2014–present), for Arabic countries.
- Balkan Music Bash (2014–present), for Balkan countries.
Similar competitions that are no longer held, include:
- West Vision Song Contest (2013), for American countries.
- Asia Vision Song Contest (2013), for Asian countries.
East Vision Song ContestBelow is a list of participants of the North Vision Song Contest who have participated at the Asian–Oceanian version of the contest either before or after their participation in the contest.
|Ukraine||neAngely||#07||#02||Competed along with Dana International with "I Need Your Love" which placed twenty-fourth in the final.|
|Hong Kong||G.E.M.||#20||#03||Competed with "Get Over You" which won the contest.|
Junior North Vision Song ContestBelow is a list of participants of the North Vision Song Contest who have participated at the Junior version of the contest before their participation in the contest.
|FYR Macedonia||Bobby Andonov||#06, #12||#01||Competed with "Tell Me It's Not Over" which placed tenth in the final.|
|Portugal||Kika||#08, #11||#02||Competed with "Alive" which placed eighth in the final.|
|Monaco||Alizée||#08||#02||Competed with "L'alize" which placed tenth in the final.|
|Cyprus||Ivi Adamou||#19||#02||Competed with "A-G-A-P-I" which placed eleventh in the final.|
|Czech Republic||Ewa Farna||#04, #21||#02||Competed with "Ticho (Fraction)" which placed fourteenth in the final.|
|Belgium||Emma Bale||#18||#05, #08||Competed with "All I Want" which placed fifth and "Run with placed second, respectively.|
- ^ The edition was held in three different cities, one for each one of the shows.
- ^ Hong Kong was selected through the Associate Broadcasters Final to compete in the twentieth edition.
- ^ neAngely represented Yemen in East Vision.
- ^ G.E.M. represented China in East Vision.