Eurovision Song Contest 1990

Eurovision Song Contest 1990
Final 5 May 1990
Venue Vatroslav Lisinski Concert Hall
Zagreb, SR Croatia, Yugoslavia
Presenter(s) Helga Vlahović Brnobić
Oliver Mlakar
Conductor Igor Kuljerić
Directed by Nenad Puhovski
Executive supervisor Frank Naef
Executive producer Goran Radman
Host broadcaster Yugoslav Radio Television (JRT) / Radiotelevision Zagreb (RTZ)
Opening act A short film "Zagreb: City of Music"
Interval act Yugoslav Changes – a film about tourism in the country.
Number of entries 22
Debuting countries None
Returning countries None
Withdrawing countries None
Voting system Each country awarded 12, 10, 8-1 point(s) to their 10 favourite songs
Nul points None
Winning song  Italy
"Insieme: 1992"

The Eurovision Song Contest 1990 was the 35th edition of the annual Eurovision Song Contest. It was held in Zagreb, Yugoslavia on 5 May 1990. The presenters were Helga Vlahović Brnobić and Oliver Mlakar.[1] Toto Cutugno was the winner of this contest with his own composition "Insieme: 1992". This was the second victory for Italy, the first one having been "Non ho l'età", performed by Gigliola Cinquetti in 1964.

The lyrics of several entries celebrated the revolution and democratisation that had occurred in central and eastern Europe in the preceding months, focusing especially on the fall of the Berlin Wall in November 1989, such as in the Norwegian and Austrian entries. However, the winning song was an even more sweeping evocation of European unity, in anticipation of the completion of the European single market, due at the end of 1992.

Malta had wished to return to the contest for the first time in 15 years, but Eurovision rules prevented them from returning due to a maximum of 22 entries allowed to compete, this rule has since been removed. A national final was held in Malta, which was won by Maryrose Mallia with "Our Little World of Yesterday".[2]

There was a slightly uncomfortable beginning to the rehearsal week when, offended by press comments concerning their ages (Brnobić being 45 at the time and Mlakar being 54), the two presenters quit the show. They were briefly replaced by Rene Medvešek and Dubravka Marković, who were much younger, but the misunderstandings were eventually allayed and Brnobić and Mlakar returned to the contest.


Zagreb, the capital of Croatia, was the second largest city in Yugoslavia. Vatroslav Lisinski Concert Hall was chosen to host the contest. The concert hall and convention center is named after Vatroslav Lisinski, a 19th-century Croatian composer.[3] The building has a big hall with 1,841 seats and a small hall with 305 seats.[3]

In order to host the 1990 contest, the venue underwent its first major renovation in 1989.[4] In 1992, the hall's copper roof cover was completely replaced.[4] Further reconstruction and redecoration work was done in 1999 and 2009.[5][6]


The Eurovision Song Contest 1990 was the first to implement an age rule. The European Broadcasting Union (EBU) were forced to bring in a restriction rule after criticism arose over the ages of two performers at 1989 contest, being just 11 and 12 years old. From 1990, no artist under the age of 16 on the day of the contest could perform on stage. This rule meant that the record for the youngest ever winner at Eurovision could never be broken, as Sandra Kim, who won for Belgium at the 1986 competition, was just 13 years old.

A notorious mishap occurred at the start of the first song, when a noticeably long delay caused by problems with the backing track was followed by the Spanish singers Azúcar Moreno missing their cue. They walked off the stage in barely concealed annoyance and the audience was left in confusion for a moment, but the song was then restarted without any further problems.

To add more confusion, the backing track for tv audio did start correctly on the first attempt. So the tv spectators hearded the orchestra playing but saw the conductor (and orchestra) just standing by. In addition, this incident revealed to the spectators that the large orchestra was just for playback.

From a musicological perspective both Spain's "Bandido" and France's "White and Black Blues" can be said to be the first entries to signal a new trend at Eurovision, with both songs fusing contemporary dance music with ethnic influences, from flamenco and calypso respectively.

The 1990 contest was the first to feature an official mascot, Eurocat, created by Joško Marušić. This mischievous purple cat popped up during the 'postcards' of each of the 22 entries, which also included travelogues of the country about to perform, in conjunction with the European Year of Tourism 1990.


Each performance had a conductor who maestro the orchestra.


Draw Country Artist Song Language[7] Place Points
01  Spain Azúcar Moreno "Bandido" Spanish 5 96
02  Greece Christos Callow & Wave "Horis skopo" (Χωρίς σκοπό) Greek 19 11
03  Belgium Philippe Lafontaine "Macédomienne" French 12 46
04  Turkey Kayahan "Gözlerinin Hapsindeyim" Turkish 17 21
05  Netherlands Maywood "Ik wil alles met je delen" Dutch 15 25
06  Luxembourg Céline Carzo "Quand je te rêve" French 13 38
07  United Kingdom Emma "Give a Little Love Back to the World" English 6 87
08  Iceland Stjórnin "Eitt lag enn" Icelandic 4 124
09  Norway Ketil Stokkan "Brandenburger Tor" Norwegian 21 8
10  Israel Rita "Shara Barkhovot" (שרה ברחובות) Hebrew 18 16
11  Denmark Lonnie Devantier "Hallo Hallo" Danish 8 64
12   Switzerland Egon Egemann "Musik klingt in die Welt hinaus" German 11 51
13  Germany Chris Kempers & Daniel Kovac "Frei zu leben" German 9 60
14  France Joëlle Ursull "White and Black Blues" French 2 132
15  Yugoslavia Tajči "Hajde da ludujemo" Serbo-Croatian 7 81
16  Portugal Nucha "Há sempre alguém" Portuguese 20 9
17  Ireland Liam Reilly "Somewhere in Europe" English 2 132
18  Sweden Edin-Ådahl "Som en vind" Swedish 16 24
19  Italy Toto Cutugno "Insieme: 1992" Italian 1 149
20  Austria Simone "Keine Mauern mehr" German1 10 58
21  Cyprus Haris Anastasiou "Milas poli" (Μιλάς πολύ) Greek 14 36
22  Finland Beat "Fri?" Swedish 21 8


1.^ Contains some phrases in English, French and Serbo-Croatian.

Score sheet

Spain 968110214561253588810
Greece 1156
Belgium 467414882174
Turkey 2132457
Netherlands 251314236122
Luxembourg 384331223155
United Kingdom 877512310310110106613
Iceland 12443101812108107412783107
Norway 8413
Israel 1642415
Denmark 646327771743764
Switzerland 51112621215813
Germany 60861271410453
France 132544121212651210124852712
Yugoslavia 81312510312725110101
Portugal 972
Ireland 1321077510610888577612124
Sweden 24226662
Italy 14912108881031686461012107128
Austria 582715863822122
Cyprus 3665252646
Finland 853

12 points

Below is a summary of all 12 point in the final:

N.ContestantVoting nation
6FranceFinland, Iceland, Netherlands, Norway, Switzerland, Yugoslavia
3ItalyCyprus, Ireland, Spain
2 IcelandPortugal, United Kingdom
IrelandAustria, Sweden
SwitzerlandDenmark, Greece
YugoslaviaIsrael, Turkey
1 AustriaItaly
United KingdomBelgium

Returning artists

Artist Country Previous year(s)
Ketil Stokkan  Norway 1986
Pepel In Kri (Toto Cutugno's backing vocalists)  Italy 1975 (for  Yugoslavia)



National jury members

  •  Spain – Amparo Mendiguren (housewife), Pedro Calleja (clinical assistant), Paloma Gómez (actress), José Ramón Gamo (student), Teresa del Río (actress), Emilio de Villota (racing driver), Fiorella Faltoyano (actress), Julián Lago (journalist at Tribuna), Raquel Revuelta (fashion model and Miss Spain 1990), Juan Carlos Arteche (footballer and businessman), Conchita de los Santos (journalist), Alfredo Roldán (senior civil servant), Margarita Girón (public relations), José Sanjuán (PhD in Chemistry), María José Olmedilla (lawyer), Javier Morera (lawyer)[31]
  •  Greece – Alexandros Roussos, Athanasia Tsoulfa
  •  Turkey – Murat Türkoğlu, Selda Güneş, Mithat Kaya, Özlem Şen, Sıla Yavuz, Nazif Eke, Hülya Okçay, Kadir Gökdemir, Aydan Özbey, Özlem Çelik, Ziya Fırat Doğançay, Meltem Altınörs, Nihal Müftüoğlu, Zeki Tatlıgil, Ahmet Hüseyin Uluçay, Mustafa Sarıkoç[32]
  •  United Kingdom – Laura Gudim, Roland Gonzalez-Attwell, Mick Elliott, Chris Whiteside
  •  Iceland – Reynir Þór Eggertsson, Helga Sesselja Guðmundsdóttir
  •  Portugal – Manuel Pinheiro


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