VRT’s commentator, Peter Van de Veire has criticised that the dress rehearsals following a second consecutive year of negative press reaction.
Speaking to Songfestival.be, Peter Van de Veire has spoken about his thoughts on the Eurovision Song Contest 2018 so far and the rehearsals process. The commentator holds the view that rehearsals should not be seen by the press, in the light of the criticism towards Sennek this year and Blanche last year.
Sennek needs a real audience instead of the ‘cardboard people’ seen in the hall during rehearsals.
For the Flemish commentator he feels that rehearsals are just rehearsals and are meant to not be perfect, but rather to make sure that everything is perfect for the big night. Peter Van de Veire confirmed that Sennek’s first rehearsal was not adequate for a place in the final, but is convinced of the fact that following their second rehearsal last week everything is better.
According to him, Belgium deserves a spot in the final solely based on the quality of the song alone. If Sennek qualifies from the first semi-final tonight, then Peter predicts a result at the left-hand side of the scoreboard, and potentially the top ten.
Sennek (whose real name is Laura Groeseneken) was born in Leuven, Belgium on 30th April 1990. Her musical career revolves around singing and songwriting, as well as playing the piano and melodica. She was the keyboardist for Belgian musician Ozark Henry, a role which involved touring worldwide and performing at Rock Werchter, a large rock music festival in her hometown.
At the end of September last year, it was announced that Sennek would represent Belgium at the 2018 Eurovision Song Contest. This early announcement made her the first confirmed artist of the new Eurovision season. She has previously described her song for Lisbon as “a pop song, but not a typical one. Not even for the Eurovision Song Contest. It is a bit mysterious.” Sennek wrote and composed A Matter of Time herself.
Sennek will perform fourth in tonight’s semi-final. She will be hoping to continue Belgium’s recent run of good results in the contest, by becoming the fourth consecutive Belgian act to finish in the top ten.
Belgium was one of the original seven nations to participate in the first edition of the Eurovision Song Contest in 1956. To date, the country has won the contest only once in 1986. Sandra Kim won the contest with the song “J’aime la vie”, her victory was not without controversy when it emerged that Sandra was just 13 years old, two years younger than the age restriction at the time. In the late 00s, Belgium struggled in the contest failing to reach the final annually from 2005 until 2010, when Tom Dice finished 6th in the final with 143 points. Belgium has finished last at the contest six times, including two sets of nul points.