ESC PARIS 1978 (23ª)

1978.jpg

  • Dates – Grand Final: Saturday, 22 April 1978 – 21:00 CEST
  • Host – Venue & Location:  Palais des Congrès, Paris, 🇫🇷 France
  • Presenter (s): Denise Fabré & Léon Zitrone
  • Musical Director: François Rauber
  • Director: Bernard Lion
  • Executive Producer:
  • Executive Supervisor: Frank Naef
  • Multicamera Director:
  • Host broadcaster:  Télévision Française 1 (TF1)
  • Interval ActStéphane Grappelli and Oscar Peterson, Yehudi Menuhin, Kenny Clarke, Niels-Henning Ørsted Pedersen
  • Participants – Number of entries: 20 [🇧🇪 Belgium (20ª), 🇩🇪 Germany (20ª), 🇮🇹 Italy (20ª), 🇳🇱 The Netherlands (20ª), 🇨🇭 Switzerland (20ª), 🇬🇧 United Kindom (18ª), Monaco (17ª), 🇪🇸 Spain (15ª), 🇮🇪 Ireland (11ª), 🇱🇺 Luxembourg (19ª), 🇫🇮 Finland (14ª), 🇳🇴 Norway (15ª), 🇵🇹 Portugal (11ª), 🇮🇱 Israel (3ª), 🇫🇷 France (20ª), 🇦🇹 Austria (16ª), 🇬🇷 Greece (2ª), 🇸🇪 Sweden (16ª), 🇩🇰 Denmark (11ª), 🇹🇷 Turkey (1ª)]
  • Debuting countries:
  • Return: 🇩🇰 Denmark (10ª), 🇹🇷 Turkey (1ª)
  • Non-returning countries:
  • Vote – Voting system: Each country awarded 12, 10, 8-1 points to their 10 favourite songs.
  • Nil Points: 🇳🇴 Norway (2ª)
  • Winning song: 1f3c6 “A-Ba-Ni-Bi” – Izhar Cohen & The Alpha Beta – Israele (1ª)

Logo ESC 1978

AboutAfter having won in London in 1977, French Television organised the 1978 Eurovision Song Contest in Paris on 22nd April.

Live in Dubai!. For the third time in Eurovision Song Contest history, the event was held in France. After having hosted the two previous contests in Cannes, French Television decided to host it in the capital Paris. A record 20 countries participated in 1978. Denmark returned to the contest after an 11 year absence. Turkey also participated, and no country withdrew from the previous year. For the first time, the show was presented by two people; Denise Fabre and Léon Zitrone. It was the first time contest was broadcast live in Dubai.

About the winner. Israel won the song contest for the first time with the song “A-Ba-Ni-Bi” by Izhar Cohen & The Alphabeta. The country received five consecutive sets of 12 points. Israel’s Head of Delegation, Rivka Michaeli, admitted though that they hadn’t been satisfied with Cohen’s song. Michaeli said it was only because all the other entries were “so absolutely awful” that Cohen had won the national heats. When it was obvious that Israel would win, the broadcasting company of Jordan stopped the live broadcast claiming they had technical difficulties. A day later they presented the song from Belgium – which came second – as the winning song.

Facts & figures. Norway did not get a single vote, which was unique for the new voting system, a fate that would be repeated several times in the future; Big European stars participated in the contest this year, despite all achieving only moderate success. Italy’s Ricchi & Poveri, only ending up 12th, went on to have a major success in Europe as part of the later wave of Italo-Pop. The popular singer for Germany, Ireen Sheer, also took part for the second time and came 6th beating Spanish disco queens Baccara who sang for Luxembourg.

o/r  country  participant(s) song – translate – Language Points  rank
01 🇮🇪 Ireland RTÉ Colm C.T. Wilkinson Born to sing English 086 05
02 🇳🇴 Norway NRK Jahn Teigen Mil etter mil (Mile after mile) Norwegian 000 20
03 🇮🇹 Italy RAI Ricchi e Poveri Questo amore (This love) Italian 053 12
04 🇫🇮 Finland YLE Seija Simola Anna rakkaudelle tilaisuus (Give love a chance) Finnish 002 18
05 🇵🇹 Portugal RTP Gemini Dai li dou Portuguese 005 17
06 🇫🇷 France TF1 Joël Prévost Il y aura toujours des violons (There will always be violins) French 119 03
07 🇪🇸 Spain TVE José Vélez Bailemos un vals (Let’s dance a waltz) Spanish[a] 065 09
08 🇬🇧 United Kindom BBC Co-Co The bad old days English 061 11
09 🇨🇭 Switzerland SSR SRG Carole Vinci Vivre (Living) French 065 09
10 🇧🇪 Belgium RTBF Jean Vallée L’amour ça fait chanter la vie (Love that makes life sing) French 125 02
11 🇳🇱 The Netherlands NOS Harmony ‘T is O.K. (It’s OK) Dutch 037 13
12 🇹🇷 Turkey TRT Nilüfer & Nazar Sevince (When someone loves… / When I’m in love) Turkish 002 18
13 🇩🇪 Germany ARD Ireen Sheer Feuer (Fire) German 084 06
14 Monaco TMC Caline & Oliver Toussaint Les jardins de Monaco (The gardens of Monaco) French 107 04
15 🇬🇷 Greece ERT Tania Tsanaklidou (Τάνια Τσανακλίδου) Charlie Chaplin (Τσάρλυ Τσάπλιν) Greek 066 08
16 🇩🇰 Denmark DR Mabel Boom-boom Danish 013 16
17 🇱🇺 Luxembourg CLT Baccara Parlez-vous français? (Do you speak French?) French 073 07
18 🇮🇱 Israel IBA Izhar Cohen & The Alphabeta (יזהר כהן ואלפא-ביתא) A-Ba-Ni-Bi (א-ב-ני-בי, I love you) Hebrew 157 01
19 🇦🇹 Austria ÖRF Springtime Mrs. Caroline Robinson German[b] 014 15
20 🇸🇪 Sweden SR Björn Skifs Det blir alltid värre framåt natten (It always gets worse when the night comes) Swedish 026 14

Missed participation:

•  🇬🇷 Greece: “Mr Nobel” (O Kyrios Nobel, Ο Κος Νόμπελ) (Greek) – Anna Vissi (Άννα Βίσση). In 1978 she was proposed by ERT (Greek National Television) to represent Greece at the 23rd Eurovision Song Contest. There were two candidate songs: “Poso S’ Agapo” (Ω Μαρία) and “O Kyrios Nobel” (Ο Κος Νόμπελ). Finally, due to controversies between the composers of the songs, her participation was disqualified and Tania Tsanaklidou (Τάνια Τσανακλίδου) went to the contest. “Na kseris s’agapo” – Robert Williams, withdrawn because neither of the composers were Greek.  However in the original final Anna Vissi was tied with this song.  She didn’t go to Paris either as ERT comissioned a whole new set of songs which included the eventual Greek entry – Charlie Chaplin.

Participation map

A coloured map of the countries of Europe

Transmitirá a 2º semifinal noutro horário. Participating countries Transmitirá a 1º semifinal em direto. Countries that participated in the past but not in 1978

ESC 1978 Scoreboard Ι Detailed voting results

Scoreboard - Eurovision Song Contest 1978

The Eurovision Song Contest 1978 was the 23rd edition of the annual Eurovision Song Contest. It took place in Paris, France, following the country’s victory at the 1977 contest with the song “L’oiseau et l’enfant” by Marie Myriam. Organised by the European Broadcasting Union (EBU) and host broadcaster Télévision Française 1 (TF1), the contest was held at the Palais des Congrès on 22 April 1978 and was hosted by French television presenters Denise Fabre and Léon Zitrone. This was the first time that more than one presenter had hosted the contest as well as the first to have a male presenter since 1956. In addition to hosting, the two presenters also served as commentators for France.

Twenty countries participated, the highest number of competing countries in the history of the competition at the time. Denmark and Turkey both returned to the contest. Denmark had not participated since 1966, 12 years before.

The winner of the contest was Israel with the song “A-Ba-Ni-Bi” by Izhar Cohen & the Alphabeta. Although ‘A-Ba-Ni-Bi’ is the correct title, French television mistakenly captioned on screen the song title as ‘Ah-Bah-Nee-Bee’. The winning entry was a love song sung in the Hebrew equivalent of Ubbi dubbi (the title is an expansion of the Hebrew word ani אני, meaning “I”). This was Israel’s first Eurovision win, and it was also the first winning song to be performed in one of the Semitic languages. Furthermore, it was also the only winning song to be conducted by a woman, Nurit Hirsh. Norway finished last for the fifth time, gaining the first nul points after the new voting system was implemented in 1975.

Palais des Congrès, Paris – host venue of the 1978 contest.

1.Location. The event took place in Paris, the capital and largest city of France, with the host venue being the Palais des congrès de Paris which is a concert venue, convention centre and shopping mall in the 17th arrondissement of Paris. The venue was built by French architect Guillaume Gillet, and was inaugurated in 1974.

2.Format. The postcards were filmed live, featuring the artists making their way to the stage. They took a corridor, then an elevator. Leaving the lift, they were greeted by the previous participants and then made their entrances to the stage. The camera also made several shots of the audience, notably Jane Birkin and Serge Gainsbourg.

The Swedish participant Björn Skifs was unhappy with the rule that every country would have to perform in their native language. He planned to sing in English anyway, but changed his mind at the last moment, causing him to completely forget the lyrics. He therefore sang the first few lines in gibberish before finding the words again. Along with the 20 participating countries, the show was also broadcast live in Yugoslavia, Tunisia, Algeria, Morocco, Jordan, East Germany, Poland, Hungary, Czechoslovakia, Dubai, Hong Kong, the Soviet Union and Japan.

3.Participating countries. Denmark returned to the competition after having been absent for twelve years, while Turkey did so after missing out two years. This meant that, for the first time, the contest had twenty participating nations competing.

3.1.Conductors. Each performance had a conductor who directed the orchestra.

  • 🇮🇪 Ireland – Noel Kelehan
  • 🇳🇴 Norway – Carsten Klouman
  • 🇮🇹 Italy – Nicola Samale
  • 🇫🇮 Finland – Ossi Runne
  • 🇵🇹 Portugal – Thilo Krasmann 
  • 🇫🇷 France – Alain Goraguer
  • 🇪🇸 Spain – Ramón Arcusa 
  • 🇬🇧 United Kindom – Alyn Ainsworth
  • 🇨🇭 Switzerland – Daniel Janin 
  • 🇧🇪 Belgium – Jean Musy 
  • 🇳🇱 The Netherlands – Harry van Hoof
  • 🇹🇷 Turkey – Onno Tunç
  • 🇩🇪 Germany – Jean Frankfurter 
  •  Monaco – Yvon Rioland
  • 🇬🇷 Greece – Haris Andreadis
  • 🇩🇰 Denmark – Helmer Olesen
  • 🇱🇺 Luxembourg – Rolf Soja
  • 🇮🇱 Israel – Nurit Hirsh
  • 🇦🇹 Austria – Richard Oesterreicher 
  • 🇸🇪 Sweden – Bengt Palmers 

3.2.Returning artists.

Artist Country Previous year(s)
Jean Vallée 🇧🇪 Belgium 1970
Norbert Niedermeyer (as part of Springtime) 🇦🇹 Austria 1972 (as part of The Milestones)
Ireen Sheer 🇩🇪 Germany 1974 (for 🇱🇺 Luxembourg)
Trio La la la (backings for José Vélez) 🇪🇸 Spain 1968, 1970, 1971, 1975 (all years as backings)

3.3.Participants and results.

3.4.All the national selections for Eurovision Song Contest 1978: 

• National Selections in 1978:

COUNTRY EVENT WINNER
🇧🇪 Belgium Eurosong 1978 Jean Vallée – L’amour ça fait chanter la vie
🇩🇰 Denmark Melodi Grand Prix 1978 Mabel – Boom boom
🇫🇮 Finland (Finnish Selection 1978) Seija Simola – Anna rakkaudelle tilaisuus
🇫🇷 France (French Selection 1978) Joël Prévost – Il y aura toujours des violons
🇩🇪 Germany (German Selection 1978) Ireen Sheer – Feuer
🇮🇪 Ireland (Irish Selection 1978) Colm T. Wilkinson – Born to Sing
🇮🇱 Israel Israel Song Festival 1978 Izhar Cohen and the Alphabeta – A-Ba-Ni-Bi
🇱🇺 Luxembourg (Luxembourgish Selection 1978) Baccara – Parlez-vous français?
🇳🇱 The Netherlands Nationaal Songfestival 1978 Harmony – ‘t Is OK
🇳🇴 Norway Melodi Grand Prix 1978 Jahn Teigen – Mil etter mil
🇵🇹 Portugal Grande Prémio TV da Canção 1978 Gemini – Da-li-dou
🇸🇪 Sweden Melodifestival 1978 Björn Skifs – Det blir alltid värre framåt natten
🇨🇭 Switzerland Concours Eurovision 1978 Carole Vinci – Vivre
🇹🇷 Turkey Şarkı Yarışması 1978 Nilüfer & Nazar – Sevince
🇬🇧 United Kindom A Song for Europe 1978 Co-Co – The Bad Old Days

• Internal Selections in 1978: 

🇦🇹 Austria Springtime – Mrs. Caroline Robinson
🇬🇷 Greece Tania Tsanaklidou – Charlie Chaplin
🇮🇹 Italy Ricchi e Poveri – Questo Amore
Monaco Caline and Olivier Toussaint – Les Jardins De Monaco
🇪🇸 Spain José Vélez – Bailemos Un Vals
3.5.Connections:

4.Voting.

Voting results
Total score
Irlanda Norvegia Italia Finlanda Portugalia Franța Spania Regatul Unit Elveția Belgia Țările de Jos Turcia Germania Monaco Grecia Danemarca Luxemburg Israel Austria Suedia
C
o
n
t
e
s
t
a
n
t
s
🇮🇪 Ireland 86 12 3 5 7 10 10 5 10 10 6 8
🇳🇴 Norway 0
🇮🇹 Italy 53 10 6 1 4 8 6 1 1 1 2 8 2 3
🇫🇮 Finland 2 2
🇵🇹 Portugal 5 4 1
🇫🇷 France 119 6 3 10 2 2 5 8 6 8 6 4 10 5 8 8 1 5 12 10
🇪🇸 Spain 65 7 8 2 4 7 4 6 12 2 6 7
🇬🇧 United Kindom 61 3 6 2 3 2 4 2 6 8 7 3 5 2 5 3
🇨🇭 Switzerland 65 5 1 1 7 4 2 7 8 6 2 3 8 1 10
🇧🇪 Belgium 125 12 7 6 6 4 12 2 12 10 5 3 12 12 7 7 4 4
🇳🇱 The Netherlands 37 5 3 4 1 5 6 12 1
🇹🇷 Turkey 2 1 1
🇩🇪 Germany 84 1 3 12 7 10 3 5 7 8 10 7 1 3 7
Monaco 107 4 4 7 8 5 1 10 5 6 10 5 7 4 10 8 1 12
🇬🇷 Greece 66 7 2 5 8 10 7 4 4 4 10 3 2
🇩🇰 Denmark 13 6 1 4 2
🇱🇺 Luxembourg 73 2 12 12 12 7 3 3 2 6 1 7 6
🇮🇱 Israel 157 8 8 8 10 10 8 6 5 12 12 12 12 12 3 5 6 12 8
🇦🇹 Austria 14 3 3 1 2 5
🇸🇪 Sweden 26 5 10 4 3 4

4.1.12 points. Below is a summary of all 12 points in the final:

N. Contestant Nation(s) giving 12 points
6 🇮🇱 Israel 🇧🇪 Belgium, 🇩🇪 Germany, 🇱🇺 Luxembourg, 🇳🇱 The Netherlands, 🇨🇭 Switzerland, 🇹🇷 Turkey
5 🇧🇪 Belgium 🇫🇷 France, 🇬🇷 Greece, 🇮🇪 Ireland Monaco, 🇬🇧 United Kindom
3 🇱🇺 Luxembourg 🇮🇹 Italy, 🇵🇹 Portugal, 🇪🇸 Spain
1 🇫🇷 France 🇦🇹 Austria
🇩🇪 Germany 🇫🇮 Finland
🇮🇪 Ireland 🇳🇴 Norway
 Monaco 🇸🇪 Sweden
🇳🇱 The Netherlands 🇮🇱 Israel
🇪🇸 Spain 🇩🇰 Denmark

4.2.Spokespersons. Listed below is the order in which votes were cast during the 1978 contest along with the spokesperson who was responsible for announcing the votes for their respective country.

  1. 🇮🇪 Ireland – John Skehan
  2. 🇳🇴 Norway – Egil Teige 
  3. 🇮🇹 Italy – Mariolina Cannuli 
  4. 🇫🇮 Finland – Kaarina Pönniö
  5. 🇵🇹 Portugal – Isabel Wolmar 
  6. 🇫🇷 France – Marc Menant
  7. 🇪🇸 Spain – Matías Prats Luque
  8. 🇬🇧 United Kindom – Colin Berry
  9. 🇨🇭 Switzerland – Michel Stocker
  10. 🇧🇪 Belgium – André Hagon
  11. 🇳🇱 The Netherlands – Dick van Bommel
  12. 🇹🇷 Turkey – Meral Savcı
  13. 🇩🇪 Germany – Sigi Harreis 
  14.  Monaco – Carole Chabrier
  15. 🇬🇷 Greece – Niki Venega
  16. 🇩🇰 Denmark – Jens Dreyer
  17. 🇱🇺 Luxembourg – Jacques Harvey
  18. 🇮🇱 Israel – Yitzhak Shim’oni 
  19. 🇦🇹 Austria – Jenny Pippal 
  20. 🇸🇪 Sweden – Sven Lindahl

5.Broadcasts. Each national broadcaster also sent a commentator to the contest, in order to provide coverage of the contest in their own native language.

Broadcasters and commentators in participating countries
Country Broadcaster(s) Commentator(s)
🇦🇹 Austria FS2 Ernst Grissemann 
Hitradio Ö3 Walter Richard Langer 
🇧🇪 Belgium RTBF1 French: Claude Delacroix
BRT1 Dutch: Luc Appermont
RTB La Première French: Jacques Bauduin 
BRT Radio 1 Dutch: Nand Baert  and Herwig Haes
🇩🇰 Denmark DR TV Jørgen de Mylius
DR P3 Kjeld Koplev 
🇫🇮 Finland YLE TV1 Erkki Toivanen
YLE Rinnakkaisohjelma TBC
🇫🇷 France TF1 Léon Zitrone and Denise Fabre
France Inter René Boyer  and Michel Polac
🇩🇪 Germany Deutsches Fernsehen Werner Veigel
Deutschlandfunk/Bayern 2 Wolf Mittler
🇬🇷 Greece ERT Mako Georgiadou 
Proto Programma Dimitris Konstantaras 
🇮🇪 Ireland RTÉ Larry Gogan
RTÉ Radio Mike Murphy
🇮🇱 Israel Israeli Television No commentator
🇮🇹 Italy Rete 2 and Rai Radio 2 Tullio Grazzini
🇱🇺 Luxembourg RTL Télé Luxembourg Jacques Navadic
RTL André Torrent 
 Monaco Télé Monte Carlo José Sacré
🇳🇱 The Netherlands Nederland 2 Willem Duys
Hilversum 3 Jan van Veen 
🇳🇴 Norway NRK Bjørn Scheele
NRK P1 Erik Heyerdahl 
🇵🇹 Portugal RTP1 Eládio Clímaco
RDP Programa 1 Amadeu Meireles [pt]
🇪🇸 Spain TVE1 Miguel de los Santos 
🇸🇪 Sweden SR TV1 Ulf Elfving
SR P3 Kent Finell
🇨🇭 Switzerland TV DRS German: Theodor Haller
TSR French: Georges Hardy
TSI Italian: Giovanni Bertini
RSR 1 French: Robert Burnier
🇹🇷 Turkey Ankara Television Bülend Özveren
Radyo 3 Şebnem Savaşçı
🇬🇧 United Kindom BBC1 Terry Wogan
BBC Radio 2 Ray Moore
Broadcasters and commentators in non-participating countries
Country Broadcaster(s) Commentator(s)
 Algeria ENTV Un­known
 Czechoslovakia ČST Un­known
 East Germany Deutscher Fernsehfunk Un­known
 Hong Kong TVB Jade (delayed broadcast on 23 April 1978) Un­known
TVB Pearl (delayed broadcast on 23 April 1978) Un­known
🇭🇺 Hungary RTV Un­known
🇮🇸 Iceland Sjónvarpið Ragna Ragnars
 Japan NHK Un­known
 Jordan JRTV Un­known
 Morocco TVM Un­known
🇵🇱 Poland TVP Un­known
 Soviet Union TST SSSR Un­known
 Tunisia RTT Un­known
 United Arab Emirates Dubai Radio and Colour Television Terry Wogan (via BBC)
 Yugoslavia TVB 2 Serbo-Croatian: Milovan Ilić
TVZ 1 Serbo-Croatian: Oliver Mlakar
TVL 1 Slovene: Tomaž Terček 

6.Incidents. 

6.1.Israeli winning reactions. Israeli win caused problems for several North African and Middle-Eastern nations that were televising the contest, even though they were not participating. According to author and political commentator John Kennedy O’Connor in his book The Eurovision Song Contest: The Official History, when Israel became the clear winners during the voting, most of the Arabic stations ended their transmission of the contest. Jordanian TV finished the show with a photo of a bunch of daffodils on screen, later announcing that the Belgian entry (which finished second) was the winner. This was also the first broadcast of the contest in the USSR, and until 1988 only partial performances was shown, each time with the exception of representatives of Israel.

7.Notes.

  1. [a] Contains some words in French
  2. [b] Contains some words in English

8.Trivial / Fun facts.

  • It was the first time contest was broadcast live in Dubai.
  • For the first time, the show was presented by two people, Denise Fabre and Léon Zitrone.
  • Norway did not get a single vote, which was unique for the new voting system, but that would happen again several times.

← Eurovision Song Contest 1977 • Eurovision Song Contest 1978 • Eurovision Song Contest 1979 →

Countries (in order of appearance)

Final Ireland ⦁ Norway ⦁ Italy ⦁ Finland ⦁ Portugal ⦁ France ⦁ Spain ⦁ United Kingdom ⦁ Switzerland ⦁ Belgium • The Netherlands ⦁ Turkey ⦁ Germany ⦁ Monaco • Greece • Denmark • Luxembourg • Israel (winner) • Austria • Swedden

Artists (in order of appearance)

Final Colm C. T. Wilkinson ⦁ Jahn Teigen ⦁ Ricchi e Poveri ⦁ Seija Simola ⦁ Gemini ⦁ Joël Prévost ⦁ José Vélez ⦁ Co-Co ⦁ Carole Vinci ⦁ Jean Vallée ⦁ Harmony • Nilüfer and Nazar ⦁ Ireen Sheer ⦁ Caline and Olivier Toussaint ⦁ Tania Tsanaklidou • Mabel ⦁ Baccara • Izhar Cohen and the Alphabeta (winner) ⦁ Springtime • Björn Skifs

Songs (in order of appearance)

Final “Born to Sing” ⦁ “Mil etter mil” ⦁ “Questo amore” ⦁ “Anna rakkaudelle tilaisuus” ⦁ “Dai li dou” ⦁ “Il y aura toujours des violons” ⦁ “Bailemos un vals” ⦁ “The Bad Old Days” ⦁ “Vivre” ⦁ “L’amour ça fait chanter la vie” ⦁ “‘t Is OK” • “Sevince” ⦁ “Feuer” ⦁ “Les jardins de Monaco” ⦁ “Charlie Chaplin” (Τσάρλυ Τσάπλιν) • “Boom Boom” ⦁ “Parlez-vous français ?” • “A-Ba-Ni-Bi” (א-ב-ני-בי) (winner) ⦁ “Mrs. Caroline Robinson” • “Det blir alltid värre framåt natten
Non-participating entries: Greece: Anna Vissi (Άννα Βίσση) – “Mr Nobel” (O Kyrios Nobel, Ο Κος Νόμπελ)