- Dates – Grand Final: Saturday, 03 May 1986 – 21:00 CEST
- Host – Venue & Location: Grieghallen (Grieg Hall), Bergen, 🇳🇴 Norway
- Presenter (s): Åse Kleveland
- Musical Director: Egil Monn-Iversen
- Director: John Andreassen
- Executive Producer: Harald Tusberg
- Executive Supervisor: Frank Naef
- Multicamera Director: John Andreassen
- Host broadcaster: Norsk rikskringkasting (NRK)
- Opening Act: “Welcome to Music” performed by Åse Kleveland
- Interval Act: “Bergensiana” performed by Sissel Kyrkjebø and Steinar Ofsdal
- Participants – Number of entries: 20 [🇧🇪 Belgium (28ª), 🇩🇪 Germany (28ª), 🇨🇭 Switzerland (28ª), 🇬🇧 United Kindom (26ª), 🇪🇸 Spain (23ª), 🇱🇺 Luxembourg (27ª), 🇫🇮 Finland (22ª), 🇳🇴 Norway (23ª), 🇵🇹 Portugal (19ª), 🇦🇹 Austria (24ª), 🇸🇪 Sweden (24ª), 🇩🇰 Denmark (19ª), 🇹🇷 Turkey (9ª), 🇨🇾 Cyprus (6ª), 🇫🇷 France (27ª), 🇮🇪 Ireland (18ª), 🇮🇱 Israel (10ª), 🇮🇸 Iceland (1ª), 🇳🇱 The Netherlands (27ª), Yugoslavia (20ª)]
- Debuting countries: 🇮🇸 Iceland (1ª)
- Return: 🇳🇱 The Netherlands (27ª), Yugoslavia (20ª)
- Non-returning countries: 🇬🇷 Greece (8ª), 🇮🇹 Italy (25ª)
- Vote – Voting system: Each country awarded 12, 10, 8-1 point(s) to their 10 favourite songs.
- Nil Points: —
- Winning song: “J’aime la vie” – Sandra Kim – 🇧🇪 Belgium (1ª)
About. The Norwegian city of Bergen had the honour of hosting the 1986 Eurovision Song Contest which saw Belgium score its first and to date, only victory with Sandra Kim’s “J’Aime La Vie”. For the first time, Norway had the honour of hosting the 31st Eurovision Song Contest. Just like in Munich three years earlier, 20 countries participated in the contest. The Netherlands and Yugoslavia returned, Italy and Greece withdrew from the from the contest and Iceland made its debut. Iceland had wanted to participate for some years but the small Atlantic island nation had to wait until a satellite connection to Iceland could be established. The 1986 Eurovision Song Contest also marked a historic landmark as the 500th Eurovision song was performed in Bergen – Luxembourg’s entry “L’Amour De Ma Vie” by Canadian-born Sherisse Laurence. The presenter of the 1986 Eurovision Song Contest, Åse Kleveland, had already participated as a singer for her home country in 1966 where she was placed 3rd. She had also presented the Norwegian national final in 1980.
Youngest winner ever. The winner of the song contest was the 13-year-old Sandra Kim, who sang “J’Aime La Vie”. She actually had told the producers of the show that she was 15 year old. It was the first win for Belgium, and it meant that all countries that had participated in the very first contest in 1956 had now won at least once.
Facts and figures. Jazz singer Timna Brauer, the daughter of the famous artist Arik Brauer, came 18th for Austria with “Die Zeit Ist Einsam”; Yugoslavia’s singer, Doris Dragovic, would appear 13 years later in the 1999 Jerusalem edition of the song contest, then singing for Croatia and improving her result: she only came 11th in Norway, but would come 4th in 1999; Bergen is the most northerly host city of the Eurovision Song Contest.
|o/r||country||partecipant(s)||song – translatE – LANGUAGE||Points||rank|
|01||🇱🇺 Luxembourg CLT||Sherisse Laurence||L’amour de ma vie (The love of my life) French||117||01|
|02||Yugoslavia JRT||Doris Dragović (Дорис Драговић)||Željo moja (Жељо моја, My desire) Serbo-Croatian||049||11|
|03||🇫🇷 France A2F||Cocktail Chic||Européennes (European girls) French||013||17|
|04||🇳🇴 Norway NRK||Ketil Stokkan||Romeo Norwegian||044||12|
|05||🇬🇧 United Kindom BBC||Ryder||Runner in the night English||072||07|
|06||🇮🇸 Iceland RÚV||ICY||Gleðibankinn (The bank of fun) Icelandic||019||16|
|07||🇳🇱 The Netherlands NOS||Frizzle Sizzle||Alles heeft ritme (Everything has rhythm) Dutch||040||13|
|08||🇹🇷 Turkey TRT||Klips ve Onlar||Halley Turkish [a]||053||09|
|09||🇪🇸 Spain TVE||Cadillac||Valentino Spanish||051||10|
|10||🇨🇭 Switzerland SSR SRG||Daniela Simons||Pas pour moi (Not for me) French||140||02|
|11||🇮🇱 Israel IBA||Moti Giladi & Sarai Tzuriel (מוטי גלעדי ושרי צוריאל)||Yavoh yom (יבוא יום, A day shall come) Hebrew||007||19|
|12||🇮🇪 Ireland RTÉ||Luv Bug||You can count on me English||096||04|
|13||🇧🇪 Belgium RTBF||Sandra Kim||J’aime la vie (I love life) French||176||01|
|14||🇩🇪 Germany ARD||Ingrid Peters||Über die brücke geh’n (Crossing the bridge) German||062||08|
|15||🇨🇾 Cyprus CyBC||Elpida (Ελπίδα)||Tora zo (Τώρα ζω, Now I live) Greek||004||20|
|16||🇦🇹 Austria ÖRF||Timna Brauer||Die Zeit ist einsam (Time is lonely) German||012||18|
|17||🇸🇪 Sweden SVT||Lasse Holm & Monica Törnell||E’ de’ det här du kallar kärlek? (Is this what you call love?) Swedish||078||05|
|18||🇩🇰 Denmark DR||Lise Haavik and Trax||Du er fuld af løgn (You are full of lies) Danish||077||06|
|19||🇫🇮 Finland YLE||Kari Kuivalainen||Never the end [Päivä kahden ihmisen (Day of two people)] Finnish||022||15|
|20||🇵🇹 Portugal RTP||Dora||Não sejas mau para mim (Don’t be bad to me) Portuguese||028||14|
• 🇬🇷 Greece: “Wagon-Lit” (Βαγκόν-Λί) (Greek) – Polina (Πωλίνα). Selected by Greece, having been drawn eighteenth in order of presentation. The reason behind the withdrawal, was that the Eurovision contest coincided with Holy Saturday. Their entry would have been “Wagon-lit” (βάγκον λι) performed by Polina.
Participating countries Countries that participated in the past but not in 1986
The Eurovision Song Contest 1986 was the 31st edition of the annual Eurovision Song Contest. It was held in Bergen, Norway, following the country’s victory at the 1985 contest with the song “La det swinge” by Bobbysocks! Organised by the European Broadcasting Union (EBU) and host broadcaster Norsk rikskringkasting (NRK), the contest was held at Grieghallen on 3 May 1986 and was hosted by previous Norwegian contestant Åse Kleveland.
Twenty countries took part in this years contest with Greece and Italy deciding not to participate and Yugoslavia and Netherlands returning. Iceland also competed for the first time this year.
The winner was Belgium with the song “J’aime la vie” by Sandra Kim. Belgium was the last of the original 7 countries that had competed in the very first contest to win. Aged 13, Kim was the youngest ever Eurovision winner. Current rules require Eurovision Song Contest participants to be at least 16, so unless the rule is changed, Kim’s record will never be broken. In the lyrics of her song, Kim claimed to be 15 years of age, but after the contest, it was revealed that she was actually 13. Switzerland, who finished second, appealed for her to be disqualified, but was not successful.
The 1986 contest was a first for Eurovision in that royalty were among the guests—Crown Prince Harald, Crown Princess Sonja, Princess Märtha Louise and Prince Haakon Magnus were all in attendance.
1.Background. By 1985, Norway had received the unwanted distinction of being “the nul points country,” receiving 0 points three times and coming in last six times. When they finally won the 1985 contest, it was a source of pride among the Norwegian population, and the national broadcaster, NRK, took full advantage of being able to showcase Norway and its achievements in front of over 500 million television viewers. By the autumn of 1985, NRK had decided to hold the next year’s contest at the Grieghallen in Bergen, turning down other bids from capital Oslo, and main cities of Stavanger, Sandnes and Trondheim. Bergen is the northernmost city to have ever hosted the Eurovision Song Contest.
As this was the first time Norway hosted a Eurovision Song Contest, NRK commissioned a lavish budget for the event, turning Grieghallen into a Viking-esque “ice palace” for the live show, complete with white and pastel neon lights for the stage. In addition, NRK also had a special diamond-encrusted dress made for presenter Åse Kleveland for her opening number. The prized dress, which weighed upwards of 15 pounds (6.8 kg), is still available for viewing at NRK’s costuming department at Marienlyst in Oslo.
Åse Kleveland, a well-known folk guitarist who was President of the Norwegian Association of Musicians and a former Eurovision entrant in 1966, sang the multilingual “Welcome to Music” as the opening act, incorporating English and French primarily, in addition to other European languages. BBC commentator Terry Wogan, at the close of Kleveland’s number, dryly remarked, “Katie Boyle (a former Eurovision host for the UK) never sang, did she?”.
During her opening speech, Kleveland said of Norway’s road in the contest, “For those of you who have followed Norway’s course through the history of the Eurovision Song Contest, you will know that it has been quite thorny, in fact. So, imagine our joy when last year we finally won, and the pleasure we feel today, being able to welcome 700 million viewers to the top of Europe, to Norway, and to Bergen.”
The intersong videos introducing each participant, traditionally named ‘postcards’ were for the only time, represented as actual picture postcards sent to each nation. Each video began with clips of various scenic views of a part of Norway, which then ‘flipped’ to reveal a message of greeting, written in the language of the upcoming song, alongside details of the title, author and composer. The postage stamp on each card (a representation of a genuine Norwegian postage stamp) was linked to the theme of the video content. The postcard then ‘flipped’ back to the picture side, where the performing artist had been superimposed onto the image. After the video, Åse Kleveland gave details of the entry and introduced the conductors in a mix of English and French, reading from cards represented by the flag of the upcoming country.
One of the interval acts presented featured Norwegian musicians Sissel Kyrkjebø and Steinar Ofsdal, accompanied by Norwegian national broadcasting orchestra, Kringkastingsorkesteret (KORK). They opened with the traditional song of the city of Bergen, Udsikter fra Ulriken (also known as “Nystemte’n”), and presented a number of familiar tunes while showing the sights and sounds of Bergen area. Ofsdal played a range of traditional Norwegian folk instruments such as accordion, recorder and hardingfele. The presentation launched Kyrkjebø into a career as an internationally recognized artist.
2.Participating countries. Iceland competed for the first time, as the national broadcaster RÚV had finally cemented their satellite television connections with the rest of Europe.
Greece withdrew, having been drawn seventeenth in the running order, as the contest coincided with Holy Saturday. Their entry would have been “Wagon-lit” (βάγκον λι), performed by Polina, who was backing vocalist of Elpida at the 1979 contest, (Elpida represented Cyprus in this year). Italian broadcaster RAI decided not to send any delegation to Bergen. Prior to their withdrawal, they were set to be 18th in the running order between Sweden and Denmark.
2.1.Conductors. Each performance had a conductor who directed the orchestra.
- 🇱🇺 Luxembourg – Rolf Soja
- Yugoslavia – Nikica Kalogjera
- 🇫🇷 France – Jean-Claude Petit
- 🇳🇴 Norway – Egil Monn-Iversen
- 🇬🇧 United Kindom – no conductor
- 🇮🇸 Iceland – Gunnar Þórðarson
- 🇳🇱 The Netherlands – Harry van Hoof
- 🇹🇷 Turkey – Melih Kibar
- 🇪🇸 Spain – Eduardo Leiva
- 🇨🇭 Switzerland – Atilla Şereftuğ
- 🇮🇱 Israel – Yoram Zadok
- 🇮🇪 Ireland – Noel Kelehan
- 🇧🇪 Belgium – Jo Carlier
- 🇩🇪 Germany – Hans Blum
- 🇨🇾 Cyprus – Martyn Ford
- 🇦🇹 Austria – Richard Oesterreicher
- 🇸🇪 Sweden – Anders Berglund
- 🇩🇰 Denmark – Egil Monn-Iversen
- 🇫🇮 Finland – Ossi Runne
- 🇵🇹 Portugal – Colin Frechter
|Elpida||🇨🇾 Cyprus||1979 (for 🇬🇷 Greece)|
2.3.Participants and results.
2.4.All the national selections for Eurovision Song Contest 1986:
• National Selections in 1986:
|🇧🇪 Belgium||Eurovision ’86||Sandra Kim – “J’aime la vie“|
|🇩🇰 Denmark||Melodi Grand Prix 1986||Lise Haavik – “Du er fuld af løgn“|
|🇫🇮 Finland||(Finnish Selection 1986)||Kari Kuivalainen – “Never the End” (Päivä kahden ihmisen)|
|🇫🇷 France||L’Eurovision 1986||Cocktail – “Européennes“|
|🇩🇪 Germany||Ein Lied für Bergen||Ingrid Peters – “Über die Brücke geh’n“|
|🇮🇸 Iceland||Söngvakeppni Sjónvarpsins 1986||ICY – “Gleðibankinn“|
|🇮🇪 Ireland||(Irish Selection 1986)||Luv Bug – “You Can Count On Me”|
|🇮🇱 Israel||Kdam Eurovision 1986||Moti Giladi & Sarai Tzuriel – “Yavo Yom” (יבוא יום)|
|🇳🇱 The Netherlands||Nationaal Songfestival 1986||Frizzle Sizzle – “Alles heeft ritme“|
|🇳🇴 Norway||Melodi Grand Prix 1986||Ketil Stokkan – “Romeo”|
|🇵🇹 Portugal||Festival da Canção 1986||Dora – “Não sejas mau para mim”|
|🇸🇪 Sweden||Melodifestival 1986||Lasse Holm & Monica Törnell – “E’ de’ det här du kallar kärlek?“|
|🇨🇭 Switzerland||Concours Eurovision 1986||Daniela Simmons – “Pas pour moi“|
|🇹🇷 Turkey||Şarkı Yarışması 1986||Klips & Onlar – “Halley”|
|🇬🇧 United Kindom||A Song for Europe 1986||Ryder – “Runner in the Night”|
|Yugoslavia||Jugovizija 1986||Doris Dragović – “Željo moja” (Жељо моја)|
• Internal Selections in 1986:
|🇦🇹 Austria||Timna Brauer – “Die Zeit ist einsam“|
|🇨🇾 Cyprus||Elpida – “Tora zo” (Τώρα ζω)|
|🇱🇺 Luxembourg||Sherisse Laurence – “L’amour de ma vie“|
|🇪🇸 Spain||Cadillac – “Valentino“|
4.Voting. The winning song, Belgium’s “J’aime la vie,” received points from every jury (Belgium received five sets of 12 points; every country awarded Belgium at least five points except for Germany, which gave them just one point). Belgium was the leader in the voting from the results of the second jury out of twenty, in the longest winning stretch during voting since 1974. Switzerland was behind Belgium in nearly every part of the voting, but Belgium had a commanding lead from the very beginning. Traditionally some juries give high points to the host country’s entrant, but this did not happen this year; no jury gave Norway’s song “Romeo” more than six points out of a possible 12.
Belgium scored an absolute record at the time, with Sandra Kim earning a never seen before number of 176 points (that record remained seven years until the 1993 contest, with Ireland scoring 187 points), an average of 9.26 points per voting nation. Kim received 77.2% of the maximum possible score, which, as of 2019, still ranks 8th among all Eurovision winners.
|🇬🇧 United Kindom||72||4||10||6||6||2||4||2||5||2||3||8||8||10||2|
|🇳🇱 The Netherlands||40||1||2||7||1||8||10||1||3||7|
4.1.12 points. Below is a summary of all 12 points in the final:
|N.||Contestant||Nation(s) giving 12 points|
|5||🇧🇪 Belgium||🇫🇮 Finland, 🇫🇷 France, 🇮🇪 Ireland, 🇵🇹 Portugal, 🇹🇷 Turkey|
|🇨🇭 Switzerland||🇧🇪 Belgium, 🇮🇱 Israel, 🇱🇺 Luxembourg, 🇳🇱 The Netherlands, 🇸🇪 Sweden|
|3||🇮🇪 Ireland||🇦🇹 Austria, 🇩🇰 Denmark, 🇪🇸 Spain|
|2||🇱🇺 Luxembourg||🇩🇪 Germany, 🇳🇴 Norway|
|🇸🇪 Sweden||🇮🇸 Iceland , 🇨🇭 Switzerland|
|1||🇩🇪 Germany||🇬🇧 United Kindom|
4.2.Spokespersons. Each country announced their votes in the order of performance. The following is a list of spokespersons who announced the votes for their respective country.
- 🇱🇺 Luxembourg – Frédérique Ries
- Yugoslavia – Enver Petrovci
- 🇫🇷 France – Patricia Lesieur
- 🇳🇴 Norway – Nina Matheson
- 🇬🇧 United Kindom – Colin Berry
- 🇮🇸 Iceland – Guðrún Skúladóttir
- 🇳🇱 The Netherlands – Joop van Zijl
- 🇹🇷 Turkey – Ümit Tunçağ
- 🇪🇸 Spain – Matilde Jarrín
- 🇨🇭 Switzerland – Michel Stocker
- 🇮🇱 Israel – Yitzhak Shim’oni
- 🇮🇪 Ireland – John Skehan
- 🇧🇪 Belgium – Jacques Olivier
- 🇩🇪 Germany – Christoph Deumling
- 🇨🇾 Cyprus – Anna Partelidou
- 🇦🇹 Austria – Tilia Herold
- 🇸🇪 Sweden – Agneta Bolme Börjefors
- 🇩🇰 Denmark – Bent Henius
- 🇫🇮 Finland – Solveig Herlin
- 🇵🇹 Portugal – Margarida Mercês de Melo
5.Broadcasts. National broadcasters were able to send a commentary team to the contest, in order to provide coverage of the contest in their own native language.
|🇦🇹 Austria||FS1||Ernst Grissemann||–|
|Hitradio Ö3||Hans Leitinger|
|🇧🇪 Belgium||RTBF1||French: Patrick Duhamel||–|
|BRT TV1||Dutch: Luc Appermont||–|
|RTBF La Première||French: Jacques Mercier||–|
|BRT Radio 2||Dutch: Julien Put and Herwig Haes|
|🇨🇾 Cyprus||RIK||Neophytos Taliotis||–|
|RIK Deftero||Pavlos Pavlou|
|🇩🇰 Denmark||DR TV||Jørgen de Mylius||–|
|DR P3||Poul Birch Eriksen|
|🇫🇮 Finland||YLE TV1||Heikki Harma and Kari Lumikero||–|
|🇫🇷 France||Antenne 2||Patrice Laffont||–|
|France Inter||Julien Lepers|
|🇩🇪 Germany||Erstes Deutsches Fernsehen||Ado Schlier||–|
|Deutschlandfunk/NDR Radio 2||Peter Urban|
|🇮🇸 Iceland||Sjónvarpið||Þorgeir Ástvaldsson||–|
|🇮🇪 Ireland||RTÉ 1||Brendan Balfe|
|RTÉ Radio 1||Larry Gogan|
|🇮🇱 Israel||Israeli Television||No commentator|
|Reshet Gimel||Daniel Pe’er|
|🇱🇺 Luxembourg||RTL Télévision||Valérie Sarn||–|
|RTL plus||Matthias Krings|
|🇳🇱 The Netherlands||Nederland 1||Leo van der Goot||–|
|🇳🇴 Norway||NRK||Knut Bjørnsen||–|
|NRK P1||Erik Diesen and Sverre Christophersen|
|🇵🇹 Portugal||RTP1||Fialho Gouveia||–|
|🇪🇸 Spain||TVE 2||Antonio Gómez Mateo||–|
|🇸🇪 Sweden||TV1||Ulf Elfving||–|
|SR P3||Jacob Dahlin||–|
|🇨🇭 Switzerland||TV DRS||German: Bernard Thurnheer|
|TSR||French: Serge Moisson|
|TSI||Italian: Ezio Guidi|
|🇹🇷 Turkey||TRT||Gülgün Baysal||–|
|TRT Radyo 3||Fatih Orbay and Bülent Osma|
|🇬🇧 United Kindom||BBC1||Terry Wogan||–|
|BBC Radio 2||Ray Moore||–|
|Yugoslavia||TVB 1||Serbo-Croatian: Mladen Popović|
|TVZ 1||Serbo-Croatian: Ksenija Urličić|
|TVL 1||Slovene: Miša Molk|
|🇦🇺 AUSTRALIA||SBS TV||Unknown|
|🇬🇷 Greece||ERT||Mako Georgiadou|
|🇭🇺 Hungary||MTV1||István Vágó|
- [a] Contains some words in English, French, and Italian.
7.Trivial / Fun facts.
- The 1986 Eurovision Song Contest also marked a historic landmark as the 500th Eurovision song was performed in Bergen.
- Jazz singer Timna Brauer, the daughter of the famous artist Arik Brauer, only came 18th with her Austrian entry.
- Yugoslavia’s singer, Doris Dragovic, would appear 13 years later in the 1999 edition, singing for Croatia.
- Dragovic improved her result: she only came 11th in Norway, but 4th in 1999.
← Eurovision Song Contest 1985 • Eurovision Song Contest 1986 • Eurovision Song Contest 1987 →
Countries (in order of appearance)
|Final||Luxembourg ⦁ Yugoslavia ⦁ France ⦁ Norway ⦁ United Kingdom ⦁ Iceland ⦁ The Netherlands ⦁ Turkey ⦁ Spain ⦁ Switzerland • Israel ⦁ Ireland ⦁ Belgium (winner) ⦁ Germany • Cyprus • Austria ⦁ Sweden ⦁ Denmark • Finland ⦁ Portugal|
Artists (in order of appearance)
|Final||Sherisse Laurence ⦁ Doris Dragović ⦁ Cocktail Chic ⦁ Ketil Stokkan ⦁ Ryder ⦁ ICY ⦁ Frizzle Sizzle ⦁ Klips ve Onlar ⦁ Cadillac ⦁ Daniela Simons ⦁ Moti Giladi and Sarai Tzuriel • Luv Bug ⦁ Sandra Kim (winner) ⦁ Ingrid Peters ⦁ Elpida • Timna Brauer ⦁ Lasse Holm and Monica Törnell ⦁ Lise Haavik ⦁ Kari Kuivalainen ⦁ Dora|
Songs (in order of appearance)
|Final||“L’amour de ma vie” ⦁ “Željo moja” (Жељо моја) ⦁ “Européennes” ⦁ “Romeo” ⦁ “Runner in the Night” ⦁ “Gleðibankinn” ⦁ “Alles heeft ritme” ⦁ “Halley” ⦁ “Valentino” ⦁ “Pas pour moi” ⦁ “Yavo Yom” (יבוא יום) • “You Can Count On Me” ⦁ “J’aime la vie” (winner) ⦁ “Über die Brücke geh’n” ⦁ “Tora zo” (Τώρα ζω) • “Die Zeit ist einsam” • “E’ de’ det här du kallar kärlek?” • “Du er fuld af løgn” • “Never the End” ⦁ “Não sejas mau para mim“|
|Non-participating entries: Greece: Polina (Πωλίνα) – “Wagon-Lit” (Βαγκόν-Λί)|