- Dates – Grand Final: Saturday, 05 March 1966 – 20:00 CET
- Host – Venue & Location: Grand Auditorium de RTL, Villa Louvigny, Luxembourg, 🇱🇺 Luxembourg
- Presenter (s): Josiane Shen
- Musical Director: Jean Roderès
- Director: Jos Pauly, René Steichen
- Executive Producer: Clifford Brown
- Executive Supervisor: —
- Multicamera Director: —
- Host broadcaster: Compagnie Luxembourgeoise de Télédiffusion (CLT)
- Interval Act: Les Haricots Rouges
- Participants – Number of entries: 18 [🇧🇪 Belgium (11ª), 🇫🇷 France (11ª), 🇩🇪 Germany (11ª), 🇮🇹 Italy (11ª), 🇳🇱 The Netherlands (11ª), 🇨🇭 Switzerland (11ª), 🇦🇹 Austria (10ª), 🇩🇰 Denmark (10ª), 🇬🇧 United Kindom (9ª), 🇲🇨 Monaco (8ª), 🇱🇺 Luxembourg (10ª), 🇳🇴 Norway (7ª), 🇫🇮 Finland (6ª), 🇪🇸 Spain (6ª), Yugoslavia (6ª), 🇵🇹 Portugal (3ª), 🇮🇪 Ireland (2ª), 🇸🇪 Sweden (8ª)]
- Debuting countries: —
- Return: —
- Non-returning countries: —
- Vote – Voting system: Ten-member juries awarded points (5, 3 and 1) to their three favourite songs.
- Nil Points: 🇮🇹 Italy (1ª), Monaco (1ª).
- Winning song: “Merci, Chérie” – Udo Jürgens – 🇦🇹 Austria (1ª)
About. Once again, the Grand Duchy of Luxembourg had the honour of staging Europe’s most important musical contest and for the first time, a song in German managed to win the trophy.
New rules introduced. The capital city of Luxembourg was the home of the 11th Eurovision Song Contest. The rules for the contest were changed and national juries could include music experts again. The major change was that a rule was introduced stipulating that songs had to be performed in one of the official languages of the participating country. During the dress rehearsal, the Italian participant Domenico Modugno was not satisfied with the orchestra and left the stage in anger. It was uncertain if he was going to perform during the live show, but he sang his song “Dio Come Ti Amo” after all. The song later became a huge success in South America for Gigliola Cinquetti, the winner of the 1964 Eurovision Song Contest.
Austria wins. The Austrian participant Udo Jürgens participated in the Eurovision Song Contest for the third consecutive time and finally, he managed to score the first ever victory for his native country with the song “Merci Chérie”. Udo later became one of the most-loved artists in the German-speaking countries.
Facts & figures. Future song contest hosts Lill Lindfors and Åse Kleveland took part in this contest as singers, finishing 2nd and 3rd respectively. In her performance, Åse ignored tradition and was the first woman not to wear a dress in the Eurovision Song Contest; Dutch representative Milly Scott became the first black singer to take part in the contest.
|o/r||country||participant (s)||song – translate – language||Points||runk|
|01||🇩🇪 Germany ARD||Margot Eskens||Die zeiger der uhr (The hands of the clock) German||007||10|
|02||🇩🇰 Denmark DR||Ulla Pia||Stop, mens legen er go (Stop while the going’s good) Danish||004||14|
|03||🇧🇪 Belgium RTB||Tonia||Un peu de poivre, un peu de sel (A bit of pepper, a bit of salt) French||014||04|
|04||🇱🇺 Luxembourg CLT||Michèle Torr||Ce soir je t’attendais (Tonight, I waited for you) French||007||10|
|05||Yugoslavia JRT||Berta Ambrož (Берта Амброж)||Brez besed (Without words) Slovene||009||07|
|06||🇳🇴 Norway NRK||Åse Kleveland||Intet er nytt under solen (Nothing is new under the sun) Norwegian||015||03|
|07||🇫🇮 Finland YLE||Ann-Christine Nyström||Playboy Finnish||007||10|
|08||🇵🇹 Portugal RTP||Madalena Iglésias||Ele e ela (He and she) Portuguese
|09||🇦🇹 Austria ÖRF||Udo Jürgens||Merci chérie (Thank you, darling) German [a]||031||01|
|10||🇸🇪 Sweden SR||Lill Lindfors & Svante Thuresson||Nygammal vals (New, yet familiar, waltz) Swedish||016||02|
|11||🇪🇸 Spain TVE||Raphael||Yo soy aquél (I’m that one) Spanish||009||07|
|12||🇨🇭 Switzerland SSR SRG||Madeleine Pascal||Ne vois-tu pas? (Don’t you see?) French||012||06|
|13||🇲🇨 Monaco TMC||Tereza (Tereza Kesovija)||Bien plus fort (Much Stronger) French||000||17|
|14||🇮🇹 Italy RAI||Domenico Modugno||Dio, come ti amo (God, how I love you) Italian||000||17|
|15||🇫🇷 France ORTF||Dominique Walter||Chez nous (By us) French||001||16|
|16||🇳🇱 The Netherlands NOS||Milly Scott||Fernando en Philippo (Fernando and Filippo) Dutch||000||15|
|17||🇮🇪 Ireland RÉ||Dickie Rock||Come back to stay English||014||04|
|18||🇬🇧 United Kindom BBC||Kenneth McKellar||A man without love English||008||09|
The Eurovision Song Contest 1966 was the 11th edition of the annual Eurovision Song Contest. It took place in Luxembourg City, Luxembourg, following the country’s victory at the 1965 contest with the song “Poupée de cire, poupée de son” by France Gall. Organised by the European Broadcasting Union (EBU) and host broadcaster Compagnie Luxembourgeoise de Télédiffusion (CLT), the contest was held at the Villa Louvigny on Saturday 5 March 1966 and was hosted by Luxembourgish television presenter Josiane Chen.
Eighteen countries participated in the contest, the same that had competed the year before.
The winner was Austria with the song “Merci, Chérie”, performed and composed by Udo Jürgens, and written by Jürgens and Thomas Hörbiger. This was Udo Jürgens third consecutive entry in the contest, finally managing to score a victory for his native country Austria. Austria would not go on to win again until the 2014 edition. This was also the first winning song to be performed in German. The contest is also noted for its historic results for several countries. Austria who came first, Sweden who came second, Norway who came third and Belgium who came fourth all achieved their best results up until then, some of which would stand for several decades. In contrast traditional Eurovision heavyweights up to that point such as France, United Kingdom and Italy all achieved their worst result by far up till that point, with the general public in the aforementioned countries meeting these results with a degree of consternation.
The rule stating that a country could only sing in any of its national languages was originally created this year, possibly due to the 1965 edition’s Swedish entry which was sung in English.
1.Location. The 1966 Eurovision Song Contest was hosted in Luxembourg City. The venue chosen to host the 1966 contest was the Villa Louvigny, which was also the venue for the 1962 edition. The building served as the headquarters of Compagnie Luxembourgeoise de Télédiffusion, the forerunner of RTL Group. It is located in Municipal Park, in the Ville Hautequarter of the centre of the city.
2.Format. A new change in rules was introduced this year, allowing music experts to be present in the juries again. 1966 also marked the year the first ever black singer graced the Eurovision stage, Milly Scott representing the Netherlands. She was also the first singer to use a portable microphone.
This year’s voting was also characterised with numerous cases of “neighbourly” or “bloc” voting – a problem that would plague the contest in many future decades. Sweden for example received all its 16 points, bar one, from its Nordic neighbours – as did Finland. Denmark likewise received all its points from Nordic nations. The voting of the Nordic countries was met with booing from the Luxembourg audience. Portugal and its sole neighbour Spain exchanged maximum five points, with Switzerland and Austria – also two countries neighbouring each other – doing likewise. France was spared the indignity of no points from its micro-state neighbour Monaco. Ireland awarded maximum points to its culturally closest neighbour the United Kingdom with Netherlands doing the same for Belgium.
During the voting process, the presenter (Josiane Chen) accidentally greeted United Kingdom by saying “Good night London”. She then realized her mistake and said “Good evening, London”. Afterwards Michael Aspel, who was the spokesperson for the United Kingdom at the time, responded by saying “Good morning, Luxembourg” prompting laughter from Josiane and the audience.
3.Participating countries. All countries who had participated in the 1965 contest returned for a second consecutive year.
3.1.Conductors. Each performance had a conductor who was maestro of the orchestra.
- 🇩🇪 Germany – Willy Berking
- 🇩🇰 Denmark – Arne Lamberth
- 🇧🇪 Belgium – Jean Roderès
- 🇱🇺 Luxembourg – Jean Roderès
- Yugoslavia – Mojmir Sepe
- 🇳🇴 Norway – Øivind Bergh
- 🇫🇮 Finland – Ossi Runne
- 🇵🇹 Portugal – Jorge Costa Pinto
- 🇦🇹 Austria – Hans Hammerschmid
- 🇸🇪 Sweden – Gert-Ove Andersson
- 🇪🇸 Spain – Rafael Ibarbia
- 🇨🇭 Switzerland – Jean Roderès
- 🇲🇨 Monaco – Alain Goraguer
- 🇮🇹 Italy – Angelo Giacomazzi
- 🇫🇷 France – Franck Pourcel
- 🇳🇱 The Netherlands – Dolf van der Linden
- 🇮🇪 Ireland – Noel Kelehan
- 🇬🇧 United Kindom – Harry Rabinowitz
|Domenico Modugno||🇮🇹 Italy||1958, 1959|
|Udo Jürgens||🇦🇹 Austria||1964, 1965|
3.3.Participants and results.
3.4.All the national selections for Eurovision Song Contest 1966:
• National Selections in 1966:
|🇧🇪 Belgium||Eurosong 1966 (song selection) [b]||Tonia – “Un peu de poivre, un peu de sel”|
|🇩🇰 Denmark||Melodi Grand Prix 1966||Ulla Pia – “Stop – mens legen er go’“|
|🇫🇮 Finland||(Finnish Selection 1966)||Ann-Christine Nyström – “Playboy”|
|🇮🇪 Ireland||(Irish Selection 1966)||Dickie Rock – “Come Back to Stay”|
|🇮🇹 Italy||Sanremo 1966||Domenico Modugno – “Dio, come ti amo“|
|🇳🇱 The Netherlands||Nationaal Songfestival 1966||Milly Scott – “Fernando en Filippo“|
|🇳🇴 Norway||Melodi Grand Prix 1966||Åse Kleveland – “Intet er nytt under solen“|
|🇵🇹 Portugal||Grande Prémio TV da Canção 1966||Madalena Iglésias – “Ele e ela“|
|🇸🇪 Sweden||Svensk Sångfestival 1966||Lill Lindfors & Svante Thuresson – “Nygammal vals“|
|🇨🇭 Switzerland||Concours Eurovision 1966||Madeleine Pascal – “Ne vois-tu pas ?“|
|🇬🇧 United Kindom||A Song for Europe 1966 (song selection) [c]||Kenneth McKellar – “A Man Without Love”|
|Yugoslavia||Jugovizija 1966||Berta Ambrož – “Brez besed“|
• Internal Selections in 1966:
|🇦🇹 Austria||Udo Jürgens – “Merci, Chérie“|
|🇫🇷 France||Dominique Walter – “Chez nous“|
|🇩🇪 Germany||Margot Eskens – “Die Zeiger der Uhr“|
|🇱🇺 Luxembourg||Michèle Torr – “Ce soir je t’attendais“|
|🇲🇨 Monaco||Téréza – “Bien plus fort“|
|🇪🇸 Spain||Raphael – “Yo soy aquél“|
|🇳🇱 The Netherlands||2||1||1|
|🇬🇧 United Kindom||8||3||5|
4.1.5 points. Below is a summary of all 5 points in the final:
|N.||Contestant||Nation(s) giving 5 points|
|4||🇦🇹 Austria||🇧🇪 Belgium [a], 🇱🇺 Luxembourg, 🇲🇨 Monaco, Yugoslavia|
|3||🇸🇪 Sweden||🇩🇰 Denmark, 🇫🇮 Finland, 🇳🇴 Norway|
|2||🇧🇪 Belgium||🇩🇪 Germany, 🇳🇱 The Netherlands|
|1||🇩🇪 Germany||🇨🇭 Switzerland|
|🇮🇪 Ireland||🇫🇷 France|
|🇱🇺 Luxembourg||🇸🇪 Sweden|
|🇳🇴 Norway||🇮🇹 Italy|
|🇵🇹 Portugal||🇪🇸 Spain|
|🇪🇸 Spain||🇵🇹 Portugal|
|🇨🇭 Switzerland||🇦🇹 Austria|
|🇬🇧 United Kindom||🇮🇪 Ireland|
|Yugoslavia||🇬🇧 United Kindom|
4.2.Spokespersons. Listed below is the order in which votes were cast during the 1966 contest along with the spokesperson who was responsible for announcing the votes for their respective country.
- 🇩🇪 Germany – Werner Veigel
- 🇩🇰 Denmark – Claus Toksvig
- 🇧🇪 Belgium – André Hagon
- 🇱🇺 Luxembourg – Camillo Felgen (Luxembourgish representative in 1960 and 1962)
- Yugoslavia – Dragana Marković
- 🇳🇴 Norway – Erik Diesen
- 🇫🇮 Finland – Poppe Berg
- 🇵🇹 Portugal – Maria Manuela Furtado
- 🇦🇹 Austria – Walter Richard Langer
- 🇸🇪 Sweden – Edvard Matz
- 🇪🇸 Spain – Margarita Nicola
- 🇨🇭 Switzerland – Alexandre Burger
- 🇲🇨 Monaco – TBC
- 🇮🇹 Italy – Enzo Tortora
- 🇫🇷 France – Jean-Claude Massoulier
- 🇳🇱 The Netherlands – Herman Brouwer
- 🇮🇪 Ireland – Frank Hall
- 🇬🇧 United Kindom – Michael Aspel
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.
|🇦🇹 Austria||ÖRF||Willy Kralik|
|🇧🇪 Belgium||RTB||French: Paule Herreman|
|BRT||Dutch: Herman Verelst|
|🇩🇰 Denmark||DR TV||Skat Nørrevig|
|🇫🇮 Finland||TV-ohjelma 1, Yleisohjelma||Aarno Walli|
|🇫🇷 France||Première Chaîne ORTF||François Deguelt||–|
|🇩🇪 Germany||Deutsches Fernsehen||Hans-Joachim Rauschenbach|
|🇮🇪 Ireland||Telefís Éireann||Brendan O’Reilly|
|Radió Éireann||Kevin Roche|
|🇮🇹 Italy||Secondo Programma||Piero Angela|
|🇱🇺 Luxembourg||Télé-Luxembourg||Jacques Navadic||–|
|🇲🇨 Monaco||Télé Monte Carlo||François Deguelt|
|🇳🇱 The Netherlands||Nederland 1||Teddy Scholten||–|
|🇳🇴 Norway||NRK, NRK P1||Sverre Christophersen|
|🇵🇹 Portugal||RTP||Henrique Mendes|
|🇪🇸 Spain||TVE||Federico Gallo|
|🇸🇪 Sweden||Sveriges TV, SR P1||Sven Lindahl||–|
|🇨🇭 Switzerland||TV DRS||German: Theodor Haller|
|TSR||French: Georges Hardy|
|TSI||Italian: Giovanni Bertini|
|🇬🇧 United Kindom||BBC1||David Jacobs||–|
|BBC Light Programme||John Dunn|
|Yugoslavia||Televizija Beograd||Serbo-Croatian: Miloje Orlović|
|Televizija Zagreb||Serbo-Croatian: Mladen Delić|
|Televizija Ljubljana||Slovene: Tomaž Terček|
|East Germany||Deutscher Fernsehfunk||Unknown||–|
|Soviet Union||CT USSR||Igor Kirillov||–|
6.1.Italian song arrangement. This was one of the first contests in which an entry was not accompanied by an orchestra. The Italian entry “Dio, come ti amo” performed by Domenico Modugno had been rearranged since its performance at the Sanremo Music Festival and officially broke the EBU rule that stated the arrangement should be finalised well in advance. During the Saturday afternoon rehearsal Modugno performed the new arrangement with three of his own musicians as opposed to the orchestra, which went over the three-minute time limit. Following his rehearsal Modugno was confronted by the show’s producers about exceeding the time limit and was asked to use the original arrangement with the orchestra. Modugno was so dissatisfied with the orchestra that he threatened to withdraw from the contest. Both the producers and EBU scrutineer Clifford Brown felt it was too short notice to fly Gigliola Cinquetti to Luxembourg to represent Italy, so the EBU gave in and allowed Modugno to use his own ensemble instead of the orchestra. Despite websites and the official programme listing Angelo Giacomazzi as the conductor, Giacomazzi actually played the piano for the entry.
- [a] The song also contains phrases in French.
- [b] Tonia was internally selected to represent Belgium at Eurovision 1966. The song “Un peu de poivre, un peu de sel” that Tonia performed at Eurovision was selected through a national final with four songs.
- [c] Kenneth McKellar was internally selected to represent United Kingdom at Eurovision 1966. McKellar performed all six songs on the show A Song for Europe 1966, and the public could vote via postcards. The result was announced one week later.
7.Trivial / Fun facts.
- Dutch representative Milly Scott became the first black singer to take part in the contest.
- For the first time, a song in German managed to get the trophy.
← Eurovision Song Contest 1965 • Eurovision Song Contest 1966 • Eurovision Song Contest 1967 →
Countries (in order of appearance)
|Final||Germany ⦁ Denmark ⦁ Belgium ⦁ Luxembourg ⦁ Yugoslavia ⦁ Norway ⦁ Finland ⦁ Portugal ⦁ Austria (winner) ⦁ Sweden • Spain ⦁ Switzerland ⦁ Monaco ⦁ Italy ⦁ France ⦁ The Netherlands • Ireland • United Kingdom|
Artists (in order of appearance)
|Final||Margot Eskens ⦁ Ulla Pia ⦁ Tonia ⦁ Michèle Torr ⦁ Berta Ambrož ⦁ Åse Kleveland ⦁ Ann-Christine Nyström ⦁ Madalena Iglésias ⦁ Udo Jürgens (winner) ⦁ Lill Lindfors and Svante Thuresson • Raphael • Madeleine Pascal ⦁ Téréza ⦁ Domenico Modugno ⦁ Dominique Walter ⦁ Milly Scott ⦁ Dickie Rock • Kenneth McKellar|
Songs (in order of appearance)
|Final||“Die Zeiger der Uhr” ⦁ “Stop – mens legen er go’” ⦁ “Un peu de poivre, un peu de sel” ⦁ “Ce soir je t’attendais” ⦁ “Brez besed” ⦁ “Intet er nytt under solen” ⦁ “Playboy” ⦁ “Ele e ela” ⦁ “Merci, Chérie” (winner) ⦁ “Nygammal vals” ⦁ “Yo soy aquél” • “Ne vois-tu pas ?” ⦁ “Bien plus fort” ⦁ “Dio, come ti amo” ⦁ “Chez nous” ⦁ “Fernando en Filippo” ⦁ “Come Back to Stay” • “A Man Without Love”|