Portugal always manage to deliver a sense of class and elegance with their Festival da Canção submissions since debuting in 1964. The festival will once again go ahead in 2021 without 2020 winner Elisa (who won with Medo de sentir last year) submitting an entry. You can hear all twenty submissions above and we’ve included the Semi-Final line-ups below.
Five artists in each semi-final will qualify to a grand final based on televote and jury scores making a 50/50 split. These acts will face-off on the 6th of March 2021 in the finale hosted by Filomena Cautela and Vasco Palmeirim.
See our highlights of the 2021 entrants below:
NEEV “Dancing in the Stars”
This track from multi-instrumentalist NEEV is a rare English language entry in the contest. The tender track which appears to deal with the subject of loss sees NEEV sing: “Now you’re dancing in the stars above us and I’m still here singing for you…and they tell me I’ll be ok but I don’t know” against delicate piano-centred production.
mema. “Claro como água”
Translating to English as Clear As Water, Claro como água is a dramatic Portuguese entry. The track incorporates elements of Portuguese traditional music into its ethereal and atmospheric production, combining them with minimalist electronic sounds.
Miguel Marôco “Girassol”
With classic guitar sounds drawing us in, Girassol by Miguel Marôco has flavours of classic swinging sixties pop yet Miguel’s vocal delivery helps the track feel contemporary. The title translates to Sunflower, something that delivers traditional wholesome pop imagery and promises some enticing, original staging.
Nadine “Cheguei Aqui”
Translating as Got Here, Nadine delivers an evocative vocal showcase on the dramatic and heartfelt Cheguei Aqui. Her voice, a rich emotional tapestry, sells the track with true conviction, shining atop guitar and piano led production. This is a gorgeous number.
The Black Mamba “Love Is On My Side”
Another elegant pop number here. The Black Mamba, deliver a soulful treat with Love Is On My Side. Echoing vintage soul vibes in the grandiose production – Love Is On My Side feels like an already established pop classic.
Da Chick “I Got Music”
Da Chick delivers a slick disco-influenced entry with I Got Music. She notes that she is continually: “mutating in search of freedom and new ways to express her vision and creativity,” and what better way to express herself as an artist than to enter Festival da Canção. The singer is fresh from releasing 2020 album ‘conversations with the beat’.
Graciela “A vida sem acontecer”
Graciela’s track A vida sem acontecer translates as Life Without Happening and immediately struck us with the singer’s airy and dream-like vocals rippling against the quiet bubbling synth-production. It’s a beautifully enigmatic entry that presents a truly danceable groove as it progresses.
Pedro Gonçalves “Não vou ficar“
Translating as I Will Not Say this suave number gradually incorporates traditional pop elements, soaring as an uplifting mid-tempo. Pedro’s gentle vocals shine against the rousing production with slight electronic elements coming into effect in the backdrop.
You can see the full running order of the Semi-Finals below:
- Nadine “Cheguei Aqui”
- Fábia Maia “Dia Lindo”
- Sara Afonso “Contramão”
- Valéria “Na mais profunda saudade”
- IAN “Mundo”
- Irma “Livros
- Karetus, Romeu Bairos “Saudade”
- Miguel Marôco “Girassol”
- mema. “Claro como água”
- The Black Mamba “Love is On My Side”
- Carolina Deslandes “Por Um Triz”
- Da Chick “I Got Music”
- Joana Alegre “Joana do Mar”
- Graciela “A vida sem acontecer”
- Neev “Dancing in the Stars”
- EU.CLIDES “Volte-Face” (Pedro da Linha)
- Pedro Gonçalves “Não vou ficar”
- Tainá “Jasmim”
- Ariana “Mundo Melhor” (Virgul)
- Ana Tereza “Com Um Abraço” (Viviane)