Wonderful Copenhagen gets Eurovision lifeline

The Capital Region will give the tourist organisation a one-time payment to help cover its debts. Meanwhile, regional politicians say they haven't been given the truth by chairwoman Sophie Hæstorp Andersen.

Wonderful Copenhagen gets Eurovision lifeline
Photo: Jonathan Nackstrand/Scanpix
Local politicians decided on Tuesday to loan 46 million kroner ($8.2 million) to Wonderful Copenhagen to allow the tourist organisation to cover its budget shortfall as a result of massive overspending on the Eurovision Song Contest
The one-time payment will be paid back to the Capital Region (Region Hovedstaden) by way of a reduction in future support, a move that industry representatives fear will negatively impact tourism in Copenhagen
The region gives 41 million kroner ($7.3 million) a year to Wonderful Copenhagen, which will now be cut to make up for the loan.
Projektselskabet, a temporary company created by Wonderful Copenhagen to put on Eurovision, overshot its budget by some 76 million kroner ($13.6 million) and is 58 million kroner ($10.4 million) in debt. The organisation said it would cover the remaining 12 million kroner itself following Capital Region’s loan. 
According to an internal Projektselskabet obtained by Metroxpress, Capital Region chairwoman Sophie Hæstorp Andersen was made aware of the budget problems on May 21st but did not convey the seriousness of the situation further to other regional politicians. 
That allegation did not sit well with Capital Region executive committee member Kenneth Kristensen Berth of the Danish People’s Party. 
“I’m very upset about this. It seems like the members of the executive committee have been jerked around by a board of directors and a regional chairwoman who have not told the truth. I frankly find that quite alarming,” Berth told Metroxpress.
Susanne Langer of the Red-Green Alliance (Enhedslisten) said she would demand an “explanation of who knew what and when”.
“Every day there has been a new explanation. That in itself is very troubling. We have been given numerous explanations as to what to expect in terms of overspending, deficits and so on,” she told Metroxpress prior to Tuesday’s regional meeting. 
Langer and Endhedslisten’s four other regional board members were the only ones to vote against giving Wonderful Copenhagen the 46 million kroner cash injection. 

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Is Denmark’s Eurovision entry a rip-off?

Danes on Friday night voted for the song they wanted to represent them at this summer’s Eurovision contest. But before the euphoria even wore off, the winning entry was accused of being a rip-off of a smash hit German pop song.

Is Denmark's Eurovision entry a rip-off?
Lighthouse X will represent Denmark at Eurovision with the song 'Soldiers of Love'. Photo: Henning Bagger/Scanpix
The Danish trio Lighthouse X won Friday’s Melodi Grand Prix with the song ‘Soldiers of Love’. With 42 percent of viewers’ votes, the winners should have spent the next few days basking in glory before preparing to represent the nation in Stockholm this summer.
Instead, social media users began pointing out that the song performed by Johannes Nymark, Søren Bregendal and Martin Skriver sounded an awful lot like German pop superstar Helene Fischer’s ‘Atemlos durch die Nacht’ hit from 2013. 
Lighthouse X flatly denies being inspired by the German track. 
“We are not, because none of us know that song,” the group told tabloid BT. 
Two music experts came to the Danish group’s defence – sort of. 
Producer Chief 1 acknowledged that the two songs sound familiar but said it was likely “just a coincidence”. 
“We don’t have so many tones in the pop palette, so you can’t avoid touching on something else in this universe,” he told TV2. “I really don’t think the people behind this song sit around listening to bad German schlager to find inspiration.” 
The head of the official Melodi Grand Prix fan club also said the two songs are very similar but not close enough to qualify as pure plagiarism. 
“I’ll admit that when you hear Helene Fischer’s song, the chorus sounds a lot like the Danish winning song. But otherwise the songs are quite different and I have a hard time believing that EBU [the European Broadcasting Union, which produces the Eurovision Song Contest, ed.] would threaten to disqualify it based on this,” Johann Sørensen said. 
So, is the Danish song a rip-off of the German? Listen to them both below and judge for yourself.