Denmark in the Eurovision Song Contest
Denmark made its debut in the contest in 1957. The country won its first Eurovision in 1963 with the song “Dansevise” performed by Grethe & Jørgen Ingmann. Denmark took a hiatus from the contest between 1966 and 1978 due to poor results and disagreement with the voting structure. After their return, it took a while but in 2000 the Olsen Brothers got to first place with “Fly On The Wings Of Love”. In 2013, the third Danish win was there: Emmelie De Forest sang “Only Teardrops”.
Photo credits: Robin Skjoldborg
To select its entries for Eurovision, Denmark holds an annual national selection called Dansk Melodi Grand Prix. In 2013, it was held in the Jyske Bank Boxen in Herning on 26 January. The show was hosted by Lise Rønne, Louise Wolff and Sofie Lassen-Kahlke. The 10 competing songs were:
- “Jeg har hele tiden vidst det“, sung by Frederikke Vedel
- “Human“, sung by Brinck
- “I’m not alone“, sung by Kate Hall
- “Rejs dig op“, sung by Louise Dubiel
- “We own the universe“, sung by Daze
- “Stay awake“, sung by Simone
- “Invincible“, sung by Jack Rowan feat. Sam Gray
- “Only teardrops“, sung by Emmelie De Forest
- “Beautiful to me“, sung by Albin
- “Unbreakable“, sung by Mohamed Ali
In a superfinal, 3 songs came out:
- “Stay awake”, sung by Simone (15 pts., 3rd)
- “Only teardrops”, sung by Emmelie De Forest (26 pts., 1st)
- “Unbreakable”, sung by Mohamed Ali (19 pts., 2nd)
Photo credits: Albin Olsson
Emmelie De Forest
Emmelie Charlotte-Victoria de Forest, born on 28 February 1993 in Randers, Denmark, has music in her blood, claiming descent from Queen Victoria of the UK. With a Swedish father and Danish mother, her multicultural roots have influenced her musical journey. Starting her singing career at a tender age, Emmelie found her passion in jazz classics from the 1930s and 1940s, performing in local festivals by the age of 14.
Her moment of international recognition came in 2013 when she represented Denmark at the Eurovision Song Contest with her song “Only Teardrops.” Winning the competition, Emmelie became a sensation not only in Denmark but throughout Europe. This triumph was followed by her debut album of the same name and numerous tours across the continent.
Further establishing her Eurovision legacy, Emmelie introduced “Rainmaker” in 2014, which became the official anthem for the Eurovision Song Contest the following year. Her commitment to music continued with her sophomore album and various singles. After parting ways with Universal Music Group in 2015, she joined Cosmos Music and shifted her focus to songwriting. Her lyrical contributions graced multiple Eurovision stages, including penning Lucie Jones’ “Never Give Up on You” in 2017.
By 2018, Emmelie released her second album “History.” Her most recent endeavors include launching “Typical Love Song” in 2021 and making an appearance in the short film “Text Me When You Get Home.” Emmelie’s journey from a local festival singer to an international sensation underscores her enduring impact in the music industry.
The song combines a pop melody with folky undertones, particularly noticeable with the inclusion of the flute. Its catchy chorus and emotive lyrics discuss the complexities of love and conflict, suggesting that both love and understanding can be the solution to disputes.
At the Eurovision contest, “Only Teardrops” stood out both in terms of its melodic appeal and Emmelie’s spirited performance. Garnering a total of 281 points, the song allowed Denmark to clinch the Eurovision victory that year. Emmelie’s barefoot performance added a unique touch and became one of the memorable moments from the contest. After its Eurovision win, “Only Teardrops” became a hit across Europe, charting in multiple countries.