Amber battles her way to the top of the Eurovision crop

Amber wowed the crowds at the Marsa Shipbuilding last night, winning the Malta Eurovision Song Contest with fan-favourite power ballad Warrior. 

Amber raked in 72 combined points to win last night’s contest. Photo by
Amber raked in 72 combined points to win last night’s contest. Photo by

Amber has won Saturday night’s final with her compelling performance of the power ballad Warrior. The win comes after she received the most combined points (72) from both the public’s televoting as well as the jury members. All five members of the jury awarded her 12 points, as did the votes of the viewers back home. Christabelle Borg placed 2nd while Glen Vella took the 3rd place.

Flanked by writer Matt (Muxu) Mercieca and composer Elton Zahra, an emotional Amber took to the stage to once again perform her winning song. The duo behind Warrior are no strangers to Eurovision success after having worked together on Gaia’s The Start which won the Junior Eurovision in Kiev just last year. They also penned Federica’s Diamonds and last night’s runner up Rush.

Saturday night’s show opened with Conchita Wurst, the bearded-Bond girl and last year’s controversial winner, who took to the stage to belt out her winning anthem Rise like a Phoenix. After all the acts were done, she returned to perform her new single: Heroes.

Hosted by Lyona Xuereb and Daniel Chircop, Saturday night’s final was held at the newly renovated Marsa Shipbuilding. In true Eurovision style the presenters attempted to enthuse the crowd between performances with a series of jokes that almost always fell flat. However not all Eurovision traditions were upheld, with Lyona only undergoing one costume change towards the end of the show.

Last year’s winners of the Malta Eurovision Song contest Firelight also performed on the night. Starting with Coming Home (the song that took them to Copenhagen earlier this year), the band then performed two new songs they’ve penned since their win.

Although Amber’s song was hotly tipped to win, other audience favorites included the runner-up Christabelle, Franklin and the Ekklesia Sisters. Between her stage presence and the catchy tune, it’s no surprise that Christabelle’s Rush placed second scoring a combined total of 47 points.

Malta’s own Disney prince Franklin placed 5th (totaling 26 points) after his powerful performance of Still Here. In a surprising twist, the Ekklesia Sisters became one of the more controversial acts, with some people supporting them for their attempt, while many others voiced their concern over the novelty value of the act not compensating for the flat performance of their song.

This year also saw the return of two Malta Eurovision Song Contest veterans. Ludwig Galea who formed part Trilogy, placed 10th, while Lawrence Gray’s comeback found him tied in 8th place.

Vocally most acts were on point, however the song selection this year was lacking to say the least. A lot of the songs didn’t have that defining quality that would help them stand out from the rest, and if it weren’t for the impressive stage and exciting visuals a number of performances would have verged on the boring.

Amber will be representing Malta in the 60th annual Eurovision Song Contest, which will take place in Vienna, Austria.

Click here to read Chucky Bartolo’s blow-by-blow live blog of last night’s contest