Espagne 1968

Spain participated in and won the Eurovision Song Contest 1968 with the song « La, la, la » by Massiel. The song was written by the members of Dúo Dinámico.

Internal selection controversy

Originally, the artist chosen to perform « La, la, la » at Eurovision was singer-songwriter Joan Manuel Serrat. However, he intended to sing the song in Catalan. The Franco dictatorship would not allow this – and insisted that the entry should be performed in Spanish, official language for all the territories of Spain, although Serrat wanted to claim for the other regional languages of this country, repressed under the Franco dictatorship.

On 29 March 1968, one week before the contest, Massiel was asked to replace Joan Manuel Serrat as Spain’s representative at the Eurovision Song Contest.

At Eurovision

Massiel performed 15th in the night of the contest, following Ireland and preceding Germany. At the close of voting Massiel had received 29 points, winning the contest for Spain.

Vote rigging allegations

In May 2008, a documentary by Spanish film-maker Montse Fernández Villa, 1968. Yo viví el mayo español, centred on the effects of May 1968 in Francoist Spain,[1] and alleged that the 1968 Eurovision Song Contest was rigged by the Spanish dictator Francisco Franco, who would have sent state television officials across Europe offering cash and promising to buy television series and contract unknown artists.[2] The allegation was based on a testimony by journalist José María Íñigo, a TVE employee at the time, who claimed the rigging was common knowledge and suggested that Spanish record label representatives offered to release albums by Bulgarian and Czech artists (neither Bulgaria nor Czechoslovakia were members of the European Broadcasting Union at the time).[3]

The documentary claimed that the contest should in fact have been won by the United Kingdom’s entry – « Congratulations » performed by Cliff Richard – which finished second by one vote.[4] Massiel, the performer of the winning entry, was outraged by the allegations, and claimed that if there had been fixes, « other singers, who were more keen on Franco’s regime, would have benefited ». José María Iñigo, author of the statement in the documentary, personally apologized to Massiel and claimed that he had repeated a widespread rumour and that his words had been taken out of context. Both Massiel and Iñigo accused television channel La Sexta, broadcaster of the documentary, of manufacturing the scandal.[5]

Voting

Every country had a jury of ten people. Every jury member could give one point to his or her favourite song.

Points awarded to Spain

Points awarded to Spain
10 points 9 points 8 points 7 points 6 points
5 points 4 points 3 points 2 points 1 point

Points awarded by Spain

3 points  Portugal
2 points  Germany
 Italy
1 point  Belgium
 Norway
 Yugoslavia

References

  1. ^ « Massiel sí, Madelman no: así fue el Mayo del 68 en España » (in Spanish). Público. 3 May 2008. Retrieved 3 December 2009. 
  2. ^ « TVE ‘compró’ los votos para que Massiel ganará Eurovisión » (in Spanish). 20 minutos. 5 May 2008. Retrieved 3 December 2009. 
  3. ^ « Vea el vídeo donde José Maríá Iñigo ‘descubre’ a Massiel » (in Spanish). 20 minutos. 5 May 2008. Retrieved 3 December 2009. 
  4. ^ Govan, Fiona (4 May 2008). « How Franco cheated Cliff out of Eurovision title ». The Telegraph. Retrieved 26 April 2012. 
  5. ^ « Massiel e Iñigo acusan a La Sexta de « urdir todo para favorecer a Chiquilicuatre« «  (in Spanish). El Mundo. 6 May 2008. Retrieved 3 December 2009.