Eurovision Song Contest 1986
Norway's beautiful city of Bergen had the honour of hosting the 1986 Eurovision Song Contest which showed the first Belgian victory with Sandra Kim's J'Aime La Vie
For the first time, Norway had the honour of hosting the Eurovision Song Contest in its 31st edition. Just like in Munich the years earlier, 20 countries participated in the contest. The Netherlands and Yugoslavia returned, Italy and Greece withdrew from the from the contest and Iceland made their debut. Iceland had wanted to participate for some years already, but the small Atlantic island nation had to wait until a satellite connection to Iceland could be etablished. The 1986 Eurovision Song Contest also marked a historic landmark as the 500th Eurovision song was performed in Bergen - Luxembourg's entry L'Amour De Ma Vie by Canadian-born Sherisse Laurence.
The contest was one big commercial for Norway as a country as all the postcards introducing the participants showed the beauty of the Norwegian landscape. The presenter of the 1986 Eurovision Song Contest, Åse Kleveland, had already particpated as a singer for her homecountry in 1966 where she was placed 3rd. She had also already presented the Norwegian national final in 1980.
The winner of the song contest was the 13-year-old Sandra Kim, who sang J'Aime La Vie. She actually had told the producers of the show that she was 15 year old. It was the first win for Belgium, and all countries that had participated in the very first contest in 1956 had now won at least once. Jazz singer Timna Brauer, the daughter of the famous artist Arik Brauer, only came 18th with her Austrian entry Die Zeit Ist Einsam. Yugoslavia's singer, Doris Dragovic, would appear 13 years later in the 1999 Jerusalem edition of the song contest, then singing for Croatia and improving her result: she only came 11th in Norway, but would come 4th in 1999.