In Brief

Eurovision 2015: Finland's PKN become contest favourites

Punk band with learning difficulties who sing about their hatred of chores becomes surprise favourite for Eurovision 2015

Finland's entry into this year's Eurovision Song Contest is a punk band made up of musicians with learning disabilities. The group, PKN, whose members have Down's syndrome and autism, will perform their song Aina Mun Pitaa (I Always Have To) after being picked by the Finnish public.

PKN (Pertti Kurikka's Nameday) are now ranked among the favourites for the contest by bookmakers, reports the BBC. They are 5/1 to win the contest, according to Betfred, making them third favourites behind Italy and Estonia.

Their song is about the frustrations of everyday life, whether it’s eating healthily or doing chores like washing up.

"Every person with a disability ought to be braver," singer Kari Aalto said. "He or she should themselves say what they want and do not want," he told Finnish broadcaster YLE.

The group, made up of four middle-aged men, is the first punk band to compete at Eurovision. But not everyone was happy with their selection, reports The Guardian. Wiwibloggs, a website devoted to everything Eurovision, gave the song a score of one out of ten. A reviewer wrote: "This is not music. It's noise with a good backstory".

But the band members are unfazed by criticism. "We are rebelling against society in different ways, but we are not political," bassist Sami Helle told The Guardian. "We are changing attitudes somewhat, a lot of people are coming to our gigs and we have a lot of fans. We don't want people to vote for us to feel sorry for us. We are not that different from everybody else – just normal guys with a mental handicap."

PKN say they are aiming to raise awareness of people with learning disabilities, but also "have a f***ing good time".

PKN aren't the only outsiders to find themselves in the Eurovision spotlight. Earlier this month Australia became a first-time wildcard entrant to the song competition, scoring a one-off invitation to join in the event, the first in the competition's 60-year history. On May 23, Australia will be fast-tracked to the final in Vienna, but for the moment the act and their song is being kept a secret.

Some commentators though, thought the surprise inclusion was a bit of a joke. "Let's be honest: Australia only got allowed to enter #eurovision because most of the world confuses Austria with Australia," tweeted @kazonis.

Recommended

Eurovision venue odds: the cities most likely to host the song contest
Kalush Orchestra
In Depth

Eurovision venue odds: the cities most likely to host the song contest

UK music festivals in summer 2022
Victorious Festival takes place at Southsea seafront in Portsmouth
In Focus

UK music festivals in summer 2022

Zaporizhzhia nuclear power plant: is Ukraine heading for another Chernobyl?
Russian soldier at Zaporizhzhia nuclear plant
Getting to grips with . . .

Zaporizhzhia nuclear power plant: is Ukraine heading for another Chernobyl?

Can Ukraine realistically liberate Crimea?
Tourists on beach by Russian airbase in Crimea
Today’s big question

Can Ukraine realistically liberate Crimea?

Popular articles

Why The Satanic Verses is still controversial
Salman Rushdie, author of The Satanic Verses
Getting to grips with . . .

Why The Satanic Verses is still controversial

Is World War Three on the cards?
Ukrainian soldiers patrol on the frontline in Zolote, Ukraine
In Depth

Is World War Three on the cards?

Will China invade Taiwan?
Chinese troops on mobile rocket launchers during a parade in Beijing
Fact file

Will China invade Taiwan?

The Week Footer Banner