Wow! I can’t believe that this is the 10th edition of the Eurovision Diary!

This diary started in 2002, when we did Eurovision in Estonia, and my idea was that this would be a great way for the family and friends of my crew to see what our daily lives were like. Since the crew was from Sweden, the first year it was written in Swedish. But directly after that show, one of our technical partners, High End Systems, came back to me and asked if I could do next year’s edition in English. It turned out that they were sitting in Austin, checking it every day, without having a clue what the hell I was talking about. But at least the pictures were funny…… Mind you, the word “blog” did not even exist back then!

But that was the past, let’s focus on the present, and the present involves this small thing called The Eurovision Song Contest! My name is Ola Melzig, and I’m the Technical Director of the largest music television show in the world. I would like to welcome you to our world, where you can follow our daily lives from now to May 17, and watch us trying to tame this beast!

Three weeks into this project, on September 27th, I’d just taken my son to his morning ice hockey practice, when I got a text message from our LD Fredrik Jönsson. From that moment on, everything changed. Our beloved friend, colleague and partner in all kind of various crimes, Pontus “Bullen” Lagerbielke had passed away. He lost his battle to cancer, and it all happened SO fast. I don’t remember much of the days after. It’s all a blur. And up to this day, it still feels unreal that he is no longer with us. Besides all the shows and tours he did worldwide, Bullen managed to cram in 6 Eurovision Song Contests in his busy schedule as assistant Lighting Designer, and/or operator for lighting and/or video. Bullen was that kind of guy. Whatever you asked him to do, you know he would do it 110%, and better than anyone else. And he would always do it with a smile on his face, well, unless catering sucked, which has been the case on too many Eurovisions to be honest…… We did 5 Eurovisions together, the first one in Tallin, Estonia, back in 2002, the last one in Malmö 2013. He was also a permanent member of Fredrik Jönsson’s FOH on Melodifestivalen the past 6 years. Needless to say, Bullen was one of the very first people we booked to do the 2016 Eurovision Song Contest. I know that I speak for the entire production team when I say that you have been missed in every single step of this production, Bullen. Thanks for everything you did for all of us for all these years. Thanks for the joy, the passion, the knowledge, the experience and the laughter, and all your absolutely brilliant ideas.

This show, we do in honor of your memory. I know this is a bold statement, but we are about to do the best, and most spectacular Eurovision ever.

Rest In Peace our dear friend.

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