What is it?
On Saturday 13th May at 8pm (BST) millions of people across five continents will be glued to their TVs to watch the world’s biggest music show - the Eurovision Song Contest! United by music.
The Eurovision Song Contest: United by music, first graced our screens in 1956 and has become internationally recognised as the world’s longest running annual international televised music competition.
First held in 1956, the Eurovision Song Contest was originally conceived as an experiment in transnational television broadcasting. Started by the European Broadcasting Union and based on the Italian San Remo Music Festival, 66 contests featuring over 1,600 songs have been performed on the Eurovision stage.
Format and scoring system.
As more countries have become involved with the show, the format has changed to now include relegation rounds and semifinals ahead of the Grand Final. All songs also have a maximum time limit of three minutes to ensure everyone who has qualified has time to perform.
The voting system works on the basis of positional voting, with the act with the highest score winning the competition and the honour of hosting the competition the following year.
Most notable winners
Whilst some acts can be rather eccentric and strange, there have been some very famous and well-known acts including ABBA, with their 1974 hit ‘Waterloo’ as well as Celine Dion and British stars Lulu and Bucks Fizz.
Here are some fun facts about previous winners and losers.
- The longest running losers are the Cypriots, having never won.
- Luxembourg has won 5 times. But none of the 5 winners came from Luxembourg. Four were French and one (Vicky Leandros) Greek
- Norway has ended last nine times! They came last in 1963, 1969, 1974, 1976, 1978, 1981, 1990, 1997 and 2001.
- Ireland holds the record of most victories in Eurovision Song Contest: Seven victories! The six of these victories was in the 80s and 90s: 1970, 1980, 1987, 1992, 1993, 1994 and 1996.
- Three of the songs sent to Eurovision have been in made up languages. Two of these entries have come from Belgium: Sanomi (2003) and O Julissi (2008); and one from the Netherlands: Amambanda (2006)
- Portugal had to go through 49 contests to achieve their first victory in 2017.
- When Ukrainian singer Ruslana won Eurovision in 2004, she was rewarded with a seat in Parliament.
First Semi Final results:
The first semifinals were Tuesday night. Here are the lucky 10 going through to Saturday’s final:
Country: Norway Artist: Alessandra Song title: Queen of Kings
Country: Serbia Artist: Luke Black Song title: Samo Mi Se Spava
Country: Portugal Artist: Mimicat Song title: Ai Coração
Country: Croatia Artist: Let 3 Song title: Mama ŠČ!
Country: Switzerland Artist: Remo Forrer Song title: Watergun
Country: Israel Artist: Noa Kirel Song title: Unicorn
Country: Moldova Artist: Pasha Parfeni Song title: Soarele şi Luna
Country: Sweden Artist: Loreen Song title: Tattoo
Country: Czech Republic Artist: Vesna Song title: My Sister's Crown
Country: Finland Artist: Käärijä Song title: Cha Cha Cha
Second Semi Finals:
The second Semifinal will be on Thursday 11th May. Which 10 of the following countries do you think will earn a place at Saturday’s final?
Country: Denmark Artist: Reiley Song title: Breaking My Heart
Country: Armenia Artist: Brunette Song title: Future Lover
Country: Romania Artist: Theodor Andrei Song title: D.G.T (Off and On)
Country: Estonia Artist: Alika Song title: Bridges
Country: Belgium Artist: Gustaph Song title: Because Of You
Country: Cyprus Artist: Andrew Lambrou Song title: Break A Broken Heart
Country: Iceland Artist: - Diljá Song title: Power
Country: Greece Artist: Victor Vernicos Song title: What They Say
Country: Poland Artist: Blanka Song title: Solo
Country: Slovenia Artist: Joker Out Song title: Carpe Diem
Country: Georgia Artist: Iru Song title: Echo
Country: San Marino Artist: Piqued Jacks Song title: Like An Animal
Country: Austria Artist: Teya & Salena Song title: Who The Hell is Edgar?
Country: Albania Artist: Albania & Familja Kelmendi Song title: Duje
Country: Lithuania Artist: Monika Linkyte Song title: Stay Country: Australia Artist: Voyager Song title: Promise
The Eurovision Final:
The Eurovision finals will take place in Liverpool, UK on Saturday 13th May. Artists from 26 countries will battle it out to become this year’s Eurovision champion and win the honour of hosting the Eurovision Song Context in 2024.
Ukraine – as reigning champions- automatically get to perform.
United Kingdom, Spain, Italy, Germany, and France all automatically get to the final along with the 10 winners from the first semi-finals.
Who do you think will win?
Good luck if your country is performing!