Eurovision 2021: Organisers Explain How Song Contest Will Work This Year

Daniel Welsh
·Entertainment Reporter
·2-min read

Eurovision bosses have confirmed how things will work for this year’s contest when it takes place in May.

It was revealed last year that the European Broadcasting Union (EBU) had put together four different contingency plans regarding how Eurovision could work in 2021, depending on how where the continent is at in terms of the Covid-19 crisis.

On Tuesday morning, the EBU released a statement confirming how things will play out for this year’s contest in Rotterdam, where the live final was originally supposed to have taken place in 2020.

They have announced it’s their intention to have all 42 representatives performing live on stage in Rotterdam, although a decision about whether Eurovision will be able to have a studio audience is yet to be made.

Eurovision will be going ahead in 2021 – albeit with a few tweaks. (Photo: Rolf Klatt/Shutterstock)
Eurovision will be going ahead in 2021 – albeit with a few tweaks. (Photo: Rolf Klatt/Shutterstock)

“The spirit and tradition of the Eurovision Song Contest is about uniting Europe on one stage and we are very much still determined to achieve this in Rotterdam in May,” said Martin Österdahl, Eurovision’s Executive Supervisor.

“We are moving forward with our plans to produce a safe Eurovision Song Contest, with all artists performing live in Rotterdam.

“This protocol demonstrates our commitment to make this happen, with the health and safety of everyone attending, including crew and press, our top priority.”

The EBU has also published the extensive coronavirus measures they’re planning to take to make sure Eurovision goes ahead as safely as possible.

It’s been recommended that each competitor quarantines for five days before flying out to The Netherlands, and they must test negative for Covid-19 at most 72 hours before the make the journey.

After arriving in The Netherlands, everyone must stay in their hotel, with the exception of travelling to the arena for rehearsals and performances, as well as “other programme-related activities”.

Regular testing will also take place for cast, crew and press throughout the process, in a special venue next to the arena.

Duncan Laurence is still the reigning Eurovision champion, following his success in Tel Aviv in 2019 (Photo: Guy Prives via Getty Images)
Duncan Laurence is still the reigning Eurovision champion, following his success in Tel Aviv in 2019 (Photo: Guy Prives via Getty Images)

Singer-songwriter James Newman was supposed to have been representing the UK at Eurovision in 2020.

It was recently announced that will be returning for this year’s contest, although his competing song is yet to be revealed.

Last year, Eurovision was cancelled outright because of coronavirus, with a special entitled Eurovision: Europe Shine A Light airing in its place.

The special broadcast featured performances from a number of former Eurovision favourites, as well as short clips of each of the songs that had been submitted in 2020.

In addition to this, the BBC put together its own special, Eurovision: Come Together, in which fans voted for their favourite performance ever.

Unsurprisingly, ABBA’s Waterloo came out on top, with Conchita Wurst’s Rise Like A Phoenix in second place.

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This article originally appeared on HuffPost UK and has been updated.