Eurovision 2021 is definitely happening which will be a relief to fans who were left disappointed last year, when the beloved song contest was cancelled.
Instead, in 2020 there was alternative programming to keep dedicated fans entertained, and at the time host Graham Norton said: "Eurovision offers a real escapism for people, which is something we need more than ever throughout these times.
“This year, people at home can celebrate the amazing spirit of the event and hopefully get the chance to take their mind off the current situation for a few hours.”
Fans needn't worry, as the Eurovision Song Contest is just around the corner now! Here's what we know so far...
Eurovision 2021 release date
Eurovision 2021 will take place on 18th, 20th, and 22nd May in host city Rotterdam, The Netherlands. The live final starts at 8pm on the 22 May, and will be shown live on BBC1 as normal.
Martin Österdahl, Executive Supervisor of the Eurovision Song Contest said: “The Eurovision Song Contest will definitely make its welcome return this May despite the pandemic but, in the prevailing circumstances, it is regrettably impossible to hold the event in the way we are used to."
He added: "We’re grateful for the renewed commitment and backing from the City of Rotterdam and the ongoing support of all the participating broadcasters. We very much hope to be able to gather in Rotterdam in May and will do all we can in the coming weeks to achieve this. With an ever-changing situation we are taking our time to ensure that we can host the Eurovision Song Contest in the best and safest way possible."
Who is the UK's Eurovision 2021 entry?
Brit award-winner and Grammy-nominated singer-songrwriter James Newman has been reselected as the UK’s entry after he was unable to perform last year due to Eurovision 2020’s cancellation.
Speaking to Radio 1 Newsbeat, James has previously said: "I was so gutted when it got cancelled last year, and I didn't get the opportunity to go to Rotterdam and sing on stage. I instantly wanted to take part again."
James will sing his single 'Embers'. Graham Norton has called James’ song ‘a banger’, one which ‘represents everything that Eurovision is.’
If you can't wait to hear it, you can watch the official music video for ‘Embers’ below!
Who will win Eurovision 2021?
The current favorite country to win Eurovision 2021 are Italy, with Måneskin's song "Zitti e buoni" (which means "Shut up and Behave" in English).
This Italian rock band won the Sanremo Music Festival in 2021 with their Eurovision song, and they were runners-up in the eleventh season of the X Factor Italia in 2017. The official Eurovision 2021 music video for Zitti e buoni has already received over 2 million views online, and you can listen to it below!
Betting sites across the board have Italy as the frontrunners, closely followed by France in second place!
Who will host the UK coverage of Eurovision 2021?
Longtime Eurovision fans will be delighted to know that beloved Eurovision commentator and legendary talk show host Graham Norton will return for his 12th year covering the Eurovision Song Contest on BBC One.
Graham Norton said he was “so excited for Eurovision to return, after the past year we’ve had it’s exactly the kind of joy the world needs.”
#Eurovision week is here! 🔥📺 Semi Final 1 | BBC Four | Tues 18th May📺 Semi Final 2 | BBC Four | Thurs 20th May 📺 Grand Final | @BBCOne | Sat 22nd May@BBCRadio2 | @BBCSounds | @BBCiPlayer pic.twitter.com/8Cync0zix4May 16, 2021
Who will announce the UK’s scores at Eurovision 2021?
It has been announced that Amanda Holden will be the UK's Eurovision Spokesperson at Eurovision 2021.
This means the Britain’s Got Talent judge and Heart radio presenter will be tasked with delivering the country’s scores live from London later this year! She follows in the footsteps of TV royalty like Richard Osman, Nigella Lawson, Lorraine Kelly and Alex Jones!
Amanda Holden said: “What an honour to announce the UK’s votes this year. I’m utterly thrilled. It’s an ambition ticked after 45 years of watching it!”
How will the contest look this year?
Of course, safety is priority and Eurovision organisers have put together three plans to ensure the competition can go ahead. A socially distanced Eurovision Song Contest will see people attending in person, but adhering to appropriate social distancing measures. If this is not possible, a travel restricted version will go ahead where no delegations will be able to travel to Rotterdam, and instead perform via video link.
A worst case scenario will see a lockdown competition implemented without an audience and virtual activities will be considered to explore the host city of Rotterdam.
Confirming the news, Councillor Said Kasmi from the City of Rotterdam said: "The Eurovision Song Contest in Rotterdam, live from Ahoy, is a ray of light to look forward to together. As Host City, we are optimistic, enthusiastic and realistic.
"Within the available possibilities, we will make the best of this situation together with our partners! Let's hope that this Eurovision Song Contest, which will be different from all 64 previous Contests, will offer great new opportunities for partners and entrepreneurs in the city. One way or another: Rotterdam will Open Up again!"
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