How can you vote in this year’s Eurovision?
This is the first year in Eurovision history that viewers anywhere in the world can vote for their favourite entries. If you live in a country that is not taking part in Eurovision this year--like Luxembourg--you are now allowed to vote as part of the “rest of the word” category. To support your favourite song in the semi-finals and the final, simply go here.
Where can you watch the Eurovision Song Contest?
Depending on which TV channels you get, you’ll be able to see the Eurovision shows on: One (all shows) and Das Erste (final)--Germany, Culturebox (semi-finals) and France 2 (final)--France, VRT 1 (all shows, Flemish commentary) and La Une (all shows, French commentary)-- Belgium, or BBC One (all shows)--UK. Furthermore, all shows are available to watch live on the official Eurovision Song Contest YouTube Channel.
Are there any watch parties or public viewings in Luxembourg?
Chances are you already have friends or neighbours hosting a Eurovision party (and if not, maybe you should plan one ASAP), however a number of Eurovision public watch parties are also taking place in Luxembourg. Both the semi-finals and finals are, for example shown at Lounge Act One (7 avenue John F. Kennedy, Luxembourg-Kirchberg), and watch parties for the final will be organised at Crossfire (15 rue Dicks, Luxembourg-Gare) and the new Rainbow Centre (from 18:00, 19 rue Saint Esprit, Luxembourg-Centre).
Why isn’t Eurovision only for European countries?
The Eurovision Song Contest is strongly connected to European culture and identity. However, it is broadcast by the European Broadcasting Union and open to all its members, which explains why Israel competes, for example. The EBU also includes members from Asia and Africa.
What about Australia?
Australia has a long-lasting relationship with the Eurovision Song Contest and started broadcasting it in 1983, attracting an impressive viewing audience (even though Eurovision typically starts airing at 5 in the morning down under). In 2015, for Eurovision’s 60th birthday, Australia was invited to participate as a one-off event, but was then allowed to stay on. Australia’s participation has been confirmed by the EBU until 2023. So this could technically be Australia’s last year in Eurovision.
Who are the ‘Big Five’?
Seeing that you work or live in Luxembourg, you will be forgiven if you think this relates to the Big Four--but it doesn’t. In Eurovision, the Big Five are: France, Germany, Italy, Spain and the UK. As the major funders of the EBU, they get a pass directly to the final. The previous year’s winning country--this year, Ukraine--also automatically qualifies for the final.
How many countries are participating this year?
Thirty-seven countries are entered this year. Of those, 2 x 10 songs qualify from the semi-finals. To this, the Big Five and last year’s winner Ukraine’s songs are added. In this way, the final will count songs from 26 countries.
What are the rules for a participating song?
Some songs might seem longer to you than others, but no songs are longer than 3 minutes, that’s the rule. Furthermore, all songs must be new, sung live and with no more than six people on stage. Since 1999, performers have been allowed to sing in any language they want.
Who votes, when, and how?
This year, the public alone decides who qualifies from the semi-finals to the finals. This is a new thing--and the results will show if this was a good decision or not.
In the final, every country awards two set of scores: from the “experts” (national jury) and from the televoters. No one can vote for their own country. The points given are: the famous “douze points” to the favourite act, the second favourite gets 10 points, the third place gets 8 points, and then 7 points, and so on, down to one point for the tenth favourite. The scoreboard will first show the jury’s votes, and then the televoters. Worth mentioning is that the two are often very different, which makes it all the more exciting.