If you’re unaware of how Eurovision works, the concept is this: 26 countries who reach the grand final put forward an act to represent them in the form of a song, with the overall winner being crowned by judges scores and a public vote. The winner is then given the honour of hosting the contest the following year.
Sadly, after Ukraine’s 2022 victory, the country has been ruled out to be the next hosts due to the war, with organiser expressing their “deep regret”. Kalush Orchestra’s Stefania took the public vote by a landslide to win the competition — a victory in which the significance was two-fold; both a recognition of the strength of Kalush Orchestra’s performance and a show of unity with the nation.
The UK were a surprise success in the 2022 edition, with artist Sam Ryder earning second place for his performance of Space Man. Last month, Eurovision asked the UK to step in as replacement hosts for 2023, and it has now been confirmed that the UK will host the competition for the first time since 1998. Organisers approached the BBC to host the broadcasting of the finals, and it was confirmed today (July 25) that an agreement had been reached with the broadcasters to show the competition live.
The voting for the host city will begin this week, and Ukraine are set to automatically qualify for the tournament alongside the “big 5” (France, Spain, Italy, Germany and the UK). A new logo reflecting the unique circumstances is also due to be revealed.
Mykola Chernotytskyi, Head of the Managing Board of UA:PBC said: “The 2023 Eurovision Song Contest will not be in Ukraine but in support of Ukraine.
“We are grateful to our BBC partners for showing solidarity with us. I am confident that together we will be able to add Ukrainian spirit to this event and once again unite the whole of Europe around our common values of peace, support, celebrating diversity and talent.”
Find out more information about today’s decision on the Eurovision website.