It’s colourful. It’s glam. It’s inclusive. And it’s pure feel-good fun. Nope, I’m not describing PlayOJO – it’s Eurovision!
I hope you’ve got some ‘national celebration’ left in the tank after the King’s coronation, coz the Eurovision grand final’s coming this Saturday night and another king or queen will be crowned (and this time I will be watching).
It’s the 67th running of the Eurovision Song Contest, the world’s oldest TV singing competition, and after a 2nd place last year, are we singing for the win or heading back to nil points?
Let’s test your Eurovision knowledge, check the basics of Saturday’s final and get down with the UK’s entry, so you can decide for yourself!
Know your Eurovision history?
With 7 wins, Ireland is the most winningest nation in Eurovision, though the UK isn’t far behind with 5 wins. But pub quiz time – how many of these previous winners could you name? Full disclosure, I managed just 2.
- Sandie Shaw (1967)
- Lulu (1969)
- Brotherhood of Man (1976)
- Bucks Fizz (1981)
- Katrina and the Waves (1997)
As you can see, despite being historically one of the most successful Eurovision nations, we haven’t got our mitts on the trophy since 1997. We also hold the unenviable record of having finished runner-up 16 times, including last year courtesy of the UK’s favorite Space Man, Sam Ryder.
Who’s representing us this year?
The artist trying to improve on Sam’s 2nd place in 2022 is singer-songwriter Mae Muller, who’ll be performing her track, I Wrote A Song. The 25 year old Londoner has been destined for stardom since her appearance at the age of 10 in the music video for Mika’s glam pop hit, Grace Kelly, and she’s not without hope of a podium finish.
It may be about revenge on a cheating ex, but I Wrote A Song is an upbeat Balearic banger that comes just as the sunshine arrives, and it should get you grooving when she closes out the grand final as the last of the 26 acts on Saturday night.
The song’s a good’un, but don’t get too excited about our chances. As I write this, the UK is a 50/1 outsider to clinch Eurovision, and if the betting’s anything to go by, Sweden and Finland will be duking it out for this year’s win. Eurovision isn’t always easy to predict however, with Italy’s Maneskin an unlikely winner in 2021, so you never know.
Here’s our entry – have a listen and see what you think…
Just so you know what we’re up against, here’s the Swedish entry that’s a very hot favorite to win. Like our entry, it’s also euro-vocal-house to the max, and it’s got proper Eurovision pedigree too. The artist Loreen won Eurovision in 2012 and bids to become only the 2nd artist ever to win twice, after Ireland’s Johnny Logan who won twice in the eighties.
Where is Eurovision being held?
Ukraine’s Kalush Orchestra took the prize last year, and normally, last year’s winner becomes the host nation. But due to the ongoing war, this year’s final will be held at the Liverpool Arena on behalf of Ukraine.
How can I watch the Eurovision final?
If you watched the semi-finals on Monday and Wednesday this week, you’ll already be in the mood for the final on Saturday night, where the 26 remaining nations compete for a place in music history.
The Eurovision 2023 grand final coverage kicks off at 8pm on Saturday 13th May on BBC 1 and BBC iPlayer. The show lasts 4 hours, so make sure you’ve got enough prosecco and party rings to last you the distance.
How does voting work?
Scoring in Saturday’s grand final will be a mix of votes from a jury of industry professionals from each country, and from a telephone public vote, which means you get a say in who wins. Eurovision used to be seen as a geopolitical popularity contest, but the public vote is now the deciding factor, with the last 4 winners all scoring higher in the public vote than the jury vote.
The number to call for each act will be shown on screen once all acts have done their thing. You can’t vote for the UK, so you’ll have to pick your favourite act from the other 25 countries instead.
If you’re hosting or headed to a Eurovision party, have a fab time. If not, but your coronation bunting’s still up, you’re halfway to a Eurovision party anyway, so you might as well make the most of it. Enjoy!