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Every year, there is a music contest in Europe that brings together about fifty-two countries. This song contest is very important in these countries and along the European region. However, if you are not from there, you probably wonder: What is Eurovision? What is this “music festival”? Why does it last a week? And more importantly, how does it brings together so many European countries and others?
What about Eurovision winners, do you know any? Maybe you do and are not aware of it. If we know mention the winning top Eurovision songs, I bet you have hear of some! Do you wonder when is Eurovision Song Contest 2019? Read our VocApp blog and learn all about the Eurovision Song Contest winners, about the Eurovision Song Contest in Tel Aviv and all the controversies of the show, together with the expectations for this year’s winner.
What is Eurovision Song Contest?
Firstly, we will answer the question: What is Eurovision? Well, after World War II, during the reconstruction of Europe, the countries decided to create a show that would unit the nations and promote peace and balance. The European Broadcasting Union (EBU) launched the idea of an international song contest and transmitted it across all countries of the union at the same time.
The first ever Eurovision Song Contest was broadcast in May 24th of 1956 in Lugano, Switzerland. At that point, 7 countries participated, Switzerland, Belgium, France, Germany,Italy, Luxembourg and the Netherlands, with 2 songs each, and the Host Nation won that year.
To this day, the original country’s songs pass immediately to the final without participating in the semi-finals. As for the participants, that would be any active member of the European Broadcasting Union or, in other words, those states that fall within the European Broadcasting Area. More recently, Eurovision Song Contest invited Australia to participate, as a way to be grateful for the constant views annually.
How does the Music Contest Work?
But how does it work? Does the music contest use a point’s system, a jury’s system or something else? Well, first of all, each country has to submit an original song for a live performance. Votes are given to each song by an open telephone line, with a phone number for each contestant.
With time, the contest rules and voting system changed, but the main idea of an audience that votes for its favorite song continues. There is also a jury for each country that gives points from 1-12.
Moreover, each country’s audience cannot vote for its own nation’s song in order to keep it fair. As for how the countries choose a song, it is up to them. Some choose a singer and put up different songs, some do their own competition. The host country is decided every year based on the winner.
If we now talk about Eurovision winners, the participant with most wins is Ireland, with 7 awards. The one with the highest score, with the current voting system, is Portugal’s Salvador Sobral winner at Kiev, Ukraine in 2017. However, if we talk about the most famous Eurovision Song Contest Winners, we have to name ABBA and Céline Dion.
As for controversies, Eurovision has plenty of them. From songs directed to leaders of state, to transgender participants and protests on same-sex marriage, the Eurovision Song Contest witnessed protests and controversial situations and it become a way for people to express their thoughts on the current situations.
For example, in Eurovision Song Contest of 1974, ABBA became one of Eurovision winners, but some attentions turned to Portugal’s contestant Paulo de Carvalho, who sang a song of Revolution, representing Portugal’s recent acquired freedom from the 41 years of political dictatorship by the Estado Novo, with the song “And After The Farewell”.
Criticisms and Scandals
The competition is also a target of criticism for its musical and political positions. For example, in recent years, 2014 and 2015, Russia was booed after performing and winning high points, after Russia’s military intervention in Ukraine and as a form of discontent with the countries policies against the LGBT community. Moreover, when it comes to voting, the contest was accused of political bias, as each nation’s jury appears to vote according to the relations with the other countries, and not to the performance of the contestant.
The Eurovision Song Contest 2019 is not free of controversy either. In fact, last year’s winning country of Israel almost made Jerusalem the host city, a place that is currently facing many political and religious tension. Many people have reacted to this choice and several organizations requested the cancellation of this year’s contest. Many participants even received messages to boycott the program and not participate.
Eurovision Song Contest 2019
Nevertheless the controversies, the show must go on, and Israel will keep the Eurovision Song Contest on the road. But where will Israel host Eurovision 2019?
After winning in Portugal in 2018, with the song Toy performed by the artist Netta, Israel will host the semi-finals on the 14th of May 2019 and 16th of May 2019 respectively, and later the final will be held on the 18th of May 2019.
When we talk of predictions and odds, the Eurovision top 10 of this years at this moments seems to be the Netherlands at the top, followed by countries like Russia, Sweden and even Italy. This odds are, of course, just simulations and do not define the final result of the competition.
On a new note, the 2 semi-finals have happened and the countries that will participate on the Eurovision Final have been decided! During the first semi-final, out of 17 participants, 10 have passed to the Eurovision Final. Some of them are, for example, Cyprus, Greece, Belarus and Estonia. As for the second semi-final, some of the winners were Sweden, Malta, Russia and the Netherlands, some of which are within the winners bets.
However, in order for you to know the final result, you must wait a while longer and watch the Eurovision Final on Saturday, 18th of May!
Until then, continue reading our VocApp blog and improve your language skills with our app. Follow the link and download our App https://vocapp.com/ to learn over 30 languages.
Written by Bárbara Marques