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Eurovision Song Contest will not take place ‘as normal’ in 2021

Organisers are now working on three other scenarios

This year’s Eurovision Song Content will not take place “as normal” with organisers putting three scenarios in place for the 65th event.

The European Broadcasting Union (EBU), Dutch Host Broadcasters NPO, NOS and AVROTROS and the City of Rotterdam have said they are now looking at what they call scenario B, which would involve hosting a socially distanced event with artists performing in Rotterdam. Scenario A was Eurovision taking place as everyone would expect.

The event is still expected to take place on 18th, 20th and 22nd May.

“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,” said Martin Österdahl, executive supervisor of the Eurovision Song Contest.

“The security, health and safety of all participants at the Eurovision Song Contest, from the crew to the artists, is our top priority. We are following international developments closely and continuing to explore and plan for three revised scenarios (B, C and D) first announced last autumn,” 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,” added Österdahl.

A further decision on how the Contest will be staged will be taken in the coming weeks.

Sietse Bakker, executive producer event for Host Broadcasters NPO, NOS and AVROTROS said: “By staying flexible for as long as we can, we are aiming to make the best possible Eurovision Song Contest under the circumstances.

“Our primary goal is to get the 41 artists to Rotterdam, to all perform on the same stage, and to welcome journalists to cover the Contest.”

The other possible scenarios are:

Scenario C: a travel restricted Eurovision Song Contest

A Eurovision Song Contest, from Rotterdam’s Ahoy Arena but no delegations or artists will travel to Rotterdam.  Hosts and interval acts would still be live from the Ahoy, with the performances of all the participants “live on tape”.

Scenario D: a lockdown Eurovision Song Contest

A Eurovision Song Contest without an audience and virtual activities will be considered to explore the host city of Rotterdam. The performances of all the participants will be “live on tape”. There would be 9 shows (6 dress rehearsals, 2 Semi-Finals and a Grand Final), but no audience.