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Organisers call off 2020 Eurovision Song Contest

For the first time in 65 years, Eurovision will not take place this year, as the spread of Covid-19 across Europe causes the second major event cancellation of the day

By Anna Grace on 18 Mar 2020

ARA partner Rotterdam Ahoy hosted the Eurovision test event

Eurovision 2020 was set to take place at the Rptterdam Ahoy Arena

image © Rotterdam Ahoy

The 65th Eurovision Song Contest has become the latest high-profile event to be called off in the face of the continuing spread of coronavirus.

The news comes just hours after organisers announced the cancellation of the 2020 Glastonbury Festival.

The European Broadcasting Union announced today (18 March) that the annual competition, which was set to take place on 16 May at the 16,000-capacity Rotterdam Ahoy Arena, has been delayed until 2021.

“It is with deep regret that we have to announce the cancellation of the Eurovision Song Contest 2020,” reads a statement from organisers.

“The Eurovision Song Contest will come back stronger than ever”

“We have explored many alternative option to allow the contest to go ahead. However, the uncertainty created by the spread of Covid-19 throughout Europe means it is impossible to continue with the live event as planned.”

The event’s executive supervisor, Jon Ola Sand, adds: “We are very proud of the Eurovision Song Contest, that for 64 years has united people all around Europe. We regret this situation very much, but I can promise you: the Eurovision Song Contest will come back stronger than ever.”

Participating broadcasters are in discussions with the Eurovision Song Contest Reference Group to decide whether the selected artists will be able to perform their songs next year.
Dutch singer-songwriter Duncan Laurence won last year’s Eurovision Song Contest.

Photo: Rotterdam Ahoy (CC BY-SA 4.0) (cropped)


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