It seems the United Kingdom are going to need a new Head of Delegation. Guy Freeman has announced to be leaving BBC at the end of February to seek a new challenge at Hat Trick Productions.
Guy Freeman’s Eurovision career
Freeman has been involved in Eurovision in two periods. At first, he was there when Katrina & The Waves won the Eurovision Song Contest 1997. After a couple of years producing other shows for the British broadcaster, he returned to Eurovision in 2014.
After a few years of older acts like Bonnie Tyler and Engelbert Humperdinck, Freeman took charge in 2014 and went a different route. He and his team decided to pick new, unknown talent internally for both Vienna and Stockholm. BBC even took the step of reviving the national final format from 2016 onwards. During Freeman’s times with the Eurovision delegation, the United Kingdom scored their best result in Kyiv, where Lucie Jones finished in fifteenth place.
Building a new company
The Executive Producer will leave the BBC to start working with Hat Trick Productions. Together with talent agent Anita Land, Freeman will set up a co-venture for Hat Trick, called Livewire Pictures.
Explaining his decision to leave the BBC for a new, uncertain adventure, Freeman said:
The chance to build a new company, creating more of the shows and events I love, at such a dynamic time in our business, with the support of Jimmy [Mulville, managing director of Hat Trick] and Hat Trick, is simply too good to miss.
Starting his job at the end of February, one could wonder where that leaves the British delegation for the Eurovision Song Contest. It seems likely that Guy Freeman will be involved in producing Eurovision: You Decide, the UK national final, on February 7th.
UPDATE: Helen Riddell as Head of Delegation
We reached out to the BBC to seek clarification on the possibly new Head of Delegation for the contest in Lisbon. They have confirmed that the United Kingdom used to work with a joint Head of Delegation, with both Freeman and Helen Riddell taking on the role. In a statement to us, BBC state:
Helen Riddell, who is the current joint Head of Delegation for the UK alongside Guy, will continue as Head of Delegation and will be in Lisbon.
Which UK entry in Guy Freeman’s time is your favourite? Let us know below or on social media, such as Facebook and Twitter!