The beautiful mountainous country hidden in the Alps has requested to perform in the second semi final of this year’s edition of the Eurovision Song Contest.
Despite having immense musical talent, Switzerland is also known as the land where winter sports can sometimes steal the spotlight of other ongoing events. This is certainly the case and the reason behind their request to the EBU to get an automatic spot in the second semifinal this year.
An Official Statement
In a brief statement made by Reto Peritz, the Head of Delegation for Switzerland at the Eurovision Song Contest at SRF we learned that:
The reason is a program planning bottleneck. On Tuesday 14 May, the Swiss national ice hockey team will play in the World Championship at the same time as the 1st semi-final of the Eurovision Song Contest
Reto Peritz, Head of Delegation for Switzerland at SRF.
The EBU is no stranger to such requests. For example, last year the Italian National Broadcaster, RAI, also submitted their request to vote in the second semi final due to some conflicting schedules. You can read more about that in a previously published article, here.
Switzerland in the Eurovision Song Contest
Switzerland was one of the countries that competed in the very first Eurovision in 1956. They were also the first winners with Lys Assia’s “Refrain”. They also won the contest in 1988 with Celine Dion’s “Ne partez pas sans moi.” Since the introduction of the semi-finals, Switzerland struggled to make the final and only managed to qualify for the grand final on four occasions, most recently in 2014. It also placed last in their semi-final in three occasions. In Lisbon, the sibling duo Zibbz represented Switzerland with their entry “Stones”. Despite their powerful performance, they only placed 13th in semi-final 1, failing to make the final.