Last month, on the 18th March, the Eurovision fan community was rocked by the news of the cancellation of the 2020 contest. The rapidly evolving COVID-19 pandemic left organisers with little option but to cancel for the sake of public safety.
However, a number of updates from 2020 artists, broadcasters and the EBU have already began to emerge regarding the 2021 contest. Although no one can predict what the global situation will be like by May 2021, the EBU is currently looking ahead to the organisation of the next contest. For the moment, one thing is certain – the 2020 entries will NOT be eligible for the next edition of the contest, whenever that is.
At present, NPO and AVROTROS are likely to be the hosts of the next contest, having won the previous edition. Rotterdam is also likely to remain the host city. However, this may well change in the coming months. In the meantime, we know that the EBU will be broadcasting Europe Shine A Light as an alternative broadcast for the 16th of May. The show will not contain voting, but will feature the 2020 entries in some capacity.
Many nations are yet to confirm their participation in the next contest, and the EBU yet to finalise details of their plans for 2021. However, we have collated the information we know so far…
To date (as of March 31st), 12 of the artists from Eurovision 2020 have been confirmed for the 2021 contest. The majority of these artists were internally-selected by the broadcasters, but not all. As European countries gain more certainty of their domestic situations regarding COVID-19, more confirmations are to be expected in the coming months. Of course, this also means that the decisions announced below could be changed/altered between now and 2021 also…
At the time of writing, the artists confirmed for Eurovision 2021 so far are:
- 🇦🇹 Austria – Vincent Bueno
- 🇦🇿 Azerbaijan – Efendi
- 🇧🇪 Belgium – Hooverphonic
- 🇧🇬 Bulgaria – VICTORIA
- 🇬🇪 Georgia – Tornike Kipiani
- 🇬🇷 Greece – Stefania
- 🇮🇱 Israel – Eden Alene
- 🇳🇱 Netherlands – Jeangu Macrooy
- 🇷🇴 Romania – Roxen
- 🇪🇸 Spain – Blas Cantó
- 🇨🇭 Switzerland – Gjon’s Tears
- 🇺🇦 Ukraine – GO_A
Tim, Julian and Costa reacted to the first 10 artist announcements for Eurovision 2021, which you can watch below:
As mentioned above, most of the initial broadcasters to confirm their 2021 artist were those that selected these artists internally. For broadcasters who run annual national selections, the decision is less clear-cut. Selecting the winner of their 2020 national final winner internally would mean discarding hours of broadcast media. For many, such as Iceland, these shows are among their most-watched of the year. For countries like Sweden and Norway, their selections have been running for decades and are national events.
With this in mind, here are the countries that have confirmed that they will be hosting national finals next year to select their 2021 entries:
- 🇪🇪 Estonia – Estonia’s ERR have confirmed that Eesti Laul will be returning for the 2021 season. The broadcaster have already invited this year’s winner Uku Suviste to participate, who has accepted the invitation as of now.
- 🇫🇮 Finland – Uuden Musiikin Kilpailu (UMK) will return in 2021, and will be an open selection once again.
- 🇱🇹 Lithuania – Just yesterday, LRT issued a statement to confirm that they will be running a national final in 2021 as planned. However, this year’s winners The Roop have been invited to participate as finalists, enabling them to skip the qualifying heats.
- 🇳🇴 Norway – Melodi Grand Prix will return for its 61st edition next year. Although she was invited to participate as a finalist, Ulrikke will not be returning as of now.
- 🇭🇷 Croatia – Having used their historical national final DORA for the past two years, it is not known if HRT will be opting to run it for 2021. However, the Balkan nation intend to return for the 2021 contest.
- 🇮🇪 Ireland – RTÉ have yet to confirm if Lesley Roy will be their representative for 2021, but the broadcaster intend to participate next year.
- 🇱🇻 Latvia – Unlike other broadcasters, LTV are currently not disclosing their plans for next year. Instead, the broadcaster will decide on whether they will participate depending on the evolution of the pandemic over the coming months.
- 🇵🇹 Portugal – Although RTP have yet to confirm the return of Festival da Canção for 2021, the announcement that Elisa will not be selected for Eurovision 2021 is an indication of the selection returning.
- 🇸🇪 Sweden – Unsurprisingly, SVT are looking to proceed with Melodifestivalen 2021. However, the broadcaster deny that rules prohibit last year’s winner from taking part. They also denied that an artist is not allowed to take part three years in a row. This means The Mamas may well return to the Melfest stage for the third consecutive year…
With 21 countries confirming their intentions/terms of participation for next year’s contest, this leaves 20 countries who were due to participate in the 2020 contest left. We expect that the remaining broadcasters will publish more information in the coming months, depending on the current climate.
In the meantime, be sure to stay updated by following @ESCXTRA on Twitter, @escxtra on Instagram and liking our Facebook page for the latest updates! Also, be sure to subscribe to our YouTube channel to see our reactions to the news in the coming months.