Rotterdam 2021

Österdahl tells BBC: “We’re going for the most normal Eurovision that we can at this point.”

“We have been in close contact with organisations like F1"

The executive supervisor of the Eurovision Song Contest, Martin Österdahl, has revealed more information regarding plans for this year’s contest – in an interview with BBC’s Newscast podcast.

Following the news that both the EBU and the Dutch broadcasters had “reaffirmed” their hopes to hold this year’s contest with all entrants present at Ahoy, Österdahl told the BBC that he deems the trip to Rotterdam as necessary travel.

“This isn’t a holiday trip. This is actually a job that needs to be done.”

EBU received guidance from F1 and other organisations

It was also announced during the interview that the EBU have been in contact with several other large organisations, to ensure that the event runs as smoothly as possible in amongst the obstacles introduced by the pandemic.

“We have been in close contact with organisations like F1, the tennis tour, the golf associations, and learned from best experiences. We’ve compared our plans to the likes of the IOC.”

Österdahl told presenter Adam Fleming. 

“Hopefully we’ll have some audience”

Österdahl tells the BBC that he remains hopeful for a live audience during this year’s shows. A decision which is due to be reached in the coming weeks.

Hopefully, we’ll have some audience, it makes a huge difference to the atmosphere of the broadcast if we have some people present.

We’re going for the most normal Eurovision Song Contest that we can at this point.

Österdahl discusses the potential for an audience at Eurovision this May.

Although keen for an ‘as normal’ contest, he admits that the usual celebratory hugs and kisses, when a country receives douze points, is off the cards. Instead, organisers will recommend a dance move, fist bump or ‘foot kiss’ as acceptable substitutes.

Martin Osterdahl’s full interview with BBC Newscast is available now on BBC Sounds.

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