Editorials & Opinion

When should we expect the Eurovision 2021 running order announcement?

Eight years ago, the EBU revealed the first-ever producer-determined running order draw following the introduction of the rule ahead of the 2013 Eurovision Song Contest. With the line-up for the 2021 Eurovision Song Contest almost finalised, we are now awaiting the reveal of the running order for the 2021 Eurovision semi-finals. In order to predict just when we might see the all-important reveal, we’ve taken a look at exactly when the announcement has happened in every contest since the rule’s introduction.

This is an updated version of an article published in March 2020

Looking through the archives

To do this, we’ve simply looked through eurovision.tv‘s archives and found the following data:

  • The date of each year’s semi-final running order announcement
  • The date of each year’s mid-March deadline which usually coincides with ahead of delegations meeting. This tends to run over a Sunday to Tuesday period, we have taken the Monday with it widely agreed as the key date during the meeting. In 2021, this meeting took place virtually prior to the agreed final deadline.
  • The date of day one of each year’s rehearsal schedule.

Our findings

ContestOrder RevealDays After DeadlineDays Before Rehearsals
🇳🇱 Rotterdam 2021To be announcedTo be announced (15 March)To be announced (9 May*)
Eurovision 202012 May / 14 MayContest cancelledContest cancelled
🇮🇱 Tel Aviv 20192 April22 days (11 March)32 days (4 May)
🇵🇹 Lisbon 20183 April22 days (12 March)26 days (29 April)
🇺🇦 Kyiv 201731 March18 days (13 March)30 days (30 April)
🇸🇪 Stockholm 20168 April25 days (14 March)24 days (2 May)
🇦🇹 Vienna 201523 March7 days (16 March)49 days (11 May)
🇩🇰 Copenhagen 201424 March7 days (17 March)35 days (28 April)
🇸🇪 Malmö 201328 March10 days (18 March)39 days (6 May)
*to be confirmed


Excluding the cancelled 2020 contest, we’ve never had an order reveal later than April 8th, which was 25 days after the entry deadline for Stockholm 2016. Typically, the running order arrives in the last week of March. An important factor in some years could be the Easter weekend, which, in 2016, was as early as between 25 March and 28 March. In 2018, the Easter weekend took place between 30 March and 2 April. Therefore, early Easters could’ve been the result of the order being pushed into April.

However, despite the increasingly earlier entry deadlines as the years progressed between 2013 and 2015, the running orders for Stockholm, Kyiv, Lisbon and Tel Aviv took significantly longer to arrive. Furthermore, with the participation of the Belarusian entry yet to be resolved, a later submission deadline and Easter taking place between 2 April and 5 April, this is likely to push back the running order reveal. It would make it likely that the running orders for Rotterdam will arrive week commencing 5 April.

With rehearsals not expected to commence until the second week of May, this also means an ease of pressure on producers, further suggesting it will once again come later rather than earlier. Of course, the unpredictable situation regarding the COVID-19 pandemic could encourage producers to leave such announcements until the last possible moment.

How is the running order decided?

Ahead of the 2018 Eurovision Song Contest, the official Eurovision YouTube channel offered insight on how a running order for the Eurovision Song Contest is determined. Give it a watch below:

When do you think the Eurovision 2020 semi-final running order announcement will take place? Let us know your predictions at @ESCXTRA!

One Comment

  1. With Belarus out of the contest and with the running order ready to be published, I believe it could come out this week. (Monday 29 or Tuesday 30)

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