Well…..this is a little unexpected! It turns out that after 31 years of broadcasting the Eurovision Song Contest, the grand old Land Down Under will be competing in the Eurovision Grand Final on May 23rd! Supposedly for the one year only, could Australia take the title on its debut appearance? You can get the details below. But first, here’s Australian commentator Julia Zemiro talking more about the decision!
So, Australia will be taking part in the Eurovision Song Contest! The move has been approved by the EBU Reference Group, and has been welcomed with open arms by Jon Ola Sand, the Executive Supervisor of the Eurovision Song Contest, saying:
It’s a daring and at the same time incredibly exciting move. It is our way of saying; let’s celebrate this party together!
Now let’s not forget that Australia is no stranger to the Eurovision, having broadcast the show (and in later years, the Grand Final) live at 5 a.m. since 1983..only recently has their love of the Contest been recognised, with last year, the Aussies being allowed to send one Jessica Mauboy as an ‘unofficial act’. However, down under, the news to the country taking part in Eurovision has been a lot more positive than here in Europe. For example, Jaz from the absolutely FANTABULOUS blog Eurovision by Jaz has clicked onto that saying (and I hope she doesn’t kill me for quoting this!):
I KNOW!!! Although I feel a little victimised. It seems like most people outside Australia are mad and everyone inside is SO EXCITED OHHH MAAAH GAWWWWSH.
So, getting back to the facts. Australia will be a direct finalist in the competition, performing on the night of the Grand Final on May 23rd.. so with Australia now taking part in the Contest, the number of competing countries has been brought up to 40. Whoever will represent Australia in Vienna has yet to be disclosed, but we’re hoping for big things. And speaking of ‘Big’, I have a question. Now that Australia will be a part of the Big 6 – essentially making it a ‘Big 7’? – will there now be 26 or 27 finalists in the show? Will one of the semi-finals have only nine qualifiers while the other has ten? These are a few of the questions on everyone’s lips now. However, Australia’s participation in the Contest is supposedly a once-off, so we shouldn’t exactly be scared if they just so happen to win the Contest on their debut appearance, as they will host the show in a European city. Don’t worry guys, Eurovision 2016 won’t have to break the bank!
So what can we hope from Australia in Eurovision this year? Well, one thing that immediately jumps to mind is ‘Sea of Flags’ – the song Jessica Mauboy sang as an interval act during last year’s Eurovision in Copenhagen. One thinks an incredibly slick and well-produced song will come from the land Down Under. Or instead, perhaps we could be seeing something with a tinge of Aboriginal ethnicity come from Australia? All we know is that Australia will be giving it their all on their only chance to take part in Europe’s biggest TV show!
So what do you think of Australia’s debut in the Contest?
Edin Jukovic from Austria: This is Eurovision Song Contest and not Worldvision Song Contest!!!
Shaun Underhay from the United Kingdom: Not sure how I feel about Australia’s confirmed participation for this year, though I’m certainly not dead set against it. Only thing I really do object to, however, is that they’re allowed automatic entry to the final. They’ve never even entered before, so how does that work?
Tommy Engström from Sweden: Not a total surprise that they would join soon but still a surprise to see them join at this late stage of the ESC season. Looking forward to see them on stage in Vienna.
Michael Santillan from Ireland: New voting friends for UK and Ireland! Wooo!
Well it seems as if we have a good few mixed feelings to the decision of Australia taking part in Eurovision. However, it is only going to be – at the very maximum – two years they’re taking part in, so us Eurofans shouldn’t be too scared of our Contest going into disrepute. So, what do you think? Are you happy that the Land Down Under will be joining the Europarty for the 60th anniversary, or do you think that Australia should have stayed out of Eurovision? Feel free to tell us what you think by commenting below!