It’s been going since 1956. The 62nd season of the Eurovision Song Contest to be held in Kiev, Ukraine, starts on 9 May (until 13 May). It is produced by the formidable European Broadcasting Union which has ABC and SBS as associate members. Membership of the EBU gives them year-round benefits with access to European news and sports footage. SBS has broadcast the Contest since 1983 but Australia’s official involvement stepped up considerably in 2015 when it fully participated for the first time in Vienna, surprising all by coming fifth. That was expected to be a once-only involvement but Australia was invited back in 2016 to Stockholm where second place was secured by Dami Im with Sound of Silence (we was robbed, probably). This year in Kiev, Australia will be represented by former X Factor winner, Isaiah Firebrace with Don’t Come Easy.
For the past eight years, the SBS presentation has been fronted by Julia Zamiro and Sam Pang, but with Julia’s apparent absorption by ABC Television, the SBS presentation will this year be handled by Myf Warhurst (formerly a darling of ABC Television) and Joel Creasy, said to be a sequins buff. All this switching about might be an argument for the merger of the two networks. Politics has always played a part in the Eurovision Song Contest. This year, Russia has withdrawn because its competitor was not granted entry to Ukraine. Bosnia and Herzegovina are also out but they’re citing budget issues.
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