Since the European Broadcasting Union (EBU) announced on June 17th 2022 that the winning country of this year’s contest, Ukraine, will not be the host country of the Eurovision Song Contest 2023, a lot has happened. From Poland and Ukraine demanding that the EBU has to rethink their decision up to many British cities that want to apply to be the next Eurovision host city.
It is not Ukraine
On June 17th 2022 the EBU released a public statement on the official website of the Eurovision Song Contest, Eurovision.tv, about Ukraine not being the host country of the Eurovision Song Contest 2023. The main reason for this decision is that Ukraine will not be able to guarantee the safety of the contest; this is of course because of the ongoing war between Ukraine and Russia. But if you think about it, even when the war between the two countries would be solved this year, it might take months or even years before Ukraine has rebuild their facilities, such as roads, venues, etc.
Next to this, the EBU stated in their public announcement that they are going to have negotiations with this year’s runner-up the UK, after Sam Ryder’s “Space Man” came in 2nd during this year’s contest in Turin, Italy.
Also, the EBU stated that Ukraine will have a lot to say when another country would take on the task of hosting the 2023 contest, which means that next year we will see a “Ukrainian” contest on another country’s soil, which happened during quite some occasion in the contest’s history.
Read the full statement of the EBU here.
Ukraine asks for reconsideration
The day after the EBU’s statement, on June 17th 2022, Ukraine started to defend its win, by stating that the EBU should reconsider, and that they should be open to new negotiations with this year’s winner. Ukraine feels that the EBU overlooked possibilities for this country to host the Eurovision Song Contest again, but they do acknowledge that safety is an issue that should be guaranteed when Ukraine would host the upcoming contest.
Ukraine also disclosed the cities that they are considering as possible host city in their statement, these cities are: Lviv, Zakarpattia, and Kyiv (capital city).
Prime-Minister Boris Johnson
The British Prime-Minister Boris Johnson added to the conversation by stating, on June 18th 2022, that he believes that Ukraine should organize the Eurovision Song Contest 2023 on Ukrainian soil, just like the rules of the contest state. Johnson believes it is possible, and that it should be done, because Ukraine won the contest of 2022 fair and square. Next to this, Johnson believes that Ukraine’s capital, Kyiv, should host the contest.
Poland gave its opinion
On June 19th 2022 Poland gave its opinion stating that the European Broadcasting Union (EBU) should look into organizing the next contest in Ukraine some more. The tradition is that the winning country organizes the contest on their grounds, and Poland feels strongly about allowing Ukraine that chance next year. By doing so Poland wants to show their support for the country of Ukraine.
Different British cities want to apply
Since the announcement that the EBU is talking with the British National Broadcaster BBC, many British cities have made known that their city is willing to host the event, among these cities are the following:
- Glasgow – OVO Hydro
- Leeds – First Direct Arena
- Manchester – Manchester Arena
- London – O2 Arena, OVO Wembley Arena, Copper Box Arena
- Belfast – Odyssey Arena
- Sheffield – Utilita Arena Sheffield
- Aberdeen – P&J Live Complex
- Birmingham – Utilita Arena Birmingham
- Cardiff – Principality Stadium
- Sunderland – The Stadium of Light
And then all of a sudden, on June 19th 2022, it was Brussels calling! British newspaper “The Guardian” has stated that the European Union is also working on a bid to host the next Eurovision Song Contest in Brussels (Belgium), also known as “The Heart of the European Union”. The bid of Brussels would also mean a celebration for Ukraine and Moldova taking steps to enter the European Union, and by Brussels hosting Ukraine would have a “Ukrainian Eurovision Song Contest on neutral grounds”. The potential venues in Brussels would be the following:
- Forest National
- Palais 12
As you can read, it might take a while before we know where the contest of 2023 is going to be held, but in the meantime we can (kind of) enjoy the soap opera that the next song contest is slowly, but steadily, becoming.
If there are any updates we, of ESCplus International, keep you posted!