Eurovision Song Contest 2022 opens
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Ukraine won the 2022 Eurovision Song Contest back in May, with the UK coming second place with Sam Ryder’s Spaceman performance. The victory saw the UK breaking its recent trend of coming last or towards the bottom of the leaderboard. Usually, the winning country hosts the next annual contest, but due to the Russian invasion of Ukraine, the UK was asked to do the honours for next year, with the BBC agreeing to discussions. However, Ukraine’s winners have since spoken out to say they are “disappointed” by the decision.
Earlier this month, a statement was released by the European Broadcasting Union (EBU) announcing Ukraine wouldn’t host due to the ongoing war.
A lengthy statement explained why this year’s runner-up had been asked to host instead of the winning country.
Since then, fans have been speculating about where in the UK the world-famous competition could be held.
Kalush Orchestra has now broken its silence though, expressing dismay with the historic decision.
Frontman Oleg Psyuk stated: “I’m very disappointed because we had hoped to host it in Ukraine.”
Ukraine enjoyed a landslide victory on May 14 in the midst of an agonising time for the country.
Speaking to Metro, Oleg talked about how the group auctioned the trophy to raise $900,000 (£700,000) for the Ukrainian army.
“It’s very important to help our country at the moment,” he told the publication.
He continued: “We help as much as we can. I have a volunteering organisation, one of my musicians is fighting on the front line, and we’re also raising donations and money from the ticket sales and we send it all to Ukraine.”
Last Friday, the EBU said in its statement: “Following their win at the Eurovision Song Contest (ESC) in May the EBU has been exploring options for the hosting of next year’s competition with Ukraine’s public broadcaster UA:PBC, who previously staged the event in 2017 and 2005.
“It has become a well-known tradition that the winner of the Eurovision Song Contest hosts the competition the following year, providing certain criteria including ensuring the viability of staging the event and the safety of all stakeholders, including the public, are met.
“Given the ongoing war since the Russian invasion of this year’s winning country, the EBU has taken the time to conduct a full assessment and feasibility study with both UA:PBC and third-party specialists including on safety and security issues.”
It went onto say: “The EBU would like to thank UA:PBC for their wholehearted cooperation and commitment in exploring all scenarios in the weeks since Kalush Orchestra’s win on May 14 in Turin and share their sadness and disappointment that next year’s Contest cannot be held in Ukraine.
“The EBU has been supporting UA:PBC across a whole range of areas since the invasion. We will ensure that this support continues so UA:PBC can maintain the indispensable service they provide to Ukrainians.
“As a result of this decision, in accordance with the rules and to ensure the continuity of the event, the EBU will now begin discussions with the BBC, as this year’s runner up, to potentially host the 2023 Eurovision Song Contest in the United Kingdom.
“It is our full intention that Ukraine’s win will be reflected in next year’s shows. This will be a priority for us in our discussions with the eventual hosts.”
The BBC quickly responded to agree to “discussions” surrounding the major decision.
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