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Dancing with the Stars 2023: The Eurovision connections

Tonight the 20th edition of 'Dancing with the Stars Australia' kicks off on Channel 7.

Among the 14 competitors are two who have close connections with the Eurovision Song Contest.

Let's take a look:


Paulini shot to stardom during the first season of 'Australian Idol' on Channel 10 back in 2003. Paulini finished in fourth place behind Australian Eurovision 2015 representative Guy Sebastian (Australian Idol 2003 winner), Shannon Noll, and Cosima De Vito.

Following her appearance on 'Australian Idol', Paulini went on to release music under the Sony BMG label. She earned a No. 1 debut single 'Angel Eyes' and a No. 1 debut album 'One Determined Heart' on the ARIA charts.

In 2006, she would go on to form part of the supergroup Young Divas with Ricki-Lee, Emily and Kate, all from various seasons of Australian Idol.

Paulini would go on to compete in 'Eurovision - Australia Decides' in 2022. The show featured 11 acts trying to represent Australia at Eurovision.

Although Sheldon Riley would go on to win, Paulini still did well finishing in 6th place with her song 'We Are One'.

Mary Coustas

Mary Coustas is well known for playing the character Effie on the Australian sitcom ‘Acropolis Now’.

In 2001, Coustas would commentate the Eurovision Song Contest for SBS as her character Effie.

It was the first time Australian commentary was used and the show included “prominent multicultural Australians” who introduced songs that were connected to the countries of their background and a panel of guests discussing the entries.

Audience participation was encouraged and viewers could call in to vote for entries in categories like best/worst costume and best song.

Despite the huge effort, it sadly didn’t land with Australian Eurovision fans, resulting in the SBS broadcasting the unedited Eurovision Song Contest two weeks later.

Past connections

This isn't the first time Eurovision related artists have taken part on 'Dancing with the Stars'.

'Eurovision - Australia Decides' Courtney Act finished runner-up twice while Eurovision 2016 legend Dami Im finished 5th in 2020.

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