Eurovision 2020 has been cancelled
Well it was the news many expected, but many hoped not to hear.
Eurovision 2020 has been cancelled.
The EBU released a statement on tonight saying:
"It is with deep regret that we have to announced the cancellation of the Eurovision Song Contest 2020 in Rotterdam.
Over the past few weeks we have explored many alternative options to allow the Eurovision Song Contest to go ahead.
However the uncertainty created by the spread of COVID-19 throughout Europe - and the restrictions put in place by the governments of the participating broadcasters and the Dutch authorities - means the European Broadcasting Union (EBU) has taken the difficult decision that it is impossible to continue with the live event as planned."
It is a devastating blow for Eurovision fans, particularly those who had planned to travel to the event.
Many elements are still to be worked on including refunds, artists competing next year or not and dates and hosting of Eurovisoin 2021.
Many people hoped that the event would be postponed or held without an audience or remotely. The EBU answered these questions in FAQ format which we've included below:
Why not postpone the event?
The current situation across Europe is likely to remain uncertain for the coming months and at this stage we cannot guarantee we would be able to stage an event of this size with this many stakeholders later this year. A Contest later in the year would also reduce the amount of time the winning broadcaster would have to prepare for the following year’s competition.
Could you not have held the contest without an audience?
We are carefully following the advice of the relevant authorities to protect the health and wellbeing of all citizens. Dutch restrictions on gatherings of large numbers of people and international travel restrictions mean that holding the event, even without an audience, is impossible at this time.
Why couldn’t you have held the show remotely?
It’s in the DNA of the Eurovision Song Contest to bring delegations, artists and fans together in one place and provide an equal platform for all artists to compete together on the same stage and the same opportunity to shine. We felt that under the extreme circumstances we face this year, organizing the Eurovision Song Contest in another way would not be in keeping with our values and the tradition of the event.
The unique format of the Song Contest as an international live event means that it is not possible to identify any realistic alternative. We therefore have no choice other than to cancel the show.
A number of countries have invited their artist to compete again next year including Greece, Spain, Bulgaria, Malta, Romania, The Netherlands and Ukraine.
Estonia and Sweden have confirmed a new round of their national final will take place in 2021.
It is unclear if any of the artists will be able to perform their 2020 song in 2021. It would be against the current rules but it is understood to be up for a discussion.
More news is expected in the coming days. Continue to follow Aussievision on Facebook and Twitter for more details.