• Dale Roberts

The 10 longest Eurovision Contests of all time



As Eurovision fans, we all know the Saturday night Grand Final is an epic marathon of songs, interval acts and of course, the dramatic voting.


The Contest has been getting longer over the years, but which editions have stretched viewers patience the most?


We look at the 10 longest editions of the Eurovision Song Contest.


10. 2011 - Düsseldorf

3 hours, 27 minutes and 58 seconds



The 2011 edition, which was hosted by Anke Engelke, Judith Rakers and Stefan Raab, wasn't stretched out because of the songs, interval acts or the hosts taking too long.


It was the length of the voting at 52 minutes and 30 seconds (the third longest on this Top 10) that saw it make our list. But with 43 nations taking part that year, it is understandable.



9. 2013 - Malmö

3 hours, 29 minutes and 35 seconds



The 2013 Contest was hosted by Eurovision legend Petra Mede.


Because Petra can do no wrong, what actually caused the lengthy show?


The one section that was a little longer than others was the amount of time it took to get through the songs (1 hour 47 minutes) which was the 7th highest on the list. Perhaps the butterfly infused postcards slowed things down?



8. 2014 - Copenhagen

3 hours, 34 minutes and 52 seconds



Copenhagen held the 2014 Contest with Lise Rønne, Nikolaj Koppel and Pilou Asbæk as hosts.


The show had the quickest voting of any edition on this list (41 minutes) but the Contest was weighed down by it's lengthy interval.


At 44 minutes, it was the longest interval in Eurovision history (at the time) and is 6th highest on this list. Many will remember the 12 points songs with the often confusing references to China.



7. 2017 - Kyiv

3 hours, 44 minutes and 7 seconds



Eurovision headed back to Kyiv in 2017 with Oleksandr Skichko, Volodymyr Ostapchuk and Timur Miroshnychenko hosting.


So what dragged this one down? Well it was quite snappy in all departments but the lengthy duration of the songs was the 2nd highest on this list at 1 hour 52 minutes.


For those who remember Måns Zelmerlöw's host boot camp segment came on during the songs, so.... we might be able to blame him?



6. 2016 - Stockholm

3 hours, 46 minutes and 5 seconds



Considered by many to be the best Eurovision show, it finishing 6th on our list.


Hosted by the dynamic duo of Måns Zelmerlöw' and Petra Mede, it was actually the interval that dragged the show longer.


At 52 minutes it is the 3rd longest on this list and to be honest we didn't mind when it was 'Love, Love, Peace, Peace' but perhaps Justin Timberlake could have stayed at home?



5. 2018 - Lisbon

3 hours, 48 minutes and 31 seconds



Hosted by an all female team of Sílvia Alberto, Daniela Ruah, Catarina Furtado and Filomena Cautela, the Lisbon show was pretty long in every category.


On this list it had the 3rd longest duration of songs, the 5th longest interval and the 3rd longest beginning of the show.



4. 2021 - Rotterdam

3 hours, 55 minutes and 47 seconds



If there was ever a year fans would forgive a lengthy Contest, it was 2021.


After missing the 2020 edition due to the pandemic, the hosts of Chantal Janzen, Edsilia Rombley, Jan Smit and Nikkie de Jager did help to put on a great show.


It had the quickest beginning of the list with the first song performed before the show had even reached 10 minutes, but it was the interval of 53 minutes and 57 seconds (2nd longest on this list) that helped drag it out.



3. 2015 - Vienna

3 hours, 58 minutes and 45 seconds



A special year for Aussies as Australia made our debut at the Contest in Vienna.


But before you blame us, it wasn't the one extra country performing that slowed down the show.


It took a whopping 21 minutes and 23 seconds before the first song was performed. This is the longest in Eurovision history and a full five minutes more than any other edition on this list.


Add in a few technical hiccups that saw the voting run for 54 minutes (the 2nd highest on this list) and the 2015 edition was the longest of all time for several years.



2. 2019 - Tel Aviv

4 hours, 10 minutes and 23 seconds.



The Tel Aviv edition, hosted by Erez Tal, Bar Refaeli, Assi Azar and Lucy Ayoub, was the first ever Contest to go over 4 hours.


And there is one clear reason why: the interval acts.


We had the switch song, Hallelujah, Bo'ee, Netta and Madonna (infamously) all perform.


It took a whopping 1 hour and 4 minutes to get through, which is 11 minutes more than the next longest interval of all time.


Please never do that again.



1. 2022 - Turin

4 hours, 10 minutes and 35 seconds



And the longest Eurovision of all time, by a mere 12 seconds, was this year's edition in Turin.


Italy is notorious for lengthy shows and it should come as no surprise that it went longer than any other Contest.


But why?


The time it took to get through all the songs (1 hour 57) was the longest of all time, perhaps all those prop set ups and filler spots didn't help.


Additionally, the voting took 54 minutes which is the longest in this list, with the televoting alone taking 20 minutes.


Will it remain the longest of all time? Well the last time the Italians hosted in Rome in 1991 they held the record for eight years, so it may take some beating!



So there you have it, as you can see every edition on this list has been in the past 11 years, showing that modern Eurovision is just getting longer and longer.


The longest from every other decade is below:


2000s: Kyiv (2005) 3:25:35

1990s: Jerusalem (1999) 3:13:28

1980s: Lausanne (1989) 3:09:59

1970s: Jerusalem (1979) 2:56:05

1960s: Vienna (1967) 1:46:44

1950s: Lugano (1956) 1:27:27


Thanks to eschome.net for the numbers.


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