• Alyce Collett

The Guinness Book of World Records connected to the Eurovision Song Contest



The Guinness Book of World Records was first published in 1955. The following year saw the inaugural edition of our beloved Eurovision Song Contest.


Many of the records in the Guinness Book of World Records have a Eurovision connection, or are even about our beloved contest, so let’s take a look at some of the World Records connected to the Eurovision Song Contest.


Below are official World Records that can be found on the Guinness Book of World Records official site that are connected to Eurovision, whether they be about the actual contest or artists who have performed at the contest:



Longest running annual TV music competition (international)

The Eurovision Song Contest holds the record for the longest running annual TV music competition, and claimed the title just before the 2015 contest in Austria.


There are plenty of other annual music competition that pre-date Eurovision, but none of them are broadcast on TV, so they don’t count for this world record.



Most points scored at Eurovision

At the 2017 contest, Salvador Sobral not only secured Portugal’s first ever win at the contest, but also claimed the record for the most points scored at Eurovision. His 382 points from the jury and 376 points from the televote saw him earn a whopping 758 points, which beat the previous record of 534 points set by Jamala the previous year. Prior to 2016 (when the voting system changed) Alexander Rybak held the record, when he earned 387 points on the way to victory in the 2009 contest in Moscow.



Most successful country at Eurovision

Images of various Irish Eurovision entires

The most successful country at Eurovision is Ireland, after winning the competition seven times – 1970, 1980, 1987, 1992, 1993, 1994 and 1996.



Least successful country

This unfortunate honour goes to Norway, after having finished last 11 times and earning nil point on four occasions.



Oldest Eurovision contest winner


The Olsen Brother - Photo Credit: EBU

The 2000 winners, The Olsen Brothers from Denmark, were 49 and 45 when they won the title in Stockholm.

The following year in Copenhagen, Dave Benton, who was representing Estonia alongside Tanel Pader was also 49 when he won the competition.


Tanel Padar (left) & Dave Benton (right) - Photo Credit: eurovision.tv


Oldest male Eurovision Song Contest entrant

Back in 2012, the UK’s representative Engelbert Humperdinck set the record for the oldest male contestant at Eurovision. He was 76 years and 24 days old when he competed in Baku with his song his song ‘Love Will Set You Free’.



Most cumulative weeks on the UK albums chart (group, individual album)

Photo Credit: amazon.com

This record goes to ABBA, whose 1992 album ‘Gold – Greatest Hits by ABBA’ has spent 828 weeks in the Top 100 of the UK Album Charts (as of 22nd March 2018).



Largest gathering of ABBA impersonators

Speaking of ABBA, the record for the largest gathering of ABBA impersonators actually belongs to a group of Australians. 368 people (the equivalent of 92 complete ABBAs) gathered at Kew Primary School in Melbourne in November 2011 for the record, which was in celebration of Guinness World Records Day.



Highest annual earnings ever for a female pop star

The 1988 contest in Dublin kickstarted the career of a little known Celine Dion. The then 20 year old won the contest with ‘Ne Partez Pas Sans Moi’ and then went onto set the record for highest annual earnings ever for a female pop star after making an estimated $56 million (£33.5 million) back in 1998. The record was subsequently beaten by Madonna in 2013 who made $125 million (£82 million) for that year.



Longest-held vocal note in a UK hit single (female artist)

The longest held vocal note in a UK hit single actually comes from the Eurovision movie. In the song 'Húsavík', Molly Sandén holds a note for a whopping 18 seconds at the climax of the song. The song spent four weeks on the UK’s Official Singles Chart, hitting a peak of number 59 on 16th July 2020. This year the song was nominated for an Oscar but unfortunately missed out, but Molly Sandén left us with an amazing performance of the song in Húsavík, Iceland.



Highest paid dancer

In 1994, Irish decided to do something different for the interval act of the show, and so they created a 7 minute traditional Irish dancing performance called 'Riverdance’ especially for the show. Riverdance has since go on to become an international phenomenon, and one of the main stars of the inaugural performance that night in Dublin, Michael Flatley, has gone on to set the record as the world’s highest paid dancer. He was earning £1 million a week for his show Lord of the Dance at the peak of the show’s success.



Largest group drum roll

The largest group drum roll took place at an event in Germany on 30th August 2009. The group of 1,682 drummers was led by former German Eurovision representative Guildo Horn played a drum roll for five minutes and two seconds.