20 things you may or may not know about the Eurovision

Malta's Michela Pace takes the Eurovision stage at the final in Tel Aviv on Saturday night but before that you may want to brush up on these curiosities

Tonight, Malta’s own Michela Pace, will battle it out against 25 other contestants in the Eurovision final in Tel Aviv.

On Friday, It was announced that Malta will perform first in the lineup, opening the show.

Without further ado, here are 20 Eurovision facts you may, or may not know:

1. UK holds host record

Katrina and the Waves won the Eurovision for the UK in 1997
Katrina and the Waves won the Eurovision for the UK in 1997

Despite the UK's dismal track record as of late, the country has actually hosted the Eurovision a record-breaking eight times, with their last being in 1998, following their 1997 win, with Katrina & the Waves performing ‘Love Shine a Light.’

2. Youngest performer is 16 years old

Zena for Belarus is the Eurovision's youngest singer this year
Zena for Belarus is the Eurovision's youngest singer this year

This year’s youngest contestant is Zena. The 16-year-old is representing Belarus, with the song ‘Like it.’ Belarus made it to the final.

3. Oldest performer is 54 years old

Turkish performer Serhat represents the tiny republic of San Marino
Turkish performer Serhat represents the tiny republic of San Marino

On the other side of the spectrum, Serhat, is the oldest contestant this year. The 54-year-old Turkish singer represents San Marino with the song ‘Say Na Na Na’ in tonight's final.

4. Michela breaks bad luck streak

In 2016, Ira Losco was the last Maltese performer to qualify for the Eurovision final
In 2016, Ira Losco was the last Maltese performer to qualify for the Eurovision final

Michela Pace broke something of a bad luck streak for Malta. Her song ‘Chameleon,’ took the island to the final for the first time since 2016’s ‘Walk on Water’ by Ira Losco.

5. From children's TV presenter to Eurovision singer

Australia's entry for the Eurovision 2019 Kate Miller-Heidke
Australia's entry for the Eurovision 2019 Kate Miller-Heidke

Australia’s Kate Miller-Heidke is a fan favourite and currently touted by bookmakers to place 2nd in the competition. However, did you know before she was swaying from a pole on the Eurovision stage (seriously look it up) the opera singer was actually a Children’s TV presenter? Kate was a guest presenter on the children’s television show Play School, the longest running kids programme in Australia.

6. Bisexual on stage

Duncan Laurence is the bookmakers' favourite
Duncan Laurence is the bookmakers' favourite

The Netherland’s Duncan Laurence is the bookmaker’s favourite to win with his song ‘Arcade.’ Many may not know however that the singer is actually bisexual, a group that is often not represented on stage.

7. Euphoria is top stream

Loreen propelled Sweden to victory in 2012 with Euphoria
Loreen propelled Sweden to victory in 2012 with Euphoria

Loreen’s ‘Euphoria’ changed the Eurovision game it took the sound of the contest in a completely different direction. Having won the competition in 2012 for Sweden, it’s still one of the most streamed Eurovision songs of all time.

8. Just 24 words

Nowadays, Eurovision fans are obsessed with the lyrics of their favourite singer’s song, but in 1995 Norway won with the song ‘Nocturne’, which contained just 24 words, accompanied by long violin solos.  

9. The Irish record

Ireland holds the record of most victories in Eurovision Song Contest: Seven victories. The six of these victories was in the 80s and 90s: 1970, 1980, 1987, 1992, 1993, 1994 and 1996.

10. ABBA zero points

ABBA won the 1974 Eurovision contest with Waterloo
ABBA won the 1974 Eurovision contest with Waterloo

ABBA might be loved across the world, but apparently not so much by the United Kingdom in 1974. The country gave the entry zero points!

11. Marija l-Maltija

Malta's first try at the Eurovision was in 1971
Malta's first try at the Eurovision was in 1971

Malta first competed in the Eurovision in 1971 and came in… last. Joe Grech sang Marija l-Maltija.

12. No live animals please

Live animals are banned from the stage at Eurovision.

13. 300 points and not enough

Russia's entry "A Million Voices" from 2015 became the first non-winning Eurovision song to score over 300 points.

14. It's about the machines

Eurovision special acts get crazier every year
Eurovision special acts get crazier every year

Staging for the Eurovision gets crazier, each year and so it should, it can make a break a performance. This year the show used 10 heavy fog machines, 48 flame units, 20 spark machines, 18 MagicFX smoke kets, 1 waterfall, 8 magnum Confetti cannons (for the winning song) 2 Universal Effects Wind Machines, 8 MagicFX Stage Fans.

15. Welcome to Tel Aviv

Tel Aviv is hosting the 2019 Eurovision
Tel Aviv is hosting the 2019 Eurovision

This year’s Eurovision final is held at the Tel Aviv Fairgrounds and hosts an audience of 7,200.

16. The Danes hold the record attendance

In 2001, the largest audience ever attended the Eurovision Song Contest. Almost 38,000 people gathered at Copenhagen’s Parken Stadium to witness the first ever Estonian victory.

17. Never give up

If you don’t succeed try and try again, Ukraine’s Eduard Romanyuta auditioned four times to represent his country at the Eurovision before finally being chosen.

18. What's in a name... a lot

Tamara Todevska is representing North Macedonia in this year's Eurovision
Tamara Todevska is representing North Macedonia in this year's Eurovision

North Macedonia, was once part of Yugoslavia, and after gaining independence it had to use the formal name Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia. The country changed its name this year to North Macedonia after with Greece, which had objected to the simple Macedonia. North Macedonia has competed in the Eurovision since 1998.

19. The Big Five

Commonly known as ‘the big five,’ Spain, Italy, Germany, France and Italy never have to compete in the semi-finals and are automatically through to the finals because they make the biggest financial contributions to the European Broadcasting Union.

20. From Eurovision to Worldvision

Eurovision has also been broadcast outside Europe to several countries that do not compete, such as the United States, Canada, New Zealand, and China.

The Eurovision final will be on tonight at 9pm. 

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