Sydney-based singer Sheldon Riley has secured Australia’s spot in this year’s Eurovision Grand Final.
Riley made it through the competition’s second semi-finals round in Turin, Italy last night (May 12), performing his song ‘Not The Same’. He was one of 10 participants chosen from the round to advance to the finals, where he will compete against singers from 24 other countries including Ukraine, Spain, UK, Finland and more.
In true extravagant, Eurovision style, Riley delivered his original number in an elaborate costume, complete with jewelled face covering, feathered white frock and blinged-out nails. Watch it below.
“I’m absolutely ecstatic,” he said in a press statement. “Tonight I just wanted to deliver my best performance and make Australia proud. It’s a huge thrill that people across Europe have appreciated ‘Not The Same’, and I’m so happy I get to be on the stage again this weekend.
“I can’t wait to be part of the Grand Final in front of 200 million people, and see what all the other amazing acts are going to bring to the stage. This is honestly a dream come true for me. I am so thankful for all the support from fans over here and everyone back home.”
“Australia is through to the Grand Final once again and we couldn’t be prouder of Sheldon,” added Australian Head of Delegation and SBS Commissioning Editor Emily Griggs. “He has truly captured the attention of Europe and has been representing the country with style and one sensational voice.”
The Eurovision Grand Final will air on SBS this Sunday (May 15) at 7.30pm AEST, with hosts Myf Warhurst and Joel Creasey.
Riley was selected to represent Australia at the Eurovision: Australia Decides 2022 event in February this year. His song ‘Not The Same’ was up against entries from Voyager (‘Dreamer’) and Jaguar Jonze (‘Little Fires’), among others.
He takes over the position from Montaigne, who represented Australia last year with her song ‘Technicolour’. She was originally set to compete in the 2020 Eurovision Song Contest, but this was postponed due to the COVID-19 pandemic.