Organisers of the Eurovision Song Contest are looking at “alternative programming” options to showcase this year’s entries in a capacity beyond the live competition.
Eurovision 2020 was cancelled earlier this week (March 18) due to the ongoing coronavirus pandemic. The singing contest, which attracts a TV audience of nearly 200 million people each year, was due to take place in Rotterdam after the Netherlands won it in 2019.
However, it appears the 2020 song entries could now live on in a slightly different format.
Posted on the official Eurovision website as well as its social media channels today (March 20), a new statement reads: “The EBU is very aware of how much the Eurovision Song Contest will be missed this year. The Contest’s values of universality and inclusivity, and our proud tradition of celebrating diversity through music, are needed now more than ever.
“As such, the EBU and its Members are currently exploring alternative programming, but not a competition, to help unite and entertain audiences around Europe during these challenging times.” See the full post below.
— Eurovision Song Contest (@Eurovision) March 20, 2020
The statement continues: “It is our intention with this programming, and on our online platforms in the coming months, to honour the songs and artists which have been chosen for the Eurovision Song Contest 2020.”
The news means that this year’s songs will not be eligible to compete when Eurovision returns in 2021.
In a similar move earlier this week (March 18), the BBC announced plans to broadcast “a celebration of Glastonbury” this summer following the confirmation that the 2020 festival will no longer take place.
“We, along with the Eavis family, are saddened that understandably, the Glastonbury Festival can’t take place,” a statement from the BBC press office reads.
“We are already looking forward to next year’s festival at Worthy Farm and will now look at providing our audiences with a celebration of Glastonbury in June.”