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Liverpool live: Fireworks, LED-screens and a moon

This is the day when we first see the Big 5 and Ukraine to rehearse. Of course Ukraine is added, not as the organizer but as last year’s winner. photo credits: EBU/Corinne Cumming/Sarah Louise Bennett Germany Lord of the Lost is wearing red costumes, like in the national final. Singer Chris ‘Lord’ Harms wears a collar of flames. The band is elevated on a triangular metal structure, adorned with red and black LEDs, and an unrelenting flashing light display that persists throughout the entire three-minute performance. And of course we spot a lot of fireworks in the performance. France La Zarra is standing on a tall, moving column covered in sparkly black fabric that goes all the way to the ground. The column has a mirror-tiled top, and La Zarra is wearing a fitted gown made entirely of black and red sequins. She is singing her heart out on top of the column, and there’s a French flag displayed on the LED wall behind her at the end of her performance. Italy Marco Mengoni sings his ballad while standing alone on stage. Marco is wearing leather trousers and a silver sparkly vest, while a backdrop of swirling clouds on an LED wall. An oversized moon provide a dramatic visual setting. Ukraine TVORCHI-member Jeffrey wears a black suit covered with gold images. Andrii wears black clothes with a silver jacket over it. During their performance, TVORCHI effectively utilize lighting and an LED wall, with four boxes on stage providing a backdrop for their two dancers dressed in black. Their are big flames during the performance. Spain The staging for Blanca Paloma’s performance resembles the setup seen during Benidorm Fest in January. It features two fringed red semi-circular structures at the center of the stage, forming a circle where Blanca and her five dancers perform. The background is set aglow with black, red, and white lighting. There has been some low smoke during the performance. United Kingdom Mae Muller wears a corset jacket and black trousers, and commences her performance on a raised plinth before the LED wall. The wall features pop art-style graphics. At the beginning, there’s a section where Mae’s face splits horizontally, giving the impression that she’s inside her own head, which enhances the pop video quality of the performance.  four dancers dressed in black and red accompany Mae, particularly during the second half of the performance, when they join Mae at the front of the stage for a synchronized dance routine.   in collaboration with Eurovision Artists

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Liverpool live: rehearsal schedule

We already head to day 5: some rehearsals of the 2nd semifinal, and….. the big 5. 11.30 – 11.50 Denmark11.55 – 12.15 Armenia12.20 – 12.40 Romania12.45 – 13.05 Estonia13.10 – 13.30 Belgium 14.40 – 15.10 Germany15.20 – 15.50 France16.00 – 16.30 Italy16.40 – 17.10 Ukraine17.20 – 17.50 Spain18.00 – 18.30 United Kingdom 

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Road to Liverpool: Ukraine

We can not wait for the Eurovision Song Contest in Liverpool. Therefore, we have a closer look at one of the contestants every day. Today: Ukraine. Tvorchi This year, Ukraine was the first country to select this song. Tvorchi was chosen with the song “Heart of steel”. The song was inspired by the events in May in the Azovstal factory in Mariupol. By that time, the factory was the last place in Mariupol which was defended against the Russians. The duo singing the song is Tvorchi. Tvorchi excists of Andrii Hutsuliak and Nigerian born Jimoh Augustus Kihende. Both were students at the Faculty of Pharmacy in Ternopil, in the west of Ukraine. released their debut single “Slow” in 2017. Their debut album followed in 2018. In 2020, Tvorchi became 4th in Vidbir, the national final for the Eurovision Song Contest, with the song “Bonfire“. So far, Tvorchi released four albums. Vidbir The national final for the Eurovision Song Contest is called Vidbir. On 17 December last year the final was held in a shelter, the Maidan Nezhalesto Metro Station. After a shortlist with 36 names was published, 10 acts and songs were selected for Vidbir. While the jury chose for Krutь, the televoting audience had Tvorchi as there favourite. Tvorchi became the overall winner. It is not the first time that Vidbir is the national selection. It is the name of the national final since 2016. Often, with this year as an exception, the final is held after two semifinals.  Ukraine in the Eurovision Song Contest Ukraine participates in the Eurovision Song Contest since 2003. Already after one year, Ruslana brought the trophy home with her song “Wild dances”. The second Ukrainian victory came in 2016 with Jamala. She sang “1944”. With a landslide victory, Kalush Orchestra managed to win the contest last year with “Stefania”. But Ukraine also holds another record. No other country reached the final in ALL occasions. The contest is not held in Ukraine this year. Due to the war, safety guarantees could not be made.  The bookmakers Ukraine is currently 3rd at the bookmakers. It would not be a surprise if they really get that place. The country reached a top-3 place in no less than 3 occasions. The song And of course here is the song:  

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© EBU/Sarah Louise Bennett About Quick Facts MembersJimo Augustus KehindeAndrii Hutsuliak Founded2017 Nationality🇳🇬 Nigerian🇺🇦 Ukrainian National SelectionVidbir 2023Vidbir 2020 In Eurovision2023 Liverpool SongHeart of steel (2023) Biography TVORCHI is a Ukrainian music band from Ternopil, founded in 2018 by sound producer Andrii Hutsulyak and vocalist Jeffrey Kenny (Jimo Augustus Kehinde) .  On May 30, 2017, the duo releasted their first single called “Slow”. On September 4, the second single “You” was released. On February 2, 2018, the band released their debut album, which was called The Parts. On September 20, 2018, the band released a video clip for the song “Molodist”. A year later, on February 14, 2019, the second album Disco Lights was released. On February 21, the band released a video clip for the song “Believe”. Within a few days, the video gained 400,000 views on YouTube, and the song itself took the 9th place in the Google Play charts in Ukraine. In the summer of the same year, the band performed at the music festivals Fine City (Ternopil), Atlas Weekend (Kyiv) and Ukrainian Song Project (Lviv). On September 9, the duo released the single “#Ne tanchchyuyu”, and on September 16 the music video came out. On January 31, 2020, TVORCHI presented the song “Bonfire”, dedicated to the problems of ecology, andtook part in Vidbir, the national final for the Eurovision Song Contest. “Bonfire” became the most popular Ukrainian song of 2020 on the European Deezer platform. For 12 months, the track topped the top charts of the platform. On May 7, the premiere took place on the band’s YouTube channel and in DK Premier show on M1 TV, the music video for the song “Mova tila” from the second studio album “Disco Lights”.  On May 31, 2020, the Zolota Zhar-ptytsya music award was won by TVORCHI in the Indie category. In September 2020, TVORCHI released their third album, “13 Waves”, which was recorded remotely due to the COVID-19 pandemic in Ukraine. The record received over two million listens on music platforms in the first week of its release. On December 19, 2020, the artists became winners of the online music award “Culture Ukraine” in two nominations: “Best New Artist” and “English-language single” with the hit “Bonfire”. Ukrainian music award YUNA-2021 was held on May 12 at the National Palace of Arts “Ukraine”. TVORCHI won in the nominations “Best Pop Group”, “Best Album” and “Best Electronic Hit”. On September 10, 2021, the musical duo presented their fourth album Road on all music platforms. In July 2022, the band won two YUNA Awards for Best Live Show and Best Song in Another Language (“Falling”). On December 17, 2022, they won the National Selection for Eurovision 2023 with the song “Heart of Steel”, and thus represented Ukraine in the 2023 Eurovision Song Contest. They reached a 6th place in the final. Entries Heart Of Steel Country🇺🇦 Ukraine Year2022 LanguageEnglish LyricsJimoh August KehindeAndrii Hutsuliak MusicJimoh August KehindeAndrii Hutsuliak BackingsAndrii VeselyiDima Barkalov DancersAleksandra MakarovskayaAndrii Podkaliuk Results Semi Points: –Position: –Running order: – Results Finals Points: 243Position: 6Running order: 19

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Tvorchi wins Vidbir 2023

Tvorchi has won Vidbir 2023! The group will represent Ukraine in Liverpool next year with their song “Heart Of Steel”  The Jury gave them 9 points, while they won the public vote with 10 points. Tvorchi are the lucky ones to follow up Eurovision winners ‘Kalush Orchestra’, and therefore Ukraine has already granted itself a spot in the Eurovision Song Contest 2023 finals  watch the performance of “Heart Of Steel” here:    Tvorchi isn’t new to the Eurovision family, as they have participated in Vidbir 2020 with “Bonfire”. They went on to finals, but only ended up fourth.    In 2018 producer Andriy Gutsulyak (Andrew Hutsuliak) and Vocalist Jeffery Kenny doubled up to form the musical group.  Jeffery was born in Nigeria, but later on moved to Ukraine where he studied at the Ukrainian Medical University. This is where the duo met, and shared the same passion for music. Eventually they’ve loved it so much, that they started making their owns beats together.     

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Liverpool (left) or Glasgow (right) will host the Eurovision Song Contest 2023 on behalf of Ukraine

Host for Eurovision Song Contest 2023: Liverpool or Glasgow?

We’ve all been in suspense for weeks to find out where the Eurovision Song Contest 2023 will be organized. Between the different cities, and Ukraine’s President who was confident Maripol would be ready to host, there has been a lot of speculating. In the last couple of weeks, Eurovision’s social media team has been dropping hints and teasing its followers. The latest news is only two cities remain in this battle: Liverpool and Glasgow. The suspense is real. Let’s take a quick look at what these two cities have to offer. Liverpool Liverpool is a city located in Merseyside. With roughly 500,000 residents, it’s the 10th largest English District by population. The city is noted for its culture, architecture and transport links. The cities’ link to the Beatles, led to Liverpool becoming a very popular tourist destination. The city has continued to be a home to a lot of considerable artists and record labels. There are even connections to the Eurovision Song Contest; Sonia Evans was born in this city. When people think of Liverpool, a lot of people will think of sports. The annual Grand National horse race takes place at the Aintree Racecourse just outside the city. But, mostly (and I would even consider the word obviously), the city is best known for its premier league football. Liverpool has two rivals at each end of town: Liverpool FC and Everton FC. Glasgow Glasgow, located in Scotland, is the most populous city in Scotland and the fourth most populous ciry in the United Kingdom, with an estimated population of 650,000 people. The city is located on the River Clyde in the country’s West Central Lowlands. Like Liverpool, Glasgow is a very popular destination among tourists. The city is famed for its culture, shopping and (the many) people. If you wish to explore Glasgow outside of the Eurovision Song Contest, there’s a lot of free museums, you can look for the hidden gems recommended by locals or enjoy some shopping. If you have some time to spare, Glasgow is the perfect base for exploring the Highlands.     We don’t know when the definitive city will be announced. We, at Eurovision Universe, are excited about this shortlist. Both cities have their own charm and offer enough entertainment for a fun holiday in May 2023. We’ll keep you posted!

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7 cities on shortlist UK

Seven cities are on the shortlist to host the 2023 Eurovision Song Contest. These are Glasgow, Liverpool, Leeds, Birmingham, Manchester, Newcastle and Sheffield. Not only the place itself was a subject, but also how the cities want to reflect Ukrainian culture in the festivities. Ukraine won the Eurovision Song Contest this year but cannot organize it itself. That is why the United Kingdom and the BBC are taking on the organization. photo: EBU The next step is to create a bid book. In it, the cities show how the festival is organized in their city. The venue where the festival is held is also discussed: it must also be suitable. The infrastructure and availability of hotels are also discussed. The city must also present the financial picture. The BBC and the EBU will make a decision together, which is likely to fall in the autumn.  

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Kalush Orchestra

©EBU About Quick Facts MembersIhor DidenchukOleh PsiukTymofii MuzychukVitalii DuzhykOleksandr SlobodianykVlad Kurochka Established2019 Nationality Ukrainian National SelectionVidbir 2022 In Eurovision2022 SongStefania (2022) Biography Kalush is a Ukrainian rap band founded in 2019.  The band was named after Kalush, soloist and founder of the group Oleg Psyuk’s hometown. The band’s first music video for the song “Ne marynuy” was released on their official YouTube channel on October 17, 2019.  The video was shot on the streets of Kalush. After the release of the second music video “Ty honysh” in November 2019, the band Kalush signed a cooperation agreement with the American hip-hop label Def Jam, which is part of the Universal Music Group. On December 9, 2019, a video for the song “Hory” was released. In 12 days, the video garnered 1.2 million views on YouTube. In 2021, the band’s debut album, “Hotin”, was released. On July 23 of that year, Kalush and rapper Skofka released their second album, “Yo-yo”. In 2021 a parallel project was started – KALUSH Orchestra. Unlike the main band, this band will focus on rap with folk motifs and Ukrainian authenticity. Both groups have common members. Multi-instrumentalists Tymofiy Muzychuk and Vitaliy Duzhyk joined Oleg Psyuk (vocals, lyrics) Kilimmen (DJ) and Johnny Divny. Another musician, Igor Didenchuk, has played in Kalush from the beginning and went on to focus on the Kalush Orchestra. Kalush Orchestra competed in Vidbir, the national final for the Eurovision Song Contest with the song “Stefanai”. IThe band took a second place. However, the band got a chance to represent the country in the competition due to the disqualification of the winner of the final – Alina Pash. At the moment when Russia invaded Ukraine, the band became the hot favourite to win the contest. They won the contest with a landslide. Entries Stefania Country Ukraine Year2022 LanguageUkrainian LyricsIvan KlimenkoOleh Psiuk MusicIhor DidenchukTymofii MuzychukVitalii Duzhyk Backings– Results Semi Points: 337Position: 1Running order: 6 Results Finals Points: 631Position: 1Running order: 12

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And this is what we know about the following order

Tonight, during the winners’ press conference, every artist had to draw a ballot for the final. Will they perform in the 1st or in the 2nd half? Last week, the Big 5 already had their draw. However, there is one exception. The organizing country, in this case Italy, had already drawn for the 9th place on an earlier stage. As you notice, most of the countries drew a place in the first half. That means, next Thursday there will be a lot of places available in the 2nd half. 1st half: Armenia France Germany Italy (9th place) Norway Portugal Spain Switzerland The Netherlands Ukraine 2nd half: Iceland Lithuania Moldova United Kingdom

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Sietse Bakker: no plan in case Ukraine wins

The EBU has no plan yet, in case Ukraine wins the Eurovision Song Contest. Normally, the country with a high winning probability is already preparing for the organization of the next festival. Because of the war in Ukraine, it is by no means certain that this country will also be able to take on the organization in case they actually win. That is what Sietse Bakker, member of the EBU reference group, says to Dutch news agency ANP. “That might be a bit premature. After all, the competition has only just begun” says Bakker. “I do think it is important that the Reference Group comes together very quickly if Ukraine wins and thinks about what the ‘point of no return’ is: at what moment you can still decide whether or not it is possible in Kiev” , Baker explains. According to him, organizing the Eurovision Song Contest can easily take a year. “It doesn’t look good at the moment. It is still a dangerous situation. And it is highly uncertain how that will develop in the coming period.” There are several options if the winning country cannot organize the contest. “What EBU could do is go to a country that recently organized it. After all, the country can act quickly. Or one can say: we are going to a country that recently organized the Junior Song Contest, for example Poland. They did very well and they also have the ambition to organise Eurovision. The third option is to go to one of the Big Five countries.” Since 1981, the winning country has always organized the Eurovision Song Contest. Even when Ireland won three consecutive times, they always took on the organization. In 1980 the Netherlands organized the contest. The previous year’s winner, Israel, won twice in a row and was unable to cope financially. It is, of course, a bit early to speculate on this. Ukraine hasn’t won yet. However, the chances of that happening are high. In recent years, the number 1 has always won at the bookmakers. The last time that didn’t happen was in 2016. Russia was the number 1 at the bookmakers that year. Who did win in 2016? Ukraine… source: AD

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