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Live Blog: Eurovision Song Contest 2021 - Grand Final

Tonight we’re covering the Grand Final and Winner’s Press Conference.
Live from 18:30 – 02:30(ish) CEST.

📺 Watch the Grand Final on YouTube or learn how to watch in your region
🖨 Download the Official Eurovision Song Contest 2021 scorecard
📱 Vote using the official Eurovision App: Android / Apple

This Live Blog automatically updates. If you want to enjoy the full experience including embedded content we recommend that you accept all cookies and settings.

23 May 2021 at 01:48 CEST
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Time to say goodbye...

Eurovision is done for another year, and what a joy it’s been. Your Live Bloggers Heidi and Rob would like to say a HUGE thank you to the amazing digital team here in Rotterdam, and everyone who has kept us company for the 80 or so hours of Live Blogging we’ve done over the past two weeks. It’s been an absolute pleasure and a privilege.

Our beds are calling, but we hope very much to see you again somewhere in Italy in 2022. THANK YOU and goodnight!

Måneskin at the Press Conference after the Grand FinalEBU / Andres Putting
23 May 2021 at 01:46 CEST
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Here's a welcome pack, Italy!

Martin Österdahl hands Måneskin the Eurovision welcome pack – the beginning of their journey to hosting Eurovision 2022.

Before they go, Ethan thanks all the other artists for being part of this year’s Eurovision. And that’s the end of the winner’s press conference.

23 May 2021 at 01:44 CEST
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What would you say to UK artists who wouldn't want to touch the contest now?

…asks Steve Holden from BBC Radio 1. Taking part and playing music is what matters, says Victoria, and it’s been a really tough year and everyone brought their best game. It’s not about winning, it’s about bringing the energy of a live gig.

23 May 2021 at 01:41 CEST
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'This is not a cheesy event'

It’s a musical event, says Damiano. There are lots of different styles of music at Eurovision, and everything counts.

We couldn’t concur more.

23 May 2021 at 01:39 CEST
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Måneskin are going on tour...

…in December. Coming to a banging venue near you, get your leather trousers ready.

They’re done with musical competitions for the time being, it’s too much anxiety. They plan to follow where the music takes them.

Måneskin at the Press Conference after the Grand FinalEBU / Andres Putting
23 May 2021 at 01:36 CEST
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'The audience is the most important thing'

Måneskin are asked what it means that the public pushed them from fourth place after the jury vote (it was actually third, but whatever). It means everything, Victoria tells us, because (with no offence to the juries) what the public loves is what matters.

23 May 2021 at 01:32 CEST
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'We're four friends playing the music we love'

A journalist asks what went through Italy’s minds when they realised they had won, and Damiano says all their hard work has finally made sense. Being recognised at such a huge level means everything – they are just four friends playing the music they love.

Måneskin at the Press Conference after the Grand FinalEBU / Andres Putting
23 May 2021 at 01:29 CEST
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Where will the Italian Contest be held in 2022?

Verona?

The Head of Delegation says it’s too soon to say and, as expected, there will be a bidding process.

23 May 2021 at 01:28 CEST
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We're at the press conference....

Måneskin are at their press conference… they’ve already said they’re going to celebrate by jumping in the river and that the Eurovision bubble is one of the friendliest environments ever.

Their favourite act this evening?

Ukraine.

Måneskin won the Eurovision Song Contest 2021EBU / Andres Putting
23 May 2021 at 00:51 CEST
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ITALY are the winners of Eurovision 2021

Live Blog: Winner

Pack your bags, we’re off to ITALY in 2022.

HUGE congratulations to Måneskin for a hard-fought win, and a massive round of applause to the rest of the competitors who have made this a brilliant, brilliant show.

A few months ago we weren’t sure this was going to happen, but here we are. What a night, what a fortnight, what a YEAR.

Time to relive Måneskin’s brilliant performance – we’ll be heading off to the winner’s press conference shortly, so stay with us if you want further updates.

23 May 2021 at 00:48 CEST
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Three countries left...

Malta gets 47 points, which is a SHOCK. Destiny looks devastated.

France gets 251 points, which isn’t enough to get ahead of Italy. So it all comes down to Switzerland.

Switzerland doesn’t get enough.

which means…

23 May 2021 at 00:43 CEST
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HUGE public points for Ukraine and Italy!

And they’re now in the lead. It’s all going to come down to the public points for France, Switzerland, Iceland, Malta and Italy.

Iceland get 180 points from the public, which puts them ahead of Ukraine. Italy get 318 votes, which sends them straight into the lead.

So only Malta, Switzerland and France to go.

23 May 2021 at 00:39 CEST
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The public LOVES Lithuania and Finland...

Big points for Lithuania, and the first real disconnect between the jury and the public vote. Huge points for Finland too – the rock music audience is alive and well.

Ten results to go! Our blood pressure is through the roof!

23 May 2021 at 00:37 CEST
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Some public points are coming in!

The points are starting to come in now, but the numbers are low. It feels like every country has voted for the same people, which is going to make the end of this VERY exciting.

Only 13 public points for San Marino. Flo Rida does NOT look happy.

23 May 2021 at 00:35 CEST
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The public vote is GOOD TO GO!

This way of delivering the public vote is brutal, but exciting. Currently only the United Kingdom has zero points, and sadly the public vote doesn’t change anything.

A shame for James Newman, but that’s Eurovision. It’s been an incredibly strong year, and James did the UK proud.

No public points for Germany either, but they got 3 from the juries. Same for Spain, who ended up on 6 points. None for the Netherlands either, who ended up on 11.

Man, this is CRUEL.

23 May 2021 at 00:31 CEST
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The jury vote is done!

All the jury votes are in, and the Top 5 looks like this:

  1. Switzerland – 267 points

  2. France – 248 points

  3. Italy – 208 points

  4. Malta – 206 points

  5. Iceland – 198 points

But history tells us that the public vote can change EVERYTHING. It’s nearly time to find out…

23 May 2021 at 00:26 CEST
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France and Switzerland are battling it out...

..but Gjon’s Tears from Switzerland is pulling away into the lead. The public vote is going to be EVERYTHING.

Things are very stressful here in the delegation bubble.

23 May 2021 at 00:20 CEST
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Iceland’s jury vote is being read out by the Ja Ja Ding Dong guy from the Eurovision movie. Mostly he just shouts PLAY JA JA DING DONG before giving Iceland’s 12 points to Switzerland. Incredible.

Most of the time we’re just asking each other 'What is Flo Rida making of this?'

23 May 2021 at 00:15 CEST
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“If I take the win home the first thing I will do is sleep, because I really need it, ” says Barbara from France.

We hear you, Babs. We hear you.

23 May 2021 at 00:13 CEST
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Half the juries have voted!

And now France are at the top of the leaderboard, ahead of Switzerland, Malta, Iceland and Italy. But it’s VERY close, and we have a long way to go…

23 May 2021 at 00:10 CEST
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It’s the epic sax guy from Moldova! We love him. They give their 12 points to Bulgaria, but it doesn’t change the top 5.

23 May 2021 at 00:08 CEST
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Current top 5 – Switzerland, France, Malta, Iceland and Italy. Is this going to be how things pan out after the public vote too?

23 May 2021 at 00:01 CEST
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We're seven juries in...

…and currently Switzerland are leading the jury vote, ahead of France and Italy. But the 12 points are not consistently for one country, so this could go anywhere. And of course the public vote could change everything.

IT’S VERY TENSE HERE.

22 May 2021 at 23:56 CEST
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Time for the jury votes...

We’re not going to report every jury vote, just the ones with particularly interesting (or mad) presenters, but we’ll give you regular updates on the score.

First up it’s Lucy Ayoube from Israel. Will they set the voting pattern for the rest of the evening? They give their 12 points to…SWITZERLAND.

22 May 2021 at 23:54 CEST
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WE’RE GOOD TO GO!

Executive Supervisor and Eurovision pin-up Martin Österdahl has checked and verified the results. The voting is about to begin!

22 May 2021 at 23:52 CEST
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THE VOTING IS CLOSED

Chantal has swapped her gold dress for a sparkly silver one, and the final voting countdown is delivered through the medium of contemporary dance.

The public vote is closed, so now we just have to wait for the results…WAAAAAH.

22 May 2021 at 23:45 CEST
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Duncan Laurence is in the house...

Not THE house – Duncan is in his house, having testing positive for COVID-19 earlier this week. We hope he feels better soon.

But through the wonders of television, Jan tells us, Duncan is performing both his winning song Arcade and his new song Stars.

We don’t mean to burst the magic bubble, but when Jan says ‘the wonders of television’, he means ‘the rehearsal Duncan did on Monday.’

22 May 2021 at 23:43 CEST
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ROCK THE ROOF!

Time for some Eurovision artists of yesteryear to rock the rooftops of Rotterdam. Måns Zelmerlöw kicks things off with Heroes from 2015, followed by Teach-In singing Ding-a-Dong, which was the Netherlands’ last win from 1975.

But we’re not done yet – next up it’s the turn of Belgium’s Sandra Kim to sing J’aime La Vie, the Eurovision winner from 1986, followed by Lenny Kuhr singing Le Troubadour, which won for the Netherlands in 1969.

Off to Greece now, with Helena Paparizou singing My Number One, which won the contest in 2005. She still has ALL the dance moves.

And finally, Finland’s Lordi have taken to a rooftop for a pyro-tastic reprise of their 2006 winner Hard rock Hallelujah. I mean, it could be Lordi. How would we possibly know?

22 May 2021 at 23:30 CEST
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Ode to the audience...

Eurovision takes the opportunity to celebrate the Eurovision audience, from the days when people used to clap politely in suits to the incredible crowds who pack the host cities now.

If you’ve occasionally entertained the idea of of going to the host city during Eurovision but haven’t actually done it, we can’t recommend it enough. It’s the biggest, happiest, most fun party ever.

First semi-final liveshow Eurovision Song Contest 2021EBU / Andres Putting

Time for a final recap! Every one of these songs is now engraved on our Live Blogger brains for the rest of time. At any time in the future we could be in the supermarket and be overcome by the urge to do the Roop hand dance, or hit the Tout l’Univers high note. We’ll be teaching Iceland’s dance moves to our grandchildren.

22 May 2021 at 23:27 CEST
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Eurovision Car Rides!

Edsilia takes us back to 2020, when she took some Eurovision stars of yesteryear on a tour of Rotterdam. It’s basically James Corden’s Carpool Karaoke, but make it Eurovision.

Mostly this makes us think that ALL of James Corden’s Carpool Karaoke should be Eurovision.

22 May 2021 at 23:24 CEST
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Nikkie Tutorials time!

It’s the final installment of Nikkie’s Eurovision Tutorials, with tips on how to Rock The Vote. Mostly it’s about ignoring the madness of voting, embracing the tech chaos, and not getting drunk. Incidentally, these rules also reply to Live Blogging.

Nikkie also takes us on a tour behind the scenes, which is where we’ve been hanging out for the past two weeks. And we’re not going to lie, it’s been exhausting but also incredible. A special Eurovision year, and an experience we’ll never forget.

22 May 2021 at 23:14 CEST
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Music binds us...

Time for a musical interlude, featuring Dutch DJ Afrojack accompanied by a full orchestra and Dutch musician Wulf on Rotterdam’s Erasmus Bridge.

We then move into the studio, with the Eurovision Dance Crew and Glennis Grace singing David Guetta’s Titanium.

The Netherlands does dance music SO well, and this is exactly what we need right now. Get ready for a banging pyro ending.

Dancing is happening in the Delegation Bubble at Rotterdam Ahoy right now. In the immortal words of The Roop, it’s OK to dance in a socially-distanced fashion.

Music Binds Us Feat. Glennis Grace & Wulf – Interval Act – Eurovision Song Contest 2021 – Rotterdam AhoyEBU / Andres Putting
Afrojack will perform in the Grand Final of the Eurovision Song Contest 2021
22 May 2021 at 23:11 CEST
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Iceland are in their Green Room...

…AKA their hotel. We send them all the Eurovision love.

The Green Room of Iceland during the Grand FinalGisli Berg
The Green Room of Iceland during the Grand FinalGisli Berg
22 May 2021 at 23:05 CEST
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🇸🇲 Just FYI....

Flo Rida raps: “911 when she comin’ down the pole” but can we take this opportunity to point out that the fire brigade emergency service number in San Marino is actually 115.


Stay safe out there. x

Senhit – San Marino – Grand Final – Eurovision Song Contest 2021 – Rotterdam AhoyEBU / Thomas Hanses
22 May 2021 at 23:03 CEST
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EUROPE START VOTING NOW!

We’re done with the singing, and it’s time for vote. Here’s a handy recap of all 26 songs, the first of several.

WHAT a show. What a year!

22 May 2021 at 23:00 CEST
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Come gimme your full attention...

And last but very much not least, it’s Senhit from San Marino. Featuring Flo Rida, because nothing makes sense in 2021. Also backing singers dressed as jellyfish wearing welding masks, because Eurovision.

While we’re here, can we take a moment to appreciate the lyrics of Flo Rida’s rap interlude?

“Gasoline, kerosene, stop drop roll/I can’t blame it on the stove”.

It’s not the first Eurovision song that features a stove – Russia’s Party For Everybody in 2012 involved live baking, and Latvia’s Cake To Bake in 2014 walked so Flo Rida could run.

Senhit – San Marino – Grand Final – Eurovision Song Contest 2021 – Rotterdam AhoyEBU / Thomas Hanses
22 May 2021 at 22:58 CEST
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🇸🇲 #OpenUp to... SAN MARINO #SMR

🇸🇲 San Marino / Senhit – Adrenalina

Senhit, San Marino, Backstage, Rotterdam Ahoy, 10 May 2021EBU / Thomas Hanses
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Senhit will represent San Marino at the Eurovision Song Contest 2021

Senhit

22 May 2021 at 22:57 CEST
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There’s fire in the rain...

…but we’ll get up again.

This is a very polished three minutes of pop, just as you’d expect from Sweden. But Tusse also brings something extra – his personal story, his incredible fashion choices and mesmerising use of the stage. It’s a really powerful performance from Tusse, who won Swedish Idol in 2019.

Tusse – Sweden – Grand Final – Eurovision Song Contest 2021 – Rotterdam AhoyEBU / Thomas Hanses
22 May 2021 at 22:55 CEST
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🖊 Aww Tusse...

…right in the feels 🥺

Official Programme
Official Programme
22 May 2021 at 22:55 CEST
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🇸🇪 #OpenUp to... SWEDEN #SWE

🇸🇪 Sweden / Tusse – Voices

Tusse, Sweden, backstage, Rotterdam Ahoy, 8 May 2021EBU / Thomas Hanses
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Tusse

Tusse

22 May 2021 at 22:52 CEST
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Get ready for Måneskin...

Italy have been an absolute joy in the delegation bubble over the past two weeks – hanging out in stylish clothes, playing ping pong, dancing to the other nation’s songs.

There aren’t many men who can pull off red lederhosen, cuban heels and guyliner, but Damiano from Maneskin is rocking all three whilst still managing to be a legitimate rock god. They’re a force of nature.

Måneskin – Italy – Grand Final – Eurovision Song Contest 2021 – Rotterdam AhoyEBU / Thomas Hanses
22 May 2021 at 22:50 CEST
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🖊 Måneskin are such megababes...

🏓

Official Programme
22 May 2021 at 22:49 CEST
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🇮🇹 #OpenUp to...ITALY #ITA

🇮🇹 Italy / Måneskin – Zitti E Buoni

Måneskin, Italy, Backstage, Rotterdam Ahoy, 13 May 2021EBU / Andres Putting
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Måneskin will represent Italy at the Eurovision Song Contest 2021

Måneskin

22 May 2021 at 22:47 CEST
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Your rhythm is rebellion...

A HUGE cheer for Jeangu Macrooy from the Netherlands, performing in front of a largely home crowd.

You know how sometimes the host nation brings a very average entry to avoid winning again? Yeah, not the Netherlands. They’ve brought something really special to Eurovision this year. Birth Of A New Age tells a story of resilience, with parts sung in Sranan Tongo, a language of Suriname. These lyrics are inspired by an old Surinamese saying: ‘Mi Na Afu Sensi, No Wan Man E Broko Mi’, which literally means: ‘I’m half a cent, you can’t break me’. Get ready for goosebumps.

Jeangu Macrooy – The Netherlands – Grand Final – Eurovision Song Contest 2021 – Rotterdam AhoyEBU / Thomas Hanses
22 May 2021 at 22:45 CEST
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🇳🇱 #OpenUp to... THE NETHERLANDS #NED

🇳🇱 The Netherlands (Hosts)/ Jeangu Macrooy – Birth of a New Age

Jeangu Macrooy, The Netherlands, Backstage, First Rehearsal, Rotterdam Ahoy, 13 May 2021EBU / Andres Putting
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Jeangu Macrooy

Jeangu Macrooy

22 May 2021 at 22:45 CEST
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So much still to come...

…including Afrojack, former contestants rocking the roof, and a performance from Duncan Laurence.

And, of course, the four countries who haven’t yet performed – Netherlands, Italy, Sweden, San Marino. Do NOT go away.

22 May 2021 at 22:42 CEST
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What can I say...

Norway’s Tix is up next, with a song that’s about conquering your demons and embracing your true self, inspired by Tix growing up with Tourette’s syndrome.

Under that fur coat and wings he’s wearing a silver sparkly catsuit, which definitely qualifies as 2021 Eurovision dress code.

Anyone else get Backstreet Boys vibes from this? We miss the late 90s.

TIX – Norway – Grand Final – Eurovision Song Contest 2021 – Rotterdam AhoyEBU / Thomas Hanses
22 May 2021 at 22:41 CEST
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🖊 TIX... 🥺

What a sweetheart.

Official Programme
Official Programme
22 May 2021 at 22:40 CEST
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🇳🇴 #OpenUp to... NORWAY #NOR

🇳🇴 Norway / TIX – Fallen Angel

TIX, Norway, Backstage, Rotterdam AhoyEBU / Andres Putting
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TIX will represent Norway at the Eurovision Song Contest 2021

TIX

22 May 2021 at 22:38 CEST
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Playing the game of desire...

It’s taken Efendi five attempts to get to Eurovision, and we can confirm she has the loudest delegation in Rotterdam Ahoy. Last year’s Cleopatra has been transformed into this year’s Mata Hari – it’s hard to imagine a time when “Ma ma ma ma/Ma ma ma ma” won’t be the the last thing in our brains before we fall asleep. Maybe by 2022?

Efendi – Azerbaijan – Grand Final – Eurovision Song Contest 2021 – Rotterdam AhoyEBU / Thomas Hanses
22 May 2021 at 22:37 CEST
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🇦🇿 #OpenUp to... AZERBAIJAN #AZE

🇦🇿Azerbaijan / Efendi – Mata Hari

Efendi, Azerbaijan, Backstage, Rotterdam Ahoy, 9 May 2021EBU / Andres Putting
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Efendi will represent Azerbaijan at the Eurovision Song Contest 2021

Efendi

22 May 2021 at 22:37 CEST
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🖊 Cheers Babs...

No, thank YOU.

Official Programme
22 May 2021 at 22:35 CEST
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Écoutez-moi...

If you ever wanted an example of the diversity of music at Eurovision, we give you the transition from Go_A’s Shum into Barbara Pravi’s Voila. This is a traditional French chanson inspired by the classic songs of artists like Edith Piaf. Like Ukraine it goes off at the end, but less techno.

Does anyone else really want to smoke Gauloises and drink red wine now? Yeah, us too.

Barbara Pravi – France – Grand Final – Eurovision Song Contest 2021 – Rotterdam AhoyEBU / Thomas Hanses
22 May 2021 at 22:33 CEST
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🇫🇷 #OpenUp to... FRANCE #FRA

🇫🇷 France / Barbara Pravi – Voilà

Barbara Pravi, France, Backstage, Rotterdam Ahoy, 13 May 2021EBU / Andres Putting
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Barbara Pravi will represent France at the Eurovision Song Contest 2021

Barbara Pravi

22 May 2021 at 22:30 CEST
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Ready for a Ukrainian rave?

Brace yourselves, because it’s time for some Ukranian electro folklore, and we implore you NOT to go away.

Go_A’s Shum is arguably the biggest banger of Eurovision 2021, but please pace yourselves if your dancing because this goes OFF. It’s got creepy trees, glowing frisbees, a man with a penny whistle, and a final verse of banging Ukrainian techno. Honestly, what’s not to love about Eurovision?

Go_A – Ukraine – Grand Final – Eurovision Song Contest 2021 – Rotterdam AhoyEBU / Thomas Hanses
22 May 2021 at 22:29 CEST
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🇺🇦 #OpenUp to... UKRAINE #UKR

🇺🇦Ukraine / Go_A – Shum

Go_A, Ukraine, Backstage, Rotterdam Ahoy, 9 May 2021EBU / Andres Putting
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Go_A will represent Ukraine at the Eurovision Song Contest 2021

Go_A

22 May 2021 at 22:27 CEST
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We’ve got the moves…

Time for more neon and hand dancing, because The Roop are having a Discoteque. We’ve all been dancing alone for the past year, but tonight the whole delegation bubble is having a little chair bop. LET’S DISCOTEQUE.

The Roop – Lithuania – Grand Final – Eurovision Song Contest 2021 – Rotterdam AhoyEBU / Thomas Hanses
22 May 2021 at 22:24 CEST
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🇱🇹 #OpenUp to... LITHUANIA #LTU

🇱🇹Lithuania / The Roop – Discoteque

Lithuania BackstageEBU/Thomas Hanses
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The Roop will represent Lithuania at the Eurovision Song Contest 2021

The Roop

22 May 2021 at 22:23 CEST
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An ocean of emotion...

Next up it’s Bulgaria, with Victoria singing on her floating rock. It’s not as big as Blas Cantó’s moon, but it’s still fairly sizeable and doesn’t look like you can deflate it.

Considering all the women in tiny dresses and killer heels this year, you can’t help but admire Victoria going for comfy casuals. Same for Manizha from Russia. They must both feel SO smug at their lack of blisters and sequin chafing.

VICTORIA – Bulgaria – Grand Final – Eurovision Song Contest 2021 – Rotterdam AhoyEBU / Andres Putting
22 May 2021 at 22:20 CEST
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#OpenUp to...BULGARIA #BUL

🇧🇬 Bulgaria / Victoria – Growing Up is Getting Old

VICTORIA, Bulgaria, Backstage, Rotterdam Ahoy, 11 May 2021EBU / Andres Putting
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VICTORIA will represent Bulgaria at the Eurovision Song Contest 2021

VICTORIA

22 May 2021 at 22:19 CEST
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16 acts have performed...

…but there are still 10 to go! Edsilia is up in the commentator booths. She pops in to see Henrik and Nicolai from Denmark and Yana from Russia. The commentator booths are tiny, but we’ve heard a rumour they have alcohol.

There is no alcohol in the Delegation Bubble. We’ve looked.

22 May 2021 at 22:14 CEST
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More middle fingers from Finland...

This song has a similar theme to Jendrik, but instead of ukeleles and tap dancing it’s three minutes of pyro-tastic Finnish ROCK. We know Blind Channel SEEM quite angry, but they’re absolutely charming backstage.

The chorus of this goes “Put your middle fingers up/Take a shot/Throw it up and don’t stop”. We don’t want to get all parental or anything, but this is SUCH a bad idea.

Blind Channel – Finland – Grand Final – Eurovision Song Contest 2021 – Rotterdam AhoyEBU / Thomas Hanses
22 May 2021 at 22:13 CEST
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#OpenUp to...FINLAND #FIN

🇫🇮 Finland / Blind Channel – Dark Side

Blind Channel, Finland, Backstage, Rotterdam AhoyEBU / Andres Putting
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Blind Channel will represent Finland at the Eurovision Song Contest 2021

Blind Channel

22 May 2021 at 22:12 CEST
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Wiggle that middle finger....

Time for the quirkiest act of this year’s competition, featuring Jendrik and his silver ukelele, supported by a dancer in a giant hand costume, which is NEXT LEVEL hand dancing.

Just when you think things couldn’t get any more strange, everyone starts tap dancing. Although to be honest we’ve now been here for over two weeks and nothing feels strange any more.

Jendrik – Germany – Grand Final – Eurovision Song Contest 2021 – Rotterdam AhoyEBU / Thomas Hanses
22 May 2021 at 22:10 CEST
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🖊 Jendrik...

PROBABLY amazing? DEFINITELY AMAZING!

Official Programme
22 May 2021 at 22:10 CEST
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#OpenUp to...GERMANY #GER

🇩🇪Germany/ Jendrik – I Don’t Feel Hate

Jendrik, Germany, Backstage, Rotterdam Ahoy, 13 May 2021EBU / Andres Putting
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Jendrik Sigwart will represent Germany at Eurovision 2021

Jendrik

22 May 2021 at 22:07 CEST
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Anyone for Sugar?

If Blas wasn’t sweet enough for you, here’s Natalia Gordienko from Moldova singing about Sugar. Except in in Natalia’s case, ‘sugar’ is largely metaphorical, if you catch our drift.

This one ticks all our Eurovision boxes – sparkly silver dress, pink neon, hand dancing, hot dancers in sunbed goggles. Natalia also delivers the longest note of this year’s competition, at 17 seconds.

Also: MIC DROP. That hasn’t happened in any of Natalia’s rehearsals. One of her dancers gives it back and she carries on like an absolute pro.

Natalia Gordienko – Moldova – Grand Final – Eurovision Song Contest 2021 – Rotterdam AhoyEBU / Thomas Hanses
22 May 2021 at 22:05 CEST
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#OpenUp to...MOLDOVA #MDA

🇲🇩 Moldova / Natalia Gordienko – SUGAR

Natalia Gordienko, Moldova, Backstage, Rotterdam Ahoy, 10 May 2021EBU / Thomas Hanses
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Natalia Gordienko will represent Moldova at the Eurovision Song Contest 2021

Natalia Gordienko

22 May 2021 at 22:04 CEST
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Blas Cantó's moon is rising...

Blas is here for three minutes of pure Spanish romance, featuring the largest prop in Eurovision history – a 6 metre inflatable moon. We’ve also seen it deflated, which is a little less impressive.

In English, the opening lyric to this means 'stay tonight to watch the sunrise’, which is very much how we expect this Live Blog to pan out. Just not with Blas, sadly.

*Puts lighter up, sways in Spanish*

Blas Cantó – Spain – Grand Final – Eurovision Song Contest 2021 – Rotterdam AhoyEBU / Thomas Hanses
22 May 2021 at 22:02 CEST
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#OpenUp to...SPAIN #ESP

🇪🇸 Spain/ Blas Cantó – Voy A Querdarme

Blas Cantó, Spain, Backstage, Rotterdam Ahoy, 13 May 2021EBU / Andres Putting
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Blas Cantó will represent Spain at the Eurovision Song Contest 2021

Blas Cantó

22 May 2021 at 21:58 CEST
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Every day…

…our love for Daði og Gagnamagnið finds a new way to grow.

They might be stuck in their hotel after Jóhann tested positive for COVID-19, but they’re still with us in spirit. And luckily they did a brilliant rehearsal last week, in front of an audience consisting of two Live Bloggers and a handful of crew. In many ways, this performance was just for us.

Get up off your sofa and do the dance, you know you want to.

Daði og Gagnamagnið, Iceland, Second Rehearsal, Rotterdam Ahoy, 13 May 2021EBU / Thomas Hanses
22 May 2021 at 21:57 CEST
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#OpenUp to...ICELAND #ISL

🇮🇸 Iceland / Da∂i Freyr og Gagnamagni∂ – 10 Years

Daði og Gagnamagnið, Iceland, Backstage, Rotterdam Ahoy, 10 May 2021EBU / Thomas Hanses
22 May 2021 at 21:54 CEST
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No tears for Gjon...

It’s the first of two French songs this evening, sung by Gjon on a white plinth in a black sparkly blouson that we love more every time we see it. Do you think he’ll swap it for an official Eurovision hoodie?

We’ve just checked the English lyrics to this, and they’re super-romantic – "The whole universe/Our two hearts under the ground/At the centre of the rifts where everything explodes.

*presses hands to heart*

Gjon’s Tears – Switzerland – Grand Final – Eurovision Song Contest 2021 – Rotterdam AhoyEBU / Thomas Hanses
22 May 2021 at 21:53 CEST
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🖊 Gjon gjots down his signature...

…or runes, not sure tbh.

Official Programme
Official Programme
22 May 2021 at 21:53 CEST
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#OpenUp to...SWITZERLAND #SUI

🇨🇭 Switzerland / Gjon’s Tears – Tout l’Univers

Gjon’s Tears, Switzerland, First Rehearsal, Rotterdam Ahoy, 11 May 2021EBU / Andres Putting
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Gjon's Tears will represent Switzerland at the Eurovision Song Contest 2021

Gjon's Tears

22 May 2021 at 21:51 CEST
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Let's forget the world below...

…and dance until the end. Stefania’s taken Zoom backgrounds to the next level, having made the decision to bring her entire music video to Rotterdam. There are stairs and vertigo-inducing buildings and dancing suits, and you definitely can’t fault Greece for creative ambition.

Stefania – Greece – Grand Final – Eurovision Song Contest 2021 – Rotterdam AhoyEBU / Thomas Hanses
22 May 2021 at 21:50 CEST
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TIX og Tusse

Getting ready for that second half!

Tix and Tusse Backstage at the Grand Final
22 May 2021 at 21:49 CEST
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#OpenUp to...GREECE #GRE

🇬🇷 Greece / Stefania – Last Dance

Stefania, Greece, Backstage, Rotterdam AhoyEBU / Thomas Hanses
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Stefania will represent Greece at the Eurovision Song Contest 2021

Stefania

22 May 2021 at 21:46 CEST
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Ready to light up the room?

It’s Song 9, the time when legendary British Eurovision commentator Terry Wogan would start drinking. If there is a secret bar in Rotterdam Ahoy, we have yet to find it. It’s DRY in here.

James Newman’s song Embers is all about how our flames haven’t gone out over the past year – the embers are still burning, and we just need to give them a stoke and light up the room. We are very here for this sentiment, and this song is a proper bop.

James Newman – United Kingdom – Grand Final – Eurovision Song Contest 2021 – Rotterdam AhoyEBU / Thomas Hanses
22 May 2021 at 21:45 CEST
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#OpenUp to...UNITED KINGDOM #UK

🇬🇧 United Kingdom / James Newman – Embers

James Newman, United Kingdom, Backstage, Rotterdam Ahoy, 13 May 2021EBU / Andres Putting
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James Newman will represent the United Kingdom at the Eurovision Song Contest 2021

James Newman

22 May 2021 at 21:44 CEST
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8 songs down, 17 to go! Is everyone having a lovely time?

Time for a chat with NikkieTutorials, where we meet the winners of her #EurovisionChallenge and also say hello to Valentina, the winner of last year’s Junior Eurovision. It

We also learns that Duncan Laurence cleans his Eurovision trophy every week, when he does all his other cleaning. It actually looked quite hard to clean, there are lot of fiddly details. But probably best not to put it in the dishwasher.

OMG, Nikkie just plugged this Live Blog. WELCOME, new viewers.

22 May 2021 at 21:39 CEST
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1,2... Girls, Come on!

Take shelter, Serbia’s Hurricane are incoming with force 9 hairography and some dance moves that may cause structural damage.

The lyrics to this are brilliant. "And I am cute and nice/And you’re alone, alone, alone/And I know, I know, I know/It will be wild, wild, wild

It is. It’s totally wild.

Hurricane – Serbia – Grand Final – Eurovision Song Contest 2021 – Rotterdam AhoyEBU / Thomas Hanses
22 May 2021 at 21:38 CEST
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#OpenUp to...SERBIA #SRB

🇷🇸 Serbia / Hurricane – Loco Loco

Hurricane, Serbia, Backstage, Rotterdam AhoyEBU / Thomas Hanses
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Hurricane will represent Serbia at the Eurovision Song Contest 2021

Hurricane

22 May 2021 at 21:36 CEST
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Love is...

…on Portugal’s side. This is another good example of how diverse the musical styles are this evening, with The Black Mamba bringing the blues to Love Is On My Side.

It’s the first time in Eurovision history that Portugal has ever entered a song that isn’t in Portuguese, but apparently The Black Mamba record music in both languages. Stick around for the Prince-style guitar solo at the end.

The Black Mamba – Portugal – Grand Final – Eurovision Song Contest 2021 – Rotterdam AhoyEBU / Andres Putting
22 May 2021 at 21:33 CEST
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🖊 The Black Mamba....

…not fans of ping-pong

Official Programme 2021
22 May 2021 at 21:33 CEST
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#OpenUp to...PORTUGAL #POR

🇵🇹 Portugal / The Black Mamba – Love Is On My Side

The Black Mamba, Portugal, Backstage, Rotterdam Ahoy, 11 May 2021EBU / Andres Putting
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The Black Mamba will represent Portugal at the Eurovision Song Contest 2021

The Black Mamba

22 May 2021 at 21:31 CEST
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Excuse my French...

Sticking with the female empowerment theme, it’s time for Malta’s Destiny, singing her power-vocal pop banger Je Me Casse.

There’s lots more neon, another silver dress, and also our first hand dance of the evening – there are a few more of those to come too. Are you waggling? We’re waggling.

Destiny – Malta – Grand Final – Eurovision Song Contest 2021 – Rotterdam AhoyEBU / Thomas Hanses
22 May 2021 at 21:30 CEST
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🖊 Destiny signs her name across our hearts...

You keep up the great work too, Destiny! 💪

Official Programme 2021
22 May 2021 at 21:30 CEST
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#OpenUp to...MALTA #MLT

🇲🇹 Malta / Destiny – Je Me Casse

Destiny, Malta, Backstage, Rotterdam AhoyEBU / Andres Putting
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Destiny will represent Malta at the Eurovision Song Contest 2021

Destiny

22 May 2021 at 21:27 CEST
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Are you ready for change?

Because WE are the change.

Time for something COMPLETELY different – Russia’s Manizha rapping about female empowerment from inside a giant dress. We had a chat with Manizha last week and discovered that the wall of 500 Russian women on the digital screen includes her mum. How nice is that?

Manizha – Russia – Grand Final – Eurovision Song Contest 2021 – Rotterdam AhoyEBU / Thomas Hanses
22 May 2021 at 21:25 CEST
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🖊 From Russia with Love...

We’ve been asking the Eurovision acts to sign the Official Programme 2021 on our beloved ping-pong table in the delegation bubble, and we’re gonna share some of the messages this evening…

Official Programme 2021
22 May 2021 at 21:25 CEST
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#OpenUp to...RUSSIA #RUS

🇷🇺 Russia / Manizha – Russian Woman

Manizha, Russia, backstage, Rotterdam Ahoy, 8 May 2021EBU/Thomas Hanses
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Manizha performed 'Russian Woman' at the Russian national final for Eurovision 2021

Manizha

22 May 2021 at 21:23 CEST
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Don’t you ever dare...

…to wear my Johnny Cash T-shirt. It’s time for Belgium’s Hooverphonic, who don’t share clothes but do have our first band of the evening. The Wrong Place is an understated and classy indie ballad in the midst of all the pyro and neon. Take a moment to relax and nod along thoughtfully.

Hooverphonic – Belgium – Grand Final – Eurovision Song Contest 2021 – Rotterdam AhoyEBU / Thomas Hanses
22 May 2021 at 21:21 CEST
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#OpenUp to...BELGIUM #BEL

🇧🇪Belgium / Hooverphonic – The Wrong Place

Hooverphonic, Belgium, First Rehearsal, Rotterdam Ahoy, 9 May 2021EBU / Andres Putting
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Hooverphonic will represent Belgium at the Eurovision Song Contest 2021 with the song The Wrong Place

Hooverphonic

22 May 2021 at 21:20 CEST
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Feel my beating heart...

Time for our first mid-tempo bop of the evening – we challenge you not do a little sofa dance. Also our first neon backdrop, which is another big theme for 2021.

Her backing dancers’ tops don’t look very breathable, do they? Proper sweaty in there.

Stay for the big finish, when Eden delivers a dress reveal and the two highest notes of 2021.

Eden Alene – Israel – Grand Final – Eurovision Song Contest 2021 – Rotterdam AhoyEBU / Thomas Hanses
22 May 2021 at 21:18 CEST
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🔥 Måneskin BOP Alert 🔥

Måneskin went absolutely OFF to El Diablo!

Acts supporting acts: YOU LOVE TO SEE IT 💖

22 May 2021 at 21:17 CEST
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🇮🇱 #OpenUp to...ISRAEL #ISR

🇮🇱Israel / Eden Alene – Set Me Free

Eden Alene, Israel, Backstage, Rotterdam Ahoy, 9 May 2021EBU / Andres Putting
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Eden Alene will represent Israel at the Eurovision Song Contest 2021

Eden Alene

22 May 2021 at 21:15 CEST
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Let's hear it for Albania...

Albania’s brought all the silver sequins – we estimate you’ll see no less than five sparkly silver dresses this evening, not including the hosts. And a couple of the guys. And half the audience.

'I am alone Yes, I am alone, ' sings Anxhela. There are 3,500 people in that arena, and 200 million people watching her deliver this Albanian mega-ballad. Anxhela has never been less alone.

Anxhela Peristeri – Albania – Grand Final – Eurovision Song Contest 2021 – Rotterdam AhoyEBU / Thomas Hanses
22 May 2021 at 21:13 CEST
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🇦🇱 #OpenUp to...ALBANIA #ALB

🇦🇱 Albania / Anxhela Peristeri – Karma

Anxhela Peristeri, Albania, Backstage, Rotterdam Ahoy, 11 May 2021EBU / Andres Putting
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Anxhela Peristeri will represent Albania at the Eurovision Song Contest 2021

Anxhela Peristeri

22 May 2021 at 21:11 CEST
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Tonight we're gonna burn in a party...

Is there a better way to get this Eurovision party started? Elena’s brought silver sequins, hot dancers in red catsuits and FIRE. We’re already a bit warm, and there are still 25 songs to go…

Elena Tsagrinou – Cyprus – Grand Final – Eurovision Song Contest 2021 – Rotterdam AhoyEBU / Thomas Hanses
22 May 2021 at 21:09 CEST
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🇨🇾 #OpenUp to...CYPRUS #CYP

🇨🇾Cyprus / Elena Tsagrinou – El Diablo

Elena Tsagrinou, Cyprus, Backstage, Rotterdam Ahoy, 9 May 2021EBU / Andres Putting
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Elena Tsagrinou will represent Cyprus at the Eurovision Song Contest 2021

Elena Tsagrinou

22 May 2021 at 21:09 CEST
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LET THE GRAND FINAL OF THE EUROVISION SONG CONTEST BEGIN

We made it, guys. Sit back and ENJOY.

22 May 2021 at 21:07 CEST
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Let's meet our hosts!

Our hosts this evening are Chantal, Edsilia, Jan and Nikkie. Chantal is a famous Dutch TV presenter, and Edsilia represented the Netherlands at Eurovision in 1998 and 2007. Jan is a singer and TV presenter, and has also provided the commentary for Dutch Eurovision many times, and Nikkie is best known as Nikkie Tutorials – she’s a makeup artist and influencer with a huge international reach. You can find out more about all of them here.

There will be several changes of outfit this evening, so we’ll try to keep you up to date. The fabulous fashion journey starts here!

Hosts – Grand Final – Eurovision Song Contest 2021 – Rotterdam AhoyEBU / Thomas Hanses
22 May 2021 at 21:05 CEST
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It's not Eurovision...

…until the flag parade starts. No actual flags this year, presumably because Covid. Instead the flags are superimposed on the huge digital screen.

Tonight’s Finalists appear in the order they’ll perform tonight, and whether you’re dipping into Eurovision for the first time or have been watching since the National Finals, you are in for an absolute TREAT.

The flag parade music is provided by Pieter Gabriel – the Dutch DJ, not the guy from Genesis. By way of accompaniment, our hosts this evening are singing ‘Venus’, which you may know as a 60s hit by Dutch band Shocking Blue, or an 80s hit by Bananarama, depending on how old you are.

Nikkie Tutorials has opted out of the singing, instead providing motivational quotes and general fabulousness.

22 May 2021 at 21:01 CEST
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We're good to go!

We #OpenUp with a lovely film where Duncan Laurence dreams of everyone being together again. It’s about hope and resilience and joy.

Is it just us, or are things already getting a bit dusty in here? Eurovision’s BACK.

22 May 2021 at 20:34 CEST
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Only half an hour to go!

Here are some useful ways to pass the time before the show starts:

  1. Download the official Eurovision App – it makes it SO much easier to vote later on. You can find it here: App Store (iOS) / Google Play (Android)

  2. Download tonight’s scorecard so you and your friends/family can have a big argument later

  3. Get ready to play our fun game – have a swig of your drink of choice (we’re on the cola) every time you see any of the following:

    ✨ sparkly silver costumes

    ✋ hand dancing

    🚨 pink neon

    🌟 celestial graphics

    🔥 PYRO

22 May 2021 at 20:19 CEST
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Fancy winning some Eurovision merch?

Are you having a Eurovision house party or a small gathering? The lovely people @Eurovision on Twitter want to know about it.

Just take some pics and add the hashtag #myESCmoment, and you could win some merch signed by this year’s artists! Go go go!

22 May 2021 at 20:13 CEST
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Farewell, Ahoy Fishies

We’ve become quite attached to Eurovissie and Eurofishion, the two fish who live in Rotterdam Ahoy, but after two weeks of enjoying their fish puns it’s nearly time for us to say goodbye. Go well, little fish.

Eurovissie, eurofishion Rotterdam Ahoy, 11 May 2021 Live showEBU / Andres Putting
22 May 2021 at 20:06 CEST
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Here are the winners of the Marcel Bezençon Awards!


The Marcel Bezençon Awards were won as follows:

  • The Press Award – won by Barbara Pravi from France for Voilà

  • The Artistic Award – also won by Barbara Pravi from France for Voilà

  • The Composer Award – won by Gjon’s Tears from Switzerland for Tout l’Univers

The French speakers are sweeping the board – but will the Eurovision juries and viewers feel the same?

Marcel Bezençon Awards 2021EBU / Andres Putting
Marcel Bezençon Awards 2021EBU / Andres Putting
22 May 2021 at 20:00 CEST
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The Marcel Bezençon Award

So right now they’re getting ready to present some awards in the Delegation Bubble – a contest within a contest, if you like. Marcel Bezençon came up with the idea for Eurovision back in the 1950s, and the three awards given in his name are:

  • The Press Award – the best overall entry as chosen by the accredited press.

  • The Artistic Award – the best artistic performance voted by the commentators of the participating nations.

  • The Composer Award – Best composition as voted by the participating composers in the final.

Just FYI, it is not usually a very good indicator of tonight’s winner. The prizes are being presented by Christer Björkman, who represented Sweden at Eurovision in 1992, and is also one of this year’s Swedish commentators.

22 May 2021 at 19:29 CEST
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🖨 OFFICIAL SCORECARD: Grand Final 2021 🖨

🖨 Keep track of your favourites tonight: download and print a scorecard!

Why not use this time to add to your flag knowledge? There are 26 to learn in the Grand Final, and presumably you already know at least one.

Here are some handy memory aides for you – Sweden is IKEA in flag form. Ukraine is blue sky over yellow wheat. The Netherlands is France turned 90 degrees clockwise. Iceland is exactly the opposite of Norway, so you only have to learn one of them.

22 May 2021 at 19:18 CEST
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📺 Here's how to watch the Eurovision Song Contest 📺

📺Watch the Grand Final Live Stream or find out how to watch in your region

Grand finalists

  1. 🇨🇾Cyprus / Elena Tsagrinou – El Diablo

  2. 🇦🇱 Albania / Anxhela Peristeri – Karma

  3. 🇮🇱Israel / Eden Alene – Set Me Free

  4. 🇧🇪Belgium / Hooverphonic – The Wrong Place

  5. 🇷🇺 Russia / Manizha – Russian Woman

  6. 🇲🇹 Malta / Destiny – Je Me Casse

  7. 🇵🇹 Portugal / The Black Mamba – Love Is On My Side

  8. 🇷🇸 Serbia / Hurricane – Loco Loco

  9. 🇬🇧 United Kingdom / James Newman – Embers

  10. 🇬🇷 Greece / Stefania – Last Dance

  11. 🇨🇭 Switzerland / Gjon’s Tears – Tout l’Univers

  12. 🇮🇸 Iceland / Da∂i Freyr og Gagnamagni∂ – 10 Years

  13. 🇪🇸 Spain/ Blas Cantó – Voy A Querdarme

  14. 🇲🇩 Moldova / Natalia Gordienko – SUGAR

  15. 🇩🇪Germany/ Jendrik – I Don’t Feel Hate

  16. 🇫🇮 Finland / Blind Channel – Dark Side

  17. 🇧🇬 Bulgaria / Victoria – Growing Up is Getting Old

  18. 🇱🇹Lithuania / The Roop – Discoteque

  19. 🇺🇦Ukraine / Go_A – Shum

  20. 🇫🇷 France / Barbara Pravi – Voilà

  21. 🇦🇿Azerbaijan / Efendi – Mata Hari

  22. 🇳🇴 Norway / TIX – Fallen Angel

  23. 🇳🇱 The Netherlands (Hosts)/ Jeangu Macrooy – Birth of a New Age

  24. 🇮🇹 Italy / Måneskin – Zitti E Buoni

  25. 🇸🇪 Sweden / Tusse – Voices

  26. 🇸🇲San Marino / Senhit – Adrenalina

Iceland will perform using their rehearsal performance recorded on 13 May. Find out more here.

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Destiny, Malta, Backstage, Rotterdam Ahoy, 9 May 2021

It's Eurovision Week: here's all you need to know

22 May 2021 at 19:18 CEST
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Good Evening Europe!

Hello, and welcome to the Eurovision Song Contest GRAND FINAL Live Blog! Rob and Heidi are at the helm again, to take you through every moment of this year’s final show until the winners’ press conference in the early hours of Sunday.

We’ve followed every step since the first rehearsals two weeks ago, and we’ll be seeing this year’s contest through to the very end, until the lyrics of Loco Loco are embedded in our brains for all eternity.

Are you ready? Are you excited? Yeah, us too.