The 2018 Eurovision Song Contest may be months away but we can bring you an exclusive sneak peek of what the stage will look like in Lisbon! The stage for 2018 is inspired by the hull of a ship and reflects Portugal's history and culture.
The stage for the 2018 Eurovision Song Contest has been designed by Florian Wieder, who has been responsible for several Eurovision stage designs previously, more recently the 2017 stage in Kyiv.
"The rich history of the Portuguese as a maritime nation reflects, without any boundaries, all of the values that make the Eurovision Song Contest unique today. Portugal and especially Lisbon are historic melting pots enriched by the impressions of newly discovered cultures that were brought back to the home port. This is mainly due to the Portuguese sailor men, who traveled the seas with courage and outstanding skills of navigation," said Florian Wieder, Stage Designer for the 2018 Eurovision Song Contest.
"The 2018 Eurovision Song Contest will take you on an expedition through many different cultures in Europe and around the world. A journey through the high seas of music that pursues to discover, connect and ultimately unite the nations. Portugal stands for bringing together countries and their cultures. In 2018 Portugal will unite the music of Europe. With this Eurovision Song Contest stage, Portugal will be the navigator and compass again,” added Florian.
Four points of inspiration
Florian Wieder explained that the stage for the 2018 Eurovision Song Contest has been inspired by four key points linked to Portugal's culture and history: Navigation, The Sea, The Ships, The Maps.
Navigation: The ﬂag of Portugal features an armillary sphere. The armillary sphere is also featured in Portuguese heraldry, associated with the Portuguese discoveries during the Age of Exploration. For this reason the armillary sphere becomes the visual key element in the design concept.
The Sea: The sea gives us a sense of freedom and clarity making it one of the most peaceful places on earth. The design of the stage shows a modern interpretation of a sweeping wave and its organic shape.
The Ships: The Portuguese have been masters in crafting ships since the ancient times. They were able to explore the world because of this outstanding skill. The structure of the stage is inspired by these pieces of boatbuilding art.
The Maps: A map is a diagrammatic representation of land and sea. The radial lines of a map spread out in different directions to connect all of these places. Lisbon becomes the centre where all of the lines come together.
Distinctive and Modern
"The conceptual requirements aimed to breathe a Portuguese identity, to be elegant, modern and, at the same time, unique and distinctive," said Paulo Resende, Deputy Executive Producer of Eurovision 2018. "To ensure the difference from previous editions this stage should represent a strong statement by itself. The result was an outstanding masterpiece designed by Florian Wieder that entirely meets the concept and editorial narrative for this project."
Paulo Resende explained that the design is also reflective of Portugal's history and culture. "It reflects a Portuguese identity in a very elegant and distinctive way, addresses a certain modernity respecting the Portuguese legacy and, moreover, the created visual ambience underlines a consistent difference. This will be the right staging for all the performers to express their songs and artistic moments and, certainly, no one shall remain unresponsive and indifferent.”
Jon Ola Sand, Executive Supervisor of the Eurovision Song Contest added; "As with the logos and slogan for the 2018 Eurovision Song Contest, the stage design draws from the inspiration of Portugal’s history and of the Ocean very well. It will create a very distinctive look and feel for this year’s performers, and we look forward to seeing this intricate and modern set up in action next May."