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Eurovision Song Contest, Athens 2006
Mr Lordi spreads his wings in glorious high definition

Watch Now: Eurovision Song Contest Athens 2006 HD Cut

The 51st Eurovision Song Contest was hosted by Athens in May 2006, and is now available to watch as a never-seen-before HD (high definition) cut on the official Eurovision YouTube channel.

Watch: Eurovision Song Contest Athens 2006 HD Cut

Large parts of the Athenian extravaganza were filmed in high definition to gather artistic and scientific knowledge for future shows, but the footage was never intended to be used as part of the original broadcast.

The footage was filmed as part of a research experiment carried out by the European Broadcasting Union, ERT, the Institute for Broadcasting Technology in Munich and the research and development laboratories of Rai and the BBC.

Anna Vissi – giving Everything in high definition

READ: You can learn more about the fascinating history of Eurovision’s impact on high definition television here.

Many aspects of this high definition cut differ from the definitive version of the 51st Eurovision Song Contest that was broadcast live from Athens on Saturday 20 May, 2006. We’re excited to share this experimental HD footage with you for reference; it is not intended to replace the original show.

Athens 2006

It was the first time the Contest had been held in Greece, after Helena Paparizou’s victory in 2005 with her song My Number One.

Eurovision Song Contest, Athens 2006Natalia Gordienko makes her first appearance at Eurovision for Moldova

The show is packed with Eurovision stars from previous Contests. Anna Vissi represented the host nation with Everything – it would be her third appearance at Eurovision, having shown up for Greece in 1980 and Cyprus in 1982.

Fabrizio Faniello and Ich Troje competed for Malta (2001) and Poland (2003) respectively, while in the groups, Lithuania’s Victor Diawara of (LT United) and Israel’s Eddie Butler took to the stage again having represented their countries as part of Skamp (2001) and Eden (1999) respectively.

Maria Menounos and Eurovision favourite Sakis Rouvas

And, of course, our host Sakis Rouvas represented Greece on two occasions: Shake It (2004) and This Is Our Night (2009).

The Eurovision Song Contest 2006 HD Cut will be available to watch live on YouTube from 21:00 CEST on Saturday 31 July (and will remain on the channel to watch at your leisure).

Make sure to join in the discussion on the official Eurovision Song Contest Twitter, Instagram, TikTok and Facebook channels using the hashtag #EurovisionAgain.

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