The Eurovision Song Contest is a spectacular television show but what goes on behind the scenes? We visited the so-called Delegation Bubble where the artists have their dressing rooms and where the production crew work to find out.
When you approach the delegation area you are immediately welcomed by friendly volunteers who are eager to help. The Bubble itself is a secure area with dressing rooms for each participating country with huge screens where the live shows and rehearsals are broadcast. There are also offices, catering facilities and even a massage room. The area is usually busy and full of buzz and excitement, especially during the live shows.
Food, glorious food
Right behind the lounge area is Vladimir Trotskiy and his colleagues Maria and Marina who offer delicious lunches and make the coffee. The catering crew offer a variety of delicious meals and snacks and desserts. “Everything is cooked by our chefs in the morning and delivered directly to the venue. The quiche is especially popular with the artists. We also hope that everyone enjoys our smiles and free hugs too,” explained Vladimir.
“It’s our first time working here at Eurovision, we are delighted to be here and in love with our job,” said Marina. “The delegations are so friendly and some of them have even given us small presents,” added Maria.
Around the corner is the show desk, the coordination centre for the various Heads of Delegations managed by Helena Broden from Sweden. “I’m taking care of Heads of Delegations and provide help whenever required. The range of questions we get varies extensively from how to get a shirt for an artist or how to bring the artist’s mother into the venue,” she said.
Helena has worked on the Eurovision Song Contest before and brings her vast experience from the 2016 contest in Stockholm to Kyiv this year. “We could hardly manage our work without the assistance of our volunteers. They are very good, smart and efficient,” she said. Kseniia Butova, Bubble Manager’s Assistant and helps to coordinate the area to ensure that everything is running smoothly. “We serve as a hub for people. If delegations have questions we make sure they are answered by the right people. Together with volunteers we assist in solving any problems, we also help with the sound and video transmission in the bubble, as well as give directions,” said Kseniia.
Delegation transport is also coordinated from within the Bubble. “We are responsible for managing transportation requests if they have any. Recently we assisted Armenian delegation to reach a shopping outlet on the day that they were not rehearsing,” explained Anna, Transportation Desk Manager, pictured below.
Beauty with a purpose
Hair and make-up is an integral part of any television show. A huge team of professional make—up artists and hairdressers work in the Bubble. The team is managed by Kapetanovic, Head of Hair and Make-up (pictured below). According to Samira Strom, Make-up Coordinator, the work begins well in advance of the contest. “In total we have 40 people in our team. Ahead of rehearsals we met all the delegations for consultations and came with ideas on their look. Afterwards we provided workshops for the whole team for them to know exactly how to meet the requests of the artists,” she explained.
Samira added: “It takes up to one hour to apply make-up and on average the same time for hair is needed. Everything depends on its complexity.” The key task of the team is to make the artists feel comfortable. Samira said: “We just make the artists beautiful and try to calm them down a little bit, so they would feel comfortable on stage.”
The excitement in the Bubble is building as tonight the second Semi-Final of the 2017 Eurovision Song Contest will take place.