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AJ Odudu and Rylan will host the Allocation Draw

Eurovision 2023: AJ & Rylan to host Allocation Draw

10 January 2023 at 10:00 CET
AJ Odudu and Rylan will host the Allocation Draw
The Allocation Draw that determines which of the two Semi-Finals participating countries will compete in at the 67th Eurovision Song Contest, will take place on Tuesday 31 January live from the Host City of Liverpool at 20:00 CET.
  • ‘Handover and Allocation Draw’ take place on Tuesday 31 January, 20:00 CET
  • Broadcast live on official Eurovision YouTube channel (click to subscribe) and on BBC TWO and BBC iPlayer in the United Kingdom
  • Hosts: AJ Odudu and Rylan
  • The Eurovision Semi-Finals take place on Tuesday 9 & Thursday 11 May, with the Grand Final on 13 May, all at 21:00 CEST

Eurovision Song Contest 2023: Handover and Allocation Draw - 20:00 CET - Live from Liverpool

What is the Allocation Draw? Simply put: there are too many countries to compete in one Grand Final alone, so the EBU (European Broadcasting Union) divides the participating nations between two Semi-Finals using an Allocation Draw.

The countries that will take part in the Semi-Finals are divided into pots based on their historic voting patterns and then chosen at random to compete in either the First or Second Semi-Final. 

This way, countries that traditionally award each other points are less likely to end up in the same Semi-Final, adding excitement to the live shows. The pots are approved by the Contest's Executive Supervisor on behalf of the EBU and the Chairman of the Reference Group, the Contest's governing body.

In addition, as the so-called ‘Big Five’ (France, Germany, Italy, Spain, and the United Kingdom) and the Host Country automatically qualify for the Grand Final, the Allocation Draw also determines which Semi-Final those countries can vote in.

This year, both Ukraine and the United Kingdom automatically qualify for the Grand Final, as the United Kingdom is hosting the Contest on behalf of Ukraine who won in 2022.

BBC presenters Rylan and AJ Odudu will welcome viewers to the Handover and Allocation Draw, which will be broadcast live on the official Eurovision Song Contest YouTube channel from 20:00 CET on Tuesday 31 January. 

In the United Kingdom, audiences can watch the show live on BBC Two and BBC iPlayer, and everyone can also follow the event as it unfolds with live text commentary on the BBC News website live page.

Taking place in front of an invited audience, AJ and Rylan will conduct the live draw assisted by young people from a local Liverpool school and members of the Ukrainian community who have settled in Liverpool since Russia's 2022 invasion of Ukraine.

The show will also see the Mayor of 2022 Host City Turin, Stefano Lo Russo hand over the official keys of the Eurovision Song Contest, known as the ‘Insignia’, to the Mayor of Liverpool, Joanne Anderson, and will be the night the 2023 Contest’s unique look and slogan is unveiled.

Rylan said: 'From being part of the UK delegation since 2018, Eurovision has become such a big part of my life. I’m so excited to be presenting the handover and allocation draw which symbolises the start of the Eurovision Song Contest 2023; the year in which the United Kingdom hosts Ukraine’s party. It’s going to be an amazing year for Eurovision. I genuinely can’t wait.'

Rylan Clark hugs Sam Ryder at the Eurovision Song Contest 2022 Grand Final EBU / Corinne Cumming

AJ Odudu said: ‘It’s so exciting to have the Eurovision Song Contest in the United Kingdom in 2023. New and existing fans are in for an event like no other come May with spectacular live shows on the BBC and a city take over in Liverpool, all with British creativity and Ukrainian culture at its core. I can’t wait to kick things off with the draw later this month.’

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