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Eurovision this month: Cancellation and 'Europe Shine A Light'

31 March 2020 at 17:30 CEST
Technical pictures 2019 Andres Putting
It was with deep regret that, this March, we had to announce the cancellation of the Eurovision Song Contest 2020. However, more has happened in the past month, including public broadcasters all over Europe revealing their alternative Eurovision broadcasting plans.

With the Eurovision Song Contest 2020 unfortunately cancelled, we will not see the 3 spectacular live shows we have come to expect on 12, 14 and 16 May. However, many broadcasters - including Dutch Members NPO, NOS and AVROTROS - are planning alternative broadcasts for their television programming. Here at, we also have something exciting planned for everyone staying at home: Eurovision Home Concerts!

Eurovision 2020 in Rotterdam is cancelled

Over the past few weeks, the European Broadcasting Union (EBU) and host broadcasters have explored many alternative options to allow the Eurovision Song Contest to go ahead. However, the uncertainty created by the spread of COVID-19 throughout Europe – and the restrictions put in place by the governments of the participating broadcasters and the Dutch authorities - means the EBU has taken the difficult decision to not continue with the live event as planned. The health of artists, staff, fans and visitors, as well as the situation in the Netherlands, Europe and the world, is at the heart of this decision.

Read more here.

It is our intention, in the coming months, to honour the songs and artists which have been chosen for the Eurovision Song Contest 2020. With that in mind, the Reference Group, the Song Contest’s governing board, has decided that, in accordance with the Rules of the Eurovision Song Contest, this year’s songs will not be eligible to compete when the Contest returns in 2021.

Read more here.

Artists already confirmed for Eurovision 2021

After the unprecedented cancellation of the Contest this year, multiple participating broadcasters announced that they will continue into 2021 with the same artists they selected for Rotterdam 2020. These 12 - at the time of writing - artists are set to compete in next year's Contest with entirely new songs:

Read more here.

These 12 artists have been confirmed for Eurovision 2021

Alternative broadcasting plans

The Netherlands

Earlier today, Dutch members NPO, NOS and AVROTROS confirmed they are producing a new show, Eurovision: Europe Shine A Light, to air in place of the Grand Final on Saturday 16 May at 21:00 CEST.

Eurovision: Europe Shine A Light NPO/AVROTROS/NOS

Eurovision: Europe Shine A Light will honour all 41 songs, in a non-competitive format, as well as providing plenty of surprises for fans and viewers at home. The show will be hosted by Dutch Eurovision presenters Chantal Janzen, Edsilia Rombley (Eurovision 1998 and 2007) and Jan Smit.

Eurovision 2020 presenters Edsilia Rombley, Chantal Janzen and Jan Smit NPO/AVROTROS/NOS

The show also intends to bring together 2020’s artists, from their locations across Europe, in a performance of a past Eurovision hit, with unifying lyrics appropriate for the current situation we find ourselves in.

Read more here.


Ukrainian broadcaster UA:PBC started a campaign on Instagram using the hashtag #EurovisiOnline. They're asking people to send in their favourite Eurovision songs which will then be published on the Instagram channel of Eurovision Ukraine.


The Austrian broadcaster confirmed a new broadcast in April: the ESC Video Edition Challenge. Andi Knoll will host the show on 14, 16 and 18 April at 21:15 CEST. More details will follow soon.


For the same reason as the Eurovision Song Contest, the Eurovision preparties have also been cancelled. However, the organizers of the ESPreParty are getting creative and will organize an event online: ESPreParty at home!

Viewers can join the online event on Saturday 11 April at 23:00 CEST on Eurovision-Spain's YouTube channel.

This new project wants to honour the participants of the Eurovision Song Contest 2020. Many of them who would originally join the event, along with some surprise guests, will now perform their songs from home. More information will follow soon.

Read more here.

Spain's Eurovision 2020 representative Blas Cantó Laura Ortiz



ESC Songchecks is the German preview show ahead of the Eurovision Song Contest. NDR, the German public broadcaster, says that even though the Eurovision Song Contest will not take place in 2020, it doesn't mean the songs can't be discussed. The show is usually broadcast in April, but NDR is currently investigating a broadcast between 11 and 16 May.

United Kingdom

BBC Studios will produce a special Eurovision broadcast, Eurovision: Come Together, on Saturday 16 May in place of the Grand Final.

The show will feature classic Eurovision performances, a look at what would have been in 2020 and entertaining interviews, including this year's UK entry, James Newman.

More information on what broadcasters will air in the coming weeks will follow!

Eurovision Home Concerts

As the world stays at home, we introduce a new series on our YouTube and social channels to bring the music to you: Eurovision Home Concerts!

Recently, many artists have had to cancel tours due to current Covid-19-related group and travel restrictions, which means a new forum to share the music we love is needed now more than ever. As such, Eurovision artists are joining the trend of artists posting live music on social media, and recording beloved Eurovision songs for fans from their living rooms.

Each episode of Eurovision Home Concerts will feature several artists who have been part of the Eurovision family over the years, including artists from 2020. Each artist will perform their own song and a cover version of another Eurovision hit.

Read more here.

What does this mean for the Eurovision Shop?

Although the event will not take place, all the Eurovision 2020 merchandise is still available in the shop! This includes the Eurovision Song Contest 2020 Album which will be released on 8 May.

With the show no longer taking place, the items will not be reproduced, which means that all items are limited edition.

Shop the Eurovision 2020 merchandise here.

Eurovision 2020 merchandise EBU

As always, we will update you on official announcements as they come in. We look forward to creating enjoyable stories and videos in these times where the world is sitting at home. Take good care of yourself in these difficult times.

We wish you and your loved ones a safe and healthy month.