This year there was a big show to kick-off the 2012 Eurovision Song Contest season in the Buta Palace in Baku. The 36 countries represented in the Semi-Finals were drawn from six pots, based on voting patterns from the past years. Remember that, viewers can only vote for the other countries taking part in that respective Semi-Final.
It was also decided if a country participates in the first or second half of each Semi-Final, so that delegations know well in advance on which day they are expected in Baku for their first stage rehearsal.
First Semi-Final, Tuesday 22nd of May:
Second Semi-Final, Thursday 24th of May:
Six countries have already qualified for the Final of the Eurovision Song Contest, being United Kingdom, France, Germany, Spain, Italy and the Host Country Azerbaijan. As a total of 26 countries will take part in the Final on the 26th of May, then 10 from each Semi-Final will qualify for it.
The countries already qualified for the Final will also be drawn for their order of appearance in the Final. They are obliged to broadcast and vote in one of the Semi-Finals (between brackets):