Watched by an audience of 18,000 in the Telenor Arena and more than 120 million TV viewers in front of their TV sets in no less than 45 countries, the Final of the 2010 Eurovision Song Contest will be held tonight, starting at 21:00 CET.
25 countries will be represented in tonight's Final, 20 of which have qualified in one of the Semi-Finals, held on May 25th and 27th, and 5 being directly qualified for the show: The host country, Norway, as well as the "Big Four", The United Kingdom, Spain, France and Germany. Find out more about tonight's songs:
For the first time since 1999, the Eurovision Song Contest will be hosted by a trio this time: Nadia Hasnaoui, Haddy N'Jie and Erik Solbakken will guide you through the show. Find out more about them here:
For the first time ever in a Eurovision Song Contest Final, you will be able to cast your vote right from the beginning of the show by SMS or phone in all 39 participating countries. The televote will account for 50% of each national vote, with the remaining 50% being determined by 5-member expert juries in each participating country. The combined vote of each nation will be transformed to the Eurovision scheme, with 12 points to the first placed entry, 10 to the second placed one, and then from 8 down to 1 point from the 3rd to the 10th place, and then they will be announced live on air by spokespersons from each country. Find out more about the voting here:
The national expert jurys consist only of music experts and professional artists, and several of them also contain former participants of the Eurovision Song Contest: Svetlana Loboda will be part of the Ukrainian jury, Aistė Smilgevičiūtė in Lithuania, Sandra Studer and Peter Reber in Switzerland, Barbara Dex in Belgium, Gerli Padar in Estonia, Mary Roos in Germany, Paul Harrington in Ireland, Anne-Karine Strøm in Norway, Marcel Palonder in Slovakia, and Andreas Lundstedt in Sweden.
The order in which the countries will announce their votes tonight was determined by a draw, in March. Romania will start the exciting process, followed by Ireland, Germany, Serbia, Albania, Turkey, Croatia, Poland, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Finland, Slovenia, Estonia, Russia, Portugal, Azerbaijan, Greece, Iceland, Denmark, France, Spain, Slovakia, Bulgaria, Ukraine, Latvia, Malta, Norway, Cyprus, Lithuania, Belarus, Switzerland, Belgium, United Kingdom, The Netherlands, Israel, FYR Macedonia, Moldova, Georgia, Sweden and the last country to announce their votes will be Armenia.
Among the spokespersons are some familiar faces and real stars: Yohanna, who came 2nd in the Final of the 2009 Eurovision Song Contest, will announce the Icelandic points, while Sirusho, who came fourth in 2008 with Qélé Qélé, will do the same for Armenia. Other former participants to give votes tonight are Christina Metaxa (Cyprus 2009) and Chiara, who represented Malta in 1998, 2005 and 2009.
If you are not situated in one of the 45 countries where the 2010 Eurovision Song Contest is broadcast live, you can watch the show here, on our ESCTV player. The winners press conference will also be streamed there.
Have fun tonight, and don't forget to vote!