The Eurovision Song Contest 2020 in Rotterdam is cancelled. The European Broadcasting Union (EBU) has taken the difficult decision to not continue with the live event as planned due to 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. The text below remains as a tribute to the great work of Dutch Host Broadcasters NPO, AVROTROS and NOS.
The slogan 'Open Up' and the accompanying artwork are the creative foundation for all choices made around the Eurovision Song Contest 2020 in Rotterdam, the Netherlands.
"The slogan ‘Open Up’ is intentionally incomplete: Open up to each other. Open up to music. Open up to Rotterdam. Open up to... whatever you choose! Feel the freedom to complete the slogan in your own way. That way we get to know each other better," says Sietse Bakker, Executive Producer Event of the Eurovision Song Contest 2020.
"We have looked for a theme and slogan that reflect what the Netherlands stands for and which the Dutch can identify with; a country with an open mind to the world, where we speak our mind, with respect for each other. We also found it important to choose a theme that reflects the spirit of our times. People are concerned about increasing polarization and freedom isn’t as self-evident for everyone as it should be," emphasised Sietse. "With the slogan 'Open Up’, we warmly invite people to open up to others, to different opinions, each other's stories and of course to each other's music."
The Eurovision Song Contest was established a decade after the Second World War with the aim to bring Europe closer together through music. Over the last decades, the competition has opened itself up to new countries, new talent and new technology. To reinforce that message, a data-driven vignette has been developed that celebrates the story of the Eurovision Song Contest in a contemporary way.
The logo is an abstract representation of the flag colours of the 41 countries participating in 2020 in order of their first participation. The logo builds on the design of previous editions of the Eurovision Song Contest that were held in the Netherlands.
"This design follows the characteristics of Dutch Design: minimalistic, experimental and innovative. It tells a story, it’s colourful, festive and, not unimportantly, widely applicable," says Sietse Bakker, Executive Producer Event of the Eurovision Song Contest 2020. "Coincidentally, the first Eurovision Song Contest was opened by the Netherlands in 1956, hence the timeline starts with the colours of the Dutch flag."
The design is inspired by the theme 'Open Up' and the typical Dutch flat landscape and brings back the Green Room to the arena.
Florian Wieder: "The design shows the connection between the sky, the sea and the land. The horizon links these elements and that horizon will work as a window to open up the world of Eurovision 2020. The floor plan of the stage is inspired by the canals and bridges that connect land and water in the Netherlands. With this design, we want to bring the artists as close as possible to the audience."
Wieder about his inspiration: "I was inspired by the unique characteristics of Dutch Design. Based on that, I wanted to create an unconventional, minimalist and modern concept for next year's show. I am very happy that the Dutch public broadcaster has been so openminded and has enthusiastically embraced this design. As far as I'm concerned, this is a new chapter in stage design, a wish I have had for a long time."
Sietse Bakker, Executive Producer Event: "The design is innovative, modest and functionally smart. This way we can create a completely different look for each of the 41 participating acts, opening and interval acts and during the voting results. We’ll present an innovative stage design, grand in its simplicity and yet full of surprises."
A large semi-transparent LED screen will be used at the Ahoy Arena during the live shows. The screen is 22 meters wide and 5 meters high and can serve as a background for the smaller B-stage.
The screen connects the main stage to the B-stage and can be creatively used by delegations. Because it's semi-transparent, the audience can still see the stage when the screen is used. When not in use, the screen will be completely retracted.