Portugal: Salvador Sobral will miss Eurovision rehearsals owing to health issues

Earlier this week he recorded his Eurovision 2017 postcard in multiple locations around Lisbon, showcasing some of the capital’s most picturesque sights.

And while Salvador Sobral is clearly prepared and ready for the competition, he’s been forced to delay his trip to Kyiv owing to ongoing health issues.

Speaking during an RTP news bulletin on Sunday, the “Amar Pelos Dois” singer revealed that he’ll arrive in Kyiv on May 7 — just two days before the first semi-final, which takes place on May 9.

As a result, his sister Luísa Sobral — who also wrote the song — will fly the Portuguese flag during the first two rehearsals, presumably critiquing the LEDs and staging, and getting a sense of the sound in the arena to share with her brother. Salvador will only attend the dress rehearsals and run-throughs.

As ESC Portugal reports, the Portuguese delegation has managed the situation and tonight’s news is not coming as a surprise. They have been in talks with the EBU, who have agreed to the arrangements.

His sister will attend the scheduled press conferences and meet-and-greets on his behalf. And given the relatively simple staging he had at the Portuguese national final, it seems he won’t have that much to worry about when it comes to nailing choreography or camera angles. The strength of his stage show stems from his quirkiness and the simplicity of his performance — and arriving late isn’t going to impact that.

Salvador’s health has been a topic of discussion ever since he had surgery to repair two hernias before the final of Festival da Canção.

Tabloids subsequently made big claims about an alleged heart condition, which Salvador’s team denied at the time.

Ana Paulo, Salvador’s manager, previously told Jornal de Notícias that the claims about Salvador’s cardiac problems were utterly false.

“I have nothing more to say about that,” she said, explaining that he is doing well. “He is recovering well from hernia surgery. Eurovision is not at risk and neither is Salvador’s career. Almost every single concert is sold out.”

However, tonight’s news report did make mention of a heart condition. The bulletin did not elaborate on the condition, so it’s unclear precisely what details from the earlier tabloid reports were untrue.

This much we do know: Salvador’s star has only risen since winning the ticket to Kyiv and he’s rising with the bookies and with fans at home.

RTP will stage an official CD launch event tomorrow in Lisbon. Wiwibloggs will be on the scene to get more information about this evening’s news.

As for now we’re wishing Salvador all the best, as we know our readers are too.