Eurovision 2018 season begins — but is it better to be first or last to reveal your song?


Where does the time go? It’s been over three months since Eurovision 2017 ended in Kyiv. And whilst replaying our past playlists is all well and good, it’s time for some new tracks already.

Today, September 1st, is the first day that any song for Eurovision 2017 can officially be released. That means only one thing — Eurovision 2018 season has begun!

Yes, the successor to “Amar pelos dois” could drop any day now. Some countries have already begun the process of finding their act, whilst others may choose to play the waiting game.

But which is the better option? Do countries that reveal their song first have an advantage over the last country to reveal? We’ve taken a (totally unscientific) look at the last four contests to see who came out on top.

Eurovision 2014

First to Reveal: Ukraine — “Tick Tock”, Mariya Yaremchuk

6th place in Grand Final, 113 points

Last to Reveal: Russia — “Shine”, Tolmachevy Sisters

7th place in Grand Final, 89 points

International focus was already well and truly on Ukraine and Russia at Eurovision 2014. Hype for the Copenhagen contest ran simultaneous to the mounting crisis in Crimea and along Ukraine’s eastern front.

“Tick Tock” was the first song revealed for the contest, winning the Ukrainian national final in December 2013. The Tolmachevy’s “Shine” was released (in audio form only) at the last possible opportunity in March.

Heavily revamped before the contest, “Tick Tock” opened the show and still managed a remarkable 6th place, just ahead of “Shine”.

The penultimate song released? It was none other than Conchita’s “Rise Like a Phoenix”…

Eurovision 2015

First to Reveal: FYR Macedonia — “Autumn Leaves”, Daniel Kajmakoski

15th place in Semi Final One, 28 points

Last to Reveal: Montenegro — “Adio”, Knez

13th place in Grand Final, 44 points

Daniel Kajmakoski’s Skopje Fest victory with “Lisja esenski” in November 2014 puts him as the earliest reveal on this list.

Compare that to Knez, who publicly revealed “Adio” after the song deadline. The song was presented on time to the Head of Delegation meeting, however, meaning it was fine for entry. There would be no time for any revamps, though.

Not that the revamp of “Lisja esenski” to “Autumn Leaves” did Macedonia any favours. With three ex-Blackstreet members on stage with him, Kajmakoski dropped out in the Semi-Finals. Knez, meanwhile, went on to score Montenegro’s best-ever result, with 13th in the Grand Final.

Eurovision 2016

First to Reveal: Albania — “Fairytale”, Eneda Tarifa

16th place in Semi Final Two, 45 points

Last to Reveal: Bulgaria — “If Love Was a Crime”, Poli Genova

4th place in Grand Final, 307 points

The adage of “save the best until last” could be applied for a second straight year in 2016. Bulgaria’s on again/off again return to Eurovision was capped off by a late reveal of Poli Genova’s “If Love Was a Crime” — and to great reception from fans.

Contrast that with the frankly abysmal reaction to the revamp of Eneda Tarifa’s “Fairytale”. As ever, the Festivali i Kenges winning song was heavily changed between December and the contest.

At the contest, Poli stormed to Bulgaria’s best ever result at the time, finishing 4th. “Fairytale”, meanwhile, finished a lowly 16th in its Semi-Final.

Eurovision 2017

First to Reveal: Albania — “World”, Lindita

14th place in Semi Final One, 76 points

Last to Reveal: Armenia — “Fly With Me”, Artsvik

18th place in Grand Final, 79 points

The most recent contest, and once again a poor reaction to an Albanian revamp. Lindita’s “World” won Festivali i Kenges in December as the Albanian language “Bote”. Many fans wanted the song to remain in its native tongue, but the change was made for Kyiv.

Several countries left it late in 2017 — Bulgaria’s Kristian Kostov a notable name on the list — but Armenia were last on the list. Artsvik’s experimental “Fly With Me” was a slice of ethno-pop the 2017 contest had perhaps been lacking to that point.

Though Artsvik faltered to a remarkably low (for Armenia) 18th place, Lindita failed to make it out of the semi-final. Will Festivali i Kenges finally find Albania a qualifier again this year?

So, it seems being last to reveal certainly doesn’t harm your chances. But with Portugal proving that anyone can win Eurovision if you try hard enough, there’s no telling what could happen in Lisbon.

Which country are you most excited to see for this year’s contest? Let us know all your thoughts in the comments section below!

Follow all of our Eurovision 2018 coverage here