They’ve waited 54 years to host the Eurovision Song Contest, and Portugal want to make it as memorable as they can.
Today host broadcaster RTP set the groundworks for Eurovision 2018 during a press conference at RTP HQ, which included the announcement of Lisbon as host city, as well as dates for the contest, which culminates in the grand final on May 12.
Of course, there was lots more to talk about too. Thankfully wiwiblogger Bernardo was on-the-scene Instagramming with one hand and Facebook live-streaming with the other.
You can watch the full press conference below. Check the Facebook comments for live translations as well.
RTP Press Conference: Full Livestream
Eurovision Song Contest 2018 – Press Conference @ RTP
Posted by Wiwibloggs on Tuesday, July 25, 2017
RTP President Goncalo Reis was clear that his team weren’t feeling the pressure of hosting:
We didn’t just win. We won with personality and authenticity. The team from RTP reinvented Festival da Canção and it paid off. We are not worried about organising Eurovision. We are excited. Eurovision is a huge event for Portugal and the city, for music and entertainment content. It’s an amazing opportunity for internationalisation.
This international mood is why Lisbon and the MEO Arena were chosen, with Reis calling it a “rational” decision. The city council and tourism board will help foot the bill for the events and venue.
A full budget will be ready in December. But it sounds like Portugal has got everything well and truly in order already. After the 2017 budget crisis saga, it’s a welcome change!
RTP’s Daniel Duesdado put it simply: “Portugal won a responsibility. We couldn’t miss that responsibility. We needed to do it and do it well…an opportunity for development.”
It’s great to see the Portuguese team already looking at all the positives of Eurovision 2018. It’s still very early days, of course. But there’s a real sense that Lisbon 2018 could be a truly classy — and classic — year.
What do you think of RTP’s early preparations? Are you excited to see what the shows will be like? Let us know all your thoughts in the comments section below!