stage

It’s been one of the biggest concerns for fans throughout the current season — What’s the story with the Eurovision 2018 stage?

Some months ago, RTP set alarm bells ringing when they revealed that LED screens are out for 2018. The decision immediately ruled out a whole range of staging possibilities. But at least we won’t be seeing the singers’ faces in the background anymore, as happened with so many of 2017’s performances.

The oft-repeated call for a contest of “real music” with no artifices left many cold. Are we turning the clock back to the 1950s? Well, after watching the stage in action for the first time, the only answer to that question is: hell to the no!

Earlier this week, footage emerged from a dry-run of Hungary’s stage show. This included a full light and pyro display for “Viszlát nyar” which, if it is the actual staging, will blow everyone’s mind.

Eurovision 2018 stage in action

As you can see, the huge Lisbon stage isn’t in any danger of being overshadowed by its predecessors from Stockholm, Copenhagen, Vienna or Kyiv.

Even without LEDs, the light show provides an extremely strong setting for a song like Hungary’s entry. And those pyros and smoke machines are totally on point!

With just four days to go until first rehearsals begin, the stage is already finished, and stand-in rehearsals are underway.

As usual, those who are passionate about technical aspects of the contest will be keenly following Ola Melzig’s Eurovision diary.

In his April 24 post, the producer reveals how the pyro run-throughs are going. He also tells us that Executive Producer Christer Bjorkman is on the ground. Check out the photo below where the technical team shows the Melodifestivalen impresario how everything works.

It’s coming together!!!

A post shared by Christer Björkman (@christer.s.bjorkman) on

Hungary’s staging looks set to be spectacular. But what about the other entries? Will the huge stage work as well with a quieter song like Portugal’s? And how will it work for a dance number like Cyprus? Let us know in the comments below.

Follow all of our Portugal Eurovision 2018 news.

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poe-tay-toe-chips
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poe-tay-toe-chips

Mmmm, after seeing how disappointing the staging has been so far for the rehearsals of some of the other countries, Hungary is starting to look like a really strong contender for the top 10

AngieP
Guest
AngieP

It looks great! Especially this video showing how the Hungarian entry will look like. It will be mindblowing! In general, I don’t think the minimalistic approach and the lack of LED screens will affect the quality of the show.

John. Zh
Guest
John. Zh

Amazing stage!!!

Danny
Guest
Danny

Too bad that nobody will know what they are singing about, just like last year.

ai4pres
Guest
ai4pres

please elaborate. i kinda wanna see your vision

Skiwalko
Guest
Skiwalko

Well, they won San Remo with simple staging. Il Volo won the televote back in 2015, even though they were also singing in Italian, and they had static staging, so I think they will do really well in Lisbon.

Madrileño
Guest
Madrileño

There you go Portugal BRAVO.
THIS WILL BE A VERY SPECIAL EUROVISION.
AMAZING .
LOVE FROM SPAIN

Eve
Guest
Eve

Anything is better than giant heads in backgroud, I still have nightmares about that 😛

Dan
Guest
Dan

I understand that Portugal’s approach to the contest last year was keeping things “simple”, but I can’t help but thinking that this somehow forces other countries to do the same thing, which is a horrible thing to do. Something tells me this will be their first and last year as hosts.

anne
Guest
anne

something tell me you are a dumb ass… oh no, you are really a dumb ass.

ADd
Guest
ADd

Wow. It does look pretty, but nothing exceptional. Quite disappointing. IMO, this sucks.

Henrikh Mugosa
Guest
Henrikh Mugosa

Why always talk about Prides? What about when boobs are shown?

Mattias Sollerman
Guest
Mattias Sollerman

I can recommend reading Melzig’s blog. He’s a funny guy.

john
Guest
john

shut the f*** up wih leds.. this is music, these are songs… to listen… lights are great, these kind of lights are the best in the world to stages… just lights, are great to enphasize the singers, the songs, and not the f*** images that almost all time are boring…

Pancakes
Guest
Pancakes

F*** YOU! WE NEED LEDs!

Skimur
Guest
Skimur

I laugh at people who think that tons of pyrotechnics and the chaotic flashing of hundreds of lights that will probably cause several hundred epileptic seizures (even for those who did not have epilepsy before watching the show) will help them perceive music better than LED screens.

luis
Guest
luis

The video is off.. please solve the problem. I wanna see the stage in action.

Paul
Guest
Paul

https://www.facebook.com/escportugal/videos/10160373882310720/

First video of the Eurovision stage in action… Best stage ever in Eurovision… Lisbon 2018… to who can not open the video here, because is off.

Well well
Guest
Well well

Good lights and pyro stage for all the rock songs, Cyprus, and especially Estonia
Can be a problem for Czech Rep., Sweden, France, Belgium and Italy
Would be fun to see props again but only so-bad-yet-so-good props like it’s 2008

Weißbrot
Guest
Weißbrot

I’m pretty sure that Sweden will bring their staging from Melodifestivalen to Eurovision, so they won’t have a Problem.

Cocooo
Guest
Cocooo

Benjamin is going to bring his lightcage with him to Eurovision, it’s been confirmed already.

Well well
Guest
Well well

That LED-prop translates well on tv but is a total waste of this stage and its lighting tricks, and may equally be a disadvantage.

Miracle romania
Guest
Miracle romania

Swedens props isnt even made of LED? Hahah you funny

Well well
Guest
Well well

Well, google LED and LED lights. I couldn’t care less but please educate me if I’m wrong. I am not an electrician.

Miracle romania
Guest
Miracle romania

Its a simple construction of light tubes, thats it. Not much LED screens or LED lights about that

Denis
Guest
Denis

It´s not LED at all. It is fluroscent lights. nothing more. Simple as that!

Danny
Guest
Danny

comment image
LOL fluorescent lights? Look at this image where the prop can be seen in the background, it shows colour stripes like a tv test screen. Those stripes are 100% LED, no one uses fluorescent anymore.

Denis
Guest
Denis

The act itself is light tubes, as already confirmed. Same will be in Lisbon

Well well
Guest
Well well

Oh look, my predictions came true! I told you so! Thanks downvoters!

Bernardo
Guest
Bernardo

About the lack of LED on the stage of this year’s Eurovision, what most delegations decided to do this year was “do the will” to the Portuguese organization, because the delegations know that next year, regardless of the winner, things return to normal. I’m Portuguese and I know what I’m saying. It was probably the first and last time we organized Eurovision, because after the crap that we are doing in the production of this show, even if we have a great song, the other countries will do everything they can so that our country will never again receive the… Read more »

Gongas
Guest
Gongas

I bet if we looked at this guy’s google search history we would find: “Most common portuguese names”… Still mad your favorite didn’t win last year? 🙁 🙁

jcn
Guest
jcn

def not portuguese. His comment really seems odd, i have not read one single negative comment from a pt after the video leaked.

Henrikh Mugosa
Guest
Henrikh Mugosa

@ jcn

I think you’re wrong. The person that left the comment above signing as Bernardo IS Portuguese. 1- the way he phrased his comment makes me think that Portuguese is his mother language. 2- I think i have seen the exact same comment in Portuguese in a Portuguese fan site.

Henrikh Mugosa
Guest
Henrikh Mugosa

I don’t understand why some people focus so much on LEDs. Who cares about LEDs?

Weißbrot
Guest
Weißbrot

I’m impressed by the lack of sense in that comment.

Weißbrot
Guest
Weißbrot

Of Course he’s not Portuguese, I never thought he told us the truth.

S.T.
Guest
S.T.

We sould thank you for hosting the event. It is a big rock on your shoulder.

Denis
Guest
Denis

I think it will benefit up tempo stage acts and quiet numbers not so much.

CookyMonzta
Guest
CookyMonzta

Up-tempo acts don’t necessarily need CGI this time around, because they’ll have the lights to accentuate the rhythms. Look at the stage test for Hungary, pyrotech and all. This stage would have been perfect for Softengine (Finland 2014). I think it might be a problem for Belgium unless they decide to go with a darker theme, with fewer lights. Estonia is bringing their own tech for Elina. If their equipment can’t be integrated into the stage performance, they’d better have Plans B and C. Smoke, pyro and a darker stage are perfect for Denmark; they don’t need no stinkin’ CGI.

Sabrina
Guest
Sabrina

The stage looks great and offers a lot of possibilities, especially concerning lighting effects. The countries with “explosive” acts can take a lot of advantage from it. I think a stage like this will require more creativity than a bunch of led screens.

Eve
Guest
Eve

Agree, stage looks very beautiful.

.......
Guest
.......

Where are big screenes and things like that?

Weißbrot
Guest
Weißbrot

There won’t be any LED Screens this year, which is known for months already.

anne
Guest
anne

shiu… leds for what??

Henrikh Mugosa
Guest
Henrikh Mugosa

Funny comment!

CookyMonzta
Guest
CookyMonzta

No LED screens and no LED floor. Bring your own hi-tech (like Estonia) and hope that they can integrate it into their system, or make do with what’s on the stage. I’m pretty sure every country was sent documentation telling them what the stage CAN do and what it CAN’T do; and they had months in advance to come up with ways to use the stage.

Elin
Guest
Elin

Are there only staff from Portugal that will work behandlas the sceen? Whith camera, light etc? And whith the artists? Help them, organize so everything goes smoth and make the artists prepared etc?

Elin
Guest
Elin

Behind, not behandlas

Cocooo
Guest
Cocooo

Nearly every year where the Eurovision has been the last decade, the production team has came from all parts of Europe to help produce the show. I believe the only exception was in 2011 and 2012 when it was a sole German team who produced the shows.

Rasmus
Guest
Rasmus

I think it will be fine. I loved the stages in 98,99 and then came some kind of LED in 2000. 2001 was not a great stage where almost everyone wore black but this is fine:)

William Lee Adams
Admin

This staging feels true to the genre of metal. They honestly don’t need an LED for this performance. How it will work out for others remains to be seen…but I’m hopeful.

Catriona Colville
Guest
Catriona Colville

Too many of the performances will look the same. That was a huge problem. I really dislike their decision to remove the LED screen. It removes a big layer of creativity.

Robyn Gallagher
Editor

Using LEDs isn’t a guarantee that performances won’t look the same. Remember in 2015 when there were all those tree graphics? Or last year when it was giant heads? 😀

Ola’s production blog has revealed a very sophisticated lighting set-up. The stage is loaded with band new cutting-edge lighting tech. I suspect it’s going to blow our minds in ways we didn’t even imagine!

Kris
Guest
Kris

It will blow our minds one way or other! It’s either going to be marvellous or absolutely horrendous and old-fashioned

Erasmus
Guest
Erasmus

agree! And while I agree LED’s don’t bring a lot of creativity, I think they make acts look different from each other, I mean just, because 3 acts out of 42 had their face behind them, you can’t say all of them look the same. (answer for Robin)

Jake
Guest
Jake

yes because this run through of Hungary totally looks old-fashioned…its as if an old Lys Assia performance had made a comeback…apparently giant screensaver in the background of people singing is the only way to stage a musical performance

M_K
Guest
M_K

Doesn’t it rather add a layer of creativity? Having backdrops is pretty much the easiest way of visualising the meaning (or feel) of a song. There were some entries that really made use of the LED screens in the past and used them both creatively and effectively (Ukraine 2016, Russia 2009, Estonia 2015, Netherlands 2014 etc.) but there were also many, many, many entries that just used some random stock images in the background simply because they had to choose SOMETHING (Italy 2015, Romania 2017, pretty much any entry of 2012 etc.). In 2013, there were no LED screens and… Read more »

CookyMonzta
Guest
CookyMonzta

I think in 2013 they had an LED screen in the back. Look at the performances from Hungary and Belgium, among the few, which used that screen for their performances.

M_K
Guest
M_K

No, actually it wasn’t an LED screen, it was a projection wall.

Hada
Guest
Hada

I think this year it’s easier for acts to stand out because the stage is much more versatile. Last year almost all acts were just singing in front of a giant screensaver.

Zebb
Guest
Zebb

So, then the best solution is to keep a balance and to not overdo a concept…

S.T.
Guest
S.T.

There is a task for everybody. I think we are good.

Erasmus
Guest
Erasmus

Yeah they have great staging, but this without pyros looks empty af. I guess we’ll have to wait and see, maybe the camera angels will improve + is this stage finish? Because at the original design picture those sticks, or ribs or whatever look way bigger there, than they do here?

Gongas
Guest
Gongas

The ribs at the back actually move in various angles. In this clip they are in the down position.

Frisian esc
Guest
Frisian esc

Maybe because the stage is empty without singers and you don’t see the camera cuts here

impressiveinstants
Guest
impressiveinstants

I was one of the few people who didn’t mind 2010’s staging. It was a little overshadowed by Moscow, but it was a much more simple, and intimate stage. Plus, it worked extremely well for some entries like Ukraine or Turkey. This staging seems to have a similar concept, but to the tenth power. I can’t wait.

Gav
Guest
Gav

Wow! ? ?
Exciting!
Love it!
That’s the best I can do with in-depth thoughts at the moment. Xx

Weißbrot
Guest
Weißbrot

Well… this is A LOT! Like, Wow.People will get major headache from this and I’m loving it. Bring all the lights, all the pyro and all the Drama, Hungary. Viszlat nyar.