After 44 years, the Netherlands is going to organize the Eurovision Song Contest in 2020. And according to the organizing committee, officials want to surprise and delight Europe. To prove the point they’ve been thinking outside of the box — and outside of the board room.
“We didn’t want to come up with the concept for this Eurovision Song Contest in a meeting room in Hilversum,” Sietse Bakker, Executive Producer of the Eurovision Song Contest 2020, said in a statement from NPO. “We are putting The Netherlands in the spotlight internationally with this event, so we decided at an early stage to listen very carefully first.”
“We want the Eurovision Song Contest to become an event in which the Netherlands recognizes itself and for Europe to be positively surprised,” he added. “The Dutch are creative, especially when it comes to making television and organizing events. We have chosen to use that creativity to take the event to a higher level in 2020. Not necessarily bigger, but better.”
Last week Cornald Maas was named as the creative advisor of ESC 2020. Together with the organization, Maas wants to achieve the goals mentioned above. As part of that the organization has created a group of known and unknown Dutch people – referred to as the “Magic 100”.
As reported by AD.nl, these lucky folks were asked to think about how the Eurovision Song Contest could be improved and how things can be done differently; aesthetics; how the show could become more attractive to a wider audience; how producers can engage with viewers before and during the show; and how to transmit positive feelings about ESC and The Netherlands. During street interviews viewers were asked what they expect of the upcoming edition of ESC. The team also conducted telephone interviews with key figures from Dutch music, culture, politics, fashion and media. A diverse group of experts were also asked in workshops to find solutions to specific challenges.
Needless to say we also spoke to dozens of people from across Europe! Fans, viewers, Heads of Delegation, and so on. @wiwibloggs
— Sietse Bakker (@SietseBakker) September 5, 2019
This week, a workshop was organized in Rotterdam with experts and stakeholders to allow the brand new host city to share their vision of Eurovision in their city with the organization. In the end, over 170 people shared their thoughts.
So who was part of the “Magic 100”? Among them are Anna Nooshin (influencer); Lucien Spee (Gay Pride organizer), Rick Brink (Minister for Disability Issues); Alexander Klöpping (entrepreneur); and Kim Putters (from the social-cultural planning office). The organization wanted this group of people to be as diverse as possible.
All of that will go a long way to making the show more spontaneous. As Sietse told AD.nl: “I don’t think you’ll see any written jokes from the presenters in May. Also no act where we see them in a car in the beginning and have to hope that they will arrive on time. No, we are not going to do those tricks. It will be more sincere and spontaneous, because that is what the Netherlands stands for.”
The creative concept of the Eurovision Song Contest 2020 is currently being finalized. A diverse selection of Dutch creative agencies has been invited to develop the house style. Later this month the team from the NPO, NOS and AVROTROS will submit the concept to the EBU for approval.
Do you think that the “Magic 100” will do a great job? Do you have any creative suggestions? What are you most excited about? Let us know in the comment section down below!