Nicola Caligiore — the beloved head of delegation for Italy at the Eurovision Song Contest — is leaving his role.

Eurofestival News — the authority on all matters of Italy at Eurovision — broke the news on their web site Sunday afternoon. They report that he’ll be stepping down from Italian broadcaster RAI after the Junior Eurovision Song Contest on November 24th.

That means he’ll also be leaving his position on the EBU Reference Group, the body that represents EBU members and oversees the Eurovision Song Contest. In March he’d been re-elected to the position for a fourth time.

Writing on Eurofestival news, author Alex Pigliavento praised Nicola for helping Eurovision get the exposure — and the broadcast time — it needed in Italy. You’ll remember that Nicola paved the way for the airing of both semis in Italy. Here’s what Alex wrote.

“Needless to say, if Italy is back in the race at the event that we all love it is partly thanks to him, and the immense work done over the years to give greater visibility to Eurovision with promotion that’s always growing and has led to what is now normal for us (but which was not a few years ago) — that is the broadcast of both the semi-finals (on Rai 4) and of the final broadcast on the flagship network of Rai.”

Indeed, we’ve loved getting to know Nicola at both Junior Eurovision and Eurovision. Under his leadership, Italy has become a constant source of quality songs and fan fervour. The hype surrounding Italy’s Eurovision acts — always among the top artists in the country — has made the song contest better for everyone. When it comes to art and culture the world looks to Italy, and Nicola has helped put its Eurovision participation in that mix.

And while Nicola has countless qualities one could stress — good humour, ambition, openness — we’d like to end this by stressing his kindness. At various editions of Junior Eurovision we have seen the ease with which he works with children. He was always the exact opposite of the “pushy parent” type, instead keeping his performers calm and making sure they had a good time before all else. It’s one of his qualities we will remember most. It’s not to say he doesn’t want to win. You’ll remember he led Italy to the top of JESC 2014, and gifted us greats like Mahmood and Francesco Gabbani.

And with that we bid thee farewell, sweet Nicola. We can’t wait to see what you do next!

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MaxHightower
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MaxHightower

Im gonna miss him so much! He turned Italy into a ESC powerhouse and my personal favourite country in the Contest.

Signore Caligore: Grazie Mille per il tuo contributo alla musica europea e ti auguro buona fortuna nella tua prossima aventura professionale.

I hope I wrote that well, Im not italian but I spend most of my summers there.

LaSignora
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LaSignora

I’m so proud of him, thank you darling!

Thanos
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Thanos

Thank you for what you have done for Italy in Eurovision Nicola!!!!

Summer
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Summer

I’m so sad. He is my favourite head of delegation 🙁

L'oiseau
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L'oiseau

No one is unreplaceable. But it does raise concerns of what comes next for Italy, my absolute favorite country in ESC.

marta
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marta

If things work well, dont change them…

Carie Grant
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Carie Grant

Or as UK would say: If things works bad, don’t change them lol

Gorilla716
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Gorilla716

Let’s hope Italy continues its successful record at Eurovision (and eventually win) and not end up like the UK.

Sabrina
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Sabrina

France, Czech Republic and now Italy, some of the best HoDs are leaving. Nicola and the Italian fans should and must be proud of his work, Italy was the most consistent country in terms of quality during this decade. I hope RAI finds the right person for the job. At least in this case we won’t have to worry about the continuity of the national final.

James
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James

HOD’s dropping like flies this past twelve months: Edoardo Grassi, Helen Riddel, Jan Bors, and now Nicola Caligiore

Tom
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Tom

Who was Helen ?

Lloyd
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Lloyd

Possibly the BBC but might be wrong, if not I’m sure the BBCs HOD has left too

James
Guest
James

Yes. Helen Riddell was co-HOD with Guy Freeman for the BBC. She took the reins when Guy Freeman left but followed suit some time before You Decide took place.

Jamilla
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Jamilla

Helen replaced the previous guy Guy Freeman. He quit. Then she quit. Now they have a freelancer who does it part-time. So like not even a full-time employee. It’s all a little weird?

Meckie
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Meckie

Also Germany will have a new one next year.

Peters
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Peters

Good. Italy can do better with the staging in the future and win with the whole package.

ESCJudge
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ESCJudge

The new EBU supervisor alert (?)
?
Why not.

Lloyd
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Lloyd

I dont know much about him but I think he would be good. To create a eurovision powerhouse, he obviously knows how Eurovision works. So if he can do that for the whole contest it could be the perfect person for the job.

Tom
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Tom

My heart is broken 🙁

Preuss
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Preuss

I’ll thank him for his services and his great contribution to Eurovision, Italy’s been a consistent source of quality to the contest the past ten (or nine) years. Il Volo, Francesco Gabbani, Mahmood were some of the best acts this decade and I actually prefer Emma and Francesca (in some aspects) to Gabbani and Mahmood. 2011-2013 were quality too. I don’t doubt that Italy will continue to bring the good stuff to the Eurovision scene. It’s one of few countries in Eurovision where I feel like their music reaches my country (Norway), as I’ve heard friends and family play/stream “Grande… Read more »

Joe
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Joe

Him and Jan Bors, two of the men responsible for incredible Eurovision comeback stories. Italy have been better than ever this decade, a highlight pretty much every year, and they came back thanks to him. I hope they keep that level of commitment going and we get terrific songs for years to come. Thanks for all the amazing work, Nicola. (On the other hand, fans of them in JESC better enjoy them this year…the viewing figures for the contest in Italy don’t get me too optimistic about them sticking around there.)

Joe
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Joe

I think it’s worth saying that Italy’s comeback was probably the best thing to happen to Eurovision this decade, right?

Preuss
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Preuss

Yes, and it feels like they do well without trying very hard like some other countries. It’s meant as a compliment!

Polegend Godgarina
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Polegend Godgarina

i hope rai finds someone as passionate for eurovision as he is

KESC
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KESC

Noo, I really liked him and Edoardo Grassi. Why do they all leave?! Anyway, thank you so much for all his services.
I hope that doesn’t effet Italy’s results in a negative way.

KESC
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KESC

*affect

F@b
Guest

Another big loss in the Big 5 HOD. I’ll miss him a lot…

HOD45
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HOD45

We broke the news first this morning! @WilliamLeeAdama you know that very well. Shame you don’t mention it in your article.

Campbell Grace
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Campbell Grace

HOD45 stop being a beg whoever you are sweetie.

HOD45
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HOD45

Is your name @WilliamLeeAdams?

Polegend Godgarina
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Polegend Godgarina

stop tryin to make yourselves happen… u ain’t gon happen ! u can leave the wiwi comments section now

HOD45
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HOD45

Make yourself a favor and Get a life outside the wiwibloggs section

Polegend Godgarina
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Polegend Godgarina

nuh. worry bout your unknown lil blog we won’t be visitin instead

HOD45
Guest
HOD45

No need for your to visit our blog. You can always wait several hours to read our headlines on wiwibloggs . ?

Jamilla
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Jamilla

Eurofestival News is the Italian Eurovision blog or site of record so it makes perfect sense that they are linked at the top of this.

HOD45
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HOD45

No we had the news first and William received our email so he knows we published the story early in the morning.
He should mention us as the source.

Minaa
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Minaa

I really hope and I wouldn’t mind if he becomes the new executive supervisor of Eurovision. If that really happens. But I wish him good luck and thank you Nicola for your service.

Mr. Vanilla Bean
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Mr. Vanilla Bean

Uh I hadn’t thought of that. Yes, the new Supervisor should absolutely be Italian.

Eastman
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Eastman

He doesnt have the sort of executive producer experience that the EBU mentioned in their job description. If he was the executive producer of Sanremo then he might have a shot.

Mr. Vanilla Bean
Guest
Mr. Vanilla Bean

This experience didn’t exactly make the current supervisor do such a terrific job. though. Personal strength and having a spine should be more important. Should be.

Polegend Godgarina
Guest
Polegend Godgarina

we’ll sure miss him and his precious contribution in italy! he gave us a fantastic decade with rihsults to be proud of, the second best-performing country of the 2010s as well as one of the most acclaimed <3

Mr. Vanilla Bean
Guest
Mr. Vanilla Bean

Interesting how it’s always the good ones to jump ship. Interesting, but not surprising.

mkkay
Guest
mkkay

The worst news. He will be deeply missed. He gave Italy:
* 7 Top 10 (4 of them top 5)
* Runner-up 2 times.
Thank you Nicola for fighting and pushing Italy to be a successful country.

Mr. Vanilla Bean
Guest
Mr. Vanilla Bean

Well, it’s still the songwriters and artists that “gave Italy” those places.

Polegend Godgarina
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Polegend Godgarina

yuh his approach has always been to leave the artists as much freedom as they wish which is what the italian music industry generally does anyway

Jo.
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Jo.

That’s the key…artistic freedom.

Polegend Godgarina
Guest
Polegend Godgarina

especially in the current music climate where ‘artistry’ is more in demand (compared to the bubblegum era at the turn of the millennium when it was more about packaged popstars)

Gigii
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Gigii

What is wrong with this year????
Nicola you’ll be missed in esc..

Chris
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Chris

Oh nooooooo 🙁

Jo.
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Jo.

Thank you for your service Sir!

Jo.
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Jo.

Two of the best HoDs leaving this season, first Jan, now Nicola…

Joe
Guest
Joe

Some real champs. Their replacements have big shoes to fill.