Kate Miller-Heidke Australia Decides Eurovision 2019 Zero Gravity

Since 2016, Australia’s public broadcaster SBS, the EBU and several Asian broadcasters have been in talks over the first edition of Eurovision Asia, the would-be Asian rendition of our beloved Eurovision Song Contest.

But as the public news surrounding that event has ground to a halt, Australia has been busy making waves elsewhere. In 2019 it held its debut national final Eurovision: Australia Decides. Kate Miller-Heidke won the right to represent the country, helping make the show one of the most-talked about of the most recent Eurovision season. Australia is now gearing up for a second round in February.

In business as in love, it’s not always possible to split your heart in two. Australian broadcaster SBS simply can’t support both events equally.

Speaking to BuzzE, an entertainment branch of the Dutch Press Agency, a spokesperson from SBS revealed:

“We will continue collaborating with the European Broadcasting Union to explore the possibility for Eurovision Asia, but we will first focus on the national final Australia Decides 2020.”

The sophomore edition of Australia Decides will take place on 8 February at the Gold Coast Convention Centre. Four stars in the lineup have already been announced: Casey Donova, iOTA, Mitch Tambo and Vanessa Amorosi.

This, however, is not bad news for Eurovision Asia. It long seemed that the Asian dream was over, but the good news is that the concept is still in development!

What is Eurovision Asia all about?

When the concept of Eurovision Asia was announced in March 2016, the excitement was huge. The contest would be another version of our beloved show, but set on another continent. We immediately made wishlists, from Australia to Kyrgyzstan to Vietnam, hoping all of our favourite stars would participate.

It’s proved to be much less of rose-coloured dream than we anticipated. While the music industry of Asian countries is flourishing as never before, their regional political relations are fraught with difficulties. Since the initial announcement, the contest has been delayed several times.

Eurovision Asia: an ambitious and troubled project

The first edition of Eurovision Asia was to be held in 2017, but it quickly appeared that this plan was too ambitious. Political tensions between the biggest potential participating countries were among the reasons why Eurovision Asia was delayed. Skim the surface and you’ll soon think about China’s contentious claims to much of the South China Sea, counter-claims from Vietnam, the Philippines, Brunei and others, Hong Kong’s evolving relationship with mainland China, Taiwan’s continued conflict with China, and more.

After the release of the EurovisionAsia.tv website and a theme art work in Summer 2017, it seemed that the contest was finally close to happening. The website soon stopped being updated and no news post has appeared since October 2017.

In 2018, SBS Managing Director Michael Ebeid called Eurovision Asia “[his] one big disappointment”. On top of that, he called the contest “too geo-politically difficult”.

This did not mean that the dialogue stopped, though. But as of now it’s unclear when Eurovision Asia will happen. Keep in mind that it took the Eurovision Song Contest several years of planning too and it was not until decades later that more than twenty countries participated. In that sense, we can only be patient.

Do you hope that Eurovision Asia will happen soon? Are you excited for Australia Decides 2020? Let us know in the comments below!

Read all our Australia news here

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Rifki
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Rifki

Why is the project still called “Eurovision Asia” instead of “Asiavision”? ABU should be involved in this project as well, so that the project’s name can be changed to “Asiavision”. I do still think it will happen, but not anytime soon. 2021 will be the nearest possible year.

Wouter Ganz
Guest
Wouter Ganz

Let it go Australia, let it go.

Fast Food Music Lover
Guest
Fast Food Music Lover

It’s frustrating but I’m still hopeful it will happen eventually. Maybe Singapore or other countries can take the reigns instead of Australia’s SBS since clearly they’re losing motivation.

Liam Lindsay
Guest
Liam Lindsay

I agree with Erste Reihe beim ESC with their statement on inviting a few countries globally to compete to increase the global aspects of Eurovision. (For arguments sake, we could have Kazakhstan, Kenya, India, Canada, Trinidad and Tobago, Vanuatu and Brazil all be special guests participants in 2021 with Australia rules applicable in the event of their potential victory.) As Eurovision Asia is far too difficult to process, produce, navigate and with so many civil unrest, civil wars and armed conflicts going on in around half of the supposed competing nations not to mention the poor LGBT rights issues that… Read more »

Jonas
Guest
Jonas

No, I don’t want to see all of those countries in the contest as special guests. It would only harm the prospects of actual fee-paying full EBU members.

CookyMonzta
Guest
CookyMonzta

At this point, it is fair to say that Eurovision Asia is like vaporware. You’ll wait, and wait…and wait……

……and wait……

……and wait, for the final product to be made public. And then you find out that it is crap. Like Duke Nukem Forever, after a 14-year wait. >:-X

Tylos
Guest
Tylos

If Michael Ebeid couldn’t make it happen then it won’t happen. He was a phenomenal MD for SBS

James
Guest
James

Asia’s Got Talent and Asia’s Next Top Model didn’t seem to have that problem and they now have several seasons under their belts.

Saturday
Guest
Saturday

So China seems to be the problem? Can they just leave them out?

Alybloggs
Guest
Alybloggs

Everyone wants to leave China out, even when it comes to political matters.

WannaEatMySpaghetti
Guest
WannaEatMySpaghetti

Eurovision Asia will never happen. It simply can’t because of geopolitic, again.
China has problem with absolutely every neighbours :’)

1TruSeer
Guest
1TruSeer

Eurovision Asia will never work, China is too anti S.Korea, Japan, Taiwan and probably HongKong now etc.
It’s currently illegal to broadcast S.Korean music in China

Gorilla716
Guest
Gorilla716

I imagine participating in Eurovision has made Australia and SBS stop caring about Eurovision Asia and that the large majority of Australians prefer Eurovision over Eurovision Asia.

Kredential
Guest
Kredential

Australia already has their foot in the door by competing in ESC so they don’t care about Eurovision Asia anymore nor consider it a priority.

As a New Zealander I would love to see a Eurovision Asia someday, but the politicising of the event would be infinitely worse than ESC has ever seen. Diaspora voting would be ridiculous and I can only begin to imagine what kind of control communist China would want over the event.

Jonas
Guest
Jonas

I’m not sure why the burden of organizing the Asia contest falls on a tiny public service broadcaster, not even located in Asia. EBU logic, I guess.

Robyn Gallagher
Editor

While it’s called Eurovision Asia, its focus is the Asia-Pacific region. It’s kind of the catchment area of the Asia-Pacific Broadcasting Union (without formally being associated with the ABU). 🙂

Jonas
Guest
Jonas

Still, it seems like a huge project for SBS to take on, are BlinkTV still involved? Who’s paying for it? Is the EBU the driving force behind it or just licensing the franchise to rope in some $$$? Sorry, you’ve probably covered this before and I’ve probably asked these questions before. When is the time to let this project die?

Eastman
Guest
Eastman

No need for Eurovision Asia. We already have Australia representing Oceania. If the EBU invites Kazakhstan we’ll also have an Asian country represented at Eurovision. Keep it simple instead of messing about and trying to be the one entity who finally manages to mend China-Japan relations.

Jonas
Guest
Jonas

We already have Asian nations taking part, and it’s even been hosted in Asia. I’m not sure why Australia’s participation makes Eurovision Asia unnecessary…? Australia is not in Asia.

Preuss
Guest
Preuss

When you’re first allowed to participate in Eurovision then you can focus on that and keep bringing us amazing stagings like this year

Alex
Guest
Alex

2017: ESC Asia is delayed
2018: ESC Asia is delayed
2019: ESC Asia is delayed
2020: ESC Asia is delayed
2021: ESC Asia is delayed
2022: ESC Asia is delayed
2023: ESC Asia is delayed

Erste Reihe beim ESC
Guest
Erste Reihe beim ESC

For me that sounds like the “BER” (Airport Berlin Brandenburg International) story ….. they started building that airport 2006 and 2011 it should be open ……and now we have almost 2020 and not a single plain took off there sp far. Same is with ESC Asia ……. I love the idea but I don’t see that happen. Wouldn’t it be good to have 1 additional country to be invited from the globe to our ESC. We could invite Indonesia for 2020, Brazil 2021, South Africa 2020 ……. so we get new music elements into our contest and the countries around… Read more »

Frisian esc
Guest
Frisian esc

I was in a host family in schönefeld berlin for a week a few years back and the man of the household had worked for airports in berlin his whole life. He gave us a tour of the desolated brandenburg airport. It was very interesting

Jonas
Guest
Jonas

I hope they’ve taken the chance to film some movies or TV there, they could have been making an airport-set series for the last few years.

Sun
Guest
Sun

Just drop the idea of Eurovision Asia! I’m Asian and I have no interest in watching this show when the whole Asia is a million times complicated than Europe in terms of politics. It’s never gonna work like this.

Tibor
Guest
Tibor

I want Australia to stay in Eurovision Europe.

EurovisionSteve
Guest
EurovisionSteve

Well that’s a welcome change of heart from the European public. <3

Polegend Godgarina
Guest
Polegend Godgarina

i mean, why focus on something that’s not going to happen ?

Mr Vanilla Bean
Guest
Mr Vanilla Bean

Good choice, to be honest.

Joe
Guest
Joe

No idea what the long term results of Eurovision Asia, but based on the immediate results of Australia Decides, I think they made the right call.