The coronavirus/Covid-19 pandemic continues to escalate at an alarming speed. No one is quite sure what to do. But in a bid to get a better grip on the ever-evolving situation, the Eurovision reference group will convene on Tuesday 17 March at 10:00 CET.
Under normal circumstances, such a meeting would be considered routine and almost not newsworthy. The Reference Group is essentially the Executive Committee for all members. Its purpose is to control and guide the Eurovision Song Contest.
However, according to the official Facebook page of the Czech delegation, the meeting will address what is to happen with Eurovision 2020 given the current circumstances. The post also confirms that the postcards will not go ahead as originally planned.
Meanwhile, HOD45 — a blog which claims to written by a delegation insider — reports that the event could be pushed back by a month.
?? SUPER AKTUÁLNÍ INFO STRAN ESC ???Zítra v 10:00 zasedá tzv. reference group a bude se ?ešit co s Eurovision Song…
Eurovision 2020 postcards — original postcard filming plans cancelled
Ever since 2013, the Eurovision postcards have consistently featured the competing artists. These are typically filmed in the host country, although on occasion acts have recorded their pieces in their home country. For 2020 the plan was to film all 41 postcards in the Netherlands.
However, at least two countries have already cancelled their postcard commitments — Israel and Lithuania. But as more and more governments close their borders and announce varying stages of lockdown, the original idea seemed to be becoming increasingly untenable.
Filming has been cancelled and it now appears that organisers will be returning to the drawing board.
Could Eurovision 2020 be postponed for one month?
On the eve of the reference group meeting, the HOD45 website published a story claiming that Eurovision 2020 could go ahead in June.
The writer alleges that both the Dutch government and EBU are keen for the contest to take place in light of its founding goal to unite a divided continent after World War II. Given the impact of the coronavirus/Covid-19 pandemic, this message has never been more important.
“For them the reason is not financial, but mainly symbolic”, says the blog. There are apparently multiple options up for consideration. Supposedly the favoured one is to postpone the contest for up to one month or six weeks. This would mean that the final would be held on 6, 13 or 20 June.
The writer goes on to explain that the thought process is following a logic that cases will peak in the first ten days of April and then fall off. It also claims that scientists believe the virus will “melt down” due to warmer summer weather.
It should be noted that the “myth busters” section of the World Health Organisation’s website unequivocally states that “COVID-19 virus can be transmitted in areas with hot and humid climates”.
In conclusion, HOD45 also claims that a September date should not be ruled out either.
We are living in an era of fake news. And as alarmist Whatsapp messages circulate and crackpot Twitter theories go viral, it is important to remain sceptical of unverified sources.
HOD45 has broken a number of stories before anyone else, including Montenegro’s withdrawal and Nicola Caliorge departure from his role as Italy’s Head of Delegation. On the other hand, it has also been wrong. It previously asked “Tamara Todevska set to perform during the interval act?”. The answer was no.