Earlier today, the EBU announced that they have made the decision to cancel Eurovision 2020 due to coronavirus precautions. This is the first time that the contest has ever been cancelled in its 64-year history.
Naturally, this unprecedented move leaves a lot of questions about why the decision was made and what happens now.
In a series of Frequently Asked Questions, the EBU have revealed why they took this option over other routes such as postponement or having no audience. There is also info about whether Rotterdam will host the contest next year and if the artists selected for Eurovision 2020 will be given the opportunity to compete again.
You can find their answers to these questions and more below.
Eurovision 2020 cancellation: Frequently Asked Questions
Why has the Eurovision Song Contest in Rotterdam been cancelled?
“With the escalating spread of COVID-19 throughout Europe – and the restrictions put in place by the governments of participating broadcasters and the Dutch authorities – it is impossible to continue with the live event as planned.”
Why not postpone the event?
“The current situation across Europe is likely to remain uncertain for the coming months and at this stage we cannot guarantee we would be able to stage an event of this size with this many stakeholders later this year. A Contest later in the year would also reduce the amount of time the winning broadcaster would have to prepare for the following year’s competition.”
Could the contest not have been held without an audience?
“We are carefully following the advice of the relevant authorities to protect the health and wellbeing of all citizens. Dutch restrictions on gatherings of large numbers of people and international travel restrictions mean that holding the event, even without an audience, is impossible at this time.”
Why couldn’t the show have been held remotely?
“It’s in the DNA of the Eurovision Song Contest to bring delegations, artists and fans together in one place and provide an equal platform for all artists to compete together on the same stage and the same opportunity to shine. We felt that under the extreme circumstances we face this year, organizing the Eurovision Song Contest in another way would not be in keeping with our values and the tradition of the event.
The unique format of the Song Contest as an international live event means that it is not possible to identify any realistic alternative. We therefore have no choice other than to cancel the show.”
Will the selected artists be able to perform their songs next year?
“This is to be discussed with the Reference Group and the participating broadcasters and a decision will be communicated later.”
What will happen to my ticket?
“You will be informed about this as soon as possible. Among other things, we will look at whether the buyers will get their money back or whether the tickets will remain valid until next year. As soon as there is more clarity, ticket buyers will receive an email with their various options at the email address from which they purchased their tickets.”
Can I get a refund now?
“At the moment we are looking into the various options. As soon as we have more information, this will be communicated on songfestival.nl.”
What happens to my tickets that I bought on Ticketswap, via AVROTROS, or via the fan club (OGAE)?
“The same applies here as for “regular” ticket buyers. As soon as we have more information, this will be communicated on songfestival.nl and you will receive an email at the email address from which you booked the tickets.”
Do we have a date for next year’s Contest?
“The EBU, NPO, NOS, AVROTROS and the City of Rotterdam are continuing their conversation regarding the potential hosting of the Contest in 2021. It is currently too early to discuss any specifics regarding the event next year.”
For detailed information about the coronavirus/COVID-19 and how to stay healthy, please visit The World Health Organisation web site.