#HugforESC2020

April and May are typically the months of preview parties, concerts and the contest itself. But not this year. Due to the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic, all of the Eurovision 2020 pre-parties were cancelled, just like the song contest itself.

And the fans aren’t the only ones missing out. The preview circuit often acts as a great platform for artists to connect with their peers from across Europe. Many develop great working relationships and even friendships that last long after the closing credits have rolled on that Saturday in May.

However, San Marino’s Senhit isn’t ready for the class of 2020 to miss out on all of this. So, in an effort to bring about some good cheer, she launched the #hugforesc2020 hashtag on Instagram. Working with her friend and the campaign’s manager Ersin Parlak, the pair are hoping to give Europe “a virtual hug and a safe place to meet again.”

The idea is simple, she sends a virtual hug to one artist — Senhit chose Spain’s Blas Cantó — who in turn passes the hug onto another Eurovision 2020 act of their choice. And so the chain continues. The hope is that all 41 acts will have received a virtual hug by the time May rolls around.

As of our last update on 12 April, the hug had gone from San Marino to Spain to Cyprus to Norway to Sweden to Switzerland to Germany to Bulgaria to Romania to Lithuania to Iceland.

Since then it’s gone from Australia to Portugal to the Netherlands to Greece to Malta to Italy.

Now at 16:30 CEST on 3 May, the chain rests with Albania’s Arilena Ara. She was nominated by OGAE Italy on behalf of Diodato.

You’ll notice that Diodato didn’t record a video himself. Unfortunately, due to timing and private issues, the “Fai Rumore” singer couldn’t take part. However, he has given his blessing for OGAE Italy to take the turn in his name on behalf of the Italian public.

Update at 00:30 CEST 3 May — Mere hours after this was published, Diodato nominated the UK’s James Newman. This now leads to a confusing scenario where either OGAE’s nomination of Arilena Ara is nullified or we have potentially two chains of hugs running simultaneously… a schism if you will.

The important thing is that the Eurovision 2020 stars are sharing the love.

Below, we’ve tracked the full chain of hugs to date.

Keep scrolling to watch all the latest nomination videos. Click here for the first six #hugforesc2020 clips.

#hugforesc2020 Tracker at 12 April

  1. San Marino’s Senhit (24 March)
  2. Spain’s Blas Cantó (25 March)
  3. Cyprus’ Sandro (26 March)
  4. Norway’s Ulrikke (28 March)
  5. Sweden’s The Mamas (30 March)
  6. Switzerland’s Gjon’s Tears (31 March)
  7. Germany’s Ben Dolic (2 April)
  8. Bulgaria’s Victoria (6 April)
  9. Romania’s Roxen (7 April)
  10. Lithuania’s The Roop (9 April)
  11. Iceland’s Daði og Gagnamagnið (12 April)
  12. Australia’s Montaigne (15 April)
  13. Portugal’s Elisa (15 April)
  14. The Netherlands’ Jeangu Macrooy (16 April)
  15. Greece’s Stefania (17 April)
  16. Malta’s Destiny (21 April)
  17. Italy’s Diodato (4 May)
  18. Albania’s Arilena Ara (28 April) via OGAE Italy

    United Kingdom’s James Newman (TBC)

#hugforesc2020 — The latest hugs

1. Australia’s Montaigne

2. Portugal’s Elisa

3. The Netherlands’ Jeangu Macrooy

4. Greece’s Stefania

5. Malta’s Destiny

6. Italy’s Diodato

From Diodato’s Instagram stories

Have you been following the chain? Who’s hug was your favourite? Let us know in the comments.

36 Comments
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Tom
Tom
1 year ago

Make new post …UK nominated Ireland nominated NM nominated Azerbaijdan nominated Russia ….after 6 days Russia still didnt nominated anyone sadly …maybe if they would see post about them they would have nominate someone

Mikey
Mikey
1 year ago

Shame on Arilena. Overrated anyway

Jo.
Jo.
1 year ago

I first thought the Italian ogae woman was Jamala ^^

Danni
Danni
1 year ago

Why spread coronavirus when you can spread virtual hugs

Hyunwoo
Hyunwoo
1 year ago

I know that all artists will be at Eurovision 2021! But maybe there will be other artists. Albania – Eugent Bushpepa Armenia – Athena Manoukian Australia – Montaigne Austria – Vincent Bueno Azerbaijan – Efendi Belarus – Naviband Belgium – Hooverphonic Bulgaria – Victoria Croatia – Damir Kedzo Cyprus – Hovig Czech Republic – Mikolas Josef Denmark – Rasmussen Estonia – Jaagup Tuisk Finland – Erika Vikman France – Tom Leeb Georgia – Tornike Kipiani Germany – Johannes Oerding Greece – Stefania Hungary – Follow The Flow Iceland – Of Monsters and Men Ireland – Ryan O’Shaughnessy Israel – Eden… Read more »

Briekimchi
Briekimchi
1 year ago

It’s just a bit of fun. If someone doesn’t do it, just pick someone else. Don’t get so invested in something that isn’t the end of the world. 😉

Ziv
Ziv
1 year ago

Then let James Newman nominate Albania, and let’s pretend nothing happen.

Tom
Tom
1 year ago

Why Wiwi counted only 17 nominations? There are 18/already with Diodato’s one 🙂

Tom
Tom
1 year ago

ARILENA would “Fall from the sky” to take part at #HugsforESC2020 ….but at the end she didnt …

Tom
Tom
1 year ago
Reply to  Tom

Thanks for dislikes 🙂

Raffaela
Raffaela
1 year ago

Diodato made his today- it’s on his Instagram Story. He nominates the UK

Denis
Denis
1 year ago

Eh, are people really destroying someone because he or she doesn’t take part in passing along chain videos to others? Eh, OK.. I think we have more serious issues to deal with than carrying about who didn’t send chain videos. Who cars really?

Jo.
Jo.
1 year ago
Reply to  Denis

people forget there’s a world outside the internet…

esc2021rotterdam
esc2021rotterdam
1 year ago

BREAKING NEWS!!!!!
Diodato just has uploaded thug #hugforesc2020 challange and has nominated james form uk

esc2021rotterdam
esc2021rotterdam
1 year ago

BREAKING NEWS!!!!
Diodato just has posted on his Instagram story the hug challange and ge actually nominate james from uk

Erasmus
Erasmus
1 year ago

lol then OGAE Italy about that… Nice that he has done that though. But what know will Arilena do it as well?

esc2021rotterdam
esc2021rotterdam
1 year ago
Reply to  Erasmus

She hasn’t done it yet and I think ogae italy will remove their hug post

Mascha
Mascha
1 year ago

Which means that Wiwibloggs was lying earlier about him having given his blessings to the OGAE. Shame on you, Wiwibloggs. You’re CANCELLED.

(I’m still joking)

Phill
Phill
1 year ago

I think Diodato missed Destiny’s message and didn’t know about it. OGAE Italy should of reminded him about it instead of doing it themselves. I feel sorry for Arilena I hope someone nominates her

Tom
Tom
1 year ago
Reply to  Phill

Same situation now with UK, James probably did not saw Diodato’s nomination …

Alex
Alex
1 year ago

I thought Diodato would kill the chain.

Mascha
Mascha
1 year ago
Reply to  Alex

Well, Arilena’s probably gonna.

Euromess
Euromess
1 year ago

Cancel culture strikes again. Eurovision fans are proving themselves again. Destroy an artist just because he is guilty of not taking part in a chain of video messages on Instagram. Jesus Christ. Italy is in lockdown, but Diodato is continuing to work on various projects and performances, the last of which at Propaganda Live, as well as coordinating the virtual concert on May 1st in Taranto, as he is the artistic director. He’s not someone who sits on his bed all day eating chips, as many of you probably do.

ESC Orchesis
ESC Orchesis
1 year ago

I seriously love this idea. It really makes me happy to see such a nice and consistent form of global love throughout this pandemic.

Africavision
Africavision
1 year ago

So due to timing, Diodato couldn’t post a video, and continue the chain? Ehr… Italy, and most of the World, are in lock-down… This is the one time that no one can use the excuse that they have no time!

James
James
1 year ago
Reply to  Africavision

Diodato posted his.

Lousiane
Lousiane
1 year ago

Where did you get that conclusion?

Roelof Meesters
Roelof Meesters
1 year ago

Kinda cheap from Diodato, but I was kinda expecting someone to break the chain at some point tbh… I predict that maybe Little Big might not notice it either. Now I’m just hoping Arilena notices the challenge.

James
James
1 year ago

He just did his apparently.

Mascha
Mascha
1 year ago

.

leopard
leopard
1 year ago

It’s disappointing that Diodato refuse it and break the chain… but thankfully OGAE Italy did it for him seven days later.
And he was active whole time on Instagram so I’m not buying stories that “he didn’t see it” or “he didn’t have time”. Yeah sure, it’s so hard to record 30+ seconds clip.

Honey, you’re cancelled.

Mascha
Mascha
1 year ago
Reply to  leopard

Arilena also hasn’t answered in 5 days, I’m saying we’re doing a preemptive strike and canceling her right now!

(I’m joking)

Lousiane
Lousiane
1 year ago
Reply to  leopard

If the guy refused, he wouldn’t have asked someone from OGAE Italy to do it for him and just leave things opens.

Candy
Candy
1 year ago
Reply to  leopard

I honestly think Diodato didn’t even know he was expected to send a video of himself doing the virtual hug challenge. Don’t be so judgemental. It baffles me that basic short videos are so incredibly important to some. It’s a nice gesture but that’s it. If someone doesn’t do it, it’s not the end of the world, is it?

Ralf0711
Ralf0711
1 year ago

OMG Jeangu is such a nice, warm, lovely person. i am so glad that we see him in 2021 again. hugs to Jeangu from germany.