Tonight should have been the first semi-final of Eurovision 2020. But, instead of gathering together in Rotterdam, Eurovision fans are spreading the love virtually at home following the contest’s cancellation. To replace the semi-final one show, the EBU premiered the first part of Eurovision Song Celebration 2020 on its YouTube channel for fans to watch instead.

As part of this, the music videos of all 17 entries that were set to compete in the first semi-final were shown. But, to add extra excitement to this, the songs were played in the running order that producers had originally decided upon for the actual contest.

Many fans enjoy scrutinising the running order to predict which entries might have been given the best opportunity to shine, and which entries could have been buried between favourites. And now, we have the opportunity to do just that for semi-final one of Eurovision 2020.

Eurovision 2020 semi-final one running order

  1. 🇸🇪 Sweden: The Mamas – “Move”
  2. 🇧🇾 Belarus: VAL – “Da Vidna”
  3. 🇦🇺 Australia: Montaigne – “Don’t Break Me”
  4. 🇲🇰 North Macedonia: Vasil – “You”
  5. 🇸🇮 Slovenia: Ana Soklič – “Voda”
  6. 🇱🇹 Lithuania: The Roop – “On Fire”
  7. 🇮🇪 Ireland: Lesley Roy – “Story Of My Life”
  8. 🇷🇺 Russia: Little Big – “Uno”
  9. 🇧🇪 Belgium: Hooverphonic – “Release Me”
  10. 🇲🇹 Malta: Destiny – “All Of My Love”
  11. 🇭🇷 Croatia: Damir Kedžo – “Divlji vjetre”
  12. 🇦🇿 Azerbaijan: Efendi – “Cleopatra”
  13. 🇨🇾 Cyprus: Sandro – “Running”
  14. 🇳🇴 Norway: Ulrikke – “Attention”
  15. 🇮🇱 Israel: Eden Alene – “Feker Libi”
  16. 🇷🇴 Romania: Roxen – “Alcohol You”
  17. 🇺🇦 Ukraine: Go_A – “Solovey”

Eurovision Song Celebration 2020

In addition to the running order reveal, we also got some other fun surprises as part of the first episode of Eurovision Song Celebration 2020.

The participants were tasked with singing their song in a different genre. Australia’s Montaigne turned “Don’t Break Me” into an opera. Meanwhile, Damir Kedžo from Croatia turned the bpm up on his song “Divlji vjetre”, treating us to a full-on Euroclub banger.

Some of this year’s stars also revealed what their favourite Eurovision entries of all-time are. Norway’s Ulrikke and Ukraine’s Go_A both showed some love to Eurovision 2012 winner Loreen. Ana Soklič shared her passion for Rona Nishliu’s “Suus” (Albania 2012).

The Mamas came together and chose “Proud” by Tamara Todevska (North Macedonia 2019). Lesley Roy gave a shout out to Eurovision 1993 winner Niamh Kavanagh. Finally, Vasil selected “Bandido” by Azucar Moreno (Spain 1990) as his favourite.

The music videos for Italy’s, Germany’s and The Netherlands’ entries were also shown. These countries had been selected as the three automatic qualifiers that would have been able to vote in the first semi-final.

A number of YouTube creators from various countries were also given the opportunity to give their opinions on some of this year’s songs.

Finally, the recap of the semi-final one entries at the end of the show was made up of clips submitted by fans from across Europe and the entire globe. We got to see people performing their own versions of the songs and enjoying the music that the Eurovision 2020 artists have gifted us.

Eurovision Song Celebration 2020 will return on Thursday 14th May at 21:00 CEST.

The acts from the second semi-final will be showcased, again in the intended running order decided by producers.

What do you make of the semi-final one running order? Who do you think would have benefited and suffered the most from their placing? Let us know in the comments below!

Read more Eurovision 2020 news here

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Laburnum
Laburnum
5 months ago

In my opinion I thought Ireland or Belgium might have managed to qualify instead of Australia, but with this running order I think it killed both their chances being placed between firm favourites. I think top 3 of this semi would have been Malta, Lithuania and Sweden

Jake Dallas
Jake Dallas
5 months ago

Poor Croatia.

2017: 11th
2018: 12th
2019: 10th
2020: 11th

xohxoh
xohxoh
5 months ago

To me

4. Ireland
5. North Macedonia
6. Lithuania
7. Slovenia
8. Russia

would’ve made more sense than how it is now tbh.

Ulvi
Ulvi
5 months ago

When this Macedonian singer started with ”Why”, I really though he was gonna sing ”WHY, WHY-AY-AY-AY”. What a let-down! I don’t understand people, who prefer Euphoria to Walk Along.

Zornaddie
Zornaddie
5 months ago
Reply to  Ulvi

I thought he was about to sing Attention lol

Denis
Denis
5 months ago
Reply to  Ulvi

You don’t understand people who prefer “Euphoria, winning song that changed ESC and brought it in a new era, over Walk Along, a basic generic radio song that sounds like other songs and who you forgot even competed?

UK Clee ESC nutter
UK Clee ESC nutter
5 months ago
Reply to  Ulvi

Euphoria an amazing song which I still sing to myself 8 years later! Denis I would not as far as to say it was a game changer for ESC. Since then look at the winners/songs since.

Héctor
Héctor
5 months ago

The Mamas opening would have been such a torrent of energy. While I was watching it I felt like it would have slayed the SF. So much energy and passion. In the final it would have been different with more songs but it really would have benefited from opening the SF.

I was a bit sad during the whole thing thinking about how great it could have been and imagining their live performances on stage.

EuroSluuuuuutty
EuroSluuuuuutty
5 months ago

I can’t believe there were 60k ppl who sat down and watched this boring livestream. I left the stream after the first song when i realized nothing exciting is happening and the whole comments section was spam

Fatima
Fatima
5 months ago

I didn’t think it was boring but then I hadn’t already seen some of those videos. However, I agree with you about the live chat, it was a waste of space. That aspect of the contest gets worse every year.

UK Clee ESC nutter
UK Clee ESC nutter
5 months ago

It was ok ish! Enjoyed the songs, well some of them, but the chat left a lot to be desired. Asking the artists of 2020 to tell us their top 3 songs from the whole of the ESC waste of space! What a surprise that they generally voted for songs from their own country and most from recent history. Forget the decades from the 50’s 60’s 70′ 80’s!!

Grafton
Grafton
5 months ago

So they were expecting Attention, Feker Libi and Alcohol you to do well. And rightfully so!

Fatima
Fatima
5 months ago

I sensed that Lithuania would have ‘won’ the semi, it seemed to me to be a step up from the rest when it came on. The moment I enjoyed most was when Vasil picked Azúcar Moreno as his all-time favourite Eurovision track. Overall, I thought the programme was great. It was fun not knowing the order in advance. I will watch again on Thursday.

West
West
5 months ago

My qualifiers would be: Lithuania, Australia, Romania, Ukraine, Sweden, Israel, Belarus, Malta, Azerbaijan and Ireland. At least listening the songs at their current form – I often change my opinion about songs when I hear them live. The songs I loved have weak vocal performance or bad staging and songs I didn’t like blow my mind with awesome staging or something. So who knows how would I rate these songs if there really was a contest.

SpirK
SpirK
5 months ago

Me (a typical fan) and three of my friends who watch Eurovision when it comes up but are not fans per se. So everyone watched the show last night and voted for his/her top 10. After the show everyone gave me their votes and I calculated the results. An 11th place was also asked to be given in case of a tie, to use as a tiebreaker. Here were our votes (full result in the brackets, “-” for when it wasn’t in the person’s top 10) 1. Sweden -39 points (12 12 5 10) 2. Lithuania -38 points (10 8… Read more »

UK Clee ESC nutter
UK Clee ESC nutter
5 months ago
Reply to  SpirK

Surprised no mention of Germany, why have so many got a downer on that? Downer on Ireland too?? For me Israel to top semi 1

UK Clee ESC nutter
UK Clee ESC nutter
5 months ago
Reply to  SpirK

Sorry Germany automatic qualifiers!!!! Must be an age thing!!! 😉

SpirK
SpirK
5 months ago

The automatic qualifiers weren’t rated yeah ?

Sarp Euro Fan
Sarp Euro Fan
5 months ago

My qualifiers in running order: Sweden, Australia, Slovenia, Lithuania, Russia, Malta, Croatia, Norway, Romania and Ukraine.
But Azerbaijan and Israel are more likely than Slovenia and Croatia if I was asked to predict the final outcome.

The show was not up to my expectations, though it is understandable in these circumstances.

Chromium
Chromium
5 months ago

Pretty good running order, though the way they ordered the first half is a bit… baffling. I feel like Lithuania and Russia are too close to each other in the order (plus poor Ireland stuck between them! XD). I personally would’ve ordered it this way:
1-5. Ireland / Slovenia / Lithuania / Belarus / Sweden
6-12. North Macedonia / Australia / Russia / Belgium / Ukraine / Romania / Malta
13-17. Azerbaijan / Croatia / Israel / Norway / Cyprus

PP77
PP77
5 months ago

Ok draw. From 6-8 uptempo song, quite interesting decision.
My prediction
1.Lithuania
2.Sweden
3.Russia
4.Malta
5.Romania
6.Azerbaijan
7.Norway
8.Israel
9.Ukraine
10.Australia

11.Belgium
12.N. Macedonia
13.Ireland
14.Croatia
15.Cyprus
16.Slovenia
17.Belarus

poe-tay-toe-chips
poe-tay-toe-chips
5 months ago

Sweden, Lithuania, Russia, Belgium, Malta, Azerbaijan, Norway, Israel, Romania, and Ukraine would’ve been the qualifiers in my opinion. Belgium’s a bit borderline though I think that would be the one that barely makes it.

poe-tay-toe-chips
poe-tay-toe-chips
5 months ago

Netherlands would’ve voted and so would Germany so I think that would’ve helped.

Briekimchi
Briekimchi
5 months ago

The sign of a good running order is avoiding having more than two “weaker” entries running together. I think, largely, that they managed that here. For me, 9-13 would be the hardest stretch and 2-5 is a little rough, too. Still, not bad.

Robyn Gallagher
Admin
5 months ago

As I’ve always said, if a song needs a favourable running order place in order to qualify, it’s going to be a borderline qualifier anyway that needs a strong slot to push it from 11th to 10th place. Not exactly winning potential.

A strong song can qualify from anywhere. Consider in 2016, Michal Szpak performed second in his semi and qualified in sixth place then went on to mop up the televote in the grand final.

Ritabloggs
Ritabloggs
5 months ago

I guess it appeals to a certain audience. My dad liked that one.

Erik
Erik
5 months ago

You have a point, but it still matters. Consider 5 upbeat songs in a row or 4 ballads etc. That fifth upbeat song could be really good, but you have become tired of the tempo from the four preceding songs. There is a reason the warm up band seldom fits exactly into the main act in a concert. They can be good, but not outperform you. If you play really heavy metal the warm up band can play easier rock. If you play slow music you don’t want your audience to fall asleep during your performance. You want to change… Read more »

Roelof Meesters
Roelof Meesters
5 months ago

Belarus, Ireland, Croatia and Cyprus would have drowned with this Running Order, and I feel like Sweden, Russia, Azerbaijan, Romania and Ukraine would have really benefitted from this Order. This would have been such a strong semi- final… so sad that we’re never gonna see these songs on the Eurovision stage, it’s like Maruv times 41 :/

Craig
Craig
5 months ago

Geez. They really screwed Ireland over with that place between Lithuania and Russia

Fatima
Fatima
5 months ago
Reply to  Craig

I think Ireland hurt Russia a little. And upbeat positive track followed by scary and unsmiling. Also I think she (Lesley Roy) came across best in the lockdown videos.

Tom
Tom
5 months ago

Running order is weard ….never expected Ukraine would close …

Robyn Gallagher
Admin
5 months ago
Reply to  Tom

The first non-Björkman running order since 2015! I suspect a lot of the standard running order expectations were just Björkman techniques. As he’s not part of it this year, the Dutch team has come at it with their own ideas.

Stian F
Stian F
5 months ago
Reply to  Tom

I did. I got Sweden, Azerbaijan and Ukraine correct in my prediction… Rest was mostly 1 or 2 off… Its a perfect closing song as they always aim to have a uptempo like song at the end always. They almost never finish with a ballad. Norway or Romania was a given to come second last as well…

Tom
Tom
5 months ago
Reply to  Stian F

Well i expected Russia to open and Azerbaijan to close …but they are going according to breaks …first 6 songs, break another 6 …probably Ireland planned to have a great and big staging same with Cyprus

Joe
Joe
5 months ago

My qualifiers would have been Sweden, Lithuania, Russia, Malta, Azerbaijan, Norway, Israel, Romania, Ukraine and my last one would’ve been between Belarus and Cyprus, I couldn’t choose between the two! I like Australia’s song, but I feel like it was a bit overhyped, and I think it would’ve gotten lost going 3rd. I feel the same way about Belgium, love the song, but between Russia and Malta, I think it would’ve struggled. I’m also surprised to see that Ukraine would’ve closed the show, I personally would’ve put Malta last. Such a shame about the way this Eurovision’s gone, but you… Read more »

Kosey
Kosey
5 months ago

Sweden opening the show was a good choice. It is such a welcoming, uplifting song, it would have drawn everyone in. Interesting to close with Ukraine, I might have gone with Azerbaijan as that final minute would have really made things go out with a bang. I feel Ireland had a dodgy placing and Lesley could have been blown out of the water by Little Big. I’m pleased with Norway and Romania’s slots, as 2 of my top 3 in the whole contest, i feel comfortable they would both have qualified. Overall, I think it would have been a good… Read more »

Nobody Important
Nobody Important
5 months ago

In my opinion :
Definet qualifiers: Sweden, Australia, Lithuania, Russia, Malta, Azerbaijan, Norway, Israel and Romania.
Borderline qualifiers (Includes potential to elavate with the staging!) : Ireland, Belgium, Croatia, Cyprus and Ukraine.
Definet non qualifiers: Belarus(death spot), Slovenia and North Macedonia.

Hector
Hector
5 months ago

Oh no. Ireland would’ve drowned in that spot. Cyprus sandwiched between Azerbaijan and Norway would have struggled as well

JDS
JDS
5 months ago
Reply to  Hector

Ireland would have been buried! Horrible, horrible slot.

Sweden a good opener, Ukraine not the best choice of a closer. Especially since they closed their SF in 2018.

poe-tay-toe-chips
poe-tay-toe-chips
5 months ago
Reply to  Hector

Honestly I have reason to believe Cyprus would’ve placed last in the semi

Tusán
5 months ago
Reply to  Hector

Oh come on, Cyprus and Ireland would have struggled anywhere. You can’t really save a bad song.

Skiwalko
Skiwalko
5 months ago

Fun fact: Belgium would have performed in the 9th position for the first time in the history. They participated in 76 shows (including semi-finals) and not once did they get the 9th spot in the running order. I mean, what are the odds?

Davo
Davo
5 months ago

Ending with Ukraine would have been a real downer but suggests the producers wanted to help it qualify. Australia would have been disadvantaged here. Definite qualifiers: Lithuania, Russia, Sweden, Norway, Malta, Israel, Romania, Azerbaijan with the last two spots fought amongst Australia, Croatia and Ukraine. Croatia would definitely qualify if he performed that dance version!

An American ESC Fan
An American ESC Fan
5 months ago

That’s actually a pretty good running order! Mine was actually pretty similar (I had Israel close instead of Ukraine tho). I’m happy Belgium would have stood a decent chance at qualifying since it really stands out amongst the upbeat songs of its half. The thing I don’t really like is the Lithuania – Ireland – Russia trifecta of upbeat songs. Lithuania and Russia, probably the biggest fan faves of the semi, would still qualify but may have more of a difficulty at winning it. Ireland also would have gotten buried. My predictions for the would-be qualifiers of this semi (in… Read more »

Josh R
Josh R
5 months ago

I’m surprised Azerbaijan or Malta was not chosen to close. It makes sense that Malta wasn’t, given that Sweden opened (which is the perfect pick to open the show). Azerbaijan would’ve had a lasting impact at the end. Overall, though, no major surprises.

Someone
Someone
5 months ago
Reply to  Josh R

I think Azerbaijan didn’t close because they closed the second semi final last year. I don’t think they can close a semi final 2 times in a row.

Tom
Tom
5 months ago
Reply to  Someone

Well I am not sure as well but Slovenia got same spot n.5 like they had last year

Meckie
Meckie
5 months ago
Reply to  Someone

Ukraine already closed Semi in 2018.

poe-tay-toe-chips
poe-tay-toe-chips
5 months ago
Reply to  Josh R

I think Israel should’ve closed honestly.

Milo Epsilon
Milo Epsilon
5 months ago

Fans were asked to pay tribute to the songs but at the end I have the feeling that it was ESC which paid tribute to the fans. I wish casual viewers at home could see how commited some of us are and what lies beneath what is just a TV show to them (not to say a kitschy thing). So I’m 100% for a full 41 songs fan recap on Saturday !

Conor K
Conor K
5 months ago

Wow that was actually a decent draw for us (Ireland) for once! Poor Belarus would of had no hope in that spot, shame as the song is very underrated to begin with.

Bouke
Bouke
5 months ago

Loved it 😀

esc2021rotterdam
esc2021rotterdam
5 months ago

I think belgium actually could made it at the end of a day, as a dark ballad that is being stuck in a sea of happy songs.

An American ESC Fan
An American ESC Fan
5 months ago

I agree. I’m glad it would have stood a chance too, it’s a good song.

poe-tay-toe-chips
poe-tay-toe-chips
5 months ago

It could’ve just made it at 10th in the semi

Josh R
Josh R
5 months ago

I think Belgium, Australia, or Cyprus would’ve competed for that tenth spot. Based on the order, I think Belgium had the upper hand. This would’ve been different if Ukraine weren’t closing though.

Jim
Jim
5 months ago

They definitely saw Romania as the one to beat. They also really tried to help Belgium. Australia might’ve struggled.