Eurovision 2021 Covid-19 Coronavirus

The Covid-19 pandemic got the better of Eurovision 2020. But organisers are determined that history won’t be repeating itself in 2021. Speaking to Switzerland’s RTS, Eurovision Event Supervisor Nadja Burkhardt has revealed that the EBU and Dutch host broadcasters are working on two scenarios for next year’s contest in Rotterdam.

Covid-19 — Two scenarios for Eurovision 2021

The first scenario is a competition which would take place as normal. The second option is a contest which would take place in the context of total containment. Burkhardt explains that these are extremes and within “these two scenarios, there are sub-scenarios”.

“What must be taken into account is not only the legislation of the host country, but also the legislation of 43 delegations”, she says.

“What particularly interests me is this moment when you have to move from one scenario to another. How easily can you switch from one version to another at the last moment”. This is the challenge which is currently preoccupying Nadja and her colleagues on the organising committee.

However, the prospect of a completely online competition is not envisaged. “That would be taking things the wrong way. We could indeed start with a completely online disaster scenario, but it really is not the goal. We will really try to do everything so that the competition can take place on-site”.

Covid-19 and Eurovision: Learning from experiences of others

One of the EBU’s biggest assets in this current crisis is its network of member and associate broadcasters across Europe and the world. The plan is to leverage these connections to extract know-how and learn from the experience of individual oganisations.

“We work with other associations, sports associations in particular and with our members, such as the BBC for example, to find out how they plan their events, what are the elements that we have not yet considered”, says Nadja.

All possibilities must be looked at and great levels of creativity will be required. With different health measures being introduced in different countries every day, the plans are in constant flux.

“In fact, we are copying what is happening at the moment: from one day to the next countries are put on the red list, we can travel, we can no longer travel, we have to change the planning at the last moment… “.

What do you think of the EBU’s scenario-planning? Are they right to rule out an online option? Let us know in the comments.

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Stian F
Stian F
3 months ago

There is the possibilitey to have the show only with Dutch and local audience, and all seated, with no servings of alcohol. And restrict the audience to noone older than 60 years old, or even lower, and no disabled audience members. Eliminate people in risk of corona from the audience. Also, require quarantine for all that has taken part during the Eurovision week afterwards… But of course, this would be very very strict but definitely a possibility to have a show, live, with audience. Lets hope we have a vaccine by then and that we dont even have to have… Read more »

Aaron
Aaron
3 months ago
Reply to  Stian F

Why no disabled audience members? Not all disabled people are at high risk of the virus, unlike older people. It is unfair to discriminate against them.

Iván el Conquistador
Iván el Conquistador
3 months ago

Couldn’t have they thought about something like this EARLIER?

Robyn Gallagher
Admin
3 months ago

Eurovision is still nine months away. Right now *is* “earlier”.

1998
1998
3 months ago

I got over one cancellation, but I couldn’t get over another one. I could accept even the number of participating countries like in 2014, but I don’t want another cancellation. I pray to God that everything will be alright and that the contest will be held as usual.

esc2021rotterdam
esc2021rotterdam
3 months ago
Reply to  1998

It’s not going to be cancelled. That’s what is written in the article

Matthew Tuson
Matthew Tuson
3 months ago

I really hope we have an audience but if not then what America’s got talent is doing with a virtual is very good, gives us the audience atmosphere to the degree you forget they aren’t physically there and it doesn’t feel much different.

Kim
Kim
3 months ago

I don’t think we (Australia) will be there.Our Government has said no international travel until a vaccine is ready or the middle of 2021. As Eurovision is traditionally held in May Eurovision misses by about a month. You also have to apply for a special exemption to get permission to fly out – not many are given even if there is a death in the family. So a song contest is not going to get an exemption. I feel for Montaigne she may have missed out on Eurovision twice.

Last edited 3 months ago by Kim
Ruud Jongen
Ruud Jongen
3 months ago
Reply to  Kim

Oh no! I want Australia to participate in my country…

esc2021rotterdam
esc2021rotterdam
3 months ago
Reply to  Kim

Tbh id be suprised if australia keeps that long without international flights, It could lead into bankrupt of airline companies. Anyway, It will be so unfair for montaigne if she can’t go again to eurovision, I mean: montaigne wins australia decides 2020 and gets the ticket for eurovision 2020, loses the ticket for eurovision 2020 becuase it’s cancelled amid corona, gets reconfirmed for eurovision 2021 and then loses again the ticket for eurovision 2021 because of corona travel restrictions (doing the performance from studio in Australia is not a good option imo), what will happen then? Will she get reconfirmed… Read more »

Last edited 3 months ago by esc2021rotterdam
EurovisionBram
EurovisionBram
3 months ago

43 delegations..? ?
EBU… is there something that your not telling us? ?

Last edited 3 months ago by EurovisionBram
Denis
Denis
3 months ago
Reply to  EurovisionBram

43 is the maximum of countries taking part. They aren’t spoiling anything:)

Pineaple
Pineaple
3 months ago
Reply to  Denis

Wasn’t the maximum 44 on the official rules? 😉

Robyn Gallagher
Admin
3 months ago
Reply to  Pineaple

Yeah, the 2020 rules said 44, though the 2021 rules haven’t been made public yet. Could it be that she’s referring to the number of interested broadcasters? I feel like Montenegro and Hungary wouldn’t want to be left out of the group chat!

Bring Back The Orchestra
Bring Back The Orchestra
3 months ago

I hope that fans will return to the arena again for 2021, just like any pre-COVID contest. We may not need a vaccine after all, there’s herd immunity that could end the pandemic, just like with Spanish Flu

We must return to normal without these restrictions in place!

John
John
3 months ago

While I also want to see everyone on the same stage, I think the remote option absolutely should be made available for those countries that absolutely cannot travel. I worry about some countries (eg Australia) being able to make the journey, and they should not be excluded if they can’t.

John
John
3 months ago
Reply to  John

That’s too many absolutelys lol but you know what I’m saying!! 😉

Hyunwoo
Hyunwoo
3 months ago

It’s all the fault of Baba Vanga, who she predicted the Coronavirus in 1995!

Hyunwoo
Hyunwoo
3 months ago

In Netherlands forgot how to treat?! Call colleagues from neighboring areas where people are treated and there is no such mortality!

Paul
Paul
3 months ago

I wonder if everyone will sing in a mask

Kosey
Kosey
3 months ago
Reply to  Paul

The UK should definitely send Altern-8

Paul
Paul
3 months ago
Reply to  Kosey

Deadmau5 would be welcome too!

tylos
tylos
3 months ago
Reply to  Paul

As if he could keep it to 3 minutes
🙂

Aaron
Aaron
3 months ago
Reply to  Kosey

Hope We send James Newman, he deserves the chance to come back. Such a nice guy and his song was one of the best we’ve had in years.

ted
ted
3 months ago
Reply to  Aaron

He can write the song. But Michael Rice and James Newman had zero stage presence. Nice people, great voices, but boring to watch

Robyn Gallagher
Admin
3 months ago
Reply to  Paul

The Masked Singer: Eurovision Edition!

Christopher Grevener
Christopher Grevener
3 months ago

Im so happy that in these times the dutch broadcaster is responsible for Eurovision. There wouldn’t have been many more countries which could have dealed with this so well!! Thank you netherlands for doing an amazing job!!

Sabrina
Sabrina
3 months ago

I believe the organizers of major events scheduled to 2021 (if it’s a sensible situation for Eurovision, imagine for the Olympics…) already know by this time they’ll have to plan for both the best and the worst case scenarios. And then we’ll probably end up with something inbetween. Knowing how well the Dutch were preparing for 2020, I guess we couldn’t be in better hands during these troubled times.

esc2021rotterdam
esc2021rotterdam
3 months ago

I’m so glad that the online competition thing is not going to happen and I hope and I am even sure that the remote thing is ruled out as well, The competition must take place in Rotterdam ahoy in 18, 20 and 22 in May. I hope also that the pandemic will be over by some way before the dates of the competition (covid19 is still new for the world and we are still learning more about it so maybe and hopefully there will be good suprises about it and the pandemic will be over even without a vaccine) cuz… Read more »

1998
1998
3 months ago

Pandemic is not eternal. It must pass one day.

esc2021rotterdam
esc2021rotterdam
3 months ago
Reply to  1998

Ofc it will pass 🙂 I just hope it will be before the show

Briekimchi
Briekimchi
3 months ago

“However, the prospect of a completely online competition is not envisaged.”
Start envisaging. The EBU’s inability to move into a safe, online format is what robbed us of Eurovision in 2020. Get these plans in place first and then go from there.

ESC8
ESC8
3 months ago
Reply to  Briekimchi

I’m really sorry but I think this is a terrible idea. An online contest would be wrong on so many levels. And there are plenty of things that could go wrong as well. I really hope that the EBU won’t take such a decision. Just my opinion though.

esc2021rotterdam
esc2021rotterdam
3 months ago
Reply to  Briekimchi

If eurovision 2020 would’ve gone ahead online so the netherlands would’ve lost its chance to host a contest after 40 years (unless jeangu would’ve won but I doubt he would’ve). Fans can create and host online eurovision contests but the actual eurovision online is not even an option imo (and remote eurovision as well). Tbh I was happy that the ebu decided to cancel eurovision 2020 instead of holding it online or remotely becuase eurovision is more than just a contest, and it’s sad that some of the eurofans can’t understand it.

Last edited 3 months ago by esc2021rotterdam
Azuro
Azuro
3 months ago

For the 100th time. The Netherlands getting to host the contest is not more important than the actual contest itself.

Gert (Gertscomplex)
3 months ago
Reply to  Briekimchi

There’s no need for an online format. What are you talking about. Moreover, show some respect for these huge problems EVERY event organizer on planet Earth is facing right now. From Olympic Games to small concerts, from rock festivals to classical concerts: there’s no reason to attack event organizers currently (only when it concerns subsidizing the national organizers).

Robyn Gallagher
Admin
3 months ago
Reply to  Briekimchi

Nope, an online contest could not have happened for 2020 because the 2020 rules specifically defined the Eurovision contest as involving live, televised arena performances. If the EBU had done something else, broadcasters could legitimately have complained. The rules for 2021 have been updated to allow the competition format to be changed, it necessary.

esc2021rotterdam
esc2021rotterdam
3 months ago

It’s possible to change the format but imo online contest is really not the way of how it should proceed (and same for remote contest). I think the contest must be in Rotterdam ahoy in the confirmed dates while the final format (especially regarding the live audience) should be derermined byvthe covid19 status

Fatima
Fatima
3 months ago

I always agree with you Robyn but not it this case. In such extraordinary circumstances, those rules were hardly relevant. Like Christer Björkman, I feel it would still have been possible to have had a tangible contest with webcast performances and/or video submissions. Both “One World: Together At Home” and “Eurovision: Love Shine A Light” proved that. Some broadcasters may have declined the opportunity, but I believe enough would have played along. We would all have had a bit more fun and hope that May night, the 2020 sings and artists would have had their moment and the roll of… Read more »

Robyn Gallagher
Admin
3 months ago
Reply to  Fatima

This is not me. It’s literally what the EBU have said.

Gert (Gertscomplex)
3 months ago

It will happen. But with strict measures in place. Make no mistake, there won’t be a vaccine before the end of 2021. And vaccines are by no means medicines. Corona screws up everything. It’s the biggest global crisis since……well……….since World War II. Having said that I think the following will happen for sure: — Delegations will come to The Netherlands earlier than usual, as to adapt earlier to the Dutch environment. Meaning: some sort of 10-day quarantine before the first rehearsals start for a particular nation. — And when arriving on the airport in Rotterdam, strict testing streets for every… Read more »

ESC8
ESC8
3 months ago

This is almost exactly what I was thinking about the 2021 contest. I agree that it will be an event that it’ll be better for someone to watch it at home. Personally I don’t think that there will be a live audience at all, and this is why I think it will be a nice idea to have the green room inside the arena, like the 2012 contest, you won’t get the feeling of an empty arena on TV. Moreover, I believe that we will get pre-recorded applause like what we got in Vienna in 2015. Of course there will… Read more »

esc2021rotterdam
esc2021rotterdam
3 months ago

Tbh for me it’s a more pessimistic scenario that right now I doubt we will get (of course that only future will tell us)

Denis
Denis
3 months ago

I love this whole show must go on, despite everything mentality. It is very comforting to see.
I like that they have alternatives open cause at this stage I don’t think we will have a normal ESC. However this could be a positive thing, forcing everybody to come up with creative solutions to the problem. If everybody works together maybe we will get something unique, new and spectacular? This could open up the contest for sure..

Robyn Gallagher
Admin
3 months ago

It’s reassuring that there’s a “the show must go on” mentality. I suspect the standard Eurovision format won’t be possible, but that the organisers will do all they can to keep the magic!

Esc addict
Esc addict
3 months ago

Fingers crossed for a contest like always cause it would mean the pandemic is over, the interesting thing for the eurofans is that the contest will take place with or without the virus, and won’t be cancelled two years in a row. The pessimistics saying the contest won’t happen now have to change their speeches.

Last edited 3 months ago by Esc addict