It’s a good year to be a U.K. Eurovision fan. And it’s going to be a good New Year, too.
In November the BBC announced Sam Ryder’s All Star New Year’s Eve, a special show to welcome 2023. In a press release it said:
“Made by BBC Studios Entertainment, this spectacular celebration will see Sam joined by some of music’s biggest stars to put on an out of this world New Year Eve extravaganza as the nation builds up to the midnight moment. Performing hits which span the decades, Sam and his all-star guests will party into 2023. After heading live to the banks of the River Thames as London is lit up with the first full fireworks display since 2019. The celebrations will continue after midnight with Sam’s take on classic tunes and a number of special duets, guaranteed to keep the nation singing and dancing until the small hours.”
And now the BBC has announced even more programming, including a special broadcast of Het Grote Songfestivalfeest — the massive Eurovision concert in Amsterdam, which many of you may have attended last month.
We’re pasting the BBC press release in full below.
BBC kicks off the year of Eurovision this New Year with special programming
As the excitement continues to build for the Eurovision Song Contest 2023, the BBC will be bringing audiences a special celebration concert this New Year’s Eve to kick the year of Eurovision in the UK off in style.
The BBC will deliver the 2023 Eurovision Song Contest on behalf of Ukraine to a global audience of more than 160 million as it takes place in May 2023 in host city Liverpool.
To get the party started, The Big Eurovision Party sees some of the biggest stars in the recent history of the Contest take to the stage to perform their best known Eurovision bangers and ballads. The party is presented by Eurovision legend Edsilia Rombley, with the UK’s very own Rylan taking viewers back stage to chat with the stars. Acts performing include 2022 winners Kalush Orchestra, Subwoolfer, Stefania, TIX and Sam Ryder. The concert airs on New Year’s Eve immediately after Sam Ryder welcomes in 2023 on BBC One and BBC iPlayer.
The concert, which took place in the Netherlands last month and has been acquired for the BBC by Rachel Ashdown, Lead Commissioner for Eurovision Song Contest.
On December 30, a very special edition of The Weakest Link sees Eurovision stars and presenters take part in the much loved quiz show. Former Eurovision performers Duncan James, Cheryl Baker, Sonia and Kate Robbins appear alongside Scott Mills, Tia Kofi, Lauren Layfield, and Sarah Cawood. The show sees BAFTA award winning comedian Romesh Ranganathan host as the players work as a team to try to win up to £50,000 for their individual chosen charity. Each round, one player will be voted The Weakest Link by their fellow contestants and will leave with nothing. After a final head to head, one player will be crowned The Strongest Link and will take the prize.
The Big Eurovision Party and The Weakest Link: Eurovision Song Contest Special join the previously announced Sam Ryder’s All Star New Year’s Eve which sees 2022 Eurovision runner up Sam Ryder welcome in 2023. This spectacular celebration will see Sam joined by some of music’s biggest stars to put on an out of this world New Year Eve extravaganza.
Rylan says: “What better way to kick off the year of Eurovision in the UK than this incredible evening of programming on the BBC. The Big Eurovision Party is the perfect pre-party to the main event in May 2023 and we can’t wait to see new and existing fans enjoy the incredible music the Contest has to offer.”
Before all this, Eurovision fans can cheer on 13 year old Freya Skye as she represents the UK at Junior Eurovision Song Contest which audiences can watch live this weekend, Sunday 11 December from 3pm on BBC One, BBC iPlayer and CBBC. The UK commentators for The Junior Eurovision Song Contest on the BBC are Lauren Layfield and HRVY.