Your guide to Eurovision 2024

This year marks the 68th Eurovision Song Contest. Starting as an expression of unity and goodwill after WWII and a technical experiment to create a live televised music competition across so many borders, Eurovision now features 37 countries, including Australia. 

So, what happened with our entry for this year? And what else has been most controversial throughout the competition? 

In this episode of The Briefing, Bension Siebert and Chris Spyrou unpack the history, the scandals, and what’s been most topical so far in this year’s Eurovision event.

So, where did this all begin?

Eurovision in 1956 as an expression of unity and goodwill after WWII and a technical experiment – as a live televised music competition across so many borders. While only seven countries competed initially, Eurovision is now the longest-running international televised music contest of all time. This year there is 37 competing countries this year, including Australia.

Sorry, Australia is competing? Why?

Australia has been competing for ten years now. In 2014, Australia was invited as an interval act and Jess Mauboy performed Sea of Flags. Then in 2015, Australia was allowed to compete for the 60th anniversary edition of Eurovision – the first country outside of the Eurasia region since Morocco in 1980. While it was meant to be a once ‘one-off’ inclusion, Australia has competed ever since. 

And how’s Australia doing this year?

While groundbreaking on many accounts, this year’s entry, Electric Fields, did not make it to the final.

Why is this year’s show controversial?

While Eurovision is meant to be apolitical, it can never really avoid politics or scandal. This year Israel’s Eden Golan ‘October Rain’ entry included explicit October 7 references; the lyrics had to be changed and the track was renamed “Hurricaine”. The inclusion of Israel has upset many Palestine supporters; particularly following last year’s banning of Russia over the invasion of Ukraine.

Okay, so how do I tune in?

Watch the Eurovision 2024 Grandfinal LIVE from Malmö SBS and SBS On Demand on Sunday 12 May at 5:00am AEST.

So, who is the favourite to win?

You’ll have to listen to the podcast to find out.

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