Will Eurovision proceed in Rotterdam?

Questions linger around the staging of the Eurovision Song Contest in Rotterdam in May as the coronavirus Covid-19 continue to grip the globe.

The Danish selection Melodi Grand Prix 2020 is being held in an arena without audience, while delegates from Greece, Israel and Sweden will not attend a Heads of Delegations scheduled to take place in Rotterdam next week. Executive Supervisor of Eurovision, Jon Ola Sand, is also not allowed to participate, as EBU has imposed a travel ban on staff until 13 March.

The EBU noted that the City of Rotterdam officials had advised that there are no travel restrictions to or from the Netherlands that would keep the meeting from going ahead.

“The EBU continues to monitor the situation and assess the potential of the impact of coronavirus on its events,” an alert on its web site reads. “Instructs members to get in touch with your EBU event coordinator in case of any changes to the event program, and/or to discuss your concerns, and if necessary, make alternative arrangements.”

Dutch broadcaster NPO has indicated it is currently too early to comment on alternative scenarios but refuse to detail what those entail. They remain focussed on an “unforgettable event” in May. The EBU is also closely monitoring the situation while the Prime Minister of the Netherlands, Mark Rutte, has described cancelling events as “not sensible”.

Meanwhile the list of Film & TV events impacted around the world continues to grow, including:

MipTV festival in Cannes cancelled
SXSW festival in Austin cancelled
FOX Entertainment cancels program development presentations in New York, Chicago, Detroit and Los Angeles
European press launch for Disney+ in London cancelled
Hong Kong Filmart postponed
Sony Pictures Entertainment closes offices in London, Paris, Poland.
Mission: Impossible 7 shooting in Italy postponed
The Amazing Race shooting suspended
Chinese Grand Prix cancelled

Source: Billboard, Deadline


  1. Jᴏʜɴɴʏ 1ᴘ5

    Perhaps for the safety of everyone they should turn this years event into a Masked Singer one, audience included, they could bring back Finland’s 2006 winners Gwar then.

  2. Can’t they hold meetings via video links? Could even do Eurovision by video link from each country if they had too! No need these days for everyone to be in same place

    • Jᴏʜɴɴʏ 1ᴘ5

      Only thing is it takes away the equal audience and stage size and staging for all to perform to and also takes the advantage away from the Winner getting to play on home soil, guess for a one off okay but still I’d rather see it delayed if it has to be.

  3. The reason some big events should be cancelled is not because it’s a group of people from all over getting together, it’s because the numbers are down due to a lot of attendees being cautious. If the numbers get low enough it’s not economical or logical to put the show on. Eurovision could still go ahead if it was approached as local performances streamed live.

  4. The ESC fan sites have been on this for a while now. The general consensus seems to be there are contingencies in place every year in case of terrorism or a weather event and that it’s first and foremost a TV show and will go ahead in some form. Whether that be an empty arena in Rotterdam or each act performing from a studio in their home country.
    Hopefully it won’t come to that though.

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