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Photo: Shmulik Davidpur
Party at the Eurovision Village
Photo: Shmulik Davidpur

Eurovision kicks into high gear with first semi-final

17 countries competing Tuesday night in first live stage of contest; second semi-final takes place on Thursday and Grand Final on Saturday; show to be screened at Eurovision Village on Tel Aviv beachfront

The Eurovision Song Contest kicks into high gear on Tuesday with the first of the three official legs of the competition.

 

 

The first semi-final takes place at Expo Tel Aviv center in the northern part of the city, with thousands of people in attendance.

 

The Eurovision Village in Tel Aviv (Photo: Moti Kimchi)
The Eurovision Village in Tel Aviv (Photo: Moti Kimchi)

Acts from 17 countries will take part in the semi-final, competing for one of 26 spots in the Grand Final. The show begins at 10pm Israel Time.

Reigning champion Netta Barzilai performs at a rehearsal for the first Eurovision semi-final (Photo: Oren Aharoni)
Reigning champion Netta Barzilai performs at a rehearsal for the first Eurovision semi-final (Photo: Oren Aharoni)

The second semi-final will take place on Thursday, with the Grand Final held on Saturday.

 

The current favourite to claim the winning trophy is Duncan Lawrence of the Netherlands, who will be performing a song called Arcade in the second semi-final on Thursday.


Pride night at the Eurovision Village in Tel Aviv (Photo: Shmulik Davidpur)
Pride night at the Eurovision Village in Tel Aviv (Photo: Shmulik Davidpur)

 

Other entrants tipped to do well are France (which automatically qualifies for the final along with the UK, Spain, Italy and Germany), and Sweden, which will also have to get through the semis on Thursday.

 

  

L-R: Eurovision hosts Assi Azar, Lucy Ayoub, Bar Refaeli and Erez Tal (Photo: EPA)
L-R: Eurovision hosts Assi Azar, Lucy Ayoub, Bar Refaeli and Erez Tal (Photo: EPA)

 

Israel, as the previous year's winner and the host nation, also gets an automatic spot in the final.

 

Australians Emma and Matt support their country's entry at the Eurovision Village in Tel Aviv (Photo: Meshi Ben Ami)
Australians Emma and Matt support their country's entry at the Eurovision Village in Tel Aviv (Photo: Meshi Ben Ami)
  

 

All three shows will be hosted by Israeli television personalities Bar Refaeli, Erez Tal, Assi Azar and Lucy Ayoub. They will each be broadcast live on large screens at the Eurovision Village in Charles Clore park on the beachfront.

 

Israeli entrant Kobi Marimi in rehearsal (Photo: Oren Aharoni)
Israeli entrant Kobi Marimi in rehearsal (Photo: Oren Aharoni)

 

 

Israel has taken its hosting duties seriously, building a massive tourism campaign around the event and building a spacious beachfront village for Eurovision enthusiasts from Israel and abroad to enter into the spirit of the occasion. The village has been holding events every night of Eurovision week, including a special Pride show on Monday night.

 

 

 

Pop superstar Madonna on Tuesday confirmed that she will be performing at the Grand Final on Saturday, saying she will always speak up to defend human rights and hopes to see "a new path toward peace."

 

Madonna will make a guest appearance on Saturday, despite calls for a boycott by pro-Palestinian activists who want companies, performers and governments to disengage from Israel.

 

 


פרסום ראשון: 05.14.19, 21:09
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