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Eurovision Song Contest amends rules for 2021 edition


The rules for next year’s Eurovision Song Contest will be amended in order for it to push through “for good”.

According to the contest’s website, new executive supervisor Martin Österdahl said they will be more flexible in making the changes.

“The lessons learned from the spring of 2020 are that we need to plan for a global crisis, and we have tailored the rules of the Contest to that effect,” Österdahl stated.


“We must be able to be more flexible and to make changes even to the format itself and how we organize the event in these challenging times.”

The rule changes were approved by the contest’s Reference Group, as well as its governing board. It has also been distributed to the members of the European Broadcasting Union (EBU), who are willing to participate in the contest.

“We have updated the rules of the Eurovision Song Contest so that, should it be necessary, we are able to make modifications to the format of the shows and the organization of the event that would allow the contest to still take place despite restrictions imposed on us by a now unknown scenario,” the Contest’s website wrote.

* * *

Backing vocal rule relaxed
The proposal was a one-year trial on lifting the ban on backing vocals from the songs’ backing tracks.

“The idea behind the change is to offer participating broadcasters the possibility to explore new creative ideas, to travel with a smaller delegation for 2021 and reduce the technical burdens on the Host Broadcaster,” quoted the contest’s website. “It also allows songwriters and producers to present their work as close as possible to their original composition and, importantly, ensures the contest moves with the times.”

In addition, the contest website stated the use of recorded backing vocals is optional.

“Each delegation can choose to use backing singers, whether on or off stage. A combination of live and recorded backing vocals is also allowed. All lead vocals performing the melody of the song, including an eventual use of a so-called lead dub, shall still be live on or off stage in the arena.”

They also stated permitting recorded backing vocals increases the creative potential and diversity of acts and facilitates the contest’s modernization.

“In the event of contingency measures restricting the numbers of participants travelling and or performing on stage, backing tracks may have to be amended to include all backing vocals required,” the contest’s website ended.

The Eurovision Song Contest 2021 will take place in Rotterdam, the Netherlands, on May 18, 20, and 22, 2021. Filipino-Austrian singer Vincent Bueno, who was due to participate this year for Austria, is among next year’s contestants.



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