By Laman Ismayilova
Public broadcasters from 41 countries will participate in the Eurovision Song Contest 2021.
Speaking about the song contest, ESC Executive Supervisor Martin Österdahl said that there is the same line up of countries that would have competed in 2020, eurovision.tv reported.
"We have the exact same line up of countries that would have competed in 2020 and we are thrilled that they will all return next year. Together with our host broadcasters we are continuing to develop the 4 different scenarios and maintaining a dialogue with all participants. The team from NPO, NOS and AVROTROS are working hard on ensuring the Eurovision Song Contest will provide the excitement and innovation expected by over 180 million viewers, despite the challenging circumstances," he said.
ESC 2021 Executive Producer Sietse Bakker hailed the fact that the same 41 countries that would have taken part this year still want to come to the Netherlands in May 2021.
"It is fantastic that the same 41 countries that would have taken part this year still want to come to the Netherlands in May 2021. This demonstrates their confidence in our country still being able to organize a successful Eurovision Song Contest in Rotterdam next year, after the cancellation of the 2020 edition," said Bakker.
"We have set the bar high to create 3 amazing live shows for an audience of 180 million people, even in these challenging times. To achieve this, we are working on an extensive protocol that guarantees the health of employees, participants, the press and visitors as much as possible," he added.
The list of countries (and EBU Member broadcasters) that are expected to join Eurovision Song Contest 2021 in Rotterdam, include Azerbaijan (Ictimai TV), Belarus (BTRC), Czech Republic (CT), Germany (ARD/NDR), Israel (KAN), Ukraine (UA:PBC), Spain (TVE), Italy (RAI) and others.
Eurovision Song Contest will take place in Rotterdam, Netherlands next year.
The two Semi-Finals are scheduled for May 18 and May 20, while the Grand Final is expected to take place on May 22, 2021.
This year the song contest was canceled amid coronavirus pandemic. However, fans of music contest had a great a chance to enjoy a spectacular show "Eurovision: Europe Shine A Light", featuring 41 songs of this year's entries.
During the show, Azerbaijan's Eurovision 2020 participant Samira Efendi thrilled Eurovision fans with song "Cleopatra", which reached more than four million views on YouTube.
As the singer says, Cleopatra is a song about trusting your gut instinct, standing up for yourself and being a "Queen" - even when things get tough and especially if someone betrays or hurts you.
"It is truly a song about freedom, a celebration of all cultures and all sexualities and it's a song that is meant to inspire people to be who they are and to be proud of themselves - just as Cleopatra was. She was a queen who went through love, heartbreak, and betrayal, but she stood up for herself and is now remembered as an icon of strength and femininity," she said.
The singer will take part in the next year's contest to be held in Rotterdam, the Netherlands.
Notably, Azerbaijan marked its debut in 2008 with the duo of Elnur and Samir, who managed to become eighth in the final with their song "Day after day".
The brilliant duet of Aysel and Arash, which represented Azerbaijan next year, took the third place at the song contest, while Safura Alizada, who represented the country at Eurovision 2010 in Oslo, became fifth.
On its fourth attempt with Ell and Nikki's "Running Scared" song, the Land of Fire won the event, bringing the contest to Baku’s Crystal Hall in 2012. Ell and Nikki were the first mixed-gender duo to win the contest since 1963 and the first winners from Azerbaijan.
It is noteworthy that Azerbaijan reached the Top 5 in five consecutive contests - 3rd in 2009, 5th in 2010, 1st in 2011, 4th in 2012, and 2nd in 2013.
In 2018, Aysel Mammadova brilliantly performed at Eurovision 2018 semi-final, but she couldn't make it to the final. The singer represented Azerbaijan with the song "X My Heart".
Azerbaijan's Chingiz Mustafayev impressed all Eurovision fans with his stunning performance last year. The singer finished in the eighth place at the song contest.
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