Graham Norton shares thoughts on the prospect of Eurovision 2023 being held in the UK

·2-min read
Photo credit: Samir Hussein - Getty Images
Photo credit: Samir Hussein - Getty Images

Eurovision presenter Graham Norton has weighed in on the prospect of the UK hosting the competition next year.

Last week, it was confirmed by the European Broadcasting Union (EBU) that 2022 winners Ukraine would not be hosting in 2023, despite the previous year's victor traditionally holding the following year's show.

The organisation said it had decided not to go ahead after speaking with Ukraine's public broadcaster and other third parties amid the ongoing conflict in the country.

Photo credit: MARCO BERTORELLO - Getty Images
Photo credit: MARCO BERTORELLO - Getty Images

As such, the EBU revealed that it had begun talks with the BBC regarding the prospect of the UK playing host to the Song Contest instead. The 2022 UK act Sam Ryder came second this year.

Addressing the potential switch of host nations, Graham told Metro.co.uk: "It's sort of bittersweet isn't it, because I really feel for the EBU having to give Ukraine that news.

"They didn't want to hear it, the EBU didn't want to give that news. Now that's happened, I know the BBC are looking at it really seriously. I don't know if it's possible, but if it is, great!"

Photo credit: Christopher Baines - BBC
Photo credit: Christopher Baines - BBC

In its original statement, the EBU said: "Given the ongoing war since the Russian invasion of this year's winning country, the EBU has taken the time to conduct a full assessment and feasibility study with both UA:PBC and third-party specialists including on safety and security issues.

"The Eurovision Song Contest is one of the most complex TV productions in the world with thousands working on, and attending, the event and 12 months of preparation time needed.

"Following objective analysis, the Reference Group, the ESC’s governing board, has with deep regret concluded that, given the current circumstances, the security and operational guarantees required for a broadcaster to host, organise and produce The Eurovision Song Contest under the ESC Rules cannot be fulfilled by UA:PBC."

Photo credit: Giorgio Perottino / Stringer - Getty Images
Photo credit: Giorgio Perottino / Stringer - Getty Images

Speaking following the announcement, the BBC said: "We have seen the announcement from the EBU. Clearly these aren't a set of circumstances that anyone would want.

"Following their decision, we will of course discuss the BBC hosting the Eurovision Song Contest."

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