Eurovision: Final 10 qualifying acts revealed
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The Eurovision Song Contest 2021 is back and fans are thrilled to see it return to the BBC. Last year’s show was postponed due to the coronavirus pandemic, so the 2021 contest promises to be something special. Express.co.uk has all you need to know about the UK’s involvement and the country’s biggest wins.
When did the UK last win Eurovision?
The UK first became involved in the Eurovision Song Contest back in 1957, which marked the year of the second contest.
The country is considered to be one of the Big Five nations, along with France, Germany, Italy and Spain.
As one of the Big Five, the UK gets a golden ticket straight through to the Grand Final of Eurovision.
The UK holds a record of coming second in the final ranking a total of 15 times.
The last UK win was in 1997, which saw Katrina and the Waves singing Love, Shine a Light.
How many times has the UK won Eurovision?
The UK has won the international singing competition a total of five times since it started taking part.
The winning acts in order are as follows:
Sandie Shaw – Puppet on a String (1967)
Lulu – Boom Bang-a-Bang (1969 tied)
Brotherhood of Man – Save Your Kisses for Me (1976)
Bucks Fizz – Making Your Mind Up (1981)
Katrina and the Waves – Love, Shine a Light (1997)
The UK also boasts the record for the longest-running string of Top Five placings.
The country has hosted the contest eight times, with the last time being in 1998 in Birmingham following Katrina and the Waves’ victory.
Since the turn of the century, the UK’s performance has dropped, having only reached the top 10 on two occasions.
The 2021 entry for the UK is James Newman, with the song Embers.
Fans are hoping he is able to send the country back on a winning streak this year.
Betfair puts the UK at odds of 200/1 to win this year’s competition, with France and Malta predicted to take the top spot.
Since the introduction of the Big Five, the United Kingdom has finished last four times, so there is a lot riding on this year.
Newman has taken part in plenty of interviews leading up to this year’s competition, and he is excited to finally be getting involved.
Speaking to BBC Radio 2 about last year’s cancellation, he said: “I mean obviously I was absolutely gutted.
“I did all the lead-up, the response was amazing. I did my launch and went on BBC Breakfast. Then obviously everything kind of changed really quickly.
“I was gutted but had to keep everyone safe as well.”
This only means he is more ready than ever to take to the stage and represent the UK this time around.
Fans have taken to Twitter to share their thoughts on the 2021 UK Eurovision entry, with one saying: “Just listened to the UK’s #Eurovision @Eurovision @bbceurovision song entry by @JamesNewmanUk for this year and my word it’s fantastic and such an uplifting tune. We’ve got a very good chance with this, brilliant track. Be sure to check out ‘Embers’.”
Newman is expected to perform his song during the first half of the Grand Final on Saturday, May 22.
Another fan said: “Good luck to James Newman for his first #Eurovision2021 rehearsal today. A lovely man with a songwriting credit on his entry which is getting lots of love and represents the UK music industry. What more could we ask for?”
The Eurovision Song Contest Grand Final airs on Saturday, May 22 at 8pm on BBC One and will be available on BBC iPlayer.
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