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AJ Odudu wants to host Eurovision Song Contest 2023 after the competition moved to the UK from Ukraine
AJ Odudu wants to host the Eurovision Song Contest 2023 after it was decided that the competition will be held in the UK following Ukraine’s victory
- AJ Odudu has put her name forward as a possible presenter for next year’s Eurovision Song Contest
- Britain will host the 2023 music competition on behalf of Ukraine after their Kalush Orchestra entry triumphed this year, with organizers concluding that the war-torn country could not hold the event for “safety and security reasons.”
- Television host, AJ, 34, is keen for the competition to be held at Media City in Salford, with AJ receiving the jury’s vote from Greater Manchester this year
- The Ukrainian entry, Kalush Orchestra, won the annual competition just over two months ago in an emotional victory in Turin, Italy
AJ Odudu has put her name forward as a possible presenter for next year’s Eurovision Song Contest.
Britain will host the 2023 music competition on behalf of Ukraine after their Kalush Orchestra entry triumphed this year, with organizers concluding that the war-torn country could not hold the event for “safety and security reasons.”
Television host, AJ, 34, is keen for the competition to be held at Media City in Salford, with AJ this year’s jury voting from Greater Manchester.
Dream big: AJ Odudu, 34, has put her name forward as a possible presenter for next year’s Eurovision Song Contest
She told the Mirror: ‘Just shouting ‘from Greater Manchester’ was unbelievable. When it was announced that the UK will host it, I was buzzing.
“If it comes live from Salford this year, which has never happened before, and if I’m the face of it… just wow – that would definitely be the icing on the cake.”
The Ukrainian entry, Kalush Orchestra, won the annual competition just over two months ago in an emotional victory in Turin, Italy, on May 14, and it is tradition for the winning country to host the event the following year.
Making music: Britain to host the 2023 music competition on behalf of Ukraine after their Kalush Orchestra entry triumphed this year
But the European Broadcasting Union said last month that after an investigation it concluded that the “security and operational guarantees” needed to organize the event could not be fulfilled by Ukraine’s public broadcaster UA:PBC.
The BBC, as the UK’s national broadcaster, which came second this year with Sam Ryder’s Space Man, was invited to host – and the company confirmed this week that it would be hosting the 67th contest. The event normally draws a television audience of around 200 million and was last held in Birmingham in 1998.
AJ said, ‘We’ll make sure it’s all about Ukraine. They did a fantastic job under the circumstances to even get there.”
Born to perform: UK entry Sam Ryder came in second with his song Space Man in this year’s Eurovision Song Contest in Turin on 14 May
UK has held Eurovision Song Contest eight times
The UK has staged the Eurovision Song Contest more times than any other country, in the following cities:
- 1960 – London (Royal Festival Hall)
- 1963 – London (BBC Television Centre)
- 1968 – London (Royal Albert Hall)
- 1972 – Edinburgh (Usher Hall)
- 1974 – Brighton (Brighton Dome)
- 1977 – London (Wembley Conference Centre)
- 1982 – Harrogate (Harrogate International Center)
- 1998 – Birmingham (National Indoor Arena)
- 2023 – TB
The BBC has now begun the search for the host city, with the broadcaster saying in a statement: “It is a matter of deep regret that our colleagues and friends in Ukraine are unable to host the Eurovision Song Contest 2023.
“To be asked to host the largest and most complex music competition in the world is a great privilege.
“The BBC will now begin the process of finding a host city to work with us in delivering one of the most exciting events to come to the UK in 2023.”
Martin Osterdahl, executive supervisor of the Eurovision Song Contest, added: ‘We are extremely grateful that the BBC has accepted to host the Eurovision Song Contest in 2023 in the UK.
The BBC has taken on hosting duties for other winning countries four times before.
“As we continue this tradition of solidarity, we know that next year’s competition will showcase the creativity and skill of one of Europe’s most experienced public broadcasters, while this year’s winners, Ukraine, will be celebrated and represented at the event. ‘
Mykola Chernotytskyi, Chief Executive Officer at Public Broadcasting Company of Ukraine (UA:PBC), confirmed that the BBC and European Broadcasting Union (EBU) will honor Ukrainian culture and the Kalush Orchestra’s victory with the song Stefania, despite the move to the UK.
He said: ‘The 2023 Eurovision Song Contest will not take place in Ukraine, but in support of Ukraine.
“We are grateful to our BBC partners for their solidarity with us. I am convinced that together we will be able to bring the Ukrainian spirit to this event and reunite all of Europe around our common values of peace, support, celebrating diversity and talent.”
Looking back: The Eurovision Song Contest 1998 was last held in the UK in Birmingham, after Katrina and the Waves won last year with ‘Love Shine a Light’ in Dublin (photo posing in May 1997 after their win)