Liverpool song contest will receive £10 million from the government for Eurovision 2023

The Kalush Orchestra

The UK government will donate £10 million to the Eurovision Song Contest, which will take place in Liverpool in May.

It will be used to cover operational expenses like security and visas and to ensure that the event "showcases Ukrainian culture.".

Liverpool's city council has already committed £4 million in funding.

The BBC has learned that the Italian government did not directly donate any funds to the yearly event last year.

Instead, the city of Turin, which served as the contest's host, spent about £10 million on it; according to officials, tourism increased that amount "seven times" over.

The government also announced that over the course of the nine Eurovision shows, about 3,000 tickets to the song contest will be made available for Ukrainians residing in the UK.

Since Ukraine, whose Kalush Orchestra won the 2022 show, is unable to host due to the war, Liverpool is holding the event at its Mandamp;S Bank Arena on behalf of Ukraine.

After 25 years, the UK will once again host the Eurovision Song Contest.

Sam Ryder
After years of underwhelming performances, Sam Ryder finished second for the UK in 2022.

The Ukrainian ambassador to the UK, Vadym Prystaiko, said that the tickets for Ukrainians residing in the UK allow "comrades here to enjoy the event and celebrate our country's rich culture and music.".

The DCMS will cover the cost of the tickets for those who qualify under the Homes for Ukraine Scheme, the Ukraine Family Scheme, and the Ukraine Extension Scheme, but there will be a £20 fee for each sale.

According to the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS), the funding will "support security, visa arrangements and other operational aspects of the contest.".

The funding will help Liverpool City Council and the BBC, the event's host broadcaster, work with Ukrainian acts "to ensure a collaborative show celebrating music and how it unites people," according to a statement. The government has never before officially acknowledged its financial support.

Last year, more than 160 million viewers watched performers like Moldova's Zdob on television.

Given the higher costs of transporting equipment as a result of the UK's exit from the European Union, it is believed that some broadcasters were hesitant to compete in 2023.

This year's competition in Liverpool "will have an extra hassle," according to a delegate from a rival broadcaster who declined to be named.

According to the BBC, "normally delegations have the choice of either creating the props themselves and shipping it to the host country, or building them in the host country.".

They asserted that shipments to the UK could not be guaranteed to arrive on time because there are "more forms," and they further stated that they thought it was much simpler in previous years because props and other materials did not need to go through customs.

It is unusual for the BBC to receive financial support as part of the £10 million UK government commitment, but neither the DCMS nor the BBC would specify how much.

The government claims that "the inclusion of Ukrainian culture" will be ensured with the help of the funding package, but when pressed for more information, it remained silent.

Because it accepted the invitation when organizers said it could not be in Ukraine due to Russia's invasion, the BBC will bear the majority of this year's Eurovision's costs as the host broadcaster.

In order to save millions of dollars, the corporation is closing channels, eliminating programs, and reducing headcount. It is estimated that the corporation will spend between £8 and £17 million putting on the song contest, a significant increase from the amount it typically spends to participate.

The 37 participating broadcasters each pay a fee to participate, which in recent years has added up to a total of about £5 million. The BBC does not disclose its contribution.

Subwoolfer performing on stage last year
The week following the coronation of the King in May sees the staging of this year's Eurovision.

Additional information regarding general release tickets would be provided, according to the BBC.

Six preview performances as well as two semi-finals are available for purchase for fans to attend before the grand final on May 13th.

"We are honored to be supporting the BBC and Liverpool in hosting it on their behalf," said Lucy Frazer, secretary of culture, "and are determined to make sure the Ukrainian people are at the center of this event.". ".

On the funding announcement, Labour chose not to comment.

Weekly episodes of the new BBC podcast Eurovisioncast explore all the build-up, insights, and analysis.

I call it Eurovisioncast. offered on BBC Sounds. or conduct a search wherever you typically access podcasts.

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