EBU Press Conference – 2010 Dates, Italy and Special Guests

The European Broadcasting Union held a press conference today where many issues were raised, including dates for the 2010 contest and the possibility of the return of Italy. Two ‘special guests’ were also introduced.

Executive Supervisor of the Eurovision Song Contest, Svante Stockselius, took the opportunity to confirm that 50% of the votes in Saturday’s final will be awarded by televote, and the other 50% by a professional jury. He also confirmed that one of the songs which qualified for the final from last night’s semifinal only did so because of the jury, it finished outside the top ten. The country concerned will be revealed after the final on Saturday.

Information was given about the provisional dates for the 2010 Eurovision Song Contest. At the moment, the dates are Tuesday 18th, Thursday 20th and Saturday 22nd May.

In response to a question about the possible return of Italy, a issue which is constantly the subject of rumours, Svante said, "One of my major goals when I took on this role was to get Italy back on the Eurovision Song Contest stage, the contest needs Italy and we will constantly be talking to the broadcaster to get them back."

Two surprise guests were then introduced to the conference. The first winner of the Eurovision Song Contest, Lys Assia, and 2004 winner, Dima Bilan, entered the room and answered questions from journalists. The contest is seen by some as more about style of presentation than the substance of the song. Lys expressed her wish that the contest will return to the days when the song was the most important aspect, rather than the stage performance.

Source: EuroVisionary, eurovision.tv
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