For the third consecutive year, one of the biggest spectacles in popular music, the Eurovision Song Contest, will be broadcast in the U.S. exclusively on Logo. The Viacom network once again will carry live the Grand Final, which will run commercial free on both coasts on Saturday, May 12 at 3PM ET /12PM PT.
RuPaul’s Drag Race judge Ross Mathews is back as co-host, this time joined by popular Drag Race contestant Shangela who replaces 2017 co-host Michelle Visage. The 2018 Grand Final competition and winner’s ceremony will also be streamed live exclusively for U.S. viewers on Logo’ web site, Logo’s YouTube channel and the LogoTV mobile app.
The Eurovision Song Contest, organized by the European Broadcasting Union, is the most watched live entertainment program in world, attracting around 200 million television viewers each year. The 2018 Grand Final competition takes place in Lisbon, Portugal, with an ‘All Aboard’ theme related to the world being connected through the ocean. The host city of each final is determined by the previous year’s winner. In 2017, that was Portugal’s Salvador Sobral with his song ‘Amar Pelos Dois’.
There will be 43 acts in this year’s competition, tying the record for the most participating countries in a single year. History will be made at the Final, which will be hosted by an all-female team of four presenters, following last year’s three male hosts in Kiev, Ukraine. Eurovision is known for powerful ballads, catchy songs and ethnic beats, thrown into the mix is a complex stage show with pyrotechnics, CGI and outlandish costumes.
Heading into the semi-finals next month, Israel’s bouncy feminist anthem Toy by Netta has been the odd-0n favorite to win. Bookmakers currently currently have at No. 2 last year’s runner-up country, Bulgaria, whose 2018 representative, newly formed group Equinox, consists of three Bulgarians and two Americans, including 2017 America’s Got Talent semi-finalists Johnny Manuel. (You can watch the official videos for Netta’s Toy and Equinox’s Bones below the post.)
“Logo is thankful to once again partner with the EBU as the exclusive U.S. broadcaster for the global phenomenon that is the Eurovision Song Contest,” said Pamela Post, SVP of Original Programming, Logo. “The stateside audience for this one-of-a-kind celebration of song, performance and cultural pride continues to grow with our audience and we’re thrilled to provide a viewing home for the legion of fans in the United States.” Here is a promo:
The Eurovision song contest features artists from across Europe and Australia. Some of the biggest names on its stage through the years include ABBA, Celine Dion, Olivia Newton-John, Julio Iglesias, and Cliff Richard. Famous recent winners include Austrian Conchita Wurst and both Måns Zelmerlöw and Loreen from Sweden. The 63rd annual Eurovision Song Contest is produced by Portugal’s public broadcaster, Rádio e Televisão de Portugal.
“The EBU is very pleased to once again collaborate with Logo for the third year running to broadcast the 63rd Eurovision Song Contest for US audiences,” said Jon Ola Sand, Executive Supervisor of Eurovision Song Contest. “True to this year’s motto: “All Aboard!”, we are thrilled that the Contest is growing popularity in the United States and through Logo we’re able to bring the competition to a new excited audience.”