Monday, September 12, 2016

ESC 2017: BACK TO KYIV, FINAL ON MAY 13

The open selection process that was ment to be something new and exciting and turned out to be a near farce is over. Kyiv has been announced as the host city. At this point it is worth remembering this was the first time the bidding and selection process was this open, an initiative by NTU. 
I suppose someone is now feeling sorry and probably we won't see this much openness in the future. Speculating fans can se such annoying thing at times.... This said, NTU should also have a long look at the mirror and process what went wrong with false starts, promised dates and all the rest. Instead of an exciting weeks to follow the selection process we got... well, a bit of a farce that made some even doubt if they can handle it at all.
But if things went like the previous years, we would have only gotten the bids without too much information at the start, and then one day the chosen one and that's it. No hard feelings, no useless rumors, no misinformation, failed promises and deadlines and lost belief by fans to the whole affair.
Out of all this comes also the curious rumour that it seems that EBU preferred and wanted Odessa, but the politics inside Ukraine and those in power forced the contest to Kyiv. That could (or could not) play also some minor role in the forthcoming preparations between NTU and EBU. Or rather EBU and Ukraine. All of this of course denied by the politicians in question and it as all fair game.
The venue will be IEC (International Exhibition Center) with a capacity of 11.000 as stated by EBU. Some other sources mention anything between 10.000 and 14.000. The IEC will also have the press center, dressing rooms and delegations lounge and all necessary backstage areas. EuroClub and Eurovision Village will be most probably elsewhere, on the other side of the river.
The dates remain May 9 and 11 for the semifinals and May 13 for the final. The tickets should go on sale by the end of the year.
The broadcasters have until mid September to formally inform EBU about their intentions, and the list of the participating countries will be announced by EBU before the end of the year. The allocation draw for the semifinals takes place in the end of January. So far 24 countries have confirmed their presence, among them Portugal that returns, and one can expect all Big5 countries to be present as well. And it's pretty clear Australia will be in again as they are also taking part in the JESC. So that's already 30. 
It's good to know EBU has taken the Ukrainian spelling of Kyiv in use so if in 2005 we were in Kiev, in 2017 we are in Kyiv. 

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