Australia to compete at Eurovision Song Contest

Australia to enter the Eurovision Song Contest 2015 after last year’s Australian themed performance

COPENHAGEN, DENMARK ((EUROVISION) – Eurovision announced on Tuesday (February 11) that Australia will compete at the 2015 Eurovision Song Contest.

The Australian broadcaster SBS, which is an Associate Member of the EBU, has traditionally shown the competition and now they will get to send their own competitor to Vienna to try and emulate last year’s winner Conchita Wurst.

Australia’s inclusion in the competition is a special, one-off move designed to celebrate the Eurovision Song Contest’s 60th anniversary and play into this year’s theme of ‘Building Bridges’.

The Executive Supervisor of the contest, Jon Ola Sand, spoke for the EBU and said “It’s a daring and at the same time incredibly exciting move. It is our way of saying; let’s celebrate this party together!”

The Managing Director of SBS, Michael Ebeid, further said “We are very excited to have secured this historic opportunity for Australia to be represented on the world’s biggest stage at the 60th anniversary of the Eurovision Song Contest and are honoured that the European Broadcasting Union has supported us to achieve this ambition. SBS has been broadcasting Eurovision for over 30 years and we have seen how Australians’ love of the song contest has grown during those years.”

Owing to the special nature of Australia’s inclusion they will be fast-tracked past the two Semi-Finals and put into the Grand Final.

But it won’t be the first time an Australian has taken to the stage at Eurovision.

Last year the Australian singer Jessica Mauboy performed during an Australia-themed interval.

Gina G represented the UK at Eurovision 1996 and ‘Grease’ star Olivia Newton-John also sang for the UK in 1974.

Australia will have until March 16th to find a competitor for this year’s contest, which takes place in Vienna, Austria.

Australia has a lineage of stars including pop star Kylie Minogue and boyband 5 Seconds of Summer.

The Semi-Finals begin on May 19th and are followed by the Final on May 23rd for a contest that is watched by an estimaed 180million viewers every year.