The First Semi-Final of the Eurovision Song Contest has come to a close, giving viewers a taste of the on-stage theatrics and flamboyant outfits that contestants will arm themselves with at Saturday’s final.
Set in Copenhagen, Denmark, this year’s first ten finalists have been confirmed as: Montenegro, Hungary, Armenia, Azerbaijan, San Marino, Sweden, The Netherlands, Iceland, Russia, and Ukraine -with the latter countries likely to deploy particularly political voting tactics in light of recent unrest in the region.
Countries which didn’t make the final cut include: Latvia, Estonia, Belgium, Portugal, Moldova, and Albania.
This means bookies favourites to qualify this evening: Aram MP3 of Armenia, Ukraine's Maria Yaremchuk, Kallay-Saunders representing Hungary, and Azerbaijan's Dilara Kazimova, will all be allowed to compete at the weekend.
France, Italy, Spain, Germany, the UK, and last year’s winner Denmark will not perform in either heat, as they are guaranteed spots in the contest.
The remaining ten contenders will be chosen in the Second Semi-Final on 8 May.
EBU Executive Supervisor, Jon Ola Sand, said the 59th Eurovision Song Contest promises two more excellent shows.
“Tonight's semi-final got the 2014 Eurovision Song Contest off to a flying start, with some wonderful performances from the artists and, of course, world-class TV pictures from Danish EBU Member DR. I'm eager to see the story of this year's contest unfold with the second Semi-Final on Thursday and the Grand Final on Saturday," he said.
Join our commenting forum
Join thought-provoking conversations, follow other Independent readers and see their replies