Russia returns to Eurovision for next year’s contest in Lisbon
The competition will celebrate next year’s host with an ocean-based theme.
Russia will return to the Eurovision Song Contest as the global competition moves to Lisbon for the first time.
The 63rd year of the much-loved musical event will be hosted by the Portuguese capital when it returns next May with entries from 42 countries.
An act from Russia is among the listed participants, after last year’s Eurovision host Ukraine barred the Russian representative, Yulia Samoylova, from travelling to the country.
Ukraine’s security services claimed that she had toured in Crimea after Russia’s 2014 annexation of that peninsula from Ukraine.
The spring event will mark a momentous year for Portugal after last year’s Eurovision victor Salvador Sobral gave the country its first win in 53 years in the contest.
It will also be a special year for Sweden, which will celebrate 60 years since its first appearance in the competition.
Paying tribute to this year’s host, the theme for the 2018 contest is “All Aboard” in recognition of Lisbon’s historical sea trade fame. The slogan is accompanied by a new main logo of a blue and yellow sea shell, with 12 ocean-inspired derivations.
Jon Ola Sand, the Eurovision executive supervisor at the European Broadcasting Union said: “We are extremely happy with the creative theme and logos for this year’s contest, which resonate with Lisbon’s history and underscore Eurovision’s core values, including diversity, very well.
“The Ocean connects all of us, and its variety can provide good inspiration for each of the 42 participating broadcasters that we look forward to seeing in Lisbon next May.”
Goncalo Madail, creative manager of Portugal’s national broadcaster RTP, added: “For centuries, Portugal explored the world by sea. Today, Lisbon is more and more the city of all colours, a great harbour of cultures and sounds that welcomes you all to come aboard.”
The semi finals of the Eurovision Song Contest 2018 will take place on May 8 and 9, with the grand final following on Saturday, May 12.