Duncan Laurence from The Netherlands has won the 2019 Eurovision Song Contest with his song «Arcade», securing 492 points in a tense and showstopping Grand Final at Expo Tel Aviv.
The winner was announced at the end of the 64th edition of the world’s largest live music show, organised by the European Broadcasting Union (EBU), and hosted by Israeli Public Service Broadcaster KAN
Following the performances, the votes were counted and after much suspense, Duncan Laurence was announced as the winner by hosts Erez Tal and Bar Refaeli to cheers and applause from the thousands watching in the arena, before being presented with the iconic trophy by last year’s winner Netta.
The 26 Grand Finalists, each representing public service broadcasters who are Members of the European Broadcasting Union, took to the stage in a stunning show in Tel Aviv. 41 EBU Members and Associates in total took part in the competition.
In line with the rules of the competition, winning broadcaster AVROTROS now has the opportunity to host the Contest in 2020.
Mahmood from Italy came in second place with his song «Soldi» with a total of 465 points, and Sergey Lazarev from Russia came in third place with his song «Scream» with 369 points.
Tonight’s Contest was broadcast in the 41 participating countries and live streamed around the globe.
The Contest’s slogan Dare to Dream symbolised inclusion, diversity and unity, which represents the core values of the Eurovision Song Contest, which were embodied tonight by all the contestants.
2019 marked the third time that Israel has hosted the Eurovision Song Contest but the first time it has been held in Tel Aviv, having previously staged the event in Jerusalem in 1979 and 1999,
Jon Ola Sand, the EBU’s Head of Live Events and Executive Supervisor of the ESC, said: «I have been so delighted with this year’s competition and we have all been very impressed with the wonderful talented artists who have taken part this year, and I would like to thank them for the hard work and dedication they have given us. Each artist has brought something unique to the Contest and embodied what this contest is about. Our host broadcaster KAN has put on a spectacular show this year, using state of the art technology. We thank them for their enthusiasm and creativity in making the the Eurovision Song Contest 2019 the best yet!
Now we start planning for 2020 with our new host broadcaster AVROTROS as we look forward to what I am sure will be another incredible contest next year».
The Grand Final included performances from an array of well-known local and global artists. Last year’s winner Netta Barzilai returned to perform her new song, International pop icon Madonna performed a special version of Like A Prayer and gave audiences a treat with her new track Future, featuring US Rapper Quavo.
There was a showcase of some of the most famous artists that have graced the Eurovision stage in recent years – Conchita Wurst, Eleni Foureira, Verka Serduchka, Måns Zelmerlöw who all performed each other’s songs before joining Gali Atari, the Israeli winner of the Eurovision Song Contest in 1979. Dana International, Israel’s third winner in 1998, also wowed audiences with a spectacular performance.
The final result was decided by votes cast by expert juries and audiences from all 41 participating countries voting via the Eurovision app, phone and SMS.
Their votes were equally weighted with 50% jury votes and 50% viewer votes. The jury votes were cast during the Jury Final last night (Friday, 17 May) with viewers at home casting their votes during tonight’s Grand Final show.
Norway‘s Keiino with their «Spirit In The Sky» got the most votes from the audience.
A new presentation of the audience voting requests built the tension before the winner was revealed.
The 26 finalists were made up of 20 qualifiers from the first and second Semi Finals held on the 14th and 16th May, and six automatic qualifiers including the ‘Big Five’ countries (France, Germany, Italy, Spain and United Kingdom), and the host country, Israel.
The Eurovision Song Contest is a co-production between the European Broadcasing Union and its Israeli Member KAN
Photo by EBU / Eurovision 2019