Eurovision 2023: Irish Eurovision winners support Belfast as Host City

Amidst the increasing interest by cities within UK to host the ESC, Northern Ireland’s local press reports that seven past winners from across the island of Ireland, together with three Belfast City Councillors, are putting forward a strong case for Northern Ireland’s capital city, Belfast.

As we have previously reported, the Eurovision 2023 host city will be decided upon by the BBC and the EBU, with the final decision expected in early Fall ahead of the May 2023 contest.

A number of UK cities have already submitted bids, but to date Belfast City Council has not yet had a formal meeting about a potential proposal.

The aspirant bid

Belfast City Council’s idleness regarding a possible proposal propelled past Eurovision winners to join forces in order to trigger interest about the event’s multiple benefits for the local economy.

In the same context, three Belfast City Councillors are exerting their efforts in preparing for a bid as a matter of urgency.

One of the Councillors, Mr. Seamas de Faoite, commented that Belfast “is the best city to host the Ukrainian victors”, because people in Belfast “understand the promise and importance of peace more than any other host”.

According to the local press, Belfast ticks all of the EBU’s boxes and more:

  • The SSE Arena can seat 11,000 with the iconic Titanic Exhibition Centre next door
  • Belfast has a minimum of 9,600 hotel rooms, twice the number the EBU believes would be needed
  • Belfast International Airport, Belfast City Airport, along with the proximity of Dublin Airport and even City of Derry Airport

The winners

Dana Brown 

Rosemary Dana Brown won Eurovision back in 1970 when she was only 18 years old. She said about the prospect of Belfast hosting the Contest:

People in Northern Ireland have experienced the devastation of years of unrest and have successfully come through it. We understand and empathise with so much of the pain suffered by Ukraine’s people.

And like them, the people of Northern Ireland are steeped in music, culture, the arts, creativity and in particular, Eurovision success. An all-inclusive Northern Ireland bid for Eurovision 2023 should be held in the capital city Belfast, I believe it’s the very best place to represent the people of Ukraine.

Linda Martin is from Belfast, Niamh Cavanagh is now living near Belfast, myself and Johnny Logan’s father are from Derry Londonderry so that adds up to five Eurovision wins. Add Phil Coulter, the composer of UK’s first ever Eurovision win, Puppet on a String.

Belfast also has the full support of Paul Harrington and Charlie McGettigan who won Eurovision with “Rock and Roll Kids” so that takes us to seven winners.

Is it not fitting that Belfast could be the Eurovision host for Ukraine? We have the huge capacity SSE venue right next door to the globally recognised Titanic centre. We have very talented people at BBC NI and TV production companies as well as excellent logistics to facilitate.

Northern Ireland and Belfast can do justice to the people of Ukraine in hosting Eurovision 2023, not only because of our logistical abilities but because of our big-hearted and community-driven people.

Johnny Logan

Johnny Logan is the only performer to win the Eurovision Song Contest twice, first in 1980 with ‘What’s Another Year’, written by Shay Healy and then in 1987 with ‘Hold Me Now’ which he composed and performed himself. Johnny said:

Belfast should host Ukraine for Eurovision 2023 – and why not Belfast? Northern Ireland has produced so many great musicians and singers, my father Patrick O’Hagan among them, and hosting Eurovision 2023 would be a wonderful opportunity to highlight the positive side of the north of Ireland and its people.

So yes, I fully support the Belfast bid, it’s a great musical city with great people and I believe it can deliver.

Linda Martin 

Linda performed at the Eurovision Song Contest contest twice and won in 1992 with “Why Me?”. She said:

Belfast is perfect for Eurovision 2023. It’s a beautiful city with an 11,000 seater arena, thousands of hotel rooms and two airports, one of them right beside the world renowned Titanic experience.

Niamh Kavanagh 

Niamh won the competition in 1993 with the song “In your Eyes”. Niamh said:

Belfast would be an amazing choice to host the Eurovision on behalf of the Ukraine, it’s a thriving city with a great heart that understands surviving conflict.

Paul Harrington and Charlie McGettigan

They won the Eurovision Song Contest in 1994, with “Rock ‘n’ Roll Kids”. Paul said:

I think it’s a brilliant idea. I lived and worked in Belfast for some years and it’s a sparkling place and the people are creative and talented. Music can unite and triumph. So yes, I fully support Belfast for Eurovision 2023.

Brendan Graham

Brendan is the writer of “Rock ‘n’ Roll Kids” in 1994, and Eimear Quinn’s winning song, “The Voice”, in 1996. Brendan said:

Belfast would be a super city to host Eurovision 2023, in partnership with Ukraine. The amenities are all there, not to mention the history and the surrounding beauty of Northern Ireland.

In some elemental and visceral way Belfast and its people might have a more natural empatico with the cities and people of Ukraine than perhaps other cities might have. Belfast is a city of hope and belief in the future…and would be a city of huge welcome and embrace for Ukraine.

What do you think? Is Belfast a suitable host city for Eurovision 2023? 

Ireland: Brooke Scullion will represent the country at Eurovision 2022 with the song “That’s Rich”!

The Irish national final of, Eurosong 2022, at tonight’s Eurovision Late Late Show Special was broadcast by RTÉ and has just been completed, with Ireland selecting Brooke Scullion and “That’s Rich” as their winning act and therefore their representative at Eurovision 2022 in Turin.

Seven years later than the last time that the Irish entry was selected by a national final, the Irish viewers got the chance to vote their favourite Irish hopeful, that they wished their country got represented by.

Ryan Tubridy was the host of  tonight’s “The Late Late Show Eurosong 2022 Special”, also Marty Whelan was the co-host covering what was going on backstage. Panti Bliss also appeared briefly at the beginning of the show.

The national juries are Caroline Corr, Paul Harrington, Bláthnaid Treacy and Lucia Evans.

A total of six finalists, which had been selected among 320 submissions, competed in the national final, in the hopes of representing the country in Turin.

The performances of the finalists

The six contestants of the national final, appeared in the following order:

  • Patrick O’Sullivan – “One Night, One Kiss, One Promise”

  • Janet Grogan – “Ashes Of Yesterday”

  • Brendan Murray – “Real Love”

  • Miles Graham – “Yeah, We’re Gonna Get Out Of It”

  • Rachel Goode – “I’m Loving Me”

  • Brooke Scullion – “That’s Rich”

The voting system

After the completion of the six performances, Ryan announced that the voting lines are open and all numbers appeared again for the viewers to vote, along with a recap of the songs.

The winner was determined by a combination of jury (international and national) and televoters. In fact, first there was a combination of both the international and the national jury votes and then the aggregate jury votes were combined to the votes of the viewers.

The voting will be Eurovision style, 12 the act getting the highest number of votes, 10 the second highest etc. In case of a tie, the act scoring higher in the public televote will be declared a winner.

At the end of the televised show, the results were announced and they are as seen below.

International Jury vote results

Aggregate Jury results (International and National Jury)

Total results

The winner

Over the last few years, things haven’t really gone their way, for Ireland. Hoping to overturn the situation, tonight they had to vote for their favourite artist and song, that they wished they’d represent Ireland at the contest.

At the end of the show, the results were announced and had determined the winner which is Brooke Scullion with the song “That’s Rich”!

You can watch the winning performance of Brooke below:

What do you think of the representative that secured a ticket to Turin, to represent Ireland at this year’s contest? Let us know in the comments section below!