update deskIsrael News

Tel Aviv expected to be site of 2019 Eurovision contest

The European Broadcasting Union visited Israel, where representatives scouted potential host cities, including Eilat, Jerusalem and Tel Aviv.

Israel contestant Netta Barzilai after the first semi-final round of the 2018 Eurovision Song Contest on May 8, 2018. Credit: Wouter van Vliet, EuroVisionary via Wikimedia Commons.
Israel contestant Netta Barzilai after the first semi-final round of the 2018 Eurovision Song Contest on May 8, 2018. Credit: Wouter van Vliet, EuroVisionary via Wikimedia Commons.

Israel, which won the annual Eurovision Song Contest in May and therefore gets to host in 2019, has recommended Tel Aviv as the site of next year’s singing competition.

In Lisbon, Portugal, 25-year-old Netta Barzilai won the event with her song “Toy.” It was Israel’s fourth Eurovision win.

Israeli network KAN, which will be the host broadcaster, submitted the proposal to the European Broadcasting Union, whose members participate in the event, and expects the EBU to “accept” it.

The EBU recently visited Israel, where representatives scouted potential host cities, including  Eilat, Jerusalem and Tel Aviv.

Eilat was eliminated as a potential host because the venue proposed did not meet EBU requirements, leaving only Tel Aviv and Jerusalem. EBU executive and supervisor Jon Ola Sand said that hosting the contest without having to violate the Jewish Sabbath would be impossible. That left Tel Aviv, which is more secular than Jerusalem, as the only logical choice.

Were Tel Aviv to be selected, its mayor, Ron Huldai, said the city would cover the expenses behind the venue.

Reportedly, two possible date ranges are being considered. Most likely, the grand final will take place on May 25, 2019, or around that date.

Finally, it has been rumored the Eurovision Village setting Tel Aviv is considering is Charles Clore Park, a 30-acre park along the Mediterranean Sea, which features sculptures and art. The park is also the location of the concluding celebration of the annual Tel Aviv Pride Parade.

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