The avant-garde pop singer Montaigne has to take photos from Australia with the third wave of COVID in Europe at the Eurovision Song Contest 2021, which makes it too risky to travel to Rotterdam.
Montaigne missed the competition last year when the pandemic canceled the 2020 event and SBS decided to give it another title instead of hosting another Australia Decides selection show.
« Of course I am sad that I was not able to take part in the Eurovision live spectacle for two years in a row, » said Montaigne.
« My partner and I had talked about the video games we would be bunkering with in a hotel room in Rotterdam between rehearsals for the closing event, and we loved it.
« I’m still absolutely thrilled to be able to present Technicolor this year in whatever form my final performance will come in. »
The Netherlands, like most of Europe, is affected by the third wave of the pandemic, with an average of 8,000 cases per day.
SBS Commissioning Editor and Australian Head of Delegation Josh Martin said the scarcity of flights from Australia due to our international border closure and the prospect of spending five weeks in hotel rooms – and only being allowed to the venue in Rotterdam – were factors behind the decision not to leave.
« We’re excited. It’s such a complicated decision and we’ve tried to overcome the challenges, but in the end the risks of getting there and getting home were too great. »
Martin pointed out the advantage, however: Montaigne’s performance for the Eurovision 2021 competition will be the first on Australian soil and he remains confident that it will be competitive despite not being on stage in Rotterdam and all lighting and LED frills can use.
Like all 39 singers of the 2021 Appeal, Montaigne recorded a « live-to-tape » performance of their debut song Technicolor last month in case COVID does not go to Europe.
Martin said filming protocols were strict and the performances were being watched by Eurovision executives through Zoom.
« We had an hour to shoot three live takes and then we had to choose the best take and start the upload process. All of this was observed by representatives of the European Broadcasting Union, the Dutch broadcaster and an independent observer, » said Martin.
Montaigne will now devote her nightly hours to her campaign to win the hearts of die-hard fans in Europe with a series of interviews with influential Eurovision fan blogs and media.
And Martin and the team are finalizing their schedules for Eurovision 2021, which will run from May 19-23 and hosted by Joel Creasey and Myf Warhurst.
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