Facts

The first song ever performed at the Eurovision Song Contest is De vogels van Holland by Jetty Pearl.

Singer / Songwriter and multiple ESC contender (twice as a singer and twice as a composer) Johnny Logan's real name is Sean Sherrard. At the time of his first win in 1980 he held the Australian nationality. Later on he obtained an Irish passport.

Sandie Shaw didn't like the song Puppet on a string she sung in the 1967 contest. "I've always hated that song", she said later on. "Other people chose it for me. I would never have picked such a terrible song." The jury did like the song: Sandie won the contest.

In the Dutch national finals of 1956,1957 and 1958 tv-viewers were allowed to vote for their favourite song, but not by phone: by mail!

Until 1971 only solo-artists or duos were allowed on the contest. More people were allowed, but only if they were backing-vocals.

In 1969 there were four winners: France, Spain, The Netherlands and The United Kingdom. The Scandinavian countries were very upset. They said that the jury-system had failed and they boycotted the 1970 contest.

Sandra Kim, winner in 1986, sang J'ai quinze ans (I am fifteen years old) in her song J'aime la vie. In fact, she was only thirteen at that moment. In 1989, two thirteen year olds competed: Gili from Israel and Nathalie Paque from France. In 1990 the European Broadcasting Union put a stop on this and decided to have an age limit. You must be at least sixteen years of age to compete in the contest nowadays.

At the 1985 ESC presenter Lill Lindfors had an 'accident' with her dress. She lost it and was on the stage in her underwear for a few moments. The EBU was not amused and decided that in the future the show must be exactly the same as the last dress rehearsal: no surprises!

The United Kingdom wanted to compete in the first song contest in 1956, but they were too late. By the time they finished their national final, the candidate should have been in Lugano already.

In 1974 France decided not to participate because of the death of president Pompidou.

Liechtenstein wanted to participate in 1976. They picked a song and a singer: Little cowboy by Biggi Bachmann. But there was one little problem: Liechtenstein did not have a national broadcaster and thus is not a EBU member. Therefore she couldn't compete.

In 1962, when Dutch contenders De Spelbrekers performed their song Katinka, it seemed the lights went out. In fact, an error in the connection between The Netherlands and Luxembourg made the Dutch viewers see their contestants in negative!