The first semi final of the Eurovision Song Contest 2017 is set to clash with the second leg of the UEFA Champions League semi finals.
The dates for the 2017 Eurovision Song Contest were revealed today by Eurovision.tv alongside the announcement of Kyiv as the host city. The dates for the show are as follows:
- Semi Final 1 – May 9
- Semi Final 2 – May 11
- Final – May 13
The date of the first semi final is likely to cause headaches for a number of broadcasters across Europe. The EBU member broadcasters who participate in the Eurovision Song Contest and also hold the rights to broadcast the UEFA Champions League are; Austria, Azerbaijan, Belarus, Bosnia & Herzegovina, Croatia, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Finland, Georgia, Greece, Hungary, Ireland, Macedonia, Malta, Portugal, Serbia and Switzerland.
The European Broadcasting Union had provisionally announced the contest as being held on May 16, May 18 and May 20. These dates were agreed on by the EBU reference group, however NTU in June announced that they wished to change the dates. NTU wished to move the contest due to a clash with the Day of Remember for the victims of the Crimean Tatar Genocide on May 18.
If opposition is made to the dates announced today by a number of participating broadcasters it is likely that the contest may still be moved to the last week of May. This would mean the contest would be hosted on May 23rd, 25th and 27th. NTU will be meeting with the Steering Group of the Eurovision Song Contest next week in Berlin, Germany.
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The dates of the Eurovision Song Contest have been changed multiple times in the past. The most recent occurrence was in 2015 when host broadcaster ORF brought the broadcast of the contest forward by one week. In 2014 DR brought the contest forward by a week to ensure that during the host city selection they had a wider choice of possible venues. Sporting events clashing with the contest have caused broadcasters not to air the semi final, in 2009 TVE showed semi final 2 on a 66 minute delay due to the overrunning of Madrid Open match.