Following the release of the criteria for hosting the Eurovision Song Contest 2019, Tel Aviv is now the favourite to host next years contest.
KAN has today released the criteria for determining the host city of the Eurovision Song Contest 2019, with one specific measure now viewed to have moved next years host city from Jerusalem to Tel Aviv. Among the requirements outlined today are;
- The venue must have a capacity for between 8,000 and 12,000 people and be in a covered space
- The city must have at least 3,000 hotel rooms
- A press center must be close to the venue with a capacity for 1,500 journalists
- The venue must be available for preparations between March and May 2019
The main criteria that is seen to have flipped the race to host next years contest is a specific requirement for rehearsals to take place during Shabbat. The EBU rules require two general rehearsals on the Friday before the final, and in the afternoon before the final on Saturday.
The rule according to Israeli media is expected to mean that Jerusalem will not agree to hosting the Eurovision Song Contest 2019. Haredi Jewish parties in Jerusalem are expected to vote against any proposal which would allow rehearsals to take place during Shabbat. In contrast Tel Aviv has expressed their support for rehearsals during these time periods.
The Deputy Mayor of Tel Aviv-Jaffa, Meital Lehavi commented;
Now that the criteria have been exposed and Tel Aviv-Jaffa can officially meet the conditions and host the Eurovision Song Contest, it is clear that this is where competition should take place. Tel Aviv is suitable both in terms of infrastructure, both in terms of number of guests and the possibilities offered them and in terms of being the city cultural center of Israel.
Cities have until July 17 to submit their bid documents to KAN after which the bids will be assessed and a host city will be determined.