It has been announced by the European Broadcasting Union that the alternative programming for the Eurovision Song Contest this year gathered 73 million viewers throughout 38 different markets.
“Eurovision: Europe Shine a Light” was put together by Dutch broadcasters and the EBU itself as alternative viewing for fans after the Eurovision Song Contest 2020 sadly had to be cancelled due to the outbreak of COVID-19.
The EBU reveals that Italian station Rai gathered the most viewers for the show with 3 million people watching the show. This is followed by hosts The Netherlands and United Kingdom with 2.4 million viewers each on NPO1 and BBC One respectively. In fourth place for viewers was Russia where Channel 1 gained 2.1 million viewers for the show.
It is also understood that the show was popular with younger audiences as almost 20% of viewers were aged between 15 and 24 years old.
In addition to the viewing figures for “Eurovision: Europe Shine a Light”, the EBU announced that between March and May the official Eurovision YouTube page received 53 million unique viewers. This is partly with help from alternative content produced such as Eurovision Home Concerts, Eurovision Song Celebration and Eurovisioncalls with NikkieTutorials.
Director General for the EBU, Noel Curran said:
I really want to congratulate the whole team at NPO, NOS and AVROTROS who produced an incredibly creative and very emotional show under challenging circumstances. I’m proud that with Europe Shine A Light we united a continent in true Eurovision spirit. These fantastic figures really highlight the power of public service media to bring audiences together, not just in their own countries but across the world too.
This was also the last Eurovision event with Jon Ola Sand as the Executive Supervisor who said:
Even in the absence of a Song Contest, our show this year proves that the light that Eurovision shines into millions of hearts remains undimmed. I’d like to thank the incredible team in the Netherlands for all their hard work and our digital team who also worked intensively to provide new, original content which engaged millions online as well
He added with regards to stepping down from his current role:
The past 10 years have been amazing and I will always be a proud part of the Eurovision family. I wish everyone, and in particular my successor Martin Österdahl, all the very best as they begin preparations for the return of the Eurovision Song Contest next year.
Eurovision: Europe Shine a Light was broadcast from Hilversum, The Netherlands and hosted by Chantal Janzen, Edsilia Rombley and Jan Smit who were scheduled to host the Eurovision Song Contest 2020. NikkieTutorials also made appearances throughout the show.
It was confirmed during the broadcast of the show that Rotterdam would indeed be hosting the Eurovision Song Contest 2021, having won the right to do so after Duncan Laurence won in 2019 with the song “Arcade” for The Netherlands.