Australia’s love affair with Eurovision is set to continue, as it was confirmed this morning that the nation will return to the Contest for the fifth consecutive year when it takes place in Tel Aviv in May 2019. Broadcaster SBS’s Outgoing Managing Director Michael Ebeid made the announcement saying that Australia’s participation in 2019 was a ‘100% yes!’.
Australia have had great success in the Contest, qualifying for the final on all four previous attempts and until this year had achieved all top ten finishes. Ebeid noted that maybe this means it is time for a shake up, perhaps looking at having the Australian public having a say in choosing the artist to represent them in 2019, unlike the four previous attempts which have all been internally selected by the broadcaster, liaising with record label Sony Music.
Ebeid says to keep your eyes peeled for an important announcement regarding the Australian selection process very soon.
Australia’s participation was seen as a temporary measure when they were invited to take part as part of the 60th anniversary Contest in 2015. However Guy Sebastian’s performance was lauded as a success and they have been invited back the following three years to compete again. Rumours have been abound that their participation is now under threat as plans for an Asia Pacific Contest have been under way for some years. However due to complications this has yet to come to fruition.
Fans have been split over the inclusion of Australia in the Contest, many citing its geography and their status as Associate EBU Members only as a reason for ineligibility. Others are more positive praising the zeal of the Australian fandom, the quality of their artists and songs and their success to date as a reason to see the land from down under return year on year.