Words: Jamie Tabberer; picture: James Newman, who will represent the UK in Eurovision 2021 (BMG)
The Eurovision Song Contest will take place live and in-person in Rotterdam this year, organisers have said.
The music extravaganza was meant to take place in the Netherlands city last year, but was cancelled due to coronavirus. James Newman, the UK's scheduled entry for 2020, will finally represent this year with his song 'My Last Breath'.
Eurovision fans had speculated whether the event would take place digitally one year on. However, executive supervisor Martin Osterdahl today told the BBC it is "necessary" for the 41 entrants to travel to Rotterdam for the Contest.
"This isn't a holiday trip, this is actually a job that needs to be done," he told the outlet.
Dicussing how organisers will make the event work despite the continuing chaos of the pandemic, he said: "We have been in close contact with organisations like Formula 1, the tennis tour, the golf associations, and learned from best experiences.
"We've compared our plans to the likes of the IOC [International Olympic Committee]."
He continued: "Hopefully we'll have some audience, it makes a huge difference to the atmosphere of the broadcast if we have some people present."
According to the BBC, delegations will also be reduced from 38 to 20 people, while Osterdahl says health and safety measures will be "very thorough."
Holland's Duncan Laurence won the 2019 competition with 'Arcade'.
The Eurovision Song Contest returns from Tuesday 18 May 2021 to Saturday 22 May 2021.