Dutch Eurovision entry and bookies favourite makes song contest final

18 Mai, 2019, 03:48 | Auteur: Christine Menetries
  • Madonna performs onstage during the 2019 Billboard Music Awards at MGM Grand Garden Arena

North Macedonia, The Netherlands, Albania, Sweden, Russia, Azerbaijan, Denmark, Norway, Switzerland, and Malta have qualified for Saturday's Eurovision song Contest final in Tel Aviv.

Michela, 18, qualified to Saturday's final in nail-biting fashion, with the Eurovision presenters leaving Malta for last when announcing the ten countries which had qualified.

The contestants eliminated from the running were Ireland, Armenia, Moldova, Latvia, Romania, Austria, Lithuania and Croatia.

Duncan Laurence of the Netherlands performs during the 2019 Eurovision Song Contest second semi-final in Tel Aviv, Israel, Thursday, May 16, 2019.

Laurence performed the song in the second semi-final on Thursday evening and despite earlier problems with a ball of light, the staging worked well, Dutch commentators said.

An estimated 200 million viewers worldwide, more than the Super Bowl, are expected to tune in on Saturday to watch the 26 finalists belt out their tunes in contest's 64th year.

Click on the picture gallery above for a look at the countries participating in this year's Eurovision Song Contest finale.

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Madonna's producers said in April the star would perform at the contest in Tel Aviv, which was designated the host city after Israeli singer Netta Barzilai won in Portugal previous year. Calls for performers to boycott the show over Israel's treatment of Palestinians have failed to yield tangible results.

On May 14, her much-publicized performance came into question after the show's organizers revealed that no contract had yet been signed.

"And if we do not have a signed contract, she can not perform on our stage".

The decision to hold Eurovision in Israel is not popular with critics of the country's policies towards Palestinians in the occupied West Bank and Gaza.

"I'll never stop playing music to suit someone's political agenda nor will I stop speaking out against violations of human rights wherever in the world they may be", Madonna said, in a statement carried by United States media Tuesday.

"At a time when fewer and fewer major artists are performing in apartheid Tel Aviv, Eurovision is exactly what Israel's far-right government needs to distract from its crimes".

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