Fans Audience at Eurovision 2019
Photo: Andres Putting / EBU

A Musical Constitution

BLOG The Endurance of Eurovision: A legacy of unity and hope

The Eurovision Song Contest was built around the idea of unity. An idea that all nations, no matter their political situation or socioeconomic standing, can come together in cooperation and present their best and brightest musical talents. For 64 years this idea continued uninterrupted. Through countless conflicts and wars, government upheavals and social unrest. Through the reunification of Germany, the separation of Czechoslovakia and the total dissolution of Yugoslavia. Through Franco's Spain, Thatcher's United Kingdom and Gorbachev's Soviet Union. Through the controversies with Greece and North Macedonia and the national crises in Albania, Romania, Israel, Armenia and countless others. From Iberia to Anatolia, the Balkans to the Baltic and Scandinavia to the Mediterranean the Eurovision Song Contest has continued to be a source of strength and unity to all those who know it. A strength that only the force of a global medical crisis could quell but not squelch. The contest will endure and continue for decades to come.

The fans of the contest are just as resilient and stalwart as the contest itself, a characteristic I've come to call a 'Musical Constitution'. In the spring of 2020 when it became clear that the contest would be cancelled for the first time in over sixty years there was an audible sigh of disappointment from the world at large. But that disappointment quickly faded and was replaced by anticipation. Almost immediately the fans of Eurovision turned their sights to the next year. Almost immediately the people who love this contest and all that it stands for rallied around it and eagerly pushed forward to the future and at the same time paid tribute to those who lost the opportunity to participate in 2020.

The foundation of unity permeates even into the fans. It is a foundation that we all feel at our core and in these times it means more than ever. 2020 tested us all. It tested our bodies. It tested our hearts and it tested our souls. It made us set aside what was unimportant and focus on things we had long taken for granted. 2020 may have been one of the most difficult years our modern society has had to face but we are coming out on the other side stronger for it. We are a closer world and a kinder one. We have learned not only to care for ourselves but also to care for our neighbors.

I hope that 2021 will bring us into a new world filled with Love, Laughter and Life. I hope that we all remember how frightened we have been this past year and continue to take care of ourselves and each other. We only have one life and one world. The Eurovision Song Contest has always been an ambassador for that ideal. The ESC has always shown us that, no matter what, we are all one people and that together there is nothing we cannot accomplish.

About the author: Christopher Carlson (United States)

Christopher Carlson is our American correspondent. His interest in Eurovision began in high school when his Spanish teacher would often play "Eres Tu" by Mocedades for the class. Later encounters with Eurovision occurred upon discovering Secret Garden's "Nocturne". As a fan of history as well as music Christopher enjoys writing articles that discuss the roots and foundations of the Eurovision Song Contest. Topping the list of his favorite songs are "Heel de wereld" by Corry Brokken, "Eres Tu" by Mocedades, "Inje" by Vanya Radovanovic and "You are the only one" by Sergey Lazarev.

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