Get prepared for Eurovision 2016: Everything you need to know | Virgin Media
Get prepared for Eurovision 2016: Everything you need to know

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Nul points! Oh yes, it's that time again, when Europe unites in a display of sparkling songwriting chops and performing madcappery. The 61st edition of the Eurovision Song Contest will be broadcast on BBC One at 8pm on Saturday 14th May and we'll all be asking ourselves one question: can the United Kingdom win? Well, probably not. They've not done it since 1997 when Katrina And The Waves' Love, Shine A Light walked off (on sunshine) with the big prize. Still, hope springs eternal, and this is what we do know.

Where's it happening?

At the Ericsson Globe in Stockholm, Sweden, because Måns Zelmerlöw's Heroes was the winner in Vienna, Austria last year, doing it for the country that produced Eurovision's greatest victors, ABBA.

 

Who will be reading the autocue?

Måns himself will be presenting the extravaganza alongside Swedish TV host Petra Mede. Petra is also a comedian so expect some forced laughs.

 

And who will be providing the witty Woganesque voiceover?

The songs will soon wipe the smile off Graham Norton's face

The songs will soon wipe the smile off Graham Norton's face

In the year we said goodbye to El Tel, it'll be Graham Norton once more making sly quips about the contestants and dreaming wistfully about the bottle of Baileys under his desk.

 

So, who carries the hopes and dreams of the nation?

Joe Woolford and Jake Shakeshaft are the lads who triumphed in Eurovision: You Decide, and will perform their song You're Not Alone in Stockholm on Saturday night. Joe and Jake met on The Voice, where they were mentored by Rita Ora, and decided to make a go of it together after they failed to win.

What are their chances? Pretty slim, if we take into account the United Kingdom's dismal showing this century – but how about you decide? Here's the song below (we think it's fairly decent for this sort of thing).

Who is in with a chance of winning then?

The bookies tend to know their stuff. Either that or we all forget what they said afterwards. Anyway these are the top 10 odds (Joe and Jake are out of the frame at 80/1):

Ira Losco is in contention for Malta

Ira Losco is in contention for Malta

Russia 23/20

Ukraine 5/1

France 8/1

Australia 14/1

Sweden 16/1

Malta 26/1

Armenia 28/1

Netherlands 40/1

Austria 50/1

Israel 66/1
 

You'll be wanting to hear the Russian entry then. Here's Sergey Lazarev singing You Are The Only One.

What else can we expect?

There's always something utterly inexplicable going on at Eurovision, whether it's Finnish zombies only going and winning the thing:

Or Russia encouraging their grandmothers to enter:

Or the world being introduced to Riverdance, in this admittedly spectacular performance from Dublin in 1994:

The question is, what's going to be the craziest thing on show in Stockholm? Our money is on Pointless's Richard Osman. He'll be the guy announcing the results from the UK voters. Nul points isusually  a good thing as far as he's concerned.

 

Finally, some interesting stats!

The countries who've won the most times:


Seven

Ireland
 

Six

Sweden
 

Five

France

Luxembourg

United Kingdom
 

Four

Netherlands
 

Three

Israel

Norway

Denmark

The United Kingdom's hapless Jemini

The United Kingdom's hapless Jemini

And the countries who've received the dreaded nul points the most times:
 

Four

Austria

Norway
 

Three

Spain

Finland

Germany

Switzerland
 

Two

Belgium

Netherlands

Portugal

Turkey
 

But the United Kingdom have only bagged nul points once! That was Jemini with Cry Baby in 2003. Good luck, Joe and Jake! Don't be a Jemini.

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