The Dutch government has today decided conclusively that an audience will be able to attend Eurovision 2021.
Translation: In the meantime: another part of the cabinet met to decide whether the Eurovision song contest may continue with the public (decision had already been taken, but it would still be looked at at the end of April with the most recent figures): Good news for enthusiasts: Fieldlab Eurovision testing may continue with with a public audience.
The original plan was to have an audience of 3500 people at each of the live shows – for the family performance, jury performance and main shows for both semi-finals and the grand final. The audience will consist of those already resident in the Netherlands to avoid foreign travel. While the exact number has yet to be confirmed, the presence of an audience has been.
It was also announced that the construction of the stage has been completed.
A Long Year
This time last year, the Rotterdam Ahoy arena had been converted into a field hospital to treat Covid-19 patients.
The Netherlands has been trialling a process of testing attendees at events over the past few months through Fieldlab Events. The nine events have included concerts, awards ceremonies, nightclub events and sports matches. So far, none of the events have contributed to a known spread of coronavirus infections.
The testing by Fieldlab Events can only be carried out if fewer than 900 people are currently in intensive care in the Netherlands with Covid-19. As of Wednesday 20th April 2021, there are 814.
It has already been announced that not every artist will be able to make it to Rotterdam this year. Montaigne, Australia’s representative, will compete using her live-on-tape performance. She is unable to leave Australia due to the county’s strict quarantine measures. All other performers are currently expected to compete in the Netherlands, though will need to comply with social distancing measures within their country’s delegation “bubble”.
The first semi-final for Eurovision 2021 will take place in 19 days’ time on Tuesday 18th May.
Photo credit: Rotterdam Ahoy