RTÉ, Ireland’s public broadcaster, has been revealed to have spent €340,000 on their participation for Eurovision 2023. However, despite the broadcaster splashing cash, Ireland failed to qualify for the fourth year in a row
RTÉ left cash-strapped
Figures revealed by the Irish Mirror found that the broadcaster spent the small fortune over the course of the two weeks in Liverpool. One third of costs went to the EBU to facilitate the participation costs and broadcasting rights.
Of the remaining total, over €100,000 was spent on both accommodation for the Irish delegation, as well as Wild Youth’s staging – which included the set of giant stairs featured in their performance. Other expenses included food, drink and transport. Irish commentator Marty Whelan’s own expenses were also factored into the budget.
RTÉ routinely declares itself to be struggling financially. However, in the past five years – from 2019 to 2023 – the broadcaster has spent over €1.3 million trying to get Ireland back in the final. Previously, it was revealed that RTÉ had shelfed out €315,000 for Brooke to represent the country in Turin. The broadcaster also spent €330,000 on their participation in Rotterdam, which saw Lesley Roy come dead last.
Despite this bill, RTÉ’s Head of Delegation Michael Kealy says that the broadcaster does not provide adequate funding for a high-quality national final. As a result, the national selection – Eurosong – is traditionally held as an extension of The Late Late Show.
Ireland’s Eurovision journey
In 1965, Ireland made their debut in the Eurovision Song Contest with Butch Moore and the song “Walking the Streets in the Rain”, which managed to place 6th. Since their debut, Ireland has participated 56 times (making the Grand Final 45 times). The country has won the competition seven times, which is currently tied for the record of most wins.
Ireland’s latest Eurovision participation saw them being represented by Wild Youth, with their song “We Are One”. They placed 12th in the semi-final, receiving 10 points from the televote, missing out on the Grand Final.
What do you think of the cost RTÉ shelved out to participate? What can Ireland do to secure their place back in the final? As always, let us know what you think by commenting below. Also, be sure to follow ‘That Eurovision Site’ on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and Tiktok as we start gearing up for the new Eurovision season!
News Source: Irish Mirror
Photo Credit: Sarah Louise Bennett / EBU