The Eurovision Song Contest: 5 moments that shocked the world

The Eurovision Song Contest: 5 moments that shocked the world

Thursday, May 10, 2018

The Eurovision Song Contest may actually boost a country’s happiness, according to new research.

A new study by scientists at Imperial College London found entry into the annual spectacular was linked with an increase in life satisfaction.

While people from countries finishing higher up on the leader board were more likely to be satisfied, taking part in the competition and doing badly was found to be better than not getting involved at all.

The findings may offer some comfort to the UK which has suffered "consistently terrible performances" in the contest, the researchers said.

The study, published in journal BMC Public Health, analysed survey data from 160,000 people in 33 European countries, collected around the time of the competition between 2009 and 2015.

People were 4% more likely to be satisfied with life for every 10 places higher they finished on the scoreboard, the study found.

So, with that in mind, we take a look at five moments that have caused controversy at the opinion-splitting event.

5. Man bares bum during Jamala’s comeback performance – 2017.

In 2017 the competition was held in Ukraine, after 2016 winner Jamala brought the Eurovision to her homeland after snatching it from under the nose of Russia. A political statement itself considering Russia’s actions over Crimea.

During her comeback performance in Kiev, a prankster by the name of Vitalii Sediuk managed to clamber his way on-stage, remove his trousers and show his bottom to the cameras. He was quickly escorted away by security.

However, some questioned the response time of the security, and how he was allowed to get onstage unchallenged in the first place.



4. Dana International wins – 1998.

The 1998 contest was held in the United Kingdom, and Dana International’s win sparked outrage among some groups in Israel. The transgender woman was not expected to win, but her song Diva, hit the top spot as they scored 172 points.

Dana International, real name Sharon Cohen, was the first openly transgender contestant to take part in the competition. Her win led to protests in the streets and she even received death threats from some Orthodox Jewish groups.

She was instrumental to the greater acceptance of transsexuals and became one of the most iconic faces of Eurovision.



3. Finland’s lesbian kiss – 2013.

Eurovision and political statements go hand-in-hand, most years a performer will react to certain situations occurring within their nation or on a global scale.

In 2013, Finland were represented by singer Krista Siegfrids, who would go on to passionately kiss her girlfriend, and back-up dancer, on live TV. It was so much about the affection towards her partner, but it was a stand against Finland’s decision to ban gay marriage.



2. Israel’s llanit performs in bulletproof vest – 1973.

During the 1972 Summer Olympics in Munich, 11 members of the Israel team were taken hostage and later murdered by extremist group Black September. The event sent shockwaves across the globe, and increased tensions further in the Middle-East.

Just under a year later in 1973, Israel entered the Eurovision song contest with their song Ey Sham by IIanit. Taking place in Luxembourg, the singer appeared on stage wearing a bulletproof vest, with security warning audience members to remain seated throughout the performance otherwise they’d be shot.



1. The 11-second kiss – 1957.

In 1957, the song contest was the first to feature duos, after previous competitions only allowed solo artists to compete. Prior to the event the Danish entry, Birthe Wilke and Gustav Winckler, were the favourites to win the prestigious prize with their song Skibet skal sjle I nat (the ship will be leaving tonight).

Wilke was 21-years-old at the time with her crooner singing-partner, Winckler 11-years her senior. Television was still a new enterprise for a lot of people, and the world was a different place back then.

So, when their 11-second kiss occurred at the end of their song, it shocked viewers and even effected the voting. The favourites were undone by their actions on the night, but they finished in a respectable third place.