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Austria: ORF to broadcast ‘We are the world’ featuring ESC stars

by Stefano Casellini 1,370 views

Let’s admit it: who else is watching old Eurovisions in order to cope with the staggering absence of the contest next May? Several national broadcasters have indeed understood that Eurofans cannot simply skip 12 months. Many countries have already announced remplacement shows. They will take place in the weeks ahead of what should have been Rotterdam 2020. Next up is Austria!

Vienna, we have some news. Austrian broadcster ORF has unveiled the programme of “We are the world”. The TV show was created to entertain the audience during their forced quarantine. In collaboration with RSO, the Radio Symphonie Orchester Wien, “We are the world” is inspired by the iconic song from USA for Africa recorded in 1985. The initiative of the ORF TV’s Culture Department is to play the cover version of this song as a symbol of togertheness. The arrengement of Leonard Eröd will be executed by 50 musicians of  ORF’s Radio Symphonic Orchestra of Vienna.

Stay at home, but stay united!

But why do we talk about this? ORF will also include some former Eurovision representatives from Austria. Four of them are on board for the vocal part: PAENDA (2019), Cesár Sampson (2018), Nathan Trent (2017) and Vincent Bueno. The latter will also perform his  Eurovision entry Alive, the Austrian song for Rotterdam. For the record, Bueno is currently partaking in the “Little Eurovision Song Contest”on the Austrian screens this week.

In his own words, Martin Traxl, ORF TV culture director, describes the show:

In this special time, we feel even more than usual the responsibility not only to depict culture, but also to create it ourselves. That is why we not only want to bring music to the audience, we also want to create new, unusual constellations and unite the musicians despite the spatial distance using sophisticated techniques. Our new version of ‘We Are the World’ should be a sign of togetherness, because nothing connects more than the power of music.

We are the world” will be presented on Monday 20 April 2020 on ZIB 1, kulturMontag and ORF.at/kulturjetzt.

Austria in Eurovision

The Alpine country debuted in the Eurovision Song Contest in 1957. They have so far appeared 52 times, with 47 finals. They first won in 1966 with Udo Jurgens Merci Chérie, and again in 2014 with Conchita Wurst Rise like a phoenix.

Austria has finished last in the contest final seven times (1957, 1961, 1962, 1979, 1984, 1988 and 1991), plus one last place in the semi final (2012).

Their best result in recent time came in 2018 with Cesár Sampson. His entry Nobody like you ended third in the Grand Final.

In 2020 Austria internally selected Vincent Bueno to sing Alive on stage in Rotterdam. Vincent was going to perform in the first half of the second semi final on Thursday 14 May 2020.  ORF has  confirmed that Vincent Bueno will represent Austria at the 2021 Eurovision Song Contest next year.

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