On the 25 March 1972, 18 countries from around Europe descended on Edinburgh, Scotland, for the 17th edition of the Eurovision Song Contest.
Although Monaco had won the contest the year earlier, a suitable venue to hold the contest would not be ready in time for March 1972, and after putting an open call out to the participating broadcasters, the BBC once again stepped up to the plate to offer their support for the event. This would be the first, and so far the last time the contest has been held in Edinburgh.
The contest was held at Usher Hall. Because of the small size of the venue, the jury were placed in Edinburgh Castle for the evening. Although the interval act took place in Edinburgh Castle as well, it was actually a pre-recorded Edinburgh Military Tattoo from 1968.
The 1972 contest was directed by Terry Hughes. In his upcoming book Songs For Europe – The United Kingdom at the Eurovision Song Contest – Volume Two – The 1970s, he recalls the experience of organizing the contest, and provides some insight into the behind the scenes.
I really enjoyed the whole experience. It was so wonderful being up in Scotland. It was the only time that I had spent a great deal of time there, and I really liked it. I was surrounded by musicians, a great team, people from other countries who have stayed good friends and contacts, and it was great to be part of such an event, Terry said in his interview with eurovision.tv.
The 1972 Participants
- Germany: Nur Die Liebe Läßt Uns Leben – Mary Roos
- France: Comé-Comédie – Betty Mars
- Ireland: Ceol An Ghrá – Sandie Jones
- Spain: Amanece – Jaime Morey
- United Kingdom: Beg, Steal Or Borrow – The New Seekers
- Norway: Småting – Grethe Kausland & Benny Borg
- Portugal: A Festa Da Vida – Carlos Mendes
- Switzerland: C’est La Chanson De Mon Amour – Véronique Müller
- Malta: L-Imħabba – Helen & Joseph
- Finland: Muistathan – Päivi Paunu & Kim Floor
- Austria: Falter Im Wind – Milestones
- Italy: I Giorni Dell’arcobaleno – Nicola di Bari
- Yugoslavia: Muzika I Ti – Tereza Kesovija
- Sweden: Härliga Sommardag – Family Four
- Monaco: Comme On S’aime – Anne-Marie Godart & Peter MacLane
- Belgium: À La Folie Ou Pas Du Tout – Serge & Christine Ghisoland
- Luxembourg: Après Toi – Vicky Leandros
- Netherlands: Als Het Om De Liefde Gaat – Sandra & Andres
In the end, it was Vicky Leandros from Luxembourg with the song Après toi who won the contest in 1972, receiving perfect 10’s from host country United Kingdom, as well as Yugoslavia. She had previously represented Luxembourg in the 1967 contest that took place in Vienna, Austria, despite being born in Greece, and growing up in neighboring Germany. Vicky and her German competitor, Mary Roos, also shared the same backing vocalists for the competition.
Vicky Leandros continues to release new music releases and tour throughout Europe.
What was your favourite song from the Eurovision Song Contest in 1972?