EBU: New members join the Reference Group

by Sanjay (Sergio) Jiandani 1,199 views

The Eurovision Song Contest’s Reference Group has seen 3 new members join the committee in recent weeks. Now the governing body of the Eurovision Song Contest consists of a total of 9 members.

A total of 3 new members have joined the Reference Group: Mr. Edoardo Grassi (FT – Head of Delegation France), Mr. João Nuno Nogueira (RTP/Portugal) and Jan Lagermand Lundme (DR/Denmark) thus replacing Mr. Pavlov Hrystak (UA:PBC) and Mr. Edgar Böhm (ORF/Austria).

The current Reference Group includes the Heads of Delegation from the Netherlands, Slovenia, Italy and France.

The Reference Group’s Role

The Reference Group was established by the European Broadcasting Union’s Television Committee in 1998. The Group meets approximately five to six times each year.

The main tasks of the body include approving format developments and changes to the rules, securing financing, modernizing the brand and raising awareness of the Eurovision Song Contest and overseeing the yearly preparation by the Host Broadcaster.

The Reference Group is composed of a Chairman, three members elected by the Heads of Delegation, two Executive Producers from previous host countries, as well as the Executive Producer of the current Host Broadcaster. The EBU’s Eurovision Song Contest Executive Supervisor is also a member of the Reference Group.

The Reference Group currently consists of the following members:

  • Dr. Frank-Dieter Freiling (ZDF/Germany)(Chairman)
  • Mr. Jon Ola Sand (EBU Representative)
  • Mr. Nicola Cagliore (RAI/Italy) – Elected member
  • Mr. Martin Österdahl  (SVT/Sweden) – (Eurovision 2016 Executive Producer)
  • Mr. Aleksandar Radic (RTVSLO/Slovenia) – Elected member
  • Ms. Emilie Sickinghe (AVROTROS/Netherlands) – Elected member
  • Mr. Edoardo Grassi (FT/France)
  • Mr. João Nuno Nogueira (RTP/Portugal)  (2018 ESC Host Broadcaster representative)
  • Mr. Jan Lagermand Lundme (DR/Denmark)

The Eurovision Song Contest Reference Group is the executive Committee for all Members, its purpose being to control and guide the Eurovision Song Contest and meets four to five times each year on behalf of all Participating Broadcasters, and is required to take decisions in the general interest of the Eurovision Song Contest.

The Reference Group met up in Lisbon last week in order to supervise the ongoing preparations for the 2018 Eurovision Song Contest and will meet again in January during the 2018 Eurovision Host Insignia Handover Ceremony and the Semifinal Allocation Draw.