Eurovision 2024: EBU introduces a major change in the Grand Final running order

by Sanjay (Sergio) Jiandani 1,656 views

The EBU will be implementing another major change to this year’s Eurovision Song Contest edition, it will be introducing the so called ‘Producer’s Choice’ option, thus giving the producers of the show more power to determine the running order of the show.

Until 2024 the competing countries in the Grand Final were able to draw which half of the Grand Final they were to perform in (both the BIG 5 countries and 20 qualifying countries). Hereafter the producers of the show were responsible to determine the running order in both the first and second half of the show.

The host country’s  running order is determined via a draw during the Heads of Delegation meeting in March.

Now this will change as the EBU and SVT will be adding a third option to the draw: the Producers Choice. Hence the  BIG 5 countries and the 20 finalists (qualifiers from the semi-finals) will be having three options in their draws ( First half, Second half and Producer’s choice).  Hence 25/26 of the countries competing in the Grand Final will partake in this draw.

The Producer Choice option will allow the producers of the show to place the country anywhere in the show (either in the first or second half) in accordance to their criteria in order to make the show more exciting and entertaining. The producers intention is to make the running order more exciting in order to showcase the competing acts in the best of ways.

Hence there will be 6 places to be chosen in the First Half of the Show, 6 places in the Second Half of the Show and 13 Producer’s Choice Places.

Christer Bjorkman (Eurovision Song Contest 2024 Producer) says:

It’s all about creating the best TV show possible and giving all artists a chance to shine. In previous years, with just the First Half and Second Half draws you might find many ballads ended up in the same part of the show or many favourites were drawn to perform in the same half. Adding the flexibility of Producer’s Choice gives me the ability to create an even better flow of different tempos and an even more thrilling Grand Final.

The BIG 5 will be drawing their positions in the Grand Final ( First Half, Second Half, Producer’s Choice) on Saturday 4 May after their second rehearsal live via (Reddit AMA).

The 10 finalists from Semi-final #1 will draw their position (First Half, Second Half, Producer’s Choice) immediately after the show on Tuesday 7 May (to be broadcast live via TikTok).

The 10 finalists from Semi-final #2 will draw their position (First Half, Second Half, Producer’s Choice) immediately after the show on Thursday 9 May (to be broadcast live via TikTok).

Once all positions are set, the producers of the show will work on determining the running order of the Grand Final. The EBU is set to reveal the running order of the Eurovision 2024 Grand Final in the early hours of Friday 10 May.

EBU’s statement reads:

  • The Big 5 will be picking either First Half, Second Half or Producer’s Choice after their second Rehearsal on Saturday 4 May, live during a Reddit AMA. 
  • Then each of the 10 qualifiers from the First Semi-Final on Tuesday 7 May will draw one of those three options from the bowl immediately after the show LIVE on the Official Eurovision Song Contest TikTok channel.
  • The 10 qualifying artists from the Second Semi-Final will draw from the remaining options live on TikTok after the show finishes on Thursday 9 May. 
  • When all the 25 options are chosen, producers will compile the running order for the Grand Final of the 68th Eurovision Song Contest in the early hours of Friday 10 May. It will then be revealed on the Contest’s website and social media channels.

2013 Saw a major change in the running order

The last time we saw a major change implemented in the running order of the competition was back in 2013 when Malmo hosted the event.  In 2013 the EBU and SVT introduced a change where the producer’s of the show would determine the running order of the show after the competing countries drew which half of the show they would perform in (First/Second Half).

This rule has been implemented every year since 2013 and has given the producers the opportunity to place the competing countries in the spots they deemed the best to create an entertaining show and depict the songs in the best of ways. This move also helped the producers to take it account the logistics, staging, lighting and necessary props involved for each of the competing acts.

Prior to 2013 the running order of the Grand Final was determined via a random draw.

The Running Order Positions of the Winners (last 10 years):

  • 2023: Sweden -9th
  • 2022: Ukraine -12th
  • 2021: Italy-24th
  • 2019: Netherlands- 12th
  • 2018: Israel-22nd
  • 2017: Portugal-11th
  • 2016: Ukraine- 21st
  • 2015: Sweden- 10th
  • 2014: Austria-11th
  • 2013: Denmark,-18th

The 2024 Eurovision Song Contest is scheduled to be held on 7, 9, 11 May at the Malmo Arena in Malmo, Sweden.

Source: eurovision.tv
Photo credit: eurovision.tv