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United by Music: Eurovision 2023 Re-Embraces Original Values

The 2023 edition of the Eurovision Song Contest will not be just an ordinary edition of one of the most important music competitions in the world. 

This May, Europe will reunite once again to watch artists from all around the continent perform and dominate the very colorful stage of Eurovision. Still, the general mood will differ from what we have previously witnessed.

 

Memorably, last year's event, which took place in Turin, was characterized by a much-anticipated plot twist at the very end, with the announcement of Ukraine winning the 2022 edition.

Generally, the coronation of the music group Kalush in Italy did not surprising because of the terrible situation Ukraine was living in, and it is still living, due to the war with Russia. 

The victory of the Eastern European state wanted to be something more of a symbol, sending a direct message to Russia, which was banned from the competition after the war started in February 2022.

In the previous edition, both the international jury and the public (allowed to vote during the final evening of the contest) strongly supported the Ukrainian group, representing how most of the world was and is sustaining Zelensky and his country.

 

Unfortunately, some technical issues have been encountered since the beginning. 

Even if the nation which wins the Eurovision is supposed to host the competition the following year, this will not happen in 2023 because of the current dangerous situation in Ukraine. But we already suspected this when Kalush won in Turin last May. 

However, thanks to the outstanding performance of British singer Sam Ryder, who gained a solid second place last year, the Eurovision Song Contest 2023 will be hosted by the United Kingdom, which will make us all feel at home in beautiful Liverpool.

 

In the past few hours, this well-known British city has seen its squares and streets being decorated with new theme artwork, which unites the colors of both the British and Ukrainian flags into shining hearts. 

Commenting on this year’s design, the EBU-run Eurovision website reads: “The colorful ECG (electrocardiogram) effect produces a string of hearts, each one responsive to rhythm and sound, to illustrate the collective beating heart of all Eurovision contestants and viewers alike. We are all ‘United by Music.’ And the typeface is called ‘Penny Lane,’ inspired by the twentieth-century cast-iron signs displaying Liverpool street names and a nod to the city’s rich musical heritage”.

 

The stand-out design, which recalls the two cultures, is just one of the many attempts of the Liverpool edition to put the current conflict even more under the spotlight. Another example is the choice of involving members of the Ukrainian community, who had been relocated to the city after the beginning of the war, in the allocation draw of the semi-finals.

 

Unification appears to be the narrative thread for this year, as clearly stated in the official slogan ‘United by Music,’ just revealed today.

“We are thrilled to create the 67th Eurovision Song Contest visual identity in partnership with Ukrainian agency, Starlight, and the BBC. For this year’s theme, United By Music, our solution was inspired by research showing that when experiencing live music together, human hearts synchronize to beat in unison. This insight led to the creative concept of 160 million hearts beating as one, an idea that captures the universal spirit of Eurovision”, claimed the executives of Superunion, one of the agencies which created the design.

 

Interestingly, this May, Eurovision will go back to its original aim of unifying Europe and not only, as modern editions also present intercontinental members, like Australia and Israel.

Probably, unification as a core value of this event had been slightly lost over the past years in favor of increasing revenue and visibility as an entertainment event. 

However, in 2023 this aim returns more vital than ever, with the awareness that a solid message must be sent again and mistakes are not permitted. 

 


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