Eurovision Song Contest By Year Rate The Year! Our Coverage Archive

2016 – Stockholm

sweden

42 countries [view participants list]
Winner: Ukraine (Jamala – 1944)

The 61st Eurovision Song Contest introduces a new voting system, where televote and jury points are added separately. Ukraine wins the contest for the second time, ahead of jury favourite Australia on 2nd place and televote favourite Russia on 3rd place.

 


escgo team rating:
4.7 Stars

2015 – Vienna

austria

40 countries [view participants list]
Winner: Sweden (Måns Zelmerlöw – Heroes)

The 60th Eurovision Song Contest sees Australia participating for the first time. Sweden wins the contest again after just three years. Host country Austria shares last place with neighbouring Germany, each getting no points.

 


escgo team rating:
3.6 Stars

2014 – Copenhagen

denmark

37 countries [view participants list]
Winner: Austria (Conchita Wurst – Rise Like A Phoenix)

Austria wins the competition again after a gap of nearly five decades. Another old-timer of the competition, the Netherlands, takes second place but lands a bigger Europe-wide hit than the winner.

 


escgo team rating:
3 Stars

2013 – Malmö

sweden39 countries [view participants list]
Winner: Denmark (Emmelie de Forest – Only Teardrops)

Denmark makes the short trip across the Øresund Bridge to take victory in neighbouring Malmö. Instead of a random draw, the producers decide the running order – and instead of seats, there is a standing-only fan block by the stage.


escgo team rating:
4 Stars

2012 – Baku

azerbaijan42 countries [view participants list]
Winner: Sweden (Loreen – Euphoria)

The host nation spends an unprecedented amount on staging the contest, including constructing a brand new arena. Winner Loreen enjoys one of the biggest chart hits from Eurovision for many years.


escgo team rating:
3 Stars

2011 – Düsseldorf

germany43 countries [view participants list]
Winner: Azerbaijan (Ell/Nikki – Running Scared)

An ex-Soviet nation wins for the fifth time, and it’s the first victory by a duo in ten years. Lena defends her title, while Italy returns to the contest after a long absence and immediately takes the silver medal.


escgo team rating:
3 Stars

2010 – Oslo

norway

39 countries [view participants list]
Winner: Germany (Lena Meyer-Landrut – Satellite)

The stage is invaded during the Spanish entry, but Lena keeps her cool to bring Germany its first victory in nearly three decades. The hosts invite us to “share the moment”, with crowds of locals featuring in the postcards and a flashmob-based interval act.


escgo team rating:
4.5 Stars

2009 – Moscow

russia

42 countries [view participants list]
Winner: Norway (Alexander Rybak – Fairytale)

Rybak racks up nearly twice as many points as his nearest rival. Runaway victories don’t come much clearer! Meanwhile, the postcards teach us useful Russian words like “chic” and “Gagarin”.

 


escgo team rating:
3 Stars

2008 – Belgrade

serbia

43 countries [view participants list]
Winner: Russia (Dima Bilan – Believe)

The two-semi system that continues today is introduced for the first time. Russian star Dima Bilan wins the contest, having finished second two years earlier.


escgo team rating:
3.5 Stars

2007 – Helsinki

finland

42 countries [view participants list]
Winner: Serbia (Marija Šerifović – Molitva)

The semi-final swells to 28 countries, all but guaranteeing dissatisfaction when only 10 qualify. Serbia takes the win on its debut as a separate nation after splitting from Montenegro.


escgo team rating:
3.5 Stars

2006 – Athens

greece

37 countries [view participants list]
Winner: Finland (Lordi – Hard Rock Hallelujah)

Perennial Eurovision underperformers Finland storm to a sensational victory thanks to costumed hard rockers Lordi. Nana Mouskouri nearly loses her hand in a giant hourglass accident.


escgo team rating:
4 Stars

2005 – Kyiv

ukraine

39 countries [view participants list]
Winner: Greece (Helena Paparizou – My Number One)

Swedish-born Elena Paparizou brings Greece its first victory. The length of the voting sequence causes the EBU to make changes from next year – only the top three scores will be announced!


escgo team rating:
3.5 Stars

2004 – Istanbul

turkey

36 countries [view participants list]
Winner: Ukraine (Ruslana – Wild Dances)

With ever more countries wanting to take part, a semi-final is introduced. Ruslana dances her way to a wild victory for Ukraine and plays a very public role in the country’s Orange Revolution later that year.


escgo team rating:
2.5 Stars

2003 – Riga

latvia

26 countries [view participants list]
Winner: Turkey (Sertab Erener – Everyway That I Can)

In a thrilling finish to the voting, recent chart stars t.A.T.u. and underdogs Urban Trad are beaten at the finish by Sertab’s commercial ethnopop. Jemini score a famous “nul points” for the UK in the last ever one-day ESC.


escgo team rating:
4.5 Stars

2002 – Tallinn

estonia

24 countries [view participants list]
Winner: Latvia (Marie N – I Wanna)

Portugal declines to enter, so Latvia takes their place – and goes on to win the whole competition. Host Annely Peebo teaches us all about words beginning with “E”


escgo team rating:
3 Stars

2001 – Copenhagen

denmark

23 countries [view participants list]
Winner: Estonia (Tanel Padar & Dave Benton – Everybody)

(Still) the largest ever ESC in terms of audience size, as the Danes simply put a roof on their national football stadium and host the show there. Hosts Natasja and Søren go down in history by delivering their script in rhyme – what a mystery!


escgo team rating:
2 Stars

2000 – Stockholm

sweden

24 countries [view participants list]
Winner: Denmark (Olsen Brothers – Fly On The Wings Of Love)

Two old boys with guitars blow away all the competition with a simple song staged well, ending Denmark’s long run without a victory. The logo for the contest is a sensuous pair of lips.


escgo team rating:
3 Stars

1999 – Jerusalem

israel

23 countries [view participants list]
Winner: Sweden (Charlotte Nilsson – Take Me To Your Heaven)

Two major changes this year: the orchestra is scrapped in favour of 100% backing tapes, and entries may now be performed in any language. Sweden celebrates the 25th anniversary of “Waterloo” with its fourth win.


escgo team rating:
2 Stars

1998 – Birmingham

uk

25 countries [view participants list]
Winner: Israel (Dana International – Diva)

Britain’s second city plays host to the last ESC where conductors are seen before each entry. Televoting is rolled out in almost all countries as transsexual Israeli singer Dana International grabs a thrilling victory with the last set of votes of the night.


escgo team rating:
4.5 Stars

1997 – Dublin

ireland

25 countries [view participants list]
Winner: United Kingdom (Katrina & The Waves – Love Shine A Light)

In an attempt to modernise the contest, telephone voting is introduced – five countries take up the offer. The UK walks away with an emphatic victory, while Norway scores zero for the fourth time.


escgo team rating:
4.5 Stars

1996 – Oslo

norway

23 countries [view participants list]
Winner: Ireland (Eimear Quinn – The Voice)

The relegation system is replaced by an audio-only preselection that kicks out regulars such as Germany, Denmark and Israel. Not Ireland, though, who win for the fourth time in five years as host Ingvild Bryn negotiates her way through a virtual-reality scoreboard.


escgo team rating:
3.5 Stars

1995 – Dublin

ireland

23 countries [view participants list]
Winner: Norway (Secret Garden – Nocturne)

Norway borrow an Irish violinist and secure victory with a near-instrumental song. Host Mary Kennedy talks about the “annual Eurovision song contest from Ireland”; time and fate will have other ideas.


escgo team rating:
3.5 Stars

1994 – Dublin

ireland

25 countries [view participants list]
Winner: Ireland (Paul Harrington & Charlie McGettigan – Rock ‘n’ Roll Kids)

Interval act “Riverdance” becomes the breakout hit from this year’s contest. A huge number of Eastern European nations make their debut, but guess what? Another Irish win!


escgo team rating:
2.5 Stars

1993 – Millstreet

ireland

25 countries [view participants list]
Winner: Ireland (Niamh Kavanagh – In Your Eyes)

With the newly independent countries of Eastern Europe knocking on the door, a pre-selection is held in Ljubljana. The three ex-Yugoslav qualifiers make an emotional impact in the tiny village of Millstreet, but the host country emerges victorious again.


escgo team rating:
4 Stars

1992 – Malmö

sweden

23 countries [view participants list]
Winner: Ireland (Linda Martin – Why Me?)

Johnny Logan scores his third win for Ireland, this time as composer. Merethe Trøan mocks the international TV audience. The name of Yugoslavia appears on the scoreboard for the last time.


escgo team rating:
3 Stars

1991 – Rome

italy

22 countries [view participants list]
Winner: Sweden (Carola – Fångad av en stormvind)

The performers introduce themselves by each singing a famous Italian song. Toto Cutugno and Gigliola Cinquetti bring an entertainingly Italian brand of chaos to the hosting job, not helped by an exciting voting that ends with Sweden triumphing over France on a tie-break.


escgo team rating:
4.5 Stars

1990 – Zagreb

yugoslavia

22 countries [view participants list]
Winner: Italy (Toto Cotugno – Insieme: 1992)

Following the fall of the Berlin Wall, a number of the entries tackle the subjects of Europe, integration and harmony – and one of them even takes home the trophy, though only after an embarrassing fault with Spain’s playback tape delays the start of the show.


escgo team rating:
4.5 Stars

1989 – Lausanne

switzerland

22 countries [view participants list]
Winner: Yugoslavia (Riva – Rock Me)

After years of trying, Yugoslavia finally wins the contest just as the country is starting to come apart at the seams. Meanwhile, the presence of two children among the participants prompts the introduction of an age limit from the next year.


escgo team rating:
3.5 Stars

1988 – Dublin

ireland

21 countries [view participants list]
Winner: Switzerland (Céline Dion – Ne partez pas sans moi)

Another world star is born, although several years will pass between Céline Dion’s thrilling one-point victory over the UK – recorded on the contest’s first-ever digital scoreboard! – and her successful voyage on the otherwise doomed ship Titanic.


escgo team rating:
3.5 Stars

1987 – Brussels

belgium

22 countries [view participants list]
Winner: Ireland (Johnny Logan – Hold Me Now)

Another victory for the Irishman, and another pan-European hit. Turkey’s Seyyal Taner and Grup Locomotif are less successful: confident of a podium finish, they go home without a single point to their name.


escgo team rating:
3.5 Stars

1986 – Bergen

norway

20 countries [view participants list]
Winner: Luxembourg (Sandra Kim – J’aime la vie)

Eurovision’s theme tune, the prelude from Charpentier’s “Te Deum”, is given lyrics that proclaim: “And soon we will know who’ll be the best in the Eurovision Song Contest!”. The answer, for tonight at least, is a 13-year-old Belgian girl.


escgo team rating:
3 Stars

1985 – Gothenburg

sweden

19 countries [view participants list]
Winner: Norway (Bobbysocks – La det swinge)

An eventful evening for host Lill Lindfors, who builds bricks with music, sits on a stool, loses her skirt, then celebrates with Norway on their sensational victory after years of famous failure.


escgo team rating:
3.5 Stars

1984 – Luxembourg

luxembourg

19 countries [view participants list]
Winner: Sweden (Herreys – Diggi-loo diggi-ley)

The Herrey brothers are described as “singing deodorants” in Sweden on account of their bland image, but they put on their golden boots and storm to victory with one of ESC’s most famous nonsense song titles.


escgo team rating:
3 Stars

1983 – Munich

germany

20 countries [view participants list]
Winner: Luxembourg (Corinne Hermès – Si la vie est cadeau)

Not content with presenting the entire show in three languages, Marlene Charell also learns a complex dance routine for the interval act. All this responsibility confuses her into introducing the poor Norwegian conductor as “Johannes… Skorgan”. His actual name: Sigurd Jansen!


escgo team rating:
4 Stars

1982 – Harrogate

uk

18 countries [view participants list]
Winner: Germany (Nicole – Ein bißchen Frieden)

After years of knocking on the door, Ralph Siegel finally gets his first (and so far only) victory as composer. The host town self-mockingly asks “Where is Harrogate?”. Good question.


escgo team rating:
2 Stars

1981 – Dublin

ireland

20 countries [view participants list]
Winner: United Kingdom (Bucks Fizz – Making Your Mind Up)

Velcro shortages are reported around Europe as kids rush to replicate Bucks Fizz’s cheeky dance routine. Norway goes home pointless again.


escgo team rating:
3.5 Stars

1980 – The Hague

netherlands

19 countries [view participants list]
Winner: Ireland (Johnny Logan – What’s Another Year?)

Israel not only declines to host, but withdraws from the competition altogether. Morocco makes an improbable debut, receives a total of 7 points, and never returns. To the relief of scoreboard operators everywhere, votes are given in ascending order for the first time.


escgo team rating:
3 Stars

1979 – Jerusalem

israel

19 countries [view participants list]
Winner: Israel (Gali Atari & Milk and Honey – Hallelujah)

A second consecutive victory for Israel is enough for runner-up Betty Missiego to drink straight from the bottle during the winning reprise. A dancefloor evergreen is born as Germany scores well with an entry about Genghis Khan, whereas Austria flops despite singing about the host city.


escgo team rating:
3.5 Stars

1978 – Paris

france

20 countries [view participants list]
Winner: Israel (Izar Cohen & Alpha Beta – A-ba-ni-bi)

Israel’s landmark first win is almost overshadowed by the most famous “nul points”-scorer of all-time, Norway’s Jahn Teigen, whose performance of “Mil etter mil” in braces and dark glasses remains a favourite among ESC clip show producers. An elevator transports the participants to the Parisian stage.


escgo team rating:
2 Stars

1977 – London

uk

18 countries [view participants list]
Winner: France (Marie Myriam – L’oiseau et l’enfant)

A strike at the BBC delays the contest by a month, then the postcards are scrapped because they show Norway’s Anita Skorgan drinking alcohol while underage! The “native language” lyric rule is reintroduced and will remain in place for more than two decades; France will wait even longer for their next victory…


escgo team rating:
3.5 Stars

1976 – The Hague

netherlands

18 countries [view participants list]
Winner: United Kingdom (Brotherhood of Man – Save Your Kisses For Me)

A good night’s work for the Brotherhood Of Man: first in the running order, first on the scoreboard, one of the best-selling Eurovision winners ever, and guaranteed employment during national final interval acts from now until eternity.


escgo team rating:
3 Stars

1975 – Stockholm

sweden

19 countries [view participants list]
Winner: Netherlands (Teach-In – Ding-a-dong)

An important moment in ESC history: the current voting system is introduced, so the legendary “douze points” are awarded for the first time! Host Karin Falck is a charming if confused presence, at one point asking the scoreboard operators: “Could we have three points on the Turkey?”


escgo team rating:
3 Stars

1974 – Brighton

uk

17 countries [view participants list]
Winner: Sweden (ABBA – Waterloo)

Though nobody on England’s south coast realises it at the time, the four Swedes performing the catchy number “Waterloo” will soon be the biggest band in the world. The definitive ESC triumph.


escgo team rating:
3.5 Stars

1973 – Luxembourg

luxembourg

17 countries [view participants list]
Winner: Luxembourg (Anne-Marie David – Tu te reconnaîtras)

The first year of a brief spell in which entries may be sung in any language. The Nordic nations take the opportunity to perform in English, but a French-language song wins for the third year in a row.


escgo team rating:
3.5 Stars

1972 – Edinburgh

uk

18 countries [view participants list]
Winner: Luxembourg (Vicky Leandros – Après toi)

Scotland plays host to an elegant evening on which Vicky Leandros strikes it lucky on her second ESC appearance. She goes on to record her winning song in languages from Spanish to Japanese.


escgo team rating:
2 Stars

1971 – Dublin

ireland

18 countries [view participants list]
Winner: Monaco (Séverine – Un banc, un arbre, une rue)

The first of three consecutive years with a curious and corruptible voting system: two jurors from each country, each giving 1-5 points to each song. Malta debuts; Monaco wins; Manic Woman freezes mid-applause.


escgo team rating:
3.5 Stars

1970 – Amsterdam

netherlands

12 countries [view participants list]
Winner: Ireland (Dana – All Kinds Of Everything)

Several countries withdraw in protest at the voting system, but schoolgirl and future European parliamentarian Dana still scores a big hit with her winning song.

 


escgo team rating:
2.5 Stars

1969 – Madrid

spain

16 countries [view participants list]
Winners:
Spain (Salomé – Vivo cantando),
United Kingdom (Lulu – Boom Bang-A-Bang),
Netherlands (Lenny Kuhr – De troubadour),
France (Frida Boccara – Un jour, un enfant)

The flaws in the voting system are exposed as four countries end on the same score and no tie-break system is in place. The only solution: all four of them are crowned joint winners!


escgo team rating:
3 Stars

1968 – London

uk

17 countries [view participants list]
Winner: Spain (Massiel – La, la, la)

The first ESC in colour! The teenyboppers in the cheap seats at the Royal Albert Hall scream as loud as they can, but their idol Cliff Richard is beaten by a woman singing the word “la” 138 times.


escgo team rating:
3.5 Stars

1967 – Vienna

austria

17 countries [view participants list]
Winner: United Kingdom (Sandie Shaw – Puppet On A String)

The UK wins for the first time, though Sandie Shaw quickly turns her back on the song. Host Erica Vaal endures an evening of “technical order, I mean disorder” as the scoreboard misbehaves. The Vienna Boys’ Choir provides the interval entertainment.


escgo team rating:
4 Stars

1966 – Luxembourg

luxembourg

18 countries [view participants list]
Winner: Austria (Udo Jürgens – Merci Chérie)

It’s third time lucky for Udo Jürgens. Some notable costume choices: Åse Kleveland in a trouser suit, Kenneth McKellar in a kilt, and Milly Scott accompanied by two “Mexicans” in sombreros.


escgo team rating:
3.5 Stars

1965 – Naples

italy

18 countries [view participants list]
Winner: Luxembourg (France Gall – Poupée de cire, poupée de son)

Sweden exploits a loophole in the rules to sing in English, but it doesn’t help them when Francophone music legend Serge Gainsbourg is there to deliver arguably ESC’s first “teen pop” hit, appropriately performed by teenager France Gall – her star will continue to rise.


escgo team rating:
2.5 Stars

1964 – Copenhagen

denmark

16 countries [view participants list]
Winner: Italy (Gigliola Cinquetti – Non ho l’età)

Like 1956, only audio footage of this year exists – a shame, considering the exciting stage invasion by anti-fascist protestors! Gigliola Cinquetti gets a huge ovation for her first performance, and the juries are similarly enthusiastic.


escgo team rating:
2.5 Stars

1963 – London

uk

16 countries [view participants list]
Winner: Denmark (Grethe & Jørgen Ingmann – Dansevise)

Staged in the BBC’s television studios, this year is an intriguing anomaly, full of props, camera tricks and interesting angles. Confusion and controversy haunt the end of the voting, but Denmark come out on top.


escgo team rating:
3 Stars

1962 – Luxembourg

luxembourg

16 countries [view participants list]
Winner: France (Isabelle Aubret – Un premier amour)

What took them so long? Nevertheless, four whole countries all score “nul points” this year, establishing a cult “achievement” that will entertain ESC fans – and the public – for decades to come.


escgo team rating:
1.5 Stars

1961 – Cannes

france

16 countries [view participants list]
Winner: Luxembourg (Jean-Claude Pascal – Nous les amoureux)

The contest returns to the French Riviera. The Allisons from the UK establish a huge lead on the scoreboard but are relentlessly caught up by Luxembourg, who record their first of five victories.


escgo team rating:
2 Stars

1960 – London

uk

13 countries [view participants list]
Winner: France (Jacqueline Boyer – Tom Pillibi)

The venue is the Royal Festival Hall, the new pride of the Thames South Bank – and the commentators are housed in the theatre boxes that line the sides of the grand auditorium.


escgo team rating:
2 Stars

1959 – Cannes

france11 countries [view participants list]
Winner: Netherlands (Teddy Scholten – Een beetje)

A second Dutch win in the first four contests – and the first of 15 second-place finishes for the United Kingdom. Meanwhile, Monaco makes its debut and promptly finishes last.


escgo team rating:
2 Stars

1958 – Hilversum

netherlands

10 countries [view participants list]
Winner: France (André Claveau – Dors, mon amour)

A true classic of popular music, “Volare”, is relegated to third place by the juries who prefer a safe French ballad. Domenico Modugno has the last laugh as his song becomes a huge international hit.


escgo team rating:
2 Stars

1957 – Frankfurt am Main

germany

10 countries [view participants list]
Winner: Netherlands (Corry Brokken – Net als toen)

In a basic change to the rules, it’s “one song per country” from now on. The shortest ever ESC song (UK) goes head-to-head with two of the longest (Italy and Netherlands) – no three-minute limit yet!


escgo team rating:
3 Stars

1956 – Lugano

switzerland

7 countries / 14 songs [view participants list]
Winner: Switzerland (Lys Assia – Refrain)

The first ever Eurovision Song Contest! Each country is permitted to enter two songs, as otherwise the show would be quite short. Winner Lys Assia shows no signs of her future career in hip-hop and skateboarding.


escgo team rating:
3 Stars