Eurovision For Beginners: Spin offs of Eurovision

With such a successful format, it comes as no surprise that across the world, and even still within Europe, certain groups have tried to recreate the success using the same, or similar format that Eurovision uses.

Some have lasted the test of time, and others haven’t reached the heights of Eurovision. Here are some spinoffs that are still running:

  • Östersjöfestivalen, or otherwise known as the Baltic Song Contest began in 1967, and has been held annually in the city of Karlshamn in Sweden
  • Cân i Gymru, held in Wales, was originally intended to be used to choose the Eurovision act for Wales when they expressed interest in participating separate from the UK, however became their own song contest. It ran between 1969 and 1972, took 2 years break, and then continued from 1974 until the present day
  • The Caribbean Song Festival is held annually between members of the Caribbean Broadcasting Union, and began back in 1984
  • Festivali i Këngës is a contest many Eurovision fans will recognise. This contest is held in Albania, and since the debut in Eurovision, has been used to select Albania’s Eurovision act. It began in 1962
  • Liet-Lávlut began in 2002, and is an annual competition between European ethnic minorities and languages
  • Asia Song Festival began in 2004, and is held annually in South Korea
  • ABU Song Festival began in 2012, and is held as a Radio Song Festival, and also there is a televised song festival, and features nations from the Asia Pacific Region
  • Turkvision Song Contest began in 2013, after Turkey had pulled out of Eurovision. The contest features nations and autonomous regions with Turkic links

There also many similar competitions which are no longer running, some of which include:

  • Sopot International Song Festival had started and stopped many times between 1961 and 2014, and was held in Poland
  • Castlebar Song Contest was held between 1966 and 1986, and then once again in 1988, and was held in Castlebar, County Mayo in Ireland
  • Yamaha Music Festival, which was also called World Popular Song Festival was held between 1970 and 1987, and once again in 1989 and it was hosted in Japan
  • OTI Festival was hosted by Portugal and the Hispanic countries in Europe, South and North America. The participants could only sing in Spanish or Portuguese, and was held between 1972 and 1998, and once again in 2000
  • The Intervision Song Contest was the Eastern bloc’s answer to Eurovision, where countries from the Eastern bloc of Europe and Finland could participate. It was held between 1977 and 1980, and once again in 2008
  • MGP Nordic was a competition for participants under the age of 16 from Scandinavia and Finland. It ran in 2002, and then again between 2006 and 2009
  • World Oriental Music Festival was held in 2005, and featured artists from Europe and Asia
  • Bundesvision Song Contest was held between 2005 and 2015, and is a contest internal to Germany, where the 16 states would participate

The Eurovision Song Contest also has official spin offs, also run by the EBU. These include

  • Junior Eurovision Song Contest is an annual competition which began in 2003, and features artists aged between 10 and 15
  • Eurovision Young Dancers is a biennial dance showcase for dancers between the ages of 16 and 21. The act that a nation sends can either be a solo or dance couple. The first competition was held in 1985. The contest was cancelled in 2019 due to a lack of interest.
  • Eurovision Dance Contest was first held in 2007, and then held again in 2008 but however has not since been held
  • Eurovision Young Musicians is a competition for participants younger than 19, and focuses on talented classical musicians, and is held every two years. The competition began in 1982
  • Eurovision Choir is the newest offspring of the Eurovision format, where choirs from across Europe compete. The competition begun in 2017 and occurs every two years.