Since the announcement that Ukraine would indeed host the Eurovision Song Contest, there were huge doubts as to whether the nation could successfully host. A number of reference group meetings that have already taken place have highlighted some of the issues that Ukraine faces regarding the mammoth task of hosting the contest. Despite that, the latest meeting revealed that Ukraine has made progress since the last meeting, and the EBU is confident that Ukraine will produce a great show.
The winter General Assembly of the EBU is taking place at a time that coincides with another milestone for the hosting of the 2017 contest, and as such, the EBU has met up once again with the host broadcaster NTU to talk about the progress, and the plans.
Jon Ola Sand has said that NTU have done really well over the last few weeks, and the EBU will continue to monitor the progress closely. With the core team at NTU now in place, Jon Ola Sand is confident about where the contest is heading. He said,
‘Over the two last weeks a lot has been done from the Ukrainian side both from the authorities and from NTU. We are fully satisfied with what we have seen and what they presented to us in the meeting yesterday. I know there has been a lot of debate about this and a lot of speculations around this. We have had a firm and good dialog, an open dialog with NTU all the way. What they presented now was expected and we’re very happy to tick that off and make sure we have the progression we need’
Jon Ola Sand also confirmed that there have been no plans to move the contest to Russia, or any other host city as he, and the EBU reference group have been happy with the progress made. He states that they always have a Plan B, however despite speculation, the 2017 contest will be hosted in Kyiv.
Victoria Romanova, the Executive Producer of the 2017 contest has also commented, saying,
‘I’m glad to confirm that NTU has the sufficient budget to hold the contest next year in Ukraine. In particular we will receive 15 million Euros from the state of Ukraine and in addition to this we will receive 7 million Euros from the Kyiv city administration as the contribution of the host city. We have already received the amount from the Kyiv city administration and we have already started the preparations.’
It was only last week that Victoria Romanova and Oleksander Kharebin were announced as the Executive Producers of the show, and that Stuart Barlow would be the Show Producer. With the team now in place, the design element of the show has begun, including the stage design, the postcards and theme art.
For those interested in tickets, at this point they are planning on beginning sales around January. The next reference group meeting will take place in January, as well as the semi-final allocation draw. Stay tuned for more news from Kyiv!