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Classical Sprouts: Eurovision 2023

Eurovision Song Contest united by music

Eurovision 2023 is over, so let's debrief!

First, what is Eurovision? Its full title is the "Eurovision Song Contest," and it's an annual songwriting competition where countries from across Europe compete with original songs.

It started in 1956, and it's the world’s most-watched cultural event.

The qualifying rounds go on for months, and once we finally get to the finals competition in May, it all comes down to how many votes each song from each country gets.

Last year, the Kalush Orchestra won for Ukraine with their song "Stephania."

Normally, the previous year's winner gets to host the following year's competition, but due to the war in Ukraine, England stepped up to host this year's contest.

They made sure they honored Ukraine throughout the competition, though — this year's theme was "united by music," the host city was filled with Ukrainian art installations and Kalush Orchestra even performed at the competition.

This year's winner Loreen, for her catchy pop song "Tattoo," which grows in intensity with each verse.

Loreen is Swedish, and her win is Sweden's seventh — and her second!

Her song "Euphoria" was the 2012 winner, and Loreen is now the only woman to have won twice!

More Classical Sprouts favorites from Eurovision 2023:

Czechia: Vesna’s "My Sister’s Crown"
Kate’s favorite this year was "My Sister’s Crown" from the group Vesna, from Czechia. It has a very strong anti-war message and features some gorgeous Eastern European harmonies, too! The song came in 10th place.

Spain: Blanca Paloma’s "EAEA"
This is a great example of a country that used their national language and some traditional musical styles in their performance. The reds in her costume and set pieces are based on the Spanish flag! Check out the nifty rhythms in the flamenco clapping!

Ukraine: TVORCHI’s "Heart of Steel"
After Kalush Orchestra’s win last year, TVORCHI from Ukraine had a lot of fans. The electronic music duo entry, "Heart Of Steel" is powerful, incredibly catchy and has sections sung in Ukrainian!

France: La Zarra’s "Évidemment"
We’re bopping to this hard over here in Sprouts land, and even though the performer, La Zarra, is originally Canadian, she represented France with "Évidemment," sung completely in French! Kate finds this one particularly fun to dance to while she makes dinner.

Did you watch the contest this year? What were your favorites? Let us know on Instagram — just send @classicalsprouts a message!

Be sure to subscribe to Classical Sprouts wherever you get your podcasts and follow @classicalsprouts on Instagram to join our inclusive community.

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Classical Sprouts is produced by Emily Duncan Wilson. Kacie Brown is the digital content manager.

Kate Botello is a host and producer at Classical IPR.
Emily Duncan Wilson is IPR's digital content manager and is the producer of "Classical Sprouts" and "Kids Commute".