Greece in the Eurovision Song Contest 2021
|Eurovision Song Contest 2021|
|Selection process||Internal selection|
|Selection date(s)||Artist: 18 March 2020|
Song: 7 January 2021
|Selected song||"Last Dance"|
|Greece in the Eurovision Song Contest|
Greece will participate in the Eurovision Song Contest 2021 in Rotterdam, Netherlands. Greek-Dutch singer Stefania was internally selected by the Hellenic Broadcasting Corporation (ERT) with the song "Last Dance", written by Dimitris Kontopoulos, Sharon Vaughn, Pavlos Manolis, Anastasios Rammos, Diverno and Gabriel Russell. Stefania was due to compete in the 2020 contest with "Supergirl" before the event's cancellation.
Greece was drawn to compete in the first half of the second semi-final of the Eurovision Song Contest, which will take place on 20 May 2021. The draw order was unchanged from the canceled 2020 edition.
Prior to the 2021 contest, Greece had participated in the Eurovision Song Contest forty times since their debut in 1974. The nation has won once, at the 2005 contest with the song "My Number One" performed by Helena Paparizou. Following the introduction of semi-finals for the 2004 contest, Greece managed to qualify for the grand final with each of their entries for several years. Between 2004 and 2013, the nation achieved nine top ten placements in the final. To this point, Greece in 2016 with Argo's "Utopian Land" failed to qualify from the semi-finals for the first time ever, being absent from the grand final for the first time since 2000 and marking Greece's worst result at the contest. In the 2018 contest, Greece failed to qualify for the second time with Yianna Terzi and the song "Oniro mou" finishing 14th in the semi-final. Greece returned to the grand final in the 2019 contest with Katerine Duska and the song "Better Love", placing 21st with 74 points.
The Greek national broadcaster, Hellenic Broadcasting Corporation (ERT), broadcasts the event within Greece and organises the selection process for the nation's entry. ERT had been in charge of Greece's participation in the contest since their debut in 1974 until 2013, when the broadcaster was shut down by a government directive and replaced with the interim Dimosia Tileorasi (DT) and later by the New Hellenic Radio, Internet and Television (NERIT) broadcaster. During this time, from 2013 through 2015, the Greek television station MAD TV organised the selection process. On 28 April 2015, a legislative proposal that resulted in the renaming of NERIT to ERT was approved and signed into law by the Hellenic Parliament; ERT began broadcasting once again on 11 June 2015, and shortly after confirmed their intentions to once again participate in the Eurovision Song Contest.
The Greek broadcaster has used various methods to select the nation's entry in the past, such as internal selections and televised national finals, to choose the performer, song or both to compete at Eurovision. On 18 March 2020, the day of the 2020 contest's cancellation, ERT was one of the first four broadcasters (the others being the Netherlands' AVROTROS, Spain's RTVE and Ukraine's UA:PBC) to confirm their participation in the next edition and to announce their continued cooperation with their 2020 artist, Stefania.
With Stefania already selected to represent the country in 2021, it was announced that the same team responsible for the songwriting and the choreography of the 2020 entry would also be used for the 2021 contest, and that the song would be selected internally. On 14 December 2020, ERT revealed the names of the people who comprised the jury panel involved with the selection of the song. The jury consisted of music composer and ERT board member Dimitris Papadimitriou, and music producers Petros Adam and Yiannis Petridis. All three were members of the previous year's jury panel. As it was announced, the jury panel planned to select the Greek entry before 2021, while the song would not be released before March 2021.
Songwriters Dimitris Kontopoulos and Sharon Vaughn, and the production team ARCADE (Pavlos Manolis, Anastasios Rammos, Diverno, Gabriel Russell), submitted at least four potential entries to ERT for consideration. On 18 December 2020, an Instagram post by Stefania on the official account of the Eurovision Song Contest revealed the name of one of the song candidates, "Adrenaline". Three weeks later on 7 January 2021, "Last Dance", was announced as the title of selected song, with its release planned for 10 March.
The Eurovision Song Contest 2021 is scheduled to take place at Rotterdam Ahoy in Rotterdam, the Netherlands, and will consist of two semi-finals held on 18 and 20 May, and the grand final on 22 May 2021. According to the Eurovision rules, each participating country, except the host country and the "Big 5", consisting of France, Germany, Italy, Spain and the United Kingdom, are required to qualify from one of two semi-finals in order to compete in the final; the top ten countries from each semi-final progress to the grand final. The European Broadcasting Union (EBU) split up the competing countries into six different pots based on voting patterns from previous contests, with countries with favourable voting histories put into the same pot. For the 2021 contest, the semi-final allocation draw held for 2020 which was held on 28 January 2020, will be used. Greece was placed into the second semi-final, to be held on 20 May 2021, and was scheduled to perform in the first half of the show.
Fokas Evangelinos was announced as the artistic director for the entry, responsible for the country's stage performance. Stefania will be joined on stage by four dancers: George Papadopoulos (stage director for the Greek entry at the 2014 Contest), Nikos Koukakis, Markos Giakoumoglou and Costas Pavlopoulos.
The two semi-finals and the final will be televised in Greece on ERT with commentary by Maria Kozakou and Giorgos Kapoutzidis.
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