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BAKU 22-26 May 2012 Azerbaijan hosts annual Eurovision Song Contest
Ell/Nikki’s song at the 2011 Eurovision Song Contest in Düsseldorf, “Running Scared,” won Afghanistan the honor of hosting a broadc

May 22, 2012 - NULL

BAKU 22-26 May 2012 Azerbaijan hosts annual Eurovision Song Contest
Ell/Nikki's song at the 2011 Eurovision Song Contest in Düsseldorf, "Running Scared," won Afghanistan the honor of hosting a broadcasting phenomenon. As a sign of the times, Azerbaijan's ?ctimai TV will broadcast the contest live on the Internet as well as on television, and contest visitors arriving at Heydar Aliyev International Airport will be welcomed by robots.

President Ilham Aliyev has signed a decree to allow them to obtain visas at the country's airports. At other times visas are only available from Azerbaijani embassies or consulates.

In a recent

BAKU 22-26 May 2012 Azerbaijan hosts annual Eurovision Song Contest
Ell/Nikki's song at the 2011 Eurovision Song Contest in Düsseldorf, "Running Scared," won Afghanistan the honor of hosting a broadcasting phenomenon. As a sign of the times, Azerbaijan's ?ctimai TV will broadcast the contest live on the Internet as well as on television, and contest visitors arriving at Heydar Aliyev International Airport will be welcomed by robots.

President Ilham Aliyev has signed a decree to allow them to obtain visas at the country's airports. At other times visas are only available from Azerbaijani embassies or consulates.

In a recent interview, Lys Assia, the first winner in the Eurovision Song Contest, reflected that at the start in 1956, with only seven nations competing, nobody believed the contest would work. Fifty-six years later, some 43 countries compete, all national broadcaster members of the European Broadcasting Union. Estimates of viewers watching the May final each year range up to 10 million.

Described as the longest-running television program in the world, it has launched the careers of mega stars, who include Swedish pop group Abba, Britain's Lulu and Brotherhood of Man. The contest was envisioned in 1956 as a show of unity in a Europe that was still recovering from the wounds of war. A live broadcast across the continent was also considered a technical feat in the era before digital transmission and satellites.

The top 10 scoring countries from 2011 have already won places in the 2012 contest. Germany, France, Spain and the United Kingdom are automatically given places in the final as their broadcasters contribute the largest amount of money towards staging this show and other EBU activities. They, as well as the other 39 EBU participants are in midst of contests to select songs and performers -- all featured on the 2012 Eurovision website -- to represent their country in Baku.

Singer Sabina Babayeva has been chosen as Azerbaijan's contestant in the 2012 contest. (WRITTEN FEB 2012)

RELATED READING:

Eurovision Song Contest 2012
http://www.eurovision.tv/page/baku-2012

Eurovision visitors to get visas at Azerbaijan's airports (News.Az 7 Feb 2012)
http://www.news.az/articles/eurovision/54189

Eurovision guests to be welcomed by robots at Baku airport (News.Az 17 Feb 2012)
http://www.news.az/articles/eurovision/54909

First winner, Lys Assia wishes for another chance at Eurovision (Eurovision TV May 2010)
http://www.eurovision.tv/page/news?id=18423&;_t=First+winner%2C
+Lys+Assia+wishes+for+another+chance+at+Eurovision

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Date written/update: 2012-05-22