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Archives for March 2012

Visa information for British citizens travelling to Baku for Eurovision

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BBC Eurovision Gemma BBC Eurovision Gemma | 13:50 UK time, Thursday, 29 March 2012

As our UK HOD (Heads of Delegation) Andrew and Russell, recently returned from their meeting in Baku, they'd like to offer you some advice about the visa application process.

Visa procedure

The general visa procedure can be found on the official Eurovision website but here are some words of advice from Andrew and Russell...

Firstly, not all airlines have the visa forms on the plane. Our team had to wait until the airport, so don't worry if an application form doesn't appear while in mid-air.

Secondly, if you are a British passport holder , you must pay $118 US DOLLARS for your visa. Let me repeat that, US DOLLARS. NOT Euro. NOT Azerbaijani Manats. NO beans.

You may not be allowed into the country without $118 US Dollars for your visa, so make sure you are prepared!

As stated on the official Eurovision website, make sure you have "a passport, which is valid for at least 3 months after your planned departure from Baku. Have 2 passport-size colored photos of 3 by 4 centimeter, against a white background. And a print-out of your invitation letter or ticket to the show (a print-out of ticket booking confirmation) or accreditation confirmation letter."

It may also be possible to apply for a visa through the Embassy or Consulate of the Republic of Azerbaijan within the UK. Please see their website for more information.

Finally, enjoy Eurovision 2012 and make sure you keep up to date with all the news on the BBC website.

2012 Running Order

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BBC Eurovision Gemma BBC Eurovision Gemma | 17:49 UK time, Tuesday, 20 March 2012

The draw has been made. All 42 countries now know where they will be performing either in the Semi's or the Grand Final for Eurovision.

Semi-Final 1

The two wildcards for this semi final were won by Finland (who decided to go 9th) and Ireland (who decided to go 18th).

The other countries won the following positions:

1. Montenegro

2. Iceland

3. Greece

4. Latvia

5. Albania

6. Romania

7. Switzerland

8. Belgium

9. Finland (wildcard)

10. Israel

11. San Marino

12. Cyprus

13. Denmark

14. Russia

15. Hungary

16. Austria

17. Moldova

18. Ireland (wildcard)

Semi-Final 2

The two wildcards for this semi final were won by Ukraine (who decided to go 7th) and Lithuania (who decided to go 18th).

The other countries won the following positions:

1. Serbia

2. FYR Macedonia

3. The Netherlands

4. Malta

5. Belarus

6. Portugal

7. Ukraine (wildcard)

8. Bulgaria

9. Slovenia

10. Croatia

11. Sweden

12. Georgia

13. Turkey

14. Estonia

15. Slovakia

16. Norway

17. Bosnia & Herzegovina

18. Lithuania (wildcard)

Grand Final running order so far...

Finally, the big five countries drew the following positions for the Grand Final:

1 - United Kingdom

9 - France

10 - Italy

13 - Azerbaijan

19 - Spain

20 - Germany

The rest of the spots for the Final will be drawn at the press conference straight after the results are known from both Semi-Finals.

In the meantime, why not enjoy the UK entry for 2012 'Love Will Set You Free'

UK entry for Eurovision 2012

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BBC Eurovision Gemma BBC Eurovision Gemma | 23:49 UK time, Saturday, 17 March 2012

The time has finally arrived! With no further ado, here is the official song for the UK for Eurovision 2012 entitled 'Love Will Set You Free.' We hope you enjoy it...

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What did you think? Was it what you expected from the UK?

Having watched the official music video for Eurovision 2012, now see how it all came together with our EXCLUSIVE behind the scenes video. There's even an interview with the music legend himself on how he feels about representing the UK at Europe's biggest song contest.

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For all the news on Engelbert's Eurovision campaign make sure you keep it right here at the BBC Eurovision website.

Engelbert Eurovision Campaign #1 - photo shoot

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BBC Eurovision Gemma BBC Eurovision Gemma | 17:35 UK time, Friday, 16 March 2012

Welcome to a series of updates on Engelbert's Eurovision campaign that we will EXCLUSIVELY bring you over the next few weeks.

Last Wednesday, Engelbert was in BBC Television Centre for his official Eurovision photo shoot. Of course, we were there with cameras in hand to get you an interview with the music legend.

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Don't forget, on Monday 19th March 2012 we will be exclusively revealing the UK song for this year. Tune in at 10am on the BBC's Eurovision website for a premiere hot off the press!

Engelbert Humperdinck for Eurovision 2012!

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BBC Eurovision Nora | 20:45 UK time, Thursday, 1 March 2012

After much speculation the BBC are proud to announce that musical legend Engelbert Humperdinck will fly the flag for Britain, as our entry for the Eurovision Song Contest 2012!

And what a song it promises to be. Engelbert will be representing the UK with a track produced by Grammy award-winning Martin Terefe (Mary J Blige, James Morrison) and co-written by Martin and Ivor Novello winner Sacha Skarbek (Adele, Lana Del Rey, James Blunt). The track is being recorded in London, L.A and Nashville.

With a gobsmacking 45 year career as one of Britain's best-loved artists, there couldn't be a more experienced performer to hold the torch for the UK's Eurovision bid in 2012. In the past few months alone, Engelbert has performed to loyal fans in Russia, Romania, Israel, Belgium and The Netherlands. On singing for Britain, Engelbert says...

"It's an absolute honour to be representing my country for this year's Eurovision Song Contest. When the BBC approached me, it just felt right for me to be a part of an institution like Eurovision. I'm excited and raring to go and want the nation to get behind me!"

Engelbert Humperdinck

Engelbert Humperdinck - singing for Britain!

So here are ten things you need to know about Engelbert Humperdink or as we affectionately like to call him... 'The Hump'.

His real name is Gerry Dorsey

One of Engelbert's iconic 'looks' was stolen by Elvis

He's sold 150 million records worldwide

Jarvis Cocker is a fan

He sang 'Lesbian Seagull' for Beavis and Butthead

He held The Beatles' 'Penny Lane' off the No 1 spot in the charts

He's broken a musical Guinness World Record

Jimi Hendrix was once his guitarist

He once owned Jayne Mansfield's former home, the 'Pink Palace'

He's never been to Spain (ok, we're stretching it a bit here)

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