The thirty-ninth annual Eurovision Song Contest broadcast from Point Theatre in Dublin, Ireland.
It was a record sixth win and third consecutive title for Ireland with "Rock and Roll Kids" sung by Paul Harrington and Charlie McGettigan.
The interval act marked the first performance of the now world famous Riverdance starring Michael Flatley and Jean Butler. This ensured the contest was the most commercially successful Eurovision ever held, as of 2010.
In another bid to cope with the overwhelming number of countries wanting to participate, the European Broadcasting Union ruled that the bottom five finishing countries from the previous year would not be allowed to compete to allow room for new entries. This meant big changes in what had been a fairly static line-up; Belgium, Denmark, Israel, Slovenia and Turkey were relegated and Italy and Luxembourg withdrew voluntarily.
Poland took part for the first time and caused a furore when their act sung in English for the dress rehearsal. This was not allowed and was the performance historically used by juries to decide their votes, prior to the advent of phone voting in 1997. Six countries protested for them to be disqualified but the rules dictated that thirteen must complain and so no action was taken and they were awarded second place.