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The 2019 Eurovision Song Contest in Israel Posted by on May 6, 2019 in Celebrations and Holidays, Music, Today's Israel

The Eurovision Song Contest (תַּחֲרוּת הַזֶּמֶר שֶׁל הָאֵירוֹוִיזְיוֹן) is an international song competition.

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Eurovision has been broadcast every year since its inauguration in 1956, making it the longest-running annual international television contest (תַּחֲרוּת). It is one of the most watched events, with audience (קָהָל) figures of between 100 million and 600 million internationally. Eligibility to participate (לְהִשְׁתַּתֵּף) in the contest is not determined by geographic location. Any country that is member of the European Broadcasting Union is eligible for participation.

Each participating country submits an original song (שִׁיר), composed specially for the contest. The songs are performed on live television (טֶלֶוִיזְיָה). After the performance, the countries cast votes (לְהַצְבּׅיעַ) for the other countries’ songs. The winner ascends the stage (בָּמָה) again to perform the song over, the winning delegation is awarded a trophy, and their country is invited to host the event the following year.

Israel made its debut in the Eurovision in 1973 and has won four times, including twice during the 70’s and once in 1998. Israel has participated every year since then, but twenty years passed by without a win (זְכִיָּה). When Israel won in 2018 with the song Toy, the joy of victory was enormous. In Tel-Aviv, people gathered spontaneously in Rabin Square, jumped in the water pond and danced. The president of Israel and the prime minister, too, called the singer Netta to congratulate (לְבָרֵךְ) her. They both wished: ‟שָׁנָה הַבָּאָה בּׅיְרוּשָׁלַיִם” (next year in Jerusalem).

But the 64th Eurovision Song Contest will not be held in Jerusalem. The Israeli public broadcaster was asked to present potential candidate cities. Jerusalem, and even Eilat, bid to host (לְאָרֵחַ) the contest. But eventually Tel-Aviv was chosen by the board of Eurovision. ‟We are excited to bring the Contest to a brand new city”, they declared when announcing the host city for 2019. Israel already hosted the contest twice. Both the events were accommodated by Jerusalem. For the first time, the world’s largest live music event will take place in Tel-Aviv. Watch the announcement:

The first semi-final will be held on Tuesday, 14th of May, the second semi-final on Thursday, 16th of May, and the grand finale will take place on Saturday, 18th of May. 41 countries will participate, but only 26 will get into the grand finale. The slogan of the Tel-Aviv Eurovision is ‟Dare to Dream” (הָעֵזוּ לַחְלוֺם).

Text vocabulary

The Eurovision Song Contest = תַּחֲרוּת הַזֶּמֶר שֶׁל הָאֵירוֹוִיזְיוֹן

Television = טֶלֶוִיזְיָה

Song = שִׁיר

Contest = תַּחֲרוּת

Audience = קָהָל

Stage = בָּמָה

To participate = לְהִשְׁתַּתֵּף

To cast a vote = לְהַצְבּׅיעַ

Win = זְכִיָּה, נִצָּחוֹן

To congratulate = לְבָרֵךְ

To host = לְאָרֵחַ

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