Around 3,000 tickets are set to be made available for displaced Ukrainians living in the UK to attend this year’s Eurovision Song Contest.
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The 2023 competition will take place in Liverpool in May, who beat Glasgow to stage the contest on behalf of Ukraine after organisers deemed the country unable to host the event due to their ongoing war with Russia.
The Government has agreed to make tickets available for the event so that they can mark Kalush Orchestra‘s victory following last year’s event.
Those who are based in the UK via the Homes for Ukraine Scheme, the Ukraine Family Scheme and the Ukraine Extension Scheme will be able to apply for tickets, for all nine live shows, including the semi-finals, the preview shows and the live final on May 13.
Further details of the application process for the tickets for displaced Ukrainians will be announced in the coming weeks.
Although Ukraine won the competition in 2022 it was unable to host due to Russia’s invasion in the country.
A further £10 million in funding has also been allocated to help support Liverpool City Council and the BBC’s partnerships with Ukrainian artists and performers at the event as well as support security, visa arrangements and other operational aspects of the contest, as well as Liverpool City Council’s schools, community and volunteering programmes.
Culture Secretary Lucy Frazer said: “Putin’s illegal invasion of Ukraine means the contest cannot be held where it should be. But we are honoured to be supporting the BBC and Liverpool in hosting it on their behalf, and are determined to make sure the Ukrainian people are at the heart of this event.
“Today’s announcement means that thousands of tickets will be offered to those displaced by war, so that they can take part in a show honouring their homeland, their culture and their music. As always, we stand together with the Ukrainian people and their fight for freedom.”
Mayor of Liverpool Joanne Anderson added: “Ukraine is at the heart of all our Eurovision host city plans. Working with our Ukrainian community we are shaping a thought-provoking and powerful programme that is all-encompassing and representative of modern Ukraine – inspiring, poignant, funny, beautiful and moving.
“We’re delighted with the news that displaced Ukrainians are being given the opportunity to come to the city in May – this is their Eurovision after all. Our team has been working tirelessly behind the scenes and we can’t wait to give them a warm Liverpool welcome and, fingers crossed, do them, the rest of the Ukraine and the UK proud.”
Last month, the stage design for this year’s Eurovision Song Contest was revealed.
Designed by New York firm Yellow Studio, the stage design is meant to look like a wide hug enfolding the M&S Bank Arena in Liverpool.
The city also hosted the handover draw last month, which determined which countries would be in which semi finals. Ukraine, the UK and the rest of the “big five” (France, Spain, Germany and Italy) will all go straight to the final.