Cocaine, Putin and a butt: Here are the biggest scandals in the history of Eurovision

People running up on stage and stealing microphones. A suppository for Vladimir Putin. Rumors of cocaine use during the vote count.

Lots of scandals have taken place during Eurovision over the years.

Below you can get an overview of some of the biggest and most spectacular – and the latest are from this year and last year.

Chaos a few days before the show – the stage did not work anyway
A few days before Eurovision was to kick off this year, a number of countries suddenly got busy changing their stage shows.


Here, one of this year's hosts, Laura Pausini, is seen in front of the Eurovision stage in Turin.

Here, one of this year’s hosts, Laura Pausini, is seen in front of the Eurovision stage in Turin.
Photo: YARA NARDI

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For one of the main elements on stage – a kind of metal-constructed ‘sun’ – did not work as intended.

And instead of being able to turn around as planned, it ended up having to stand still on stage.

It also affected the Danish Eurovision hope, Reddi, who initially intended to use it. You can read more about that here.

Winner was accused of taking cocaine
When the Italian rock band Måneskin won the singing competition last year, the lead singer, Damiano David, was asked at the subsequent winning press conference about rumors and accusations on social media, where several thought they had seen that he was taking drugs while the voices were being counted.

However, he vehemently denied this and immediately said that he would be tested for drugs to prove his innocence.

The test also later showed that there was nothing to catch up on.

You can read more about the whole case HERE.

Steal the singer’s microphone
In the middle while the British singer SuRie performed during Eurovision three years ago in Portugal, security people did not manage to prevent a man from the audience from jumping on stage.

Here he snatched the microphone out of the hand of the singer who was in the process of performing the song ‘Storm’.

The man, who was wearing a backpack on his back and a red scarf around his head, held onto the microphone for about 10 seconds while, according to the BBC, he said: ‘Nazis in the British media, we demand freedom!’

After the man had been captured and transported by the scene, SuRie was offered a second chance to sing her song. However, she did not want that. (Watch the scene 1.30 min. Inside the video.)

Showed bare butt on stage
The security guards suddenly also got busy during the final of the Eurovision Song Contest five years ago in Ukraine.




Photo: STRINGER

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As the voices ticked in from all over the world, among other things, the former winner of the singing competition – Jamala – entertained with his new song. But a few seconds into the song, however, an unnamed man ran with the attention when he suddenly jumped up on the elevated podium on which she was standing out among the audience.

The man – who carried an Australian flag around his shoulders – managed to run half a lap around her while she tried to keep singing before finally choosing to pull his pants down and show his butt for over 180 million TVs viewers worldwide.

Jamala continued his singing without pauses after the man was removed.

Cliff cheated for the win
For more than 40 years, there have been doubts: Should English singer Sir Cliff Richard have won when he attended Eurovision with the song ‘Congratulations’, which was a big favorite to run with the victory?




Photo: Jens Nørgaard Larsen

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The English singer finished second in the competition. The winner was Spain with the song ‘La La La’. Many believe, however, that there was cheating and agreed play involved in the competition, as the Spanish dictator Francisco Franco is believed to have bought and bribed himself to votes from the other countries in an attempt to boost tourism to the country.

In the past, Cliff Richard has also stated himself:

“I’ve lived with being number two for so many years that it would be wonderful if someone from the competition just turned around and said, ‘Cliff, you actually won the competition.'”

‘Put In’ or Putin?
It cost Georgia its place in the competition when the country lined up in 2009 with the song ‘We Don’t Wanna Put In’, which many thought was a completely hidden message to Russian President Vladimir Putin (hence ‘Put In’ in the song’s lyrics) .

The lyrics in the song read, among other things:

‘We do not wanna put in – Cuz negative move – It’s killin’ the groove – I’m gonna try to shoot in – SoMe disco tonight – Boogie with you ‘.

The organization behind the song contest – the European Broadcasting Union (EBU) – asked Georgia to either change the lyrics or choose a new song. Georgia denied this because it was not believed the song was political. The country ended up retreating.

Israel won – but Jordan would not participate
There were not exactly warm feelings between Israel and Jordan in 1978.

Jordan at least refused to show the Israeli song ‘Abanibi’, which loosely translated ironically means ‘I love you’ when it was sung on stage. If the Jordanian viewers zapped their way to the competition, they could just see a picture of flowers.

To complicate matters further, Israel actually ended up winning the competition that year. But the Jordanian TV broadcasters simply chose to stop the transmission early before the song was announced as the final winner. Instead, it was announced that Belgium – which had become number two – won the competition.

It probably had not gone with the internet today.

Appeared wearing bulletproof vest
After militant Palestinians massacred Israeli athletes during the 1972 Munich Olympics, Israeli singer Ilanit was forced to perform her song ‘Somewhere’ wearing a bulletproof vest.

The host nation Luxembourg had called in all security personnel during the competition, and according to British TV commentator Terry Wogan, the audience had been asked to remain seated in their seats while clapping after the performance of the song, as they otherwise risked being shot by the security guards.

Fortunately, nothing happened during the competition.

Israel – which made its debut that year – finished fourth.

That little too long kiss
The story of Gustav Winckler and Birthe Wilke’s fatal kiss in 1957 is known by most Grand Prix enthusiasts


Birthe Wilke and Gustav Winckler.

Birthe Wilke and Gustav Winckler.
Photo: Scanpix

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When the two singers had sung ‘The ship must sail tonight’ at the final in Frankfurt, they kissed each other on stage.

For a full 11 seconds.

Many – though probably especially Danes – have subsequently thought that it was the kiss’s fault that the song did not win, as the juries from the Catholic countries naturally could not live with that kind of fornication. The song ended in a third place.

Buhråb against Russia
In recent years, there has been a tendency for Russia to be greeted by booing from the hall.

It really gained a foothold in 2014, after the Russian twins Tolmachevy Sisters were announced as finalists on Refshaleøen in Copenhagen.

At that time, Russia had just made a ban on so-called ‘homosexual propaganda’, and it caused the audience at the Grand Prix, which has often been called a ‘gay party’, to rage.

The following year, the host country Austria chose to turn down the volume from the audience after the Russian performance so that the reactions could not be heard at home in the living rooms.

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