Eurovision has announced that it is coming to America for the first time.
However, rather than the US competing in the existing contest – which already features entrants from outside of Europe, including Australia – it is launching its own version of Eurovision, dubbed The American Song Contest.
As revealed on Friday morning, The American Song Contest will feature entrants from all 50 states performing songs, who will be whittled down in a series of Qualifier Competitions before the live Semi-Finals and the grand finale.
While Eurovision traditionally airs in May, The American Song Contest is set to debut “during the holiday season of 2021”.
Martin Österdahl of the Eurovision Song Contest has said: “The Eurovision Song Contest’s unique legacy dates back 65 years and its worldwide popularity is still rising. It’s time for America to experience this spectacle, through its sister competition, the American Song Contest.
“Love of music is universal and celebration of music in different genres and styles can transcend boundaries and unite people. We are excited to have found the right partners to offer another series that our fans across the globe can fall in love with and to share this unique competition with the American people.”
This year’s Eurovision was set to take place in Rotterdam, following The Netherlands’ victory in 2019, but it was ultimately cancelled due to the coronavirus pandemic.
It’s since been confirmed that the 2021 competition will still take place in Rotterdam, with a number of contestants scheduled to take part this year returning, albeit with new songs.
Eurovision recently had its overseas profile boosted thanks to the Netflix film Eurovision Song Contest: The Story Of Fire Saga, starring Will Ferrell and Rachel McAdams as a pair of musicians from Iceland.
Although the film received mixed reviews, its closing number Husavik has received radio play here in the UK, and has even reached number 59 in the official charts.