Eurovision 2023 – BBC Radio 2 programmes and highlights

Eurovision 2023 - BBC Radio 2 programmes and highlights

BBC Radio 2 is the home of Eurovision 2023 on UK radio, with programmes across the network covering the news and building up to the excitement of the live Eurovision Grand Final which will be hosted this year on Radio 2 by Rylan and Scott Mills.

Continuing what has become a touching annual tradition, Scott and Rylan will toast broadcasting legend Sir Terry Wogan, former Radio 2 presenter and Eurovision commentator, before contestant number nine’s performance.

Rylan says: “Eurovision is my favourite time of the year, I cannot wait! And I’m so excited and absolutely buzzing to be hosting the Eurovision Grand Final on Radio 2, the biggest and best music event in the world, with my partner-in-crime Scott Mills. We can’t wait to bring listeners closer to the action than ever before, with all the fun, excitement and backstage gossip from what promises to be an unforgettable night.”

Scott says: “I can’t begin to describe how excited I am to be presenting the Grand Final of the Eurovision Song Contest on Radio 2. I’ve had the great pleasure of being involved with Eurovision in various ways over the years, from commentating alongside Graham Norton to singing karaoke with the contestants, but presenting from the Grand Final in Liverpool is the ultimate childhood dream come true. Rylan and I will be going all out so please come and join the party live on Radio 2!”

Paddy says: “I’m walking on sunshine to join Radio 2 live in Liverpool hosting the Eurovision semi-finals. Sam Ryder broke the UK Eurovision spell last year and I hope it’s magic for Mae in 2023.”

Helen Thomas, Head of Radio 2, says: “The 2023 Eurovision Song Contest will be a very special event and who better to host Radio 2’s coverage of the Grand Final than our very own Scott and Rylan. And I’m delighted that for the first time, Radio 2 will be bringing our listeners all the drama and fun from the semi-finals, hosted by Paddy O’Connell. With years of Eurovision experience under his belt, Paddy is the perfect guide for fans and also those who may be discovering Eurovision for the first time.”

In addition to live commentary there are a selection of specials already available exclusively on BBC Sounds as part of the Celebrating Eurovision season.

Laura Busson, Radio 2 Commissioning Executive, says: “As the radio home of Eurovision in the UK, BBC Radio 2 is going to be building up the excitement to the Grand Final with a packed schedule of Eurovision programming across the network and on BBC Sounds. The Radio 2 listeners and Eurovision have such a rich history so we’re delighted to deliver so many Eurovision treats to our audience who have loved listening to and watching the contest for decades. Do tune into Paddy during the Semi-Finals, and Rylan and Scott broadcasting live from the Grand Final in Liverpool.”

The Zoe Ball Breakfast Show

From Tuesday 9 May to Thursday 11 May, The Zoe Ball Breakfast Show celebrates Eurovision, with Zoe in London and Richie Anderson in Liverpool. Richie will be broadcasting from iconic locations across the city, meeting Eurovision legends and local super-fans.

Then on Friday 12 May Zoe and the team will be live from the centre of Liverpool ahead of a huge weekend for the city. Zoe will be joined by a host of special guests including Eurovision legends, super-fans and some of those involved in this year’s contest. Richie Anderson will be out and about, meeting people from across the continent and beyond who have travelled to Liverpool to join the party. Whether or not Richie will be dressed in an inflatable spacesuit is yet to be confirmed! A BBC Audio production.

Jeremy Vine

The Jeremy Vine Show will come live from Liverpool on Friday 12 May and look at what the event means to Ukraine and Ukrainians who have fled the war to come here. Jeremy will get the latest from Kyiv and talk to Ukrainian musicians such as Kalush Orchestra, those who have had to settle in the UK to escape the conflict and charities in Liverpool who are helping them. A BBC Audio production.

Scott Mills

Scott Mills will be broadcasting his show live from Liverpool on Wednesday 10 May and Friday 12 May with Richie Anderson in the hot seat presenting the show on Tuesday 9 May and Thursday 11 May (as Scott prepares to host the live Semi-Finals on BBC One and BBC iPlayer with Rylan).

Scott will be bringing all the gossip from the Semi-Finals as well as soaking up the city’s excitement. Expect to hear from contestants, fans and – no doubt – Scott’s Eurovision husband, Rylan! A BBC Audio production

Michelle Visage

Michelle Visage is obsessed with Eurovision; the frocks, the hair, the dancing, the drama! Hear for yourself as this Eurovision-eve (Friday 12 May) Michelle is going all out with the celebrations. For her Handbag Hits in the final half-hour of the show, Michelle will be playing non-stop Eurovision bops, ending with a dramatic Eurovision edition of Lip Sync anthem. As Michelle says every week: wherever you lay your handbag, that is your dance floor! A Mostest Productions production

Eurovision Super Saturday (13 May)

Dermot O’Leary (8am-10am)

In the build up to the Eurovision Grand Final across the day on Radio 2, Dermot – welcomes the United Kingdom’s 1969 Eurovision winner, Lulu, into the studio. She was actually the joint winner that year, with Boom Bang-a-Bang, sharing the honour with three other countries! An Ora et Labora production

Claudia Winkleman (10am-1pm)

Ahead of the big night in Liverpool, Claudia builds up to the Grand Final with the best music and some very special guests. A TBI Media production

Your Ultimate UK Eurovision Song (1-3pm)

It’s the UK Eurovision songs you never got to vote for, because we aren’t allowed to vote for our own entry… until now!

The UK has participated in the Eurovision Song Contest a total of 64 times. In those years, we’ve witnessed iconic performances such as Lulu’s Boom Bang-a-Bang in 1969, Bucks Fizz with Making Your Mind Up in 1981, Katrina and the Waves with Love Shine a Light in 1997 and, most recently, Sam Ryder took second place at the 2022 Contest with his (inter)stellar performance of Space Man.

In March, Radio 2 listeners were asked to cast up to five votes for their favourite songs of all the UK entrants that have competed in the Eurovision final since our first entry back in 1957 (with the exception of the cancelled 2020 contest and the 2023 entry). Today Steve Wright counts down the Top 40 songs as voted for by the public, unveiling Your Ultimate UK Eurovision Song in a programme offering listeners the chance to relive the music, memories and moments from past Eurovision contests.. A BBC Audio Production. This programme will be available on BBC Sounds from Monday 24th April.

Sophie Ellis Bextor’s Eurovision Kitchen Disco (3-6pm)

Eurovision super-fan and Kitchen Disco Queen Sophie Ellis-Bextor brings you three hours of the best music from everyone’s favourite song contest. In the first hour, she’ll be playing wall-to-wall Eurovision winning songs – nothing but the champions! Featuring Månaskin, Netta, Måns Zelmerlöw, Conchita, Lordi, Alexander Rybak and loads more.

In the second hour, Sophie shines a spotlight on the most famous names to compete in the contest, with classic entries from Celine Dion, ABBA, Olivia Newton-John, Jedward, Blue, Bucks Fizz… and Flo Rida!

And in the third hour, Sophie is celebrating the songs that came oh so close to victory, as she plays the very best second place finishers in Eurovision history. Featuring Sam Ryder, Mahmood, Eleni Foureira, The Common Linnets, Barbara Pravi and many more. A Listen production.

All Request Eurovision Party (6-8pm)

Richie Anderson gets the UK ready for the Grand Final live as he plays two hours of Eurovision party requests from listeners. He’ll be hearing from parties, large and small, happening across the country before handing over to Scott Mills and Rylan in Liverpool. A BBC Audio production.

Eurovision Grand Final (8pm until the Grand Final finishes)

Eurovision super-fans, Rylan and Scott Mills, will be live from Liverpool bringing the glitz and glamour of the Grand Final to BBC Radio 2.

Scott Mills has been part of the BBC’s Eurovision team since 2011, when he commentated on the Semi-Finals live from Düsseldorf. Broadcaster Rylan has been involved in the contest since Lisbon 2018 – he also hosted this year’s Allocation Draw live from Liverpool in January. Both are life-long Eurovision fans and even have their own handbook, for tips and tricks behind the scenes at the contest.

It will be the culmination of a week in the city for Scott and Rylan, as they are also hosting both the Semi-Finals live on BBC One and BBC iPlayer. Meanwhile Scott’s afternoon show on Radio 2 will be broadcast live from Liverpool from Tuesday to Friday (2-4pm) that week. A BBC Audio production.

OJ’s Eurovision After Party (approx. 11.20pm-2am)

The results might be in, but once the Grand Final has finished the Eurovision party continues with O.J. Borg with a show which will be simulcast with BBC Radio Merseyside. OJ will be making the most of this historic event, playing the hits of Eurovision past and present, and speaking to fans at the heart of the action in Liverpool and across the country. A Mostest Productions production.

BBC Radio 2

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