42 countries will participate in the 2018 Eurovision Song Contest in Lisbon. Russia is back, but (so far) Macedonia are out in the cold. At a press conference yesterday, host broadcaster RTP also revealed the slogan and theme artwork.

Eurovision 2018 logo variations

Eurovision 2018 logo variations

All Aboard! 2018 hints back to seminal UK kid's TV show Captain Pugwash. The logo though will take many forms. The blurb issued by contest organisers notes that "Europe is a collective of many, and this has also inspired RTP’s design team to introduce multiple logos for 2018, rather than a single image.

"The main logo depicting a shell comes with twelve other derivations, which are predicated on the concept of the varying life in the oceans and depict the wonders of a floating world, such as plankton and a range of other organisms which are essential for balance in aquatic ecosystems."

Who's in, who's out

42 countries will compete at the 2018 Eurovision Song Contest. Russia is back after a year of sulking. The final list released yesterday though saw no spot for Macedonia - but this is the EBU and they change their minds all the time, so don't take this 'official final list' as official or final - or even as a list for that matter.

Albania (RTSH) Cyprus (CYBC) Hungary (MTVA) Montenegro (RTCG) Slovenia (RTVSLO)
Armenia (AMPTV) Czech Republic (CT) Iceland (RÚV) The Netherlands (AVROTROS) Spain (TVE)
Australia (SBS) Denmark (DR) Ireland (RTE) Norway (NRK) Sweden (SVT)
Austria (ORF) Estonia (ERR) Israel (IPBC/KAN) Poland (TVP) Switzerland (SRG/SSR)
Azerbaijan (ICTIMAI TV) Finland (YLE) Italy (RAI) Portugal (RTP) Ukraine (UA:PBC)
Belarus (BTRC) France (FT) Latvia (LTV) Romania (TVR) United Kingdom (BBC)
Belgium (VRT) Germany (ARD/NDR) Lithuania (LRT) Russia (C1R)
Bulgaria (BNT) Georgia (GPB) Malta (PBS) San Marino (RTV)
Croatia (HRT) Greece (ERT) Moldova (TRM) Serbia (RTS)

So far, so good

Unlike last year, the contest Reference Group seem happy with preparations. RTP presented proposals for a Eurovision Village housed in Lisbon's Terreiro do Paço also known as Praça do Comercio. It opens on 4 May and runs until the day after the contest.

The show itself will take place at the Altice Arena, and this is where the press centre will be set up. The 2018 Euroclub gets a seafront location.

If you care about this sort of thing, the 'red carpet' will be blue in Lisbon.

Executive Supervisor Jon Ola Sand, noted that the group were extremely satisfied with progress.

More information concerning ticket sales will be released in the coming weeks, with plans to start selling for nine shows in late November.