As the BBC continues its preparations to host the world’s biggest music event, the senior production team bringing the Eurovision Song Contest 2023 to a global audience of over 160 million is announced.
BBC Studios Entertainment & Music have assembled a team who bring a wealth of live experience to lead the production of this milestone event in British broadcasting.
Nikki Parsons will be lead director on the Grand Final. Since 2006 Nikki has been Series Director of the BBC’s Strictly Come Dancing (the UK version of Dancing With The Stars), and has huge expertise in directing live entertainment shows in UK and US. She was also one of the BBC’s directors for the coverage of both Queen Elizabeth II’s and the Duke of Edinburgh’s funerals.
Richard Valentine is a BAFTA and Royal Television Society award winning Multi Camera director whose credits include Concert for Ukraine, Global Citizen London, One Love Manchester and Live 8. Richard has also worked with Beyonce, Foo Fighters and Duran Duran.
The third name is Ollie Bartlett who recently worked on Glastonbury, A Secret Night with Kylie Minogue, Soccer Aid, The Big Night of Musicals, The National Lottery’s New Year’s Eve. Ollie was also one of the BBC’s directors on the coverage of Queen Elizabeth II’s funeral.
BBC Studios have also appointed Dan Shipton as Lead Creative Director for the Eurovision Song Contest 2023. Dan will oversee various creative elements of the shows including the interval acts and the Flag Parade working collaboratively with German Nenov who has been appointed by Ukrainian broadcaster UA:PBC as their Creative Director.
Dan has huge expertise as a Creative Director of many major events, tours and performances. Recent credits include Little Mix: The Confetti Tour, Westlife: The Wildest Dreams Tour, Ava Max (European promotional campaign including EMAs performance), and Jurassic World Live Tour. Along with Marvin Dietmann he has also been the Creative Director of a number of Eurovision Song Contest performances including Sam Ryder in 2022.
Music director and set design
Music Director for the Eurovision Song Contest 2023 will be Kojo Samuel. Kojo will oversee the music production and arrangements on the show’s interval acts and the Flag Parade. Kojo has recently worked with multiple artists including Stormzy’s iconic Glastonbury set, Jess Glynne, Rudimental, Rita Ora, AJ Tracey and Ella Henderson. He was also the Music Executive of the 2022 Commonwealth Games Closing Ceremony.
Julio Himede takes up the role of Set Designer for the 2023 Eurovision Song Contest. Julio has designed sets for many major events and TV shows. Credits include the 64th Annual Grammy Awards, the 2018-2021 MTV Video Music Awards, the 2016-2021 MTV EMAs, Disney’s Beauty and The Beast: A 30th Celebration and the American Song Contest.
Sound and lights
As Head of Sound, BAFTA- winner Robert Edwards, will bring his Eurovision experience to the 2023 event as he was previously Sound Supervisor for the 2018 Eurovision Song Contest in Lisbon. Other credits include The Masked Singer UK, Britain’s Got Talent, X Factor and more recently Robert mixed the world feeds for the Opening and Closing Ceremonies of the Olympic Games in Tokyo and Beijing, and was part of the Host Broadcaster Team for the recent World Cup Coverage in Qatar.
The Lighting Designer will be Tim Routledge. Tim is a multi-award winning Lighting Designer of BAFTA and Royal Television Society Awards. His credits include high profile live events and concerts such as Stormzy’s 2019 Glastonbury Festival set, Spice Girls ‘Spice World’ UK Stadium Tour and Beyonce’s ‘Formation’ World Tour. TV credits include X Factor, Concert for Ukraine, Commonwealth Games Opening Ceremony 2014, I Can See Your Voice and Big Night of Musicals.
Throughout the production, the team at BBC Studios are working closely in partnership with their Ukrainian counterparts at UA:PBC on all creative elements of the three live shows. Leading the team at UA:PBC are Oksana Skybinska (Ukrainian Eurovision Head of Delegation), Tetiana Semenova (Executive Producer of programmes and events in Ukraine including The Brain, New Year’s Night and Happy Birthday Ukraine, director group producer Game of Talents) and German Nenov (Creative Director and Music Video Director who has worked on stage performances and music videos for the likes of NK, Tina Karol and Zlata Ognevich and TV shows Game Of Talents, The Brain).
The previously announced lead production team for BBC Studios are Andrew Cartmell (Executive Producer), James O’Brien (Exec in Charge of Production), Lee Smithurst (Head of Show) and Twan Van De Nieuwenhuijzen (Head of Contest).
Leading the entire project is Managing Director BBC, Martin Green CBE working with Rachel Ashdown, Lead Commissioner for the BBC.