What exactly are we not seeing today at Eurovision

Rehearsal for Eurovision 2023

As you’ll be aware, this year, media (and fan websites) are being locked out of week one of the 2023 Eurovision Song Contest rehearsals. Many broadcasters have complained to the organisers, to no avail, meaning the only way to get an idea of what’s going on is to hop on over to the official website. We might get TikTok snippets later along with official photos as the day progresses.

So what exactly happens in these first rehearsals?

Sound check

The first rehearsals are always busy as the artists and their teams work to get everything in place. The first thing that needs to be done is a sound check. Acts arrive an hour or so before their allotted stage time and go into a separate room to check microphone levels and in-ear monitors. This is followed by a safety briefing.

Once the briefing is complete, it’s time for the costume check. The artists need to ensure that their costumes fit properly and that they are comfortable wearing on stage. The artists may also make any necessary adjustments to the costumes, such as adding or removing accessories.

Stage time

Finally, it’s time for the artists to take their first steps on the big stage. The official site will tell us what they can about what everyone is wearing and how things look, but they’ll avoid any commentary on vocal performance or wobbles. Because let’s face it, for most of those taking part, today is a nerve-wracking moment, but it’s also exciting.

Alessandra rehearsing Queen of Kings for Norway
Alessandra rehearsing Queen of Kings for Norway / Corinne Cumming/EBU

The artists get to work on the stage for the first time, and they can start to imagine how their performance will look on television. The sound system at the Eurovision Song Contest is very powerful, and it can be difficult for artists to get used to it at first.  Their delegation heads are watching closely to see how things work and get half an hour after the rehearsal to provide input on camera angles. It’s now that decisions may be made around last-minute adjustments to performances and choreography.

Today’s rehearsals also allow the production team to see how the show is coming together and make any final adjustments.