You are currently viewing Your Guide To Eurovision 2024: Semi Final 1

Eurovision 2024 kicks off tonight, live from the Malmö Arena in Sweden!

Tonight, 15 countries will participate for the chance to qualify for the final. With 10 spots available, the artists will be doing all they can to impress the public at home.

Here’s your guide to Eurovision 2024 Semi Final 1!

The Hosts

Petra Mede

Petra Mede will be a familiar face to both fans and casual viewers – this will her third time hosting the contest! We first saw her host alone back in 2013, and again in 2016 alongside Måns Zelmerlöw – most notably giving us the now iconic ‘Love Love Peace Peace’ interval. Petra also hosted ‘Eurovision’s Greatest Hits’ in 2015 with UK commentator and host of the 2023 contest, Graham Norton.

Outside of Eurovision, Petra has hosted an array of Swedish television shows since her career transitioned to presenting and comedy in 2005. Credits include Melodifestivalen 2009 and 2016, Let’s Dance, Stjärnornas Stjärna and the Guldbagge Awards. She’s also an actress, starring in Netflix’s Bonus Family and voicing the Swedish dub of Destiny in Disney’s Finding Dory. Before her career took off, she worked as a dancer and backing singer – briefly for Eurovision 1988 winner, Celine Dion!

Malin Åkerman

Malin Åkerman is a model and actress who grew up between both Sweden and Canada, now living in the USA. Malin has starred in 27 Dresses, Dollface, How I Met Your Mother and Children’s Hospital, and recently featured in Swedish film Ett Sista Race.

Credit: EBU

Competing Entries and Running Order

Semi Final 1 features 15 contestants.

In a change to proceedings, the three Big 5 countries that vote in Semi Final 1 will be performing for the first time in full during the live semi-final, between the competing semi finalists. The order is as follows…

The UK’s Olly Alexander will perform ‘Dizzy’ after Ireland, and before Ukraine.

Germany’s Isaak will perform ‘Always On The Run’ between Iceland and Slovenia.

Host country Sweden will be on between Moldova and Azerbaijan. They’re represented by Marcus & Martinus with ‘Unforgettable’ – their position in the final has already been drawn in the Head Of Delegation meeting back in March, seeing them open the final on May 11th 2024.

The running order for the show is as follows:

Credit: EBU

The Favourites

Only 10 countries will qualify for the final, meaning 5 countries will miss out on performing their entries again. The current favourites to qualify are:

Croatia 🇭🇷: Baby Lasagna – ‘Rim Tim Tagi Dim’

Croatia aren’t just the favourites in Semi Final 1 – they’re one of the big favourites to win the entire competition. Should they do so, it’ll be the first time the contest ever heads to Croatia – a chance for a new country to display their culture to viewers and visitors from across the world. ‘Rim Tim Tagi Dim’ has all the ingredients of a great Eurovision song – a catchy tune, a chorus that’ll get the crowd singing along and, laced within all of it, a message that reflects the current mood of young Croatians who have frequently been leaving their hometowns in pursuit of bigger and better opportunities, whilst also touching on Baby Lasagna’s own anxiety. The story behind how the song even got to Eurovision is almost fairytale like – originally not included for Dora, Croatia’s national final, it was added last minute after another participant dropped out. ‘Rim Tim Tagi Dim’ resonated instantly with listeners, especially those in Croatia who could relate to it’s message and see that there may be a path to Eurovision victory for the first time in their 21 year history.

Ukraine 🇺🇦 : Jerry Heil & Alyona Alyona – ‘Teresa & Maria’

Ukraine is always one to watch in Eurovision, with a 100% qualification rate – the only competing country in the contest to have this title. After winning in 2022 with ‘Stefania’, and having the contest hosted on their behalf in Liverpool last year due to the ongoing Russian invasion, this years edition of their national final Vidbir was won by Jerry Heil & Alyona Alyona with ‘Teresa & Maria’. Still one of the favourites to win, Ukraine can’t be counted out of the race to take home the microphone trophy this year, and if it happens, we can only hope the contest will be able to be hosted in a safe and free Ukraine.

Lithuania 🇱🇹: Silvester Belt – ‘Luktelk’

Lithuania are embracing pop this year, opting to choose Silvester Belt with ‘Luktelk’. Silvester and the song have drawn comparisons to the recent output by Troye Sivan, which may just be a stoke of genius on their part.

Lithuanian audiences aren’t usually the type to get up and dance during performances – but that all changed at the Eurovizija final. Not only did ‘Luktelk’ have people up on their feet, but it had them singing along too – a moment you could tell meant a lot to Silvester. In Malmö, this is sure to bring the party vibes, and could put Lithuania on track to receive one of their best ever results.

Finland 🇫🇮: Windows95Man – ‘No Rules!’

A denim egg, a man called ‘Windows95Man’, shorts that at one point burst with pyrotechnics – ‘No Rules!’ isn’t just a fun song about being yourself, but it’s everything Eurovision is within an entry for casual viewers. Despite legal issues surrounding the acts actual outfit (the Windows logo), and criticism post-UMK win for it’s musical style and lack of “winner potential” a year after Käärijä stormed to 2nd place with ‘Cha Cha Cha’, ‘No Rules!’ is a televote magnet that’s already reached beyond the circle of Eurovision fans and into the general public. Nothing can ever be predicted at Eurovision, and where some acts may disconnect from those who take this contest a little more seriously, they connect with those who tune in once a year for one of the biggest, and wildest, nights in music. Finland know how to sell an entry like this, and if we use Käärijä’s catchphrase ‘It’s crazy, it’s party’ and apply it to ‘No Rules!’ – it fits like a glove.

Ireland 🇮🇪: Bambie Thug – ‘Doomsday Blue’

Bringing the witch-y vibes to Semi 1 is Ireland’s Bambie Thug, who has become a certified favourite since the rehearsal in Malmö last week. Ireland haven’t qualified since 2018, and have sent a stream of pop tracks since that haven’t quite got them past the semi finals. That could all be set to change with ‘Doomsday Blue’ however – not only does it stray completely away from the “safe pop” they’re becoming known for but it’s an entry you are guaranteed to have an opinion on – a positive sign for Eurovision. Should Bambie make it, they’ll be the first Irish artist to make the final in the 2020s, and are shooting up the odds to potentially take home the trophy for the eighth time in Ireland’s Eurovision history.

The Voting

Alongside the 15 competing countries voting, 3 of the Big 5 (plus the host) will also vote. In semi final 1, The UK, Germany and Sweden will all vote.

This year the voting will remain 100% televote only, with the ‘Rest Of The World’ vote returning. Countries who aren’t competing in the contest can use this to vote for their own favourites in the contest at a cost of €0.99. More information on this can be found at

The Intervals

Opening: Chanel, Eleni Foureira & Eric Saade

In the first semi final, our opening acts will be three past Eurovision stars who have made a huge mark on the contest, with their songs becoming instant classics for fans. They’ll be performing these songs at the start of the show.

Chanel represented Spain in 2022 with ‘Slomo’ – giving Spain their best result since the beginning of the millennium, and giving us one of the best dance-breaks the contest has ever seen. ‘Slomo’ sailed to 3rd place in the contest, and has seen Chanel enter the history books for her incredible performance in Turin.

Eleni Foureira came to the contest in 2018 as Cyprus’ representative. Her song ‘Fuego’ became a huge hit, and was another one that, like Chanel, is remembered for the dance routine and “hair-ography’. ‘Fuego’ wasn’t tipped to win before rehearsals, but entered everyone’s radar as soon as she stepped onto the stage in Lisbon, eventually taking Cyprus to 2nd – their best result to date.

Eric Saade began the Swedish renaissance in the contest in 2011 with ‘Popular’ – coming 3rd and paving the way for the stream of slick, pop entries we’ve seen from the nation since. Despite not winning, Eric became a star in Sweden and has since attempted to represent them on two more occasions – most recently in 2021 with ‘Every Minute’, which came 2nd in Melodifestivalen.

Interval: Benjamin Ingrosso

Benjamin Ingrosso has gone from representing Sweden back in 2018 with ‘Dance You Off’ to becoming one of the nations biggest stars. After entering Eurovision, Benjamin released his debut album Identification, and started his own TV show Benjamin’s where he invites celebrity friends and his famous family around for dinner. He’s released four more albums since 2020, and most recently has achieved a number #1 single with ‘Kite’ – which he also released as a remix alongside the UK’s entrant Olly Alexander. His most recent release is ‘Honey Boy’, which is collaboration between himself, Disco Machine, Shenseea and Nile Rodgers. At Eurovision, Benjamin will be performing a medley of his most popular songs, and will be joined by 21 people on stage – referencing his now infamous televote score back in Lisbon.

Interval: Johnny Logan

He’s back – the original Eurovision double winner Johnny Logan will take to the stage in Malmö during the interval! He won in 1980 with ‘What’s Another Year’, and again in 1987 with ‘Hold Me Now’. He remained the only person to win Eurovision twice until Loreen sailed to victory last year with ‘Tattoo’ – which also equalled Ireland’s record of wins. Nonetheless, Johnny remains as a legend in the Eurovision history books, and technically has actually achieved victory three times, as a writer for Linda Martin’sWhy Me?’ in 1991. He’ll be performing Loreen’s first winning song, ‘Euphoria’.

So that’s Semi Final 1 covered! There’s only one thing left to say…

Let The Eurovision Song Contest 2024 begin!

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