Loreen of Sweden has become the first woman, and only the second person, to win the Eurovision Song Contest twice.
The UK, which came second last year, was hosting this year’s contest on behalf of 2022’s winner Ukraine, who could not stage the show due to the Russian invasion.
Singers and groups from 26 countries took to the stage at the M&S Bank Arena to compete for the Eurovision Trophy.
As well as packing out the arena, fans filled the Eurovision Village in Liverpool to cheer on their favourites.
The night started with a surprise video appearance of the Princess of Wales playing the piano.
The countries which took part tonight were UK, France, Italy, Spain, Germany, Sweden, Croatia, Moldova, Switzerland, Finland, Czechia, Norway, Israel, Portugal, Serbia, Ukraine, Albania, Cyprus, Estonia, Belgium, Austria, Lithuania, Poland, Australia, Armenia and Slovenia.
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Abba also won when the contest was staged in the UK.
The event took place in Brighton as Luxembourg, having won in both 1972 and 1973, declined to host it for a second successive year due to the cost involved.
Presenter Julia Sanina was hugged by co-hosts Alesha Dixon and Hannah Waddingham at the end of the final.
Dixon said this year’s contest was something “that will live in our hearts for a very long time”.
Winner Loreen took to the stage to perform her song Tattoo for a second time and close the show.
Loreen returned to the stage after her win was announced and was handed the trophy by last year’s winners Kalush Orchestra of Ukraine.
She said: “This is overwhelming. I’m so happy and I’m so thankful.”
Addressing the crowd, she said: “Thank you for this, this is for you.”
Prime Minister Rishi Sunak tweeted: “Liverpool, you’ve done the United Kingdom and Ukraine proud. What a fantastic celebration for #Eurovision2023 Congratulations @Loreen_Talhaoui
“Sweden it’s over to you.”
The UK’s Mae Muller came second from last, with a total of 24 points.
The singer, who previously triumphed in 2012, narrowly beat Finland’s Kaarija after the public and jury votes were combined.
She had performed her anthemic dance-pop song Tattoo for the international voting public, singing from an illuminated enclosed space on the stage.
Her win means she equals the record held by Irish singer Johnny Logan, who triumphed at the contest in both 1980 and 1987.
Loreen of Sweden has become the first woman, and only the second person, to win the Eurovision Song Contest twice.
Finland’s Kaarija was awarded 376 points in the public vote, taking him to the top of the leaderboard with 526 points.
Ukraine’s Eurovision entry Tvorchi got 189 points in the public vote, making a total of 243 points.
UK entrant Mae Muller got nine points in the public vote, making a total of 24 points, it has been announced.
The crowd booed as the results were announced in the arena.
The UK jury has awarded its “douze points”, 12 points, to Loreen from Sweden, with Catherine Tate reading the result from inside the M&S Bank Arena in Liverpool.
At the end of the jury vote results, Loreen led with 340 with Israel’s Noa Kirel in second with 177 and Italy’s Marco Mengoni close behind in third with 176.
With only a handful of countries’ jury votes left, Loreen from Sweden led with 277 points, while Marco Mengoni from Italy was in second with 148, and Israel’s Noa Kirel in third with 142.
Sweden continues to lead so far with 194 points.
Loreen from Sweden leads the way so far with 78 points from the Eurovision juries and countries including Ireland giving her “douze points”, meaning 12.
Ukraine gave the United Kingdom four points, it was revealed as the first jury votes of the night were announced.
Their 12 points went to Sweden, whose entrant Loreen performed song Tattoo.
Voting for the Eurovision Song Contest has closed.
The audience at the grand final counted down from 10 before the hosts announced everyone should “stop voting now”.
Presenter Graham Norton told the crowd: “A fine countdown. One of the best.”
Former Eurovision contestants sang Merseyside classics as part of the The Liverpool Songbook performance, showcasing the region’s music.
Mahmood, from Italy, began the performance singing John Lennon’s Imagine accompanied with an orchestra, before Israel’s Netta descended from the ceiling singing to Dead Or Alive’s You Spin Me Round (Like A Record).
Iceland’s Dadi Frey performed Atomic Kitten hit Whole Again, with backing dancers wearing jumpers featuring his face and the audience singing along. Cronelia Jakobs sat on a chair with her feet in water to perform I Turn To You by Spice Girl Mel C.
Merseyside’s own Sonia, who competed in Eurovision in 1993, entertained with a rendition of her entry Better The Devil You Know after clips of her time in the competition was shown on the big screen. Dutch singer Duncan Laurence then performed Liverpool FC anthem You’ll Never Walk Alone as the crowd waved flags in the air.
He was joined on stage by hosts and performers, while Ukrainian winner Ruslana was shown on the steps of the Golden Gate in Kyiv singing along, joined by people waving the country’s national flag.
An audience member was shown in tears as the emotional performance concluded and host Graham Norton said: “A tear in my silly old eye. You don’t see that every day.”
Last year’s UK entrant Sam Ryder performed with dancers wearing prosthetic limbs.
Wearing a trademark sequinned jumpsuit, reminiscent of his 2022 Eurovision outfit, he sang new single Mountain after all the countries’ entrants had performed.
A group of dancers all with prosthetic limbs appeared on stage with Ryder and Queen drummer Roger Taylor.
The singer was then joined by a troupe of drummers as the stage lit up.
Voting is now open for the Eurovision Song Contest final.
Presenters Alesha Dixon, Julia Sanina and Hannah Waddingham changed into their second outfits of the evening as they, along with co-host Graham Norton, announced votes could be cast for the 26 countries taking part in the competition final.
The UK’s Mae Muller took to the stage for a playful performance of her track, I Wrote A Song.
The 25-year-old from north London was the 26th and final act to perform for the international voting public.
She sung from atop a raised platform wearing a slim, black outfit, flanked by four dancers in sheer, pink tops.
Afterwards, she said: “Thank you Eurovision. I love you, I love you, I love you.”
Croatian act Let 3 stripped to their underwear as they performed Mama SC!
Lead singer Zoran Prodanovic appeared to rub his crotch after revealing the white Y-fronts and vest underneath his outfit.
The British Ambassador to Ukraine, Dame Melinda Simmons, has said Ukraine was under fire from Russian missiles on Saturday as the Eurovision Song Contest took place, including the university home town of the Ukrainian act Tvorchi.
“Meanwhile, this #Eurovision night Ukraine is under another Russian missile attack,” Dame Melinda tweeted.
“Reminder that the reason why (Ukraine) could not host this event is because (Russia) continues to invade and the people of (Ukraine) live in continuing danger.”
Praising Ukraine’s entrants in the song contest, Dame Melinda added: “Tvorchi (definitely) win the prize for graphics. The staging was brilliant.
“And poignant as their university home town of Ternopil was targeted by (Russian) missiles this eve.”
Lithuanian entry Monika Linkyte with her song Stay and Israel’s Noa Kirel performing Unicorn followed Germany’s Lord Of The Lost.
Israel’s Noa Kirel broke out into a dance routine as she sang Unicorn.
Moves from the song have gone viral on TikTok ahead of Eurovision.
Kirel finished her performance by asking the audience: “You wanna see me dance?”
The crowd responded with a scream before she performed energetic dance moves.
Alessandra performed Queen Of The Kings for Norway.
The singer wore a bodysuit and cape with a gold crown-like headpiece.
Members of the audience waved Ukrainian flags as the pair took to the stage.
The electronic duo, whose country won the competition last year but were unable to host due to the Russian invasion, wore black long-sleeved tops with metallic heart detail and wide-legged trousers.
Presenter Mel Giedroyc donned a milkmaid’s outfit to appear in the back of shot behind Hannah Waddingham.
Giedroyc, who is commentating on the show with Graham Norton, wore an outfit in the style of the 2014 Polish entry Donatan and Cleo.
She appeared to be churning butter in a suggestive manner as Waddingham introduced Armenia.
The BBC Eurovision Twitter account posted: “Mel Giedroyc as a butter churning Polish milkmaid! Give her and NTA right now!”
Belgium entrant Gustaph sang Because Of You wearing a white wide-brimmed hat, pink parachute pants and a white blazer.
He was joined on stage by a vogueing dancer and three other backing performers.
Australian band Voyager performed Promise, with frontman Danny Estrin arriving on stage in a car.
The band wore sequinned suits for the song.
Finland’s Kaarija performed Cha Cha Cha wearing a illuminous green bolero-style jacket with spikes around the neck.
The artist is vying with Sweden as favourite in the contest.
He began the performance in a wooden crate which he broke his way out of and climbed on top of before being joined by backing dancers in bright pink.
Italy’s Marco Mengoni sang Due Vite in the Eurovision final.
The performance was the second in the contest for Mengoni, who finished in seventh place in 2013.
He wore a silver jewelled vest and leather trousers and sang in front of two dancers who appeared to be bouncing.
Contest favourite Loreen, who won for Sweden in 2012, performed Tattoo for the Eurovision audience.
She wore a flesh-coloured outfit and danced in an illuminated enclosed space on the stage.
Spain’s entrant Blanca Paloma performed her song Eaea.
The singer, wearing white trousers and a red one-shouldered top, was accompanied by dancers in red dresses as smoke filled the stage floor.
Host Alesha Dixon referenced the royals in a rap after the sixth song.
She said: “Six acts in and the competition is in full swing, what a week it’s been.
“All killers, no filler, big up King Charles and Queen Camilla.”
French entry La Zarra was the sixth act to perform, wearing a black sparkly full-length dress and circular headpiece.
She was elevated above the stage on a platform for song Evidemment.
Austrian entry Teya & Salena were the first contestants to perform in the Eurovision final.
The duo took to the stage to sing Who The Hell Is Edgar?
Presenter Alesha Dixon wore a one-shouldered blue sparkly dress as she appeared on stage, while Ukrainian presenter Julia Sanina wore a full-length yellow dress with a structured neckline.
Hannah Waddingham wore an off the shoulder purple metallic dress.
Presenter Graham Norton wore a black suit with silver detail.
Graham Norton welcomed viewers to the final alongside alongside co-hosts Alesha Dixon, Hannah Waddingham and Ukrainian singer Julia Sanina.
Waddingham said the UK was “so very proud” to be “taking the reins” and hosting on behalf of Ukraine, while Sanina thanked the British public.
Norton added: “United we are, well out here. But backstage the competition is fierce.”
Chemical Brothers Hey Boy Hey Girl was played as the countries competing in the final began to walk onto the Eurovision stage with their national flags.
Former Ukrainian contestants Go_A, Tina Karol and Jamala, who won for the Ukraine in 2016, performed in between the contestants taking part in the flag parade.
After the final contestant, the UK’s Mae Muller walked out onto the stage, the crowd were treated to a performance from Verka Serduchka, who entered the contest for the Ukraine in 2007.
Kate’s contribution to the opening film involved a short, instrumental piano performance created by Joe Price and Kojo Samuel, and it was recorded earlier this month in the Crimson Drawing Room of Windsor Castle.
She was wearing a blue Jenny Packham dress and earrings which belonged to the late Queen.
A troupe of drummers joined Kalush Orchestra on stage to open the grand final, with some members of the folk-rap outfit performing from on top of a giant open palm, while pyrotechnics lit up the auditorium.
The Princess of Wales has appeared playing the piano in a pre-recorded opening video for the Eurovision final.
She was recorded playing the piano earlier this month at Windsor Castle, Kensington Palace said.
Kate was shown playing a short instrumental piece lasting around 10 seconds.
The grand final of the Eurovision Song Contest has kicked off in Liverpool with a skit featuring last year’s winners Kalush Orchestra performing their hit Stefania with runner-up Sam Ryder playing guitar on the top of the Liver Building and Andrew Lloyd Webber on piano.
Israeli Eurovision champion Netta Barzilai has said the UK’s hosting of Ukraine is an “example for amazing humanity”.
The singer, who triumphed at the contest in 2019 with her song Toy, suggested she herself comes from “not an easy place” and called for the international community to “always be with your hand out”.
Presenter Graham Norton will be dividing his time between the stage and the commentary box this evening.
The UK’s Eurovision entry Mae Muller has received messages of support from the world of politics, as Labour leader Sir Keir Starmer said “we’re all cheering you on”.
“Good luck to (Mae Muller) a Kentish Town local, at @Eurovision tonight!” Sir Keir tweeted.
“We’re all cheering you on.”
Labour Mayor of London Sadiq Khan tweeted: “Tonight we’re rooting for our fellow Londoner Mae Muller in the #Eurovision final.”
Director of Culture Liverpool Claire McColgan, who has led the cultural, community and educational programmes running alongside the contest, has said that relationships forged with Ukraine would not end after Saturday’s final.
She said: “We have literally put Eurovision everywhere so no-one can not be affected by it and I think what people have seen, whether they like the Eurovision contest or not, is the kind of spirit of equality, the spirit of diversity, the spirit of compassion with our friends – our friends now – in Ukraine that is immeasurable.
“That is so powerful, and hopefully when this finishes one of the really great legacies will be those relationships in Ukraine, they’ll have a bit of Liverpool in their hearts.”
Former One Direction star Liam Payne has wished Muller luck in a tweet. Other celebrities sending their support include Robbie Williams, Kylie Minogue and Olly Murs.
In a video posted to the BBC Eurovision Instagram account, Collins told Muller to “channel your best Eurovision vibes”.
She said: “Do it for our country, darling, and I am so proud of you. I’m supporting you. Good luck.”
She spoke after coming off stage at the Eurovision Village in Liverpool on Saturday.
She said: “I think everybody’s trying extra hard to make it about Ukraine and make it really super special and coming from a different place.
“This is like the most beautiful day that they’ve ever had in Liverpool and I hate the word blessed but, you know what I’m saying?
“It’s like the gods are shining on this Eurovision.”
After months of preparation, the 25-year-old singer from north London will finally perform her track, I Wrote A Song, for the international voting public.
She is hoping to continue the success of last year’s UK entry Sam Ryder, who finished second behind Kalush Orchestra.
This year the UK’s representative is comedian and actress Catherine Tate.
Rylan Clark is part of a presenting panel which includes Graham Norton, Hannah Waddingham, Julia Sanina and Alesha Dixon.
Some ran straight to the front of the stage to claim a prime spot for the performances from acts including Claire Richards from Steps and Katrina Leskanich of Katrina And The Waves, ahead of the screening of the grand final from 8pm on the big screens.
– Austria: Teya & Salena – Who The Hell Is Edgar?
– Portugal: Mimicat – Ai Coracao
– Switzerland: Remo Forrer – Watergun
– Poland: Blanka – Solo
– Serbia: Luke Black – Samo Mi Se Spava
– France: La Zarra – Evidemment
– Cyprus: Andrew Lambrou – Break A Broken Heart
– Spain: Blanca Paloma – Eaea
– Sweden: Loreen – Tattoo
– Albania: Albina & Familja Kelmendi – Duje
– Italy: Marco Mengoni – Due Vite
– Estonia: Alika – Bridges
– Finland: Kaarija – Cha Cha Cha
– Czechia: Vesna – My Sister’s Crown
– Australia: Voyager – Promise
– Belgium: Gustaph – Because Of You
– Armenia: Brunette – Future Lover
– Moldova: Pasha Parfeni – Soarele Si Luna
– Ukraine: TVORCHI – Heart Of Steel
– Norway: Alessandra – Queen Of Kings
– Germany: Lord Of The Lost – Blood & Glitter
– Lithuania: Monika Linkyte – Stay
– Israel: Noa Kirel – Unicorn
– Slovenia: Joker Out – Carpe Diem
– Croatia: Let 3 – Mama SC!
– United Kingdom: Mae Muller – I Wrote A Song