Eurovision semi-final 2: When is it, what time does it start, presenters, musicians & can the UK vote in it?

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Eurovision’s second semi-final gets underway tonight

The Eurovision Song contest’s second semi-final gets underway tonight (Thursday, May 11) and 31 different countries are competing for a spot in the popular song contest’s grand final. Five countries have already been eliminated and fans now eagerly await the fate of 16 more.

In 2023, Liverpool was chosen as the Eurovision host city. Having won the competition last year, Ukraine was originally down to host the song contest but passed the privilege to the UK due to the Russian invasion.

The first semi-final saw ten countries qualify for the grand event including fan favourite’s such as Sweden, Finland, and Croatia. The host city began proceedings with an introductory film, starring the late Paul O’Grady alongside notable people with a connection to Liverpool.

There will be no introductory film at the second semi-final but fans will get to see a special performance titled Music Unites Generations, in which former Ukrainian Eurovision entrant Mariya Yaremchuk leads a medley of different Ukrainian music. UK entrant Mae Muller will also preview her weekend performance.

Here’s everything you need to know about the second Eurovision semi-final including when it’s on; whether it’s televised; who the presenters are; the line-up of musicians and running order; and whether the UK public can vote in it?

When is Eurovision semi-final 2?

Eurovision semi-final 2 will see 16 different countries battle it out from 8pm on Thursday May 11.

How to watch Eurovision semi-final 2?

The second semi-final along with the Grand Final on Saturday, May 13 will be televised on BBC One and BBC iplayer. It will also be broadcast live and available to watch on the official Eurovision Song Contest YouTube channel.

Full list of countries taking part in Eurovision semi-final 2

UK entrant Mae Muller will preview her weekend performanceUK entrant Mae Muller will preview her weekend performance
UK entrant Mae Muller will preview her weekend performance | BBC/Harry Carr/Capitol/EMI

Denmark: Reiley – Breaking My Heart

Armenia: Brunette – Future Lover

Romania: Theodor Andrei – D.G.T. (Off and On)

Estonia: Alika – Bridges

Belgium: Gustaph – Because of You

Cyprus: Andrew Lambrou – Break A Broken Heart

Iceland: Diljá – Power

Greece: Victor Vernicos – What They Say

Poland: Blanka – Solo

Slovenia: Joker Out – Carpe Diem

Georgia: Iru – Echo

San Marino: Piqued Jacks – Like An Animal

Austria: Teya & Salena – Who The Hell Is Edgar?

Albania: Albina & Familja Kelmendi – Duje

Lithuania: Monika Linkytė – Stay

Australia: Voyager – Promise

Can the public vote in semi-final 2?

Yes, despite not performing on the night, the UK has been given voting privileges as part of the ‘big 5’. You can vote after all the songs have been performed for a limited period of time.

The hosts of the show will indicate when the voting period opens and closes. Any votes cast outside the voting window during the live shows will not be counted but you may be charged.

Vote via the Eurovision app

The official Eurovision Song Contest app is your “ultimate second screen tool” during the live shows, available for iOS, Android and Windows devices. You’ll get live information about the participants, rank your favourites and be able to vote via the app.

Dublin indie rock band Wild Youth were one of five acts who were eliminated during the first semi-final Dublin indie rock band Wild Youth were one of five acts who were eliminated during the first semi-final
Dublin indie rock band Wild Youth were one of five acts who were eliminated during the first semi-final | BBC/Guy Levy

After voting you get a special video message from your favourite contestant.

Vote via phone or text

People watching in participating countries can vote by telephone or text. Relevant numbers will be displayed on screen by each participating broadcaster and on www.esc.vote.

Which acts will be performing in the interval of semi-final 2?

Performing ‘Music Unites Generations’ in the interval of semi-final 2 is Mariya Yaremchuk (Eurovision 2014), Zlata Dziunka (Junior Eurovision 2022) and rapper OTOY. Following this, three as-yet-unnamed drag performers and “a troupe of eclectic dancers” will perform the song, ‘Be Who You Wanna Be’.

After the 16 songs from the second Semi-final, a 1-minute preview from a selection of pre-qualified countries will be shown. During this segment, we will get a sneak peak at what’s to come from Spain, United Kingdom, and Ukraine.

What happened during semi-final 1?

The first semi-final on Tuesday (May 9) saw Ireland booted out of Eurovision after failing to attract enough points. Dublin indie rock band Wild Youth were one of five acts who were eliminated during the first semi-final at Liverpool M&S Bank Arena.

WildYouth weren’t the only rock band to fare badly, with Malta’s The Busker and Latvia’s Sudden Lights also losing their spot in the competition. The other artists on the chopping block were Azerbaijani twins TuralTuranX and the Netherlands’ Mia Nicolai and Dion Cooper.

Malta’s The Busker were also eliminated from semi-final 1Malta’s The Busker were also eliminated from semi-final 1
Malta’s The Busker were also eliminated from semi-final 1 | BBC/Guy Levy

Here’s a list of the 10 acts that made the cut:

Norway: Alessandra - Queen Of Kings

Serbia: Luke Black - Samo Mi Se Spava

Portugal: Mimicat - Ai Coração

Croatia: Let 3 - Mama ŠČ!

Switzerland: Remo Forrer - Watergun

Israel: Noa Kirel - Unicorn

Moldova: Pasha Parfeni - Soarele Si Luna

Czechia: Vesna - My Sister’s Crown

Finland: Käärijä - Cha Cha Cha

Who is presenting the Eurovision semi-final 2?

Presenting the second semi-final of Eurovision is Alesha Dixon (Strictly Come Dancing, Britain’s Got Talent), Hannah Waddingham (Ted Lasso, Game of Thrones), and Julia Sanina (Ukrainian singer).

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