Eurovision 2023: Birmingham backed to host by former runner-up – BBC

Eurovision 2023: Birmingham backed to host by former runner-up – BBC

A UK singer who nearly won the Eurovision Song Contest says she is "backing Birmingham" to host the 2023 event.
Imaani finished as runner-up to Dana International when the competition was last held in the city in 1998.
Seven cities are in the running to host it next year, on behalf of Ukraine.
The winning city is expected to be announced by the BBC and Eurovision organisers in the next few weeks.
Imaani finished seven points behind the Israeli winner 24 years ago, the year after Katrina and the Waves won with their UK entry Love Shine A Light.
Until Sam Ryder's stellar performance at this year's contest in Turin, Italy, she was the UK's most recent runner-up.
She remembers feeling "absolute terror" during the dress rehearsal for her song Where Are You?, at the city's National Indoor Arena.
"My management team drew lots over who was going to come down and tell me off for crying," she told the BBC. "I was just so scared."
Despite this, the singer has fond memories of the atmosphere in Birmingham during the live show.
"It was massive. Amazing band and the crowd was incredible. Such a huge building, it was amazing, a phenomenal experience," she said.
"There's no doubt in my mind that Birmingham could do it again. And a thousand times better than they did it before – and they did a pretty damn good job when I was there. I'm backing Birmingham."
If it wins, Birmingham will host the event at the 15,685-capacity Resorts World Arena.
Glasgow, Leeds, Liverpool, Manchester, Newcastle and Sheffield are also hoping to stage the event, in May.
Birmingham City Council leader Ian Ward said the summer's Commonwealth Games proved the city's ability to be the host.
"We saw during the Commonwealth Games people here in Birmingham rediscovering their pride and their confidence in their city and realising that Birmingham can do these major international events as well as any other city anywhere in the world," he said.
Eurovision super-fan Bryan Manley-Green, from Birmingham, said the city "blossomed" during Eurovision 1998.
"The city just came to life, it came to life for the whole month because we had the G8 just afterwards… so it was just a wonderful month," he said.
"He likes Eurovision more than me," joked partner Kevin.
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When Eurovision last came to Britain
How the UK broke its Eurovision losing streak
UK to host Eurovision Song Contest in 2023
Seven UK cities on shortlist to host Eurovision
BBC One – Eurovision Song Contest, 1998, UK Entry 1998- Imaani
Birmingham City Council
Eurovision Song Contest
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