Israel Revamps Controversial Eurovision Entry and Stays in the Race

by | Mar 9, 2024 | Explore Local | 0 comments

Israel Revises Controversial Eurovision Song Contest Entry and Stays in the Race

The Eurovision Song Contest has been in the spotlight as Israel makes changes to its entry following criticism that it was too political. The organizers, the European Broadcasting Union (EBU), have announced that the revised song, titled “Hurricane,” meets the necessary criteria and will be performed by Israeli participant Eden Golan in May.

The initial song, previously named “October Rain,” was deemed too political by the EBU. It was reported that the lyrics referenced the Islamist group Hamas’ massacre in Israel on October 7, which claimed the lives of around 1,200 people and abducted 250 others.

Eurovision Song Contest Trophy
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Positive Reactions to the Revised Entry

The decision to revise the song was met with approval from both the organizers and the Israeli public. The president of Israel, Isaac Herzog, had urged the broadcaster Kan to make the changes, emphasizing the importance of Israel’s participation in the contest. Kan initially expressed reluctance but ultimately heeded the president’s request to avoid disqualification.

Eden Golan, the 20-year-old singer representing Israel, expressed her joy upon receiving the news. In a video released by the public broadcaster, she shared her excitement. The revised version of “Hurricane” retains the same melody as the original “October Rain” but now focuses on the story of a young woman overcoming a personal crisis. The exact lyrics of the revised song have not been made public by Kan.

Overcoming Controversy for Eurovision 2023

Controversy surrounding the Israeli entries for the Eurovision Song Contest is not uncommon. In the past, other songs have faced criticism for being too political. The Israeli broadcaster referred to the disagreement with the EBU as a “difference of opinion.” They reached out to the songwriters of both entries and requested adjustments while ensuring their artistic freedom.

The decision to revise the song reflects Israel’s determination to participate and proudly represent the country on an international stage. Despite calls for Israel’s exclusion from the contest due to the recent conflict with Hamas, the organizers decided against it. Israel has previously won the Eurovision Song Contest four times.

This year’s edition of the contest will take place in Malmö, Sweden. With the revised entry, Israel remains in the race for the coveted trophy, aiming to captivate the audience with their revamped performance and make a positive impact.

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